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Where Have All the Leaders Gone?

3.69  ·  Rating Details  ·  927 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews
Legendary auto executive Lee Iacocca has a question for every American: Where have all the leaders gone?

The most widely recognized business executive of all time asks the tough questions that America's leaders must address:

• What is each of us giving back to our country?
• Do we truly love democracy?
• Are we too fat and satisfied for our own good?
• Why is America addict
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 15th 2008 by Scribner (first published April 17th 2006)
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Pete Grondin
Jan 16, 2009 Pete Grondin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm listening to the audiobook of Lee Iacocca's Where Have All the Leaders Gone? It is a call to action for anyone who believes that this country is off course. I happen to believe in most of what Lee says in this book. Unfortunately, most of the kids (teens and young adults) in this country are too sidetracked by all the gadgets the world has to offer to pay attention to the issues. Forget about us baby-boomers. We're too tired. I hope that we can get mad enough to take action and make the Wash ...more
Nov 04, 2009 Andy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed Iacocca autobiography... this book is simply him ranting into a tape recorder and then having someone type the results. He is constantly name dropping and his love fest with Castro is particularly disgusting to read. One thing that is interesting is that most of the politicians that he believes are "honest and true" are presently under ethics probes and indictments.
I think someone talked him into "writing" a book before he kicks the bucket. It isn't hard to read and some of the
Rusty Henrichsen
I’ll start off by saying that Iacocca occasionally uses strong language, but not the “F” word. He does not do this excessively, but if this will offend you, read no further.

Iacocca, who comes from a blue collar background, went to college (Lehigh, not some Ivy League school) and prospered as he worked hard and picked up mentors along the way. He supported George W. Bush in the 2000 campaign but became disillusioned during his first term and worked for Kerry in 2004. With that background, you wil
Apr 21, 2008 Chris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the equivalent of sitting down with your grandfather and listening to him dispense pearls of wisdom about the state of the United States. The first two-thirds are really insightful, full of "common sense" that nobody seems willing to talk about or admit to anymore. The final third weakens a bit and becomes more of a rant. Still, some worthwhile things to consider especially as we head into this election season.

The most valuable thing I got from the book was his request that everyone, reg
Don MacAlpine
This book was a gift from my daughter, who knows I am political. It is a good read. I have saved it. I reference it in some of my own draft books. I do so because I shared many of the concerns about a lack of leadership that Iacocca talks about.

The book is well written by Iacocca's writing partner. So, why do I give this book such a low rating?

That is because it is a book written by another rich, deeply religious egomaniac who ends up being a hypocrite in the end. He did raise issues about Obama
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
"A man of character does not ask a single soldier to die for a failed policy."

"The job of a leader is to accomplish goals that advance the common good. Anyone can take up space. Here's the test of a leader: when he leaves office, we should be better off than when he started. It's that simple."

"The best recruiting tool for the jihadists is the war in Iraq."

"But change itself is not a leadership quality, and the ability to promise change does not necessarily qualify a person to be president."
Jul 06, 2015 Marilyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Reads like a common sense conversation (at times a rant) about the problems in the U.S. and aims his strong words at sound-byte driven, lazy leaders who think tax cuts for corporations & the wealthy will restore us to our former glory. He also makes the point that we elect them so we are responsible too.

The parts that resonated most for me were about the shrinking middle class. Where Henry Ford with his $5 a day wage and the unions with the establishment of benefits created a middle class, n
Jul 27, 2008 Mike rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not bad, really just hits home that our country is in need of strong leadership.
Aug 14, 2014 Brandt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lee Iacocca had always seemed to me to be a sort of cult hero. I have always appreciated his no nonsense style and his ability to relate to the average American. This Audio CS did little to change my perception. In his brash somewhat cocky style he delivers what can amount to a sermon on leadership. One thing to point out for sure is that this was from 2007, and he accurately and eloquently described each of the candidates for the 2008 presidency. I only rated it three start because there was no ...more
May 29, 2013 Steph rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not much to say...well written and, oh yeah, thanks for NAFTA, Mr. Iacocca.
Part rant, part call to action, part history of his life; Iacocca puts forth a list he calls the 9 C's of Leadership by which we should measure our leaders. The nine C's are curiosity, creativity, communication, character, courage, conviction, charisma, competence, and finally common sense. Unfortunately most of our leaders today are lacking in more than a few of these areas.

