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The Seventh Power: One CEO's Journey Into the Business of Shared Leadership    by Kevin Hancock order for
Seventh Power
by Kevin Hancock
Order:  USA  Can
Post Hill Press, 2020 (2020)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Carrol Wolverton

Empowering People Means Positive Change ...

Kevin Hancock is the owner of Hancock Lumber in Maine, a successful multi-generational company. In working with the company and by traveling and researching, he has arrived at some interesting conclusions about people and organizations. Acquiring a debilitating voice disorder helped as well. Since he had trouble speaking, he developed the habit of listening more so he didn't look bad. It changed his whole outlook and his life.

He spends this book in a folksy style convincing us that the best-run companies have many leaders. He says there is value in empowering people to own and believe in their job and their abilities. If positions are satisfying and fulfilling, work, production, and quality excel.

He visited various organizations and groups and asked lots of questions in his research. The Lakota Indians are a good example. They were conquered and moved onto a reservation. They were dictated to by the US government. As such, they floundered and grew weak. They took a look at what was going on and embraced their traditional Lakota ways that value all things and considers all objects, persons, animals, and vegetation to have value and purpose. All are interrelated. If we recognize and grant value (especially to people), they prosper and achieve. The Navajos have a similar tale. K'e is Navajo wisdom. Division is by need, not ego.

Dictatorial leadership does not work because then people and workers are at odds with management. Hancock calls this overreaching. This has been proven over and over in history, and he uses the Stalin and Hitler regimes as examples. Dictatorships die. He uses principles applied in The Ukraine as an example of turning life around so people are self-motivated. Corruption is replaced by achievement. People must be valued. The same principles apply to business and industry and pretty much everything else.

There are seven levels of power. The seventh level is the power of the individual spirit. Others have called this self-actualization. Hancock applies it to organizations and businesses as well. Real lasting change, he says, comes from within. If allowed and nurtured, great communities, great people, and great companies result.

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