David McCleary's Reviews > Leaving Prisons: Release Your Trapped Value!

Leaving Prisons by David McCleary
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Nov 24, 2009

(Review from the author)
it was amazing
Read in November, 2009

I'm the author, so I'm a bit partial, but here are some endorsements from some people you might recognize:

“This is the book to read if you are willing to look at your own contribution to constraining your full potential. And McCleary deliberately won’t tell you exactly what to do, because he knows better than that. He has insights, though, into the territory that are well worth your while, and his insights are mostly about some highly worthy questions that you may choose to explore. These questions are woven around a great number of inspiring and sobering stories about self acceptance, self immolation and the reality that leadership is an entirely human process about reframing our relationships with ourselves and others.”
Gary Jusela, President, Gary Jusela | Associates, Inc.

“A bold guide for leaders courageous enough to engage in serious self-reflection; an invitation to explore what is perhaps the last frontier for excellence – self-interference.”
Timothy Gallwey, author of The Inner Game of Tennis, The Inner Game of Work, and The Inner Game of Stress

“This is powerfully unique leadership literature – it encourages you, the reader, to become part of the book, capture pertinent insights about yourself, and create your particular journey toward flawlessness. This book’s questions allow you to dive as deep into your prisons as you dare – the deeper the dive, the easier the departure. However, we all may need valuable input from trusted friends to peel back the onion and ensure we’re on the right path. Don’t waste time guarding your solitary confinement from needed disclosure and vulnerability – get others to help you answer these questions and start leading flawlessly!”
Ted Beahm, Regional Learning Manager, The Home Depot

"The Flawless Leader Papers tackles the part of leadership that others tend to fear and avoid - the dark side. David's work with leaders at their heart and character level is foundational and sometimes life changing. In this book, he articulates that work so that many others can learn from it. David has a strong, fresh, clear voice on leadership - what it is and why it matters."
Sue Stone Byrne, Founder, Byrne Consulting Group, and former Global Head of Leadership Development, Novartis Pharmaceutical, Basel, Switzerland

“McCleary’s work on flawless leaders offers pragmatic and useful insights for helping leaders know themselves so that they can serve others. The signs and messages ask questions that will enable leaders to look inside so that they can free themselves from personal traits, which keep them from leading others. The book does a masterful job weaving together personal and organizational change.”
Dave Ulrich, Professor, Ross School of Business, University of Michigan and Partner, The RBL Group

“It dawned on me slowly, the meaning of David McCleary's words: Yes, they are about leadership, but the larger theme here is maturity. The Flawless Leader Papers is a roadmap to human maturity, something that all leaders must possess, if they are going to rally, inspire and guide other human beings to ever-higher levels of personal productivity and collective performance. With palpable urgency, passion and conviction, McCleary writes that "we are cause, not effect." His assertion gets to the heart of what all mature leaders must understand: That their every word, every gesture, every directive causes change to happen in large ways, or small ways, for better or for worse. If "releasing trapped value" is the goal, then making leadership the most vigorous expression of human maturity is the way forward. Getting there is the promise embedded in David McCleary’s heartfelt book.”
Larry Ackerman, President, The Identity Circle, and author of Identity Is Destiny and The Identity Code

“Leadership has been the “bright shiny object” we hoped would solve the intractable problems in organization performance and change, and a source of great disappointment. In The Flawless Leader Papers, McCleary gives us some clear insights into why: Leadership requires the kind of self awareness you don’t get from knowing your Myers-Briggs Type, and leadership is not an individual trait but a social and organizational capacity that is powerful only when it is shared.”
Chris Worley, Research Scientist, USC's Center for Effective Organizations and Professor, Master of Science in Organization Development, Pepperdine University

“Creative and compelling writing with a dynamic message; in short, it was one hell of a good piece!”
Dr. David H. Eaton, psychotherapist

“To develop oneself as a leader, turn away from the familiar, the comfortable, and even the sources of existing power. That’s the message of this book, and David McCleary makes it sound not just possible, but compelling.”
Art Kleiner, author of The Age of Heretics and editor-in-chief of Strategy+Business

"Caterpillars obliterate themselves to produce the butterflies that dazzle us. McCleary thoughtfully and without apology asks you to obliterate yourself to liberate your leadership and give it wings. If you are looking for easy 1-2-3 leadership, look elsewhere. This is deep and necessary provocation."
Ron Crossland, co-author of The Leader's Voice and former Vice-Chair, Tom Peters Company

“The Flawless Leader Papers is difficult to swallow for anyone in leadership today because we all possess these flaws outlined throughout the book. David powerfully captures and reminds all of us aspiring leaders “the difficult, mysterious and dusty old thought we too often avoid.” These tough and challenging questions are not for the faint-hearted. They are thought provoking and they encourage us leaders to reflect, learn, grow and change our behaviors so that we can leave our own prisons and become flawless. Your life will be transformed as well as the lives of the people you lead. This book will help guide you and provide answers in your journey to become a flawless leader.”
Werner Widmann, President, Multek Corporation

“McCleary offers a provocative look at what keeps leaders trapped in destructive patterns and unconscious behaviors. The way out? Self-awareness and the courage to look within. He offers penetrating questions that can shake the reader loose of their own traps, if only they will allow it.”
Ann E. Feyerherm, Director, MSOD Program, Pepperdine University

“Leadership remains a top topic, and McCleary presents a compelling case for identifying the kind of leader we sorely need. Debunking the long-held cliché of the arrogant, autocratic leader, he argues that the truly powerful leader possesses genuine, trust-inspiring humility and keen self-awareness along with a loving respect for the strengths and relational values of those being led. As this gets at the “people-centric core” of what we teach at Birkman, I could not agree more wholeheartedly!”
Sharon Birkman Fink, CEO, Birkman International, Inc.

