Leading Without Authority

Have you ever been in a situation where your ideas or concerns, as expressed to those in authority, did not lead to action? Did it leave you feeling dissatisfied and powerless? Many of us have found ourselves in these frustrating situations– or even hopeless– because we had no authority to change the situation. Keith Ferrazzi’s book, Leading Without Authority, is written to encourage and empower us as leaders and influencers, especially in situations where we have no title, position, or power of authority to act.

Ferrazzi frames a new dynamic for leadership that encourages those in a follower position, and even those in a leadership position, to use collaborative approaches to problem-solving that redefine the traditional power paradigm. Ferrazzi places this new framework on our ability to create our own team, identify our own goals, and effect change. It is packed with strategies and approaches to leading without authority, not only for those who teach leadership but particularly important for law students and young lawyers who have not reached a point in their career to hold traditional leadership power or positions.

We highly encourage you to pick up or download a copy and recommend it to your law students. The lessons in it will help them, starting with their internships and clerkships this summer.

– Liz and Stephen


How to Lead When You’re Not In Charge

As a follow-up on the wonderful letter from Dean Brinkley to law students posted last week, I highly recommend How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge, by Clay Scroggins, by Clay Scroggins for some summer reading for our law students (and faculty, too!). Better yet, they can download the audiobook and hