Developing Direct Reports
by Corrinne Armour, Anneli Blundell and Belinda Cohen
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Developing Direct Reports: Taking the guesswork out of leading leaders by Corrinne Armour, Anneli Blundell and Belinda Cohen

Product details
Paperback: 276 pages
ISBN: 9780994260116
Trim size: 229 x 153 mm
Strong leadership is essential to the success of any organisation and in today’s world strong leadership must be realised at all levels.
When leadership development fails, performance gaps increase. This adversely impacts company culture, delivery of organisational objectives and the bottom line.
This book was written to change the way leaders think about and drive performance development for their leaders. It takes the guesswork out of performance development and the critical conversations needed to support behaviour change.
Written for leaders who lead leaders, this book addresses the 12 most common, globally recognized leadership derailers:
  • Staller – analysis paralysis
  • Controller – command and control
  • Cyclone – bull at a gate
  • Doer – can’t delegate
  • Avoider – conflict averse
  • Fence-sitter – indecisive leader
  • Know-it-all – closed to other ideas
  • Guardian – inability to innovate
  • Micromanager – management on a leash
  • Poker face – showing no emotions
  • People burner – poor people skills
  • Tactician – poor strategic think
Good leaders advise their direct reports how to reach their potential. Great leaders inspire their direct reports to unleash their own potential for themselves. This book shows you how it’s done.
Human behaviour is complex. Developing leadership in others takes more than knowing the theory, having a few quick conversations and authorising the training budget. Bringing out the best in your leaders can be challenging and time consuming and often leaders give up because it is too hard or they simply don’t know what to do.
This book is for any leader who is serious about improving the leadership capability in their team or organisation. Developing Direct Reports really does take the guesswork out of leading leaders.
Drawing upon their extensive experience in leadership development, the authors share their proven approach for having meaningful development conversations that deliver sustainable performance improvement.
Packed with examples, insights and recommendations – and supported by a practical framework – this book will help you to:
  • understand what’s really driving the common dysfunctional leadership behaviours you observe in the leaders you lead
  • become a catalyst for behaviour change that sticks
  • take the guesswork out of developing your direct reports into better leaders.
Compiled as a ready reference to address leadership development challenges in the moment, regular application of the mindset, principles and strategies in this book delivers benefits for both the reader and their direct report leaders. The book invites the reader to take a committed approach to leadership development and to improve his or her own leadership capability as well. With its inclusive approach to leadership development this book supports leaders to become skilled at catalyzing behavior change thereby unleashing performance potential at an individual and organisational level.
“Perhaps the most essential skill of a gifted leader is the ability to cultivate leadership competencies in others. No book is more helpful in this area than Developing Direct Reports – outstanding! With lessons both insightful and strategic, the authors brilliantly illuminate the importance of leading others to greatness!”
Marshall Goldsmith author or editor of 35 books including the NYT#1 bestselling Triggers and global bestsellers Trigger, MOJO and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There
“Wow – you can’t help but be a better leader after reading this book. But more importantly, this book will give you the savvy to develop leadership in others. Deeply insightful and incredibly practical – an essential primer for any leader of leaders looking to develop the leaders of tomorrow.” – Dr Jason Fox, bestselling author of The Game Changer
“One of the challenges for executives in senior leadership roles is the significant investment of time spent on managing people issues and growing the next generation of leaders. And yet few executives are trained in the basics of psychology to help navigate through difficult people issues and know the best interventions to help grow their people. Developing Direct Reports’ is a life line for any executive who can clearly see the impact of their direct reports’ behaviour, but is unsure what to do. The book provides practical advice on how to diagnose leadership derailers and simple coaching tips to effectively develop people. For those executives brave enough to hold up the mirror and assess one’s own behaviours, ‘Developing Direct Reports’ is also a valuable tool for their own leadership development.”
Chris Akayan, Group General Manager - Human Resources, Mirvac
“Developing Direct Reports is so much more than just another leadership toolbox. It’s a flight-path for any leader who wants to effectively forecast, navigate and enjoy the complexities and opportunities which leading any team entails. There’s both laughter and solemn recognition to be had in reflecting on the 12 Leadership Derailers, which forms an inspirational platform for a key takeaway: that leadership is a privilege we should never take for granted.”
Sean Hughes, Senior Executive
 “This book takes an enigmatically practical approach: a readable deep-dive into self-awareness, team-awareness and the neuroscience of leadership … balanced by practical step-by-step checklists anyone can follow. In our complex, changing world, knowing how to work with people and issues and “discover, decode and design” solutions is vital. The practical coaching tips included can be applied to any of the 12 leadership “derailer” behaviours that will be all-too-familiar to new and experienced leaders alike. Government, business, social sector: people are people and have shared subconscious drivers and concerns: and almost every interpersonal contingency is addressed. This book should form part of the library of every manager: either as a quick-check refresher for senior executives, as a go-to source of inspiration and ideas for emerging leaders, or as an essential reference for everyone else. Easy to read, straight to the point, and with depth for almost any workplace situation.”
Richard Dent OAM FAICD, Chief Executive, Leadership Victoria
About the authors   
Corrinne Armour:
Waging a war on wasted potential, Corrinne’s mission is empower leaders and teams to get out of their own way and embrace ‘fearless leadership’. Known for her innovative approach, results focus and the ability to tell it like it is, she is recognised as a provoker of change and growth. After living in Asia for a few years, Corrinne cooks a mean curry.
Anneli Blundell: As a professional ‘people whisperer’, Anneli has been working with leaders and teams to improve their communication and interpersonal intelligence for almost a decade. She brings to her clients a recognised expertise in the field of ‘below conscious communication’ and motivation and is obsessed with decoding people and performance dynamics for improved results. Anneli also rates herself as an excellent parallel parker.
Belinda Cohen: Performance improvement is at the heart of all Belinda’s work. With a natural curiosity for what drives behavioural diversity, Belinda brings a non-judgmental, supportive and ‘no excuses’ approach to her clients. She combines her legal and leadership experience with her passion for helping people work smarter. Belinda assists her clients to simplify the complex to bring about fresh perspectives and a new focus. Belinda’s ability to plan and book travel of any kind is an enviable skill.
All three are accomplished speakers, trainers and mentors. Together, they have published two other specialist reference books on shifting human behaviour. They are all passionate about their family, the privilege of doing great work with wonderful clients and quality dark chocolate.