Like many pundits it is easy to point out flaws in the system, but what can we do for solutions? Iacocca suggests stressi
Tim Chavel
Jul 13, 2013 Tim Chavel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lee Iacocca wrote this book to take out his frustration on President George W. Bush in my opinion. What is so ironic is most of his points really could apply to President Barak Obama. As you read through the quotes below see what you think:

Hey, America, wake up. These guys [the government officials] work for us. ~Lee Iacocca

I’ve figured out nine points and called them “Nine C’s of Leadership.”
A leader has to show CURIOSITY. – If a leader never steps outside his comfort zone to hear different ide
Nancy Fuller
Jul 23, 2008 Nancy Fuller rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Everyone should read this book before the November election!
Everyone should read this book before the November election!!!

This book exposes just how far we have strayed from the constitution and good old fashioned American values. We are so brainwashed by the media that we can only see Republican and Democrat. This book favors neither Republican nor Democrat. This book wants us to return to the principles that made this country great.

Here's a quote from the book:
Am I the only guy in this country who is fed up with what is happening? Where the hell is th
Jan 22, 2009 Brian rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It has been my goal to read books from many different points of view, not necessarily of my own.
What I learned about this book is that Iacocca doesn't like George W. Bush. One of the most disappointing books that I have tried to read. I started reading this a few days ago. I thought maybe he was going to use the Bush criticism to start off his premise of how to define a great leader. I tried to remain open minded as this book was recommended by a friend. As I continued to read today I had to sta
May 30, 2008 CJ rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2008-books
I flipped through this book while waiting for my daughter to pick out some books for herself. I read Iacocca's autobiography back in the day and found that I kind of liked the guy, but we were really quite far apart politically. I will admit that I bought this book because he trashes George W. in the first few pages and I thought, "Maybe we're not so far apart after all."

I've been feeling queasy about the upcoming presidential election, but I couldn't quite figure out why. Lee has helped me figu
Ted Mallory
Mar 11, 2009 Ted Mallory rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I finished my first two summer novels, I wanted something current. I thought about the Asault on Reason by Al Gore, but I was afraid it might be too technical (dry) or too partisan (not that he doesn't deserve to be angry since HE was elected President, not Bush Jr.) Then I spied this one. I was going to give it to my dad for Father's Day. He'd read a couple of other books by or about Iacoca, he's from Michigan, so I figured he liked it. Well two things happened on my drive down to Phoenix ...more
Aug 11, 2011 Mathew rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I remember reading about Lee Iacocca’s leadership in Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap by Jim Collins. Collins said Iacocca was more interested in celebrity than being a great CEO – the lesson there being: great leaders have humility.

Iacocca does not list humility as important to great leadership. He does list nine other attributes: curiosity, creativity, communication, character, courage, conviction, charisma, competence, and common sense. And what does he do with these? Nothing
Nov 02, 2008 Cindy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Are all leaders just self interested power brokers? Lee Iacocca wants us to think that he's different.

Since the book has been out over a year, Lido's predictions are somewhat dated. Yet his argument that we Americans are not outraged enough at our current national trajectory is still on the mark - even though Mr. Iacocca had a visual or verbal role in many of these wrong turns and we should be holding him accountable as well. His protests come off as accurate but a little too late. Seems a comm
May 29, 2009 mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Concerned citizens/voters.
Lee Iacocca was perhaps the man most responsible for CEOs becoming celebrities and super millionaires. He's been retired now for about 15 years and this is his assessment of the state of America. It is a blunt indictment of American culture, the people, AND the leaders. A quote (pg. 205): "You don't have to be a genius to see that a nation full of overeating, pill-popping, TV watching, iPod wired, shopaholic, attention-deficit-disordered people is not going to make it. We could be headed for ext ...more
Jul 16, 2007 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I probably am a big freak for this, but…I have, in fact, read all three of the Lee Iacocca books. I read the first two because they were in abundance at the local Baltimore Book Thing, and I was curious. This one is typical of what he dishes out in the other two: straight-up, easy to understand opinion and common sense from Lee Iacocca. Say what I might about his sometimes simplistic-sounding advice, but it is hard to argue with success.
Iacocca was the man who worked for Henry Ford, the man behi
Sep 22, 2007 Gerry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: aspiring leaders
Iacocca,the bestselling author and former president of Ford and Chrysler comes out with guns blazing from page one, and never stops until the last page. He is howling on the sad state of leadership in the U.S. He starts with a rundown of sins committed by George W. Bush and his administration, and then moves on to criticize the American auto industry and is furious over the sale of Chrysler to Daimler-Benz.

