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Executive Leadership

Lorraine Monroe’s life changed when a teacher encouraged her to run for student office in the fourth grade. That began what was to become Monroe’s lifelong affinity for leadership roles.

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Steve Demos, who once practiced Buddhism in a cave, started making tofu in a bathtub and selling it at his tai chi class about 20 years ago. By 2001, his organic food company boasted the nation’s best-selling soy milk: Silk.

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Anybody can excel at the tasks they love. People who rise to the top also excel at what they don’t love.

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Here are the top five smartest books on leadership, as chosen by Fortune magazine:

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If you’re chronically angry, take these four steps to turn your leadership from negative to positive:

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You can find lots of reasons to covet someone else’s position: The person who’s in it has burned out; you can do it better; it’s time for a change, etc. But sniping and politicking make you look like the last person who should get that job if it comes open. Here are two better ways to position yourself:

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Aside from his unearthly talent with a ball—“any kind of ball,” says a childhood friend—what made former New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath almost unstoppable on the gridiron was his toughness. It came from his three older brothers.

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Here’s the “doom loop” for new products: You’re out of touch with consumers. Your new-products people are tucked so far away in the organization that they wind up obsessing over technical problems and never seeing firsthand what customers want. Take these steps to avoid doom:

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By now, you’re probably sick of the wretched saga at Disney. Be that as it may, court testimony about the mess still offers lessons about precisely how not to confer and administer authority.

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Jack Stack invented the Great Game of Business, a form of open-book management that aims to persuade people to pull together with an ownership and growth mentality. Here, in a nutshell, are the Game’s main objectives:

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