The Mentor Leader
Authority vs. Influence
The Mentor Leader, by Tony Dungy, is the coachÃ¢ÂÂs third book he has written, but only the first of which I have read. From the onset, it is clear that this book covers a topic which unfortunately doesnÃ¢ÂÂt get implemented by individuals in leadership positions to the extent which it should. Coach Dungy masterfully explains how an individual in a leadership role influences others, and by virtue of that fact, essentially leaves a legacy to those underneath them so that they can become peers. That is in contrast to a more secular interpretation of a leader being one who is in control of others. Coach Dungy provides examples of how to allow individuals to become good influences on others, for the purpose of making them better, no matter what they do. The impact that a leader can have on an individual is tremendous. It is refreshing and worthwhile to see Coach DungyÃ¢ÂÂs approach as a leader in an avenue which is too often full of leaders who are out for their own goals and achievements. The mentor leader seeks to better others and build them up to make them leaders as well. A definite worthwhile read for someone who is seeking to gain insight from someone who is truly a gentleman and a great positive influence. Ã¢ÂÂItÃ¢ÂÂs not about meÃ¢ÂÂ sums up Coach DungyÃ¢ÂÂs mentor attitude, but also servant attitude as well.
July 24, 2012
would make an awesome bible study
many great biblical references along with ways to apply them in today's world to become a better and more enriched spiritual guide (leader)
June 22, 2012
A quality book with lots of relevant information. Very uplifting and helpful. We gave this book out to several coaches as gifts. We highly recommend it!
January 4, 2012
A useful resource!
In his introduction, Dungy outlines the Ã¢ÂÂessential traits of a mentorÃ¢ÂÂ (p. xvii-xviii):
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring Ã¢ÂÂcan be taught and learned; but in order to be absorbed, it must be practicedÃ¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring Ã¢ÂÂfocuses on developing the strengths of individualsÃ¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring Ã¢ÂÂworks bestÃ¢ÂÂ when there is Ã¢ÂÂgenuine concernÃ¢ÂÂ shown
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring is about Ã¢ÂÂshaping, nurturing, empowering, and growingÃ¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring is Ã¢ÂÂabout relationships, integrity, and perpetual learningÃ¢ÂÂ
Ã¢ÂÂ¢ Mentoring is Ã¢ÂÂabout changing livesÃ¢ÂÂ (p. xvii-xviii)
Although all 9 chapters of DungyÃ¢ÂÂs book relates to the Ã¢ÂÂmentor leader,Ã¢ÂÂ there were 3 chapters that seemed to prepare the heart of the mentor: Chapter 3, Ã¢ÂÂA Look Within,Ã¢ÂÂ Chapter 4, Ã¢ÂÂCharacteristics That Matter,Ã¢ÂÂ and Chapter 6, Ã¢ÂÂLiving the MessageÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 45, 67, 123). In chapter 3 Dungy explains, Ã¢ÂÂIn order to become an effective mentor, in whatever setting, it is important to take a look inside yourselfÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 45). He suggests that potential mentors take a Ã¢ÂÂpersonal inventoryÃ¢ÂÂ to assess what makes them Ã¢ÂÂthink, react, and respond the way they doÃ¢ÂÂ and what makes them Ã¢ÂÂdo the things they doÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 46). An honest self assessment will reveal personal strengths and weaknesses, unresolved issues from the past and meaningful priorities (p. 64-65).
Ã¢ÂÂCharacterÃ¢ÂÂ is described as Ã¢ÂÂthe person [others] view as the most trustworthy, who cares the most and who is willing to always do the right thing,Ã¢ÂÂ and according to Dungy, it is the Ã¢ÂÂglue that bonds solid and meaningful relationshipsÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 71). In chapter 4, Dungy presents the characteristics he believes are Ã¢ÂÂmarksÃ¢ÂÂ of a good mentor. These Ã¢ÂÂmarksÃ¢ÂÂ include competence, integrity, authenticity, courageous, faithfulness, accountable, available/approachable, loyalty, and protectiveness (p. 72-91). Throughout this chapter (and the whole book), Dungy uses Biblical references to support his points. For example, Dungy states, Ã¢ÂÂa genuine sense of self-worth is best obtained through a relationship with GodÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 74). In another part of the chapter, Dungy discusses the parable found in the book of John, chapter 10, to illustrate the Ã¢ÂÂmarkÃ¢ÂÂ of protectivenessÃ¢ÂÂÃ¢ÂÂWhen a wolf comes and threatens the flock, the hired hand runs away. . . . the shepherd on the other hand, rises to the defense of his sheepÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 94).
Dungy starts chapter 6 with a Scripture verse from the book of Matthew: Ã¢ÂÂJesus said, Ã¢ÂÂItÃ¢ÂÂs not what goes into your mouth that defiles you; you are defiled by the words that come out of your mouth. . . . The words you speak come from the heartÃ¢ÂÂthatÃ¢ÂÂs what defiles youÃ¢ÂÂÃ¢ÂÂ (Matt. 15:11, 18). He uses this Bible passage to show that mentoring starts in the heart of the mentorÃ¢ÂÂbasically, what is inside determines what will come out (p. 123). Dungy claims that people will notice various things about other individuals: their faith, their words and actions, and their legacy (p. 124-135). When discussing faith, Dungy says, Ã¢ÂÂFaith is the foundation and strength of the mentor . . . . the guiding principle behind everything we do . . . . Faith will go a long way toward giving others a reason to follow youÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 134-135). Dungy believes that the Ã¢ÂÂmany things that guide the daily steps of mentorsÃ¢ÂÂ (relationships, impact, involvement, character, faith, and actions) shape oneÃ¢ÂÂs legacy; Ã¢ÂÂlegacyÃ¢ÂÂ results in Ã¢ÂÂchanged livesÃ¢ÂÂ (p. 136, 138). In other words, a mentor is successful if he or she contributes to the positive changes in other peopleÃ¢ÂÂs lives. DungyÃ¢ÂÂs use of the Bible shows that GodÃ¢ÂÂs Word is important to him. It also shows that even if a mentor has all the necessary traits necessary, it is God who ultimately changes peopleÃ¢ÂÂ Ã¢ÂÂwith God all things are possibleÃ¢ÂÂ (Matt. 19:26).
Review by: M. Teresa Trascritti
December 29, 2010