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Lead Inside the Box: How Smart Leaders Guide Their Teams to Exceptional Results

4.44  ·  Rating details ·  98 ratings  ·  37 reviews
Every employee is different, but unfortunately many leaders use a one-size-fits-all approach to leading. In doing so, these otherwise well-intentioned leaders are working harder than they should while not getting all they could out of their teams.

Lead Inside the Box gives leaders a way to get the best out of their teams by focusing their energy where it will make the bigge
Paperback, 288 pages
Published July 20th 2015 by Career Press
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Liz Alexander
Jun 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The question that appears to lie at the heart of this book is: How does a leader invest the limited time and energy they have, in order to secure the highest performance and provoke the greatest satisfaction from each member of their team? After all, as any successful leader knows, there is no “one size fits all” when it comes to nurturing others—it’s all about the dynamic. Mike and Victor have facilitated this process by identifying eight employee behavior profiles, two of which fall within eac ...more
Phil Buckley
Jul 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"Lead Inside the Box, How Smart Leaders Guide Their Teams to Exceptional Results" provides a simple and effective approach to assess and manage your team’s effectiveness. Victor Prince and Mike Figliuolo have created an assessment framework called the Leadership Matrix. The matrix lays out four distinct employee profiles based on behavioral characteristics individuals demonstrate. Each profile is defined by the level of output the employee produces in relation to the input required from the lead ...more
Chris Weldon
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Intelligently investing our leadership capital is important and this book arms us with tools to increase your management ROI. I found something very powerful that I didn't expect. People will move from box to box if you invest in them. Not blind investment in an underperforming employee but tips to win the battle before you fight it. What motivates them or what skills are they missing that you can help provide to hit that next level. I certainly spend a ton of time recruiting and hiring and some ...more
Bob Vanourek
Jun 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A highly practical guide to help managers at all levels guide their people to better performance. These super-smart authors have developed a unique approach for easily categorizing how people work and, more importantly, for communicating clearly to them what they need to do to improve. Not your typical performance review feedback, nor your ordinary talent development plan, it’s better than those. Rich with case studies based on practical research and examples for how you can implement. Coupled w ...more
Chris Sluz
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A great, quick read that draws from the author's experience leading teams of different sizes and structures to derive a practical blueprint for impactful and efficient leadership. Explains in clear terms who to invest your leadership time in, but why and how. You will definitely find yourself thinking of teammates and team members past and present to determine where they would fall in "the box". I highly recommend this book.
Richard Krevolin
Jun 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
How can you fully exploit your leadership capital
and do your best at work while still having a life
outside of work? "Lead Inside the Box" shows you how.
There are a lot of other leadership books out there
but none tackle the subject with as much passion and
intelligence as "Lead Inside the Box." Prince
and Figliuolo have devised new theories and
innovative concepts to allow any leader to
become much better at his or her job.
Kathe Sweeney
Jun 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Team leaders
Victor Prince and Mike Figliuolo break the mold by providing new and senior leaders with an invaluable guide for managing the most precious resource leaders have--our time and energy. Using their Leadership Matrix tool, you can identify the amount of time and energy you spend per team member as a function of the results produced by that team member, allowing you to make more informed decisions about employee development, retention, and promotion.
Jun 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This very practical guide will help managers be better leaders of teams. Those leaders who seek to obtain better performance will be interested in the very practical examples in the case studies. I value the approach Prince and Figliuolo take and how clearly they communicate techniques leaders can put to work immediately. Leaders owe it to themselves to read this book.
Amy Gonzalez
Jun 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Lead Inside the Box offers managers simple, practical advice for investing their time to maximize team performance and enable individual professional development. What's most useful is their handy categorization of employee behaviors and recommendations of successful leadership strategies and techniques for each. Well worth reading.
Jun 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A thought provoking look at a framework that should really help leaders better focus their efforts and tailor their approach to the needs of the individuals in the team. Given the real life experiences of the authors, this insights in this book are practical and ones that be easily taken to implementation.
Jarrod Spencer
May 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“Simple yet profound! Applicable. Relevant. The Leadership Matrix within this book is a must read concept for everyone involved with athletics. Knowing it, will give you a huge mental advantage!" ~ Dr. Jarrod Spencer, Sports Psychologist, Mind of the Athlete, LLC
Kristin Hendrix
May 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership
The authors' thoughtful, common sense approach to people development shines through in the reviewer's copy, and I cannot wait for the full version. I have worked with many individuals as they transition from contributor to leader and this will be on the "must read" list!
Michael Paradise
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is excellent at helping managers in identifying organizational players, assessing their value to the organization's success and deciding how to manage and grow. I look forward to embracing this for Sysazzle, Inc.
Jolie Miller
Jun 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I love how this book helped me think about my team in a new way, and with actionable steps to increase performance and growth. I always enjoy Mike's insights!
Kim Gravell
Jun 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mike Figliuolo and Victor Prince’s philosophy of maximizing “leadership capital” is the foundation for this thought-provoking approach to effective leadership.
Ritwik Kumar
Apr 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of the most practical books on managing a team. This book is a must read for all the people managers out there.
Alan Veeck,
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
Victor Prince and Mike Figliuolo point out brilliantly in their book, Lead Inside the Box: How Smart Leaders Guide Their Teams to Exceptional Results, that the intersection of individual people development and a leader’s time/energy investment in those individuals is the defining crossroads for a successful leader. Just as they have done in their thoughtLEADERS courses and in Mike’s previous book – One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership – the authors demystify t ...more
Lori Young
Jun 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Leaders have finite capital. In my years as an executive coach, rising leaders nearly always prioritized managing a budget as their biggest priority to get ready for a leadership role. While it’s important for leaders to manage the scope of their fiscal responsibilities, they also need to manage their leadership capital. “Lead Inside the Box” offers leaders an easy, yet targeted strategy to wisely invest in their leadership capital; the time and energy they use to get the most out of their team ...more
Bob Lenz
Jun 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Victor Prince and Mike Figliuolo offer a methodology that successfully answers two of the most pivotal questions facing all leaders – how do I invest my time and how do I best develop my employees? Lead Inside the Box presents a set of tools that helps the reader answer these questions while also recognizing that there is no “perfect” solution. This book also excels where so many other leadership books do not – rather than simply espousing thought provoking theories, Lead Inside the Box takes th ...more
Bill Adams
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it. The straightforward 2x2 Leadership Matrix of leader input vs. employees' output which Mike and Victor present is quite compelling. I've been a leader of people for over 34 years and could "see" where many of the people I've led over the years fell into one of the four boxes. Based upon the results of the leader's assessment of their employees, the authors prescribe suggested actions for the leader to take to increase output while balancing thei ...more
Matthew Crill
Jun 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
If you lead people or you're accountable for talent management, "Lead Inside the Box" is the "go to" resource to help you deliver exceptional results.