At age 82, he has seen the U.S. overcome some of its worst crises, including the Great Dep
Alisha Bennett
This was a tough rating - ultimately I decided it was three star worthy only because I enjoyed Iacocca's style as well as his storytelling abilities. Overall this book title is misleading; there is little about actual leadership here - rather this is a conglomeration of rants, biography, raves and a plea to vote. As if this was his final adieu - Lee has put a bit of everything he finally wants to say (especially regarding the Bush administration) into these pages. I did find his "Rah Rah America ...more
Sep 01, 2014 Eddie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Very thought-provoking book... for a while. Mr. Iacocca provides very insightful commentary on leadership in general, the current (at the time) US administration, and the hopefuls for the 2008 election.

However, that is almost undone by two negatives:

1. He goes on a long, rambling rant about the auto industry. The cornerstone of capitalism? The glue of democracy? Uh... no. Expand your horizons, Mr. Iacocca. The world existed before the auto industry, and it will exist long after. Deal with it. Th
Dave B.
An entertaining short book that was more along the lines of a political treatise regarding the US leadership during 2007 than a book providing leadership values. I read this book hoping to gain knowledge on leadership style from a well known business leader. Unfortunately this book was more of a critique on Bush's administration and a reflection on Iacocca's post retirement years. The leadership qualities in this book can be summed in Iacocca's "nine C's" which are terms such as competence, char ...more
Dec 11, 2012 Ken rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lee Iacocca wrote this a year or two before Barack Obama was elected, so the current events are a bit dated, but there are some sound management and leadership principles presented. Curiosity, Courage, Conviction. There were a list of "C" words.
I enjoyed hearing some inside view of the workings of car companies, like Ford and Chrysler. Interestingly, he realized that he retired too early. He recommends remaining productive in later years in life.
He came off, at times, like he's trying to remai
Apr 17, 2008 Tim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: My Dad
I have to admit that I didn’t really know much about Lee Iacocca before I read this book I remember I heard his name in High school or maybe it was in a song, I can’t remember. So I decided to pick it up. I am so glad I did although the book starts out very negative towards the Bush presidential team I can understand that is because Mr. Iacocca is obviously upset with the current direction our country is headed. This is probably the reason he first decided to write this book and as he wrote, his ...more
Though this was a work book club pick, it really wasn't about Iacocca's leadership wisdom from his days with Chrysler - but much more a call to action for picking our nation's leaders. His political bent is definitely liberal and Democratic (similar to mine) but even though at times he really rants and raves - there are some good points as well. I liked the last half of the book better than the first half as he got away from what we need to look for in a political leader and concentrated more on ...more
Aug 11, 2013 Steve rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was one of the biggest disappointments in my reading list for a while. Iacocca's book about leadership is focused on the American presidency, and focused on the election year of 2008. He speaks about many subjects (I enjoyed his section on retirement) that wander far from his title concept. A big YUCK for me was enduring his long rant against the Bush presidency. In another point in the book he explains that he negotiated (unsuccessfully) with the Bush transition team to become ambassa ...more
Jul 24, 2008 Andrea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a very interesting and thought provoking book. Lee Iacocca discusses what used to characterize the American government and some of our outstanding political leaders throughout history. He then compares the past to the current political climate and leaders, and he presents an argument that we have no true leaders anymore. I'm not a huge fan of economics and politics, but I enjoyed this book. I thought it was a real eye-opener as to some of the areas that we as a country are currently fall ...more
Zoltan Toth-czifra
Enjoyable book from a legendary leader, a guy from the old times with real values a land a simpler view of the world. The message is a bit naive, but it gives its charm. It's like spending an afternoon with your grandfather telling your about his life, stories and ideas.
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