This is a big book with big principles and stories from big corporations

It sets out the 10 WEs: 10 principles on which all organisations should base their behaviour, to drive their operations, and ultimately build their culture.

Being with We, Kyle McDowell

They are 10 clear and unambiguous statements which are described in actionable terms, exemplified by stories and are simply irrefutable.

One of the ones which resonate with me, reading through my lens of self-aware leadership is WE 2: WE lead by example. For self aware leadership, modelling behaviour is a big consideration and as Kyle says, “…instead of QC for your product or service, you’re doing QC on your own behavior and attitude”. The essence of self-awareness.

WE 9: WE embrace challenge also aligns with my ideas about feedback and learning from it. Check out the Embrace-O-Meter to work out where you are and decide if it’s where you want to be. WE 3, 5, 6 and 8 align too.

The context of the book is big companies in big corporate America so not everything in the book will resonate, if you haven’t worked in those kind of places and spaces. But the messaging is clear and regardless of your work context, these 10 WEs are principles that organisations should aspire to.

My interest is self-aware leadership and I think this book is about WE-aware leadership. It would be great to follow the journey through from self-awareness to WE-awareness because they both contribute to a Culture of Excellence, which this book seeks to build and sustain.

I also think this book has a side hustle as an autobiography of Kyle’s contribution to corporate America. The stories are really good. I’m lucky to have recorded a podcast episode with Kyle a little while ago ready for release in the Autumn, and reading the stories in his voice makes far more sense than in mine!

Begin With We

A good book to make you think about your leadership and organisational standards. Probably most relevant to people working at the very top of big organisations and big teams and able to make big changes, but plenty to learn from wherever you are in whatever organisation you’re in

4 out of 5 from me

Remember that audio visual versions can be found on YouTube!