Victor and Mike guide you through a highly applicable 2x2 leadership matrix that will give you a framework to assess your team, evaluate their output, and give you strategies to help grow them and move them into a "higher return box".

I recently completed talent review assessments on all my managers and "Lead Inside the Box" was a wonderful resour
Jun 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“Lead Inside the Box” addresses the key role of every manager and leader: identifying and developing their replacement. Mike Figliuolo and Victor Prince have managed to concisely put in one book how to identify the players and lead them to deliver their best performance.

Even if you’ve read a leadership book in the past (and we all have), you haven’t seen the practical way “Lead Inside the Box” provides the groundwork for developing employees.

This book is a must-read for managers at every level
Christy Hendricks
Jul 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
As a leader, it's always challenging to determine where to focus your time to get the most from your team. Not all team members are created equal, so it's not surprising that you need to tailor your efforts to each member. The authors offer a fresh and practical perspective on assessing your team's talent and efficiently directing your leadership energy. They also offer tips on having those difficult conversations with team members who may not be a good fit for your team, no matter how much you ...more
Linda Ski
Jun 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book offers tools and a process for managing talent and a great one to follow if your company doesn't have a formal talent review program already in place. It's succinct with descriptions and definitions that are very relatable and much in line with Mike's previous book, "One Sheet Of Paper." Like the humane approach to help leaders give people a reasonable opportunity to meet expectations. Different advice here than some other books: spend more time with low performers and less with hi-pos ...more
Chris Delay
Jun 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The concepts and principles of “Lead Inside the Box” were interesting and insightful. In reviewing the behavior types I found the descriptions were very clear and on target. In reflecting on the various teams that I have led, I could find individuals from each behavior type on every team. By understanding the behavior types and the leadership capital needed for each, I will be able to develop a different and more effective approach to leading teams.
Mike Gunderloy
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
A framework for thinking about leadership in organizations based on a matrix that balances leadership capital invested vs. results obtained. I'm not currently leading a team, but this one was valuable to me from the other side of the table: I did some deep thinking about which of my behaviors at work are causing my boss to invest unwarranted amounts of his leadership capital. I came away resolved to change a few things, and that's about all I can expect of any book.
Jon Wortmann
Jul 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The right questions are a leader’s most valuable tools. Prince and Figliuolo provide the matrix and assessments to help every leader identify where their team is thriving and dragging. New and experienced leaders will benefit not only from the insights, but most importantly, the challenge: am I really spending my leadership capital the right way?
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
You won't get a lot of "fluff" with Mike's books. He's direct, to the point, and tells you not what you *want* to hear, but what you *need* to hear in order to be an effective leader.

If you're interested in leading teams for better results, you should buy this book now.
Jerry Ervin
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
“Lead Inside the Box by Prince and Figliuolo helps managers become leaders. As time is your leadership currency; this book will help guide you to use this currency on the right leadership matrix at the right time. It’s a must read for all new manager-leaders.”
Tony Matessa
Jul 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
During a time when we have limited time but a strong desire to coach and develop our teams - this provided a simple yet thorough method. We have already begun to put it in action.
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Victor Prince is a leadership author, trainer, and speaker. His books include The Camino Way: Lessons in Leadership from a Walk Across Spain (AMACOM, 2017), Executive Farm: A Leadership Fable (DiscoveredLOGIC, 2016), and Lead Inside the Box: How Smart Leaders Guide their Teams to Exceptional Results (Career Press, 2015). He trains and speaks to clients around the world on leadership and strategy. ...more

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