The Dichotomy of Leadership lays out 12 major aspects of leadership where people must find balance. Each chapter touches a dichotomy between taking control in some aspect and letting go. The book is a sequel to their first one “Extreme Ownership”. Throughout the read, the authors reference their first book by showing that being too controlling, taking too much ownership, or basically swinging the leadership pendulum too much in any direction will have a negative effect. Here are three points I want to highlight where I want to improve on.
First, an aspect of the dichotomy is to have discipline and structure but with grace. While a schedule and flow that is consistent is helpful, humans are not robots. Too much discipline will cause people to shutdown or leave. It’s counter-intuitive to hear that too much discipline is bad from former military members however, that is the truth.
The second point is to have the same relationship with every boss you’re under. The goal here is to have your boss trust you, have them value your opinion and have them give you what you need to accomplish your mission / tasks / goals. For me, this is the most difficult because it requires me to change and adapt to my boss. If I don’t agree with something, I have to adapt to give my boss what he / she needs so that I can complete the mission while also meeting the requirements of my leadership. This brings me to last aspect of showing humility and strength.
Finally, without humility and strength a leader is hard to follow. It makes me think of a saying popularized by Teddy Roosevelt, “Speak softly and carry a big stick.” This dichotomy truly can apply to all aspects of leadership.
In summary I wholeheartedly recommend this book for all leaders. Every adult can apply principles of this book to their work life, various organizations and their personal relationships.
You can find “The Dichotomy of Leadership” wherever books are sold. Here is the book’s listing at Echelon Front’s website: https://echelonfront.com/dichotomy-of-leadership/. Echelon Front is the name of the organization the authors are from and are the companies founders.
8 Seconds of Courage is short book with a deep inspiring story about Flo Groberg’s life from a child in France to the award ceremony for the Medal of Honor. Step by step you read about the events and people that influenced Flo’s life and decisions towards the Medal of Honor. Truthfully, the meritorious recognition is just the country’s way to recognize the commitment and sacrifice that Flo and his Soldiers already committed. The meat and substance lies in the journey to the heroism and then the recovery afterwards.
This book really highlights the journey it takes to move on instinct to protect your comrades. Flo is positively influenced by his uncle, finishes college, then joins the army. He then completes Army ranger school and leads two tours in the Middle East. It’s the memories, good and bad, that help lead him to make the right choices that protect lives. However, the 8 seconds of heroism is not the end of the voyage.
After the 8 Seconds of Courage comes recovery. This is where the battle of regret, self worth, courage to face loss and heartbreak edges on for years. Not weeks or months, it’s years of pain. It’s easy to highlight the act of valor or the ceremony for the Medal of Honor. Yet I found the most value in the story of the path to the salute to courage and the dark recovery within.
I fully recommend this book. It is a quick read but I was not able to put it down. The progression features the important points that the reader needs to understand to appreciate the journey of Flo.
Why a Download CPU app? Why would I create an app to Download CPU? Well, of course to enable everyone on Android phones to download CPU. “Isn’t that silly?” some people may ask. Yes, it is ridiculous, but I did it for fun.
I started off the Download CPU with just pictures in paint to get my concept and design down.
Once I had the concept down, I used this silly app to learn more things about developing Android apps. I mainly learned moving back and forth through Activities and putting in more logic in the app (such as flashing the background randomly). Changing the text proved to be challenging, I had to learn about the Handler() method and delaying posts. I also got better making a 3D image and working overall with the graphics of the app. This ended up being the finished product.
Overall, I’m happy with the finished product. I learned a lot more about developing an Android app and got to make a silly Download CPU in the process.
Copyright 1999, I’m behind the times with this version of “More Than Enough” from Dave Ramsey. What I liked about the book is that you could see the ideas of his later books forming in this one. I’m not sure I would classify this book as a financial book, it’s more of a behavior text on how to succeed in your aspirations. The entire book is filled with what we now call today (in 2019) Dave Rants. It provides counseling, quotes and stories touching on good moral values, integrity and character.
Another aspect this book brings is a lot of repetition, however, the repetition tells a story as you read through the chapters. Dave starts with values, vision and goals. He then maps a path that detours into hope, work, diligence, unity, contentment and giving. In between those detours are plenty of stories, quotes and motivational statements to get you fired up.
The Big Picture
Dave’s formula for financial piece starts with a decision to change. You work on getting better with managing money and get out of debt. From there, Dave focuses on character and building long term gains with positive moral influences. Surround yourself with who you want to become and be a better spouse, parent, friend, co-worker or citizen. Finally you finish life by serving and giving to others. The financial piece is just a part of the journey to a fulfilling life.
I recommend this book but I should set expectations. This is not just a ‘how to get out of debt’ book. It’s a motivational text on becoming a better person to serve others with a side benefit of financial freedom. It’s Dave’s way of telling you that you can do better and live a more fulfilling life.
Review of ‘Put Your Dream To The Test: 10 Questions to Help You See It and Seize It‘ by John C. Maxwell
Everyone has dreams, not the kind when you are sleeping but the kind where you want to do something, have something or be someone that you are not. I have had dreams: be a soccer player, make video games or be an officer in the Military to name a few. This book helps you hone in on your dream and asks tough questions to help you look at your realistic chances of success. This was a good motivational text and helped me get more realistic with what I want to achieve.
Some big takeaways
“Set a clear vision for your dream.” This for me struck a tone because I’m still figuring out my vision. It’s difficult to achieve something when you don’t have a clear goal in mind of what you want. I do set goals for myself but a vision is bigger. That is something I will have to ponder for a while longer. The next takeaway is all about growing past your limits.
“Stay within your strengths, move outside your comfort zone.” This point resonated with me because I have found that when I don’t like to do something, time drags on. However, when I do something I enjoy, it’s like I need to spend all day doing that activity. Now just take that one step further and move out of your comfort zone. If I can push myself one step farther every time, then I can accomplish my goal. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
The last point I want to highlight comes from the end of the book. “It is never too late to help others.” When you help others, you help yourself. I see this when I’m helping a client with a technical issue or when I’m helping family or friends. Nothing gives my life more meaning than when I’m helping someone else. Serving others changes your entire day. When you are consistent, that is when the change is infectious to others.
I do recommend this read. “Put your dream to the Test” was a good use of my time as it asks hard questions. If you take it seriously, this can point you in the correct direction with your dream for your success.
You can purchase the book here from Dr. Maxwell’s website.