Name : Puan Siti Murshidah Binti Mat Riffin, 
Position : Assistant Librarian, Digitisation and OCR Unit
Book : Developing Leaders 
Editor : John Adair
Publisher : The Talbot Adair Press 
Publication Year: 1988


People, especially managers, are the key resource of a business enterprise. What is strategically desirable cannot be achieved unless the people available have the necessary knowledge, training and skill to make it happen.

Therefore, alongside its corporate strategy for the future, a board of directors needs what could be called a ‘people plan’. Without a strategy for growing leaders for tomorrow, the corporate strategy will remain merely a paper projection. Strategy and people – the key resource – go together. It is people that make things happen.

In Part One, John Adair presents his ten key steps of leadership development, principles which are relevant to all organizations. As a prelude, he clarifies and draws out the full meaning of leadership in relation to the concept of management.

In Part Two, the author offers some examples and case studies in order to illustrate the various principles in a variety of fields and at different levels of leadership development: school and university, in industry and the uniformed services, on the shop floor and in the boardroom. In short, developing leaders describe the ‘state of the art’ in leadership selection, training and development.

This book may have been published before there was the internet and social media but the principles of leadership it lays out remain relevant for managers and leaders who are responsible for formulating a cohesive training plan for their own organisation.


“Action-Centred Leadership, the standard course for managers and others which developed from the functional leadership course I evolved for Sandhurst officer cadets in the 1960s, is now international. The course has been successfully run in many countries of the world, mainly through the agency of the Industrial Society. As I have stressed in this book, however, leadership development embrace more than training in the space of courses, seminars or conferences. A growing number of organizations have now accepted this fact. There is a danger that they will wrap it all up in a new jargon, a mystique called management development. The development of managers can be totally systematized providing you hold a sufficiently impoverished concept of management. A higher concept of management, one which sees the role of leader as its core, takes you more into the realms of leadership development, the subject of this book. In that context system is only part of the solution: it takes leaders to beget leaders. Therefore there can be no resting. The story of education and training for leadership in a free and democratic society, a world that seeks to conquer the specters of war, famine, disease, ignorance and want, is only just beginning. There must be a beginning of any great matter, but the continuing unto the end until it be through finished yields the true glory.” – Sir Francis Drake (Page 203)