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Theodore Roosevelt on Leadership: Executive Lessons from the Bully Pulpit

Theodore Roosevelt on Leadership: Executive Lessons from the Bully Pulpit - james m. strock I will admit that I probably wouldn't have picked this book for myself if it hadn't come highly recommended by somebody I respect. It turns out it wasn't half bad. I'm not a fan of the Business/Leadership/Motivational genre (as evidenced by most of my reviews on that shelf), but again I tell you this wasn't half bad. Theodore Roosevelt was the youngest President we've had so far. (Kennedy was the youngest elected, Roosevelt came into office as Vice President-turned-President when William McKinley was assassinated in Buffalo, NY at the Worlds' Fair in 1900). Even before his presidency, TR led an impressively interesting life, serving variously as Chief of Police and Mayor of New York City, a member of the New York State legislature, and a Colonel active in the Spanish-American War. The book is broken into short anecdotes, accompanied by background information for historical context. At the end of each chapter, author James Strock provides an analysis of Roosevelt's actions through the prism of business or leadership point of view. Subjects touched on include: public relations/communication, choosing one's battles, management of expectations, integrity, consistency, courage, tenacity, commitment, delegation of authority, leadership by example, and much more. Part of me wants to say this is all pretty intuitive and doesn't really need to be stated so explicitly, but if that were true, I guess you could level the same charge against the Bible. Business people seem to eat this sort of thing up, so it must be doing somebody some good to hear it over and over again (these leadership books, seminars, etc are all pretty much the same). My history is a bit rusty- embarrassingly so at times, so I found the historic information in this book to be fascinating. Did you know TR was almost singularly responsible for conceiving, funding, approving, and overseeing construction of the Panama Canal? Did you know there was an attempt on his life in 1912, just weeks before his unsuccessful run for a third term in office? With a bullet lodged in his rib, he insisted on delivering an hour-long speech at a campaign rally before seeking medical attention. Did you know TR dispised President Woodrow Wilson? So do I.Stuff like that made this book bearable.