My new book! The Greats on Leadership

I’m pleased to announce the publication of my latest book, The Greats on Leadership: Classic Wisdom for Modern Managers.

It will be released in early May wherever books are sold. Reserve your copy today, and read on for details …


Many thanks to the wonderful team at Nicholas Brealey Publishing (an Hachette company based in London and Boston), who believed in this project and have been delightful to work with at every step of the way.

You can read all about the book on my website,–including, I’m proud to say, some great early reviews from luminaries of the leadership and literary worlds: Marshall Goldsmith, Richard Whiteley, Bryan Burrough, John Humphrey, Diane Hessan, and many more.

Speaking of luminaries, I recently spoke to columnist Chris Nelson about the ideas in The Greats on Leadership. Read his very interesting article: “Ditch Your Corporate Leadership Training Program: Launch a Shakespeare Book Club Instead.”

Finally, here’s a quick summary of the book … Please buy and enjoy!

The Greats on Leadership: Classic Wisdom for Modern Managers

You don’t need a big title or a business degree in order to lead with impact. What you need is practical wisdom: the insight, judgment, and strength of character that all great leaders have, but most business schools and corporate workshops don’t teach. The Greats on Leadership gets you there.

Jocelyn Davis takes you on an in-depth tour of the best leadership ideas of the past 25 centuries, featuring classic authors from Plato to Winston Churchill, Shakespeare to Jane Austen, C.G. Jung to Peter Drucker, and many more. In a style both thought-provoking and entertaining, she shows how history’s great writers have always been, and still are, the real leadership gurus.

Davis spells out the behaviors that distinguish true leaders from misleaders and covers 20 specific leadership topics, including:

  • Leadership Traps (Shakespeare)
  • Change (Machiavelli)
  • Power (Sophocles)
  • Dilemmas (Madison, Hamilton)
  • Communication (Lincoln, Pericles)
  • Personality Types (Jung)
  • Motivation (Frankl)
  • Judgment (Maupassant, Melville, Austen, Shaw)
  • Character (Churchill, Plutarch, Shelley, Joyce)

Each chapter begins with a synopsis of a great work by the author and then draws out the key leadership insights, weaving them together with business examples, the best contemporary research, and tools to help put it all into practice. In the last two chapters Davis presents a new way to think about leadership levels, framing them in terms of the impact you have rather than the title on your business card.

Whether you’re a recent graduate or MBA searching for something more inspiring than the standard textbook, a new manager looking for something deeper than the typical how-to book, or an experienced executive seeking ideas to lift you to the next level, this remarkably readable and practical guide will set you on the road to becoming a great leader.



About Jocelyn R Davis

Jocelyn Davis is Principal of Seven Learning, a leadership development firm that creates a lasting lift in leaders' effectiveness using classic books, films, and stories.
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