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New book offers a lens for viewing effective leadership

Honest, open relationships built on mutual trust drive success.

February 13, 2015
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A Holland leadership-development consultant has built on his series of “trUTips” to create a book for those eager to learn how to become more effective leaders.

The trU Group LLC’s founding president, Scott Patchin, has used his experience in consulting and directing people strategies to shed new light on effective leadership in his latest book, “People-Centered Performance: Bringing Out Our Best Through Honest Conversation.”

As a leadership-development consultant, Patchin provides training and coaching services to leaders in high-growth and/or culture-focused organizations. For roughly five years, he wrote a series of short 400- to 500-word essays he called trUTips that answer common leadership questions, which prompted the decision to publish a book.

“My reason for writing the book is to give readers a lens to view leadership a little bit differently, to better refine and understand what their approach is, and look into that vision of what they believe leadership should be,” said Patchin.

“No one was arguing with some of my basic premises, which is effective leaders talk to their people, know their people, and are always having conversations around priorities in their business … but they had a hard time doing them.”

Published by Holland-based Black Lake Press in October 2014, “People-Centered Performance” incorporates Patchin’s belief that honest, open relationships built on mutual trust drive success and professional fulfillment.

Beginning the book with a chapter of “I believe” statements, Patchin outlines the elements he believes contribute to successful leadership and teamwork: leadership is working with people; individuals own development, organizations own support; great conversations start with a question; and in great organizations, everyone leads.

Intended to spark conversations about leadership, the book challenges both new and experienced leaders who are striving to improve their organization, according to a press release.

“A lot of my work appeals to new leaders because they are hungry to learn and grow, yet I work a lot with senior leaders,” said Patchin. “My target audience is high-growth, high-change business, and the leaders in those businesses are generally feeling compelled to grow because their business is getting out of hand due to growth, or they are taking on more responsibility and they want to be successful.”

In the book, Patchin introduces the concept of “Ought But Not,” which explores how well-trained, business-savvy individuals often can’t seem to implement principles, despite knowing the elements contributing to success.

“I came up with that mainly because I think leaders know what they are supposed to do, but there are a lot of reasons why they aren’t doing it,” said Patchin. “That is how I coined the OBN — to capture people’s attention that usually the biggest gap is between our intentions and our actions.”

The book also discusses potential threats that can impact a working culture and a number of proactive habits to establish, such as creating development plans for the best workers and building constructive working relationships.

“I really believe this book is meant to be a lens for readers to sift through — not only what they know but also what people are trying to get them to know. Our best intentions are to develop our people, but we overwhelm them with information,” said Patchin.

“I think the key question when you finish a leadership book is how did this affect my view of leadership and what is one thing I can take away to go do as a leader to be more effective? I think that is my intent. If I hear people doing that, then I get excited.”

Patchin founded The trU Group in 2009, with financial support through the FastTrac NewVenture program from the Kauffman Foundation and the Michigan Small Business Development Center, according to the press release.

“People-Centered Performance” is available online in paperback or as a Kindle or iBook edition.

Located at 520 Butternut Drive, Holland, The trU Group provides talent management solutions for individuals and organizations. The trU Group partners with small to medium-sized businesses to provide leadership development and executive coaching, talent management consulting, talent acquisition and onboarding of critical roles, and facilitation and training.

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