The Essential Manager’s Handbook – review

The Essential Manager’s Handbook: The Ultimate Visual Guide to Successful Management
Published by DK/Penguin Random House, 2016; 463 pages

Really liked this book as a good jumping off point to learn about Management and Leadership. It is very well laid out, and the visual nature of the book – with bright colors, dialog boxes, and assorted graphics -added a lot of the ease of comprehension of the material, and kept it interesting enough that even the not-so-engrossing aspects were interesting enough to keep my focus.

The book itself is broken in to several sections:

  • Managing People
  • Leadership
  • Achieving High Performance
  • Effective Communication
  • Presenting
  • Negotiating

Each section is broken into chapters to focus on the overall topic. There are quizzes and self-checks throughout the book to help you determine where your own competencies are, and the chapters provide actionable ideas that you can begin using immediately.

Unsurprisingly, the first part of the book is on knowing yourself.  It advocates keeping a journal and doing various assessments (360 feedback, measures of emotional intelligence, etc.) to determine where your leadership and management skills actually are – and then using the information in the book – and others it references, in order to improve those skills.

I could quite literally fill this with gems of information and knowledge that I gleaned from my reading, but that would make this unduly cumbersome.  I will note that a lot of the knowledge gained I will be using in an upcoming class on being a Seneschal.

The bottom line is that I would definitely recommend this book, especially if you are new to the idea of leadership and/or management.