The Leading-Edge Manager’s Guide to Success

•By David Parmenter
•Publisher: Wiley
•RRP: $78.99

New Zealand is not over-endowed with management thinkers and writers. For that reason alone, it’s good to watch home-grown author in this genre making it on the world writers’ and speakers’ circuit.
David Parmenter submitted his first article on key performance indicators to this magazine around 20 years ago. We accepted it, edited it and gave it the headline: Killer KPIs. Readers responded and Parmenter was hooked on the fact people took his advice seriously. It was time for him to move on from selling accounting services to Wellington businesses.
Parmenter is now the author of five books, many magazine articles and spends around 150 days year speaking to business audiences in some of the world’s largest cities. His latest book, all 380 pages of it, is not something to snuggle up to on wet Sunday afternoon. But it is treasure trove of pearls of wisdom and anecdotal gems.
The Leading-Edge Manager’s Guide to Success is the generalist manager’s one-stop-shop of career preparation, development and best practice processes that can be dipped into at any time of the day or night. fusion of practice and inspiration, this Manager’s Guide is resource guide that covers, if not everything you ever wanted to know about being successful manager or leader, certainly 80 percent of it.
The former accountant turned management and leadership writer and speaker, has followed his own advice as expressed in the first pages of his new book. “Create vision of what you want to achieve,” he says. Focus on neuro-linguistic programming.
The subconscious does not, apparently, know the difference between right and wrong; it does not know the difference between what is real and what is imagined in the future or the present; it does not know its limitations. That, reasons Parmenter, makes it possible for managers to accomplish their dreams if they envision them strongly enough.
There is wealth of helpful advice on an array of topics too broad for me to give any meaningful matrix of scope or scale – other than to say they fall into first identifying the kit needed to embark on the management journey, getting fit for the trek to the top and finally deploying techniques to become better manager or leader.
Parmenter finally focuses on leadership that makes difference. His personal heroes are explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, mountaineer Sir Ed Hillary and British bulldog Sir Winston Churchill from whom he draws anecdotes and incidents to prove his points about what it takes to think and act like leader. – Reg Birchfield

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