Reviews (5)
Name : Paul Warwick
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Review : “This is the must have read for anyone who is leading their team through change. To be successful in leading change you need the “buy in” of your team. As organisations reshape their operations to fit into Living Longer Living Better or NDIS you need to understand how your teams will react. Developing Direct Reports delivers that. Not only does it give a insight to the individuals of your team but it also provides an approach. The Discover Decode and Design approach is a winner. If you’re serious about delivering real and lasting change within your team and services you need to read Developing Direct Reports. Get the book!” Paul Warwick Regional Manager Vision Australia January 2016”

Name : Kathy McKenzie
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Review : As a coach and facilitator in many organisations I recognise a huge need for a readable and practical resource for leaders both new and experienced to help them understand how to get the best out of the people they lead. This book comprehensively identifies the derailers and how to deal with them. Taking such a complex topic and arranging in such a digestible and understandable “how to” manual is a huge task that Corrinne, Anneli and Belinda have done superbly. I grabbed it to read on a flight to Brisbane and did not put it down until done. It is not only well written, but worth every leader having a copy to read and enjoy, and then come back to as the inevitable challenges of leadership arise. I will be recommending that all my clients keep their copy close by.

Name : Bente Ryan
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Review : I have recently stepped into a new leadership role. Understanding the 12 Derailers in 'Developing Direct Reports' is helping me identify where each staff member is at, and what support they need. I am also mindful that I need to manage myself to manage the team, and the book is giving me insights into my own leadership style.

Name : Tony
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Review : This is a GREAT book with some fantastic insights. The way it deals with what people are really thinking is fantastic. I have been using the tips and ideas as a basis to coach new managers! I recommend this book for managers and people who support them.

Name : Andrew Pratley
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Review : ​Developing Direct Reports takes the guess work out of how to develop leaders in your organisation. The purpose of the book is to help you discover what the problems are, decode the underlying cause and design action plans that work. Each of the twelve leadership derailers is broken down into a format that is easy to engage with. Developed from the stories of clients blended with research we see the impact each leadership derailer is having on the individual, their team and their leader. We have all worked with, or for, 'controllers', but when in a position of developing leaders what can you do? This books not only answers the question, it provides a coaching framework to implement the change. The real value of Developing Direct Reports is not in the change we can affect in other people it's the change we can affect in ourselves. This book is ideal for anyone who wants to develop direct reports, now or in the future. ​Dr Andrew Pratley​ Adjunct Lecturer, University of Sydney Business School

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