“Do not read this book unless you are prepared to challenge your core assumptions about who you are and how you lead. Real leadership is born through advanced self-awareness so get ready for some sharp and piercing arrows of self-reflection. McCleary writes about leadership like a master archer aims; true, steady and on the mark.”
Jim Eckels, Organization Effectiveness Internal Consultant, The Boeing Company

“Dave tackles tough dilemmas for all leaders. Identifying typical leadership flaws is the first step for leaders becoming the effective managers and visionaries that all leaders need to be.”
Carl S. Ey, Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army

“Leadership is much more than the ability to compel the actions of others, or to achieve goals. It is, first and foremost, about impartation – of vision, passion, and, if one is truly a leader, of self. With so much empty leadership in our generation, it is refreshing to hear a voice calling leaders to maturity, transparent integrity, and substantial credibility, rather than simple “bottom line” assessments of aptitude. While many books on the subject content themselves with being ‘How-to’, Dave McCleary offers us a ‘Who-to’ composition on leadership, and reminds us that you cannot impart what you do not possess.”
Rev. David Gregg, Sr. Pastor, Lighthouse Church, Plainfield, CT

“Through a series of stories and unique questions, McCleary challenges readers to explore issues that are crucial not only to leadership, but to all relationships in organizations. This is a good read and if you take the time to explore McCleary’s questions I guarantee it will be time well spent.”
Jim Tamm, co-author of Radical Collaboration: Five Essential Skills to Overcome Defensiveness and Build Successful Relationships

“Dave McCleary's Flawless Leader Papers invites those of us engaged in the art of leadership to explore questions that help us discover what it is to truly be a flawless leader. This is most refreshing in that it invites us to discover our own way of being vs. some prescription for how to act. His questions invite us to expand our thinking vs. limiting it with easy answers and quick fixes. His book is about what leadership should be and often isn't. A journey of self-discovery which to my way of thinking is the most satisfying journey of them all.”
Harry B. Sloofman, Managing Director, Achieve Learning

“In The Flawless Leader Papers, David McCleary raises an incredible question that all leaders must deal with - "What purpose is worthy of my surrender?" From there, David challenges us with various experiences, thoughts and questions that allow us to wrestle with our purpose as a leader. Each page will take you one step further in becoming a flawless leader. You will not be disappointed with your journey through these words of wisdom.”
Dana McArthur, Consultant and Co-Founder, resonate

“Well beyond a traditional business book, McCleary’s The Flawless Leader Papers produces a deep self-reflection of who we are and shows how this self-reflection can unleash authentic personal awareness and enhanced performance.”
Mike McNamara, CEO, Flextronics

“Dave’s writing is much like Dave’s consulting: deep, purposeful, thoughtful, and chockfull of wisdom. Tread here only if you are prepared to dive deep into your own soul and stay there for the duration. Doing so makes transformation almost inevitable.”
Jon Mullican, Executive Minister, Highland Oaks Church of Christ, Dallas, Texas

"Answer the questions this terrific book poses and you will be on your way to becoming an authentic leader destined for success. This is as good as it gets, and is destined to become a classic!"
Jason Jennings, bestselling author of Less Is More, Think BIG-Act Small, and Hit The Ground Running

"This book contributes McCleary's unique and valuable perspective to leadership literature. It's definitely not the “same ol', same ol”’ we are used to reading. It debunks leadership myths, striking a shattering blow to the armor of the heroic leader, revealing the small, naked individual inside suffering under the weight of all that he/she has been trying to hold up. Thoughtful leaders will love the stimulation this book provides."
Geoff Bellman, Consultant and co-author of Extraordinary Groups

"This is far more thoughtful and provocative than most leaderships books on the market. If you're looking for 10 simple steps, don't pick this up. If you are ready to examine your potential in a new way, I highly recommend this book."
John Childers, JD, MSOD, Senior Director, Hildebrandt

“In this book, David asks important questions that are rationally unanswerable, the kind of questions that "remain rattling within us" and yet lead to profound growth and change. This book takes us on the incredible journey of becoming a leader. There are no lists of things to do or ways to be, only questions to "disturb our sleep and disrupt our thoughts," questions that can only be answered by taking the journey toward becoming a Flawless Leader.”
Stephen Pile, President, XF Teams

“The Flawless Leader Papers cuts straight through all the protective layers that so many of us have in place, and explains how understanding and accepting our own brokenness is key to the journey to becoming a Flawless Leader. With challenging and powerful metaphors, Dave encourages us to dig deep and come face to face with our self-imposed limits on our own potential.”
Patrick J Hehir, MBA, MSOD, President, Business Value Group LLC

"David McCleary will challenge your thinking in The Flawless Leader Papers. Edgy and thought provoking, David works to ensure it addresses the root issues affecting leadership today. Don't expect a quick fix approach, but a revealing view of the fundamental aspects that distinguish a truly successful leader. By reviewing and applying his latest thinking, your leadership capability is bound to excel."
Troy Heflin, Sr. VP of Organization Development and Change, AB Volvo

“Playing poet, provocateur, pundit, and prophet, McCleary nudges you gently at times and pushes you mightily at others to honestly examine who you are and why people ought to be following you. It’s the most unique perspective on leadership I have ever come across – I guarantee you have not read a book like this one!”
Jim Kouzes coauthor of the best-selling book, The Leadership Challenge, and Dean's Executive Professor of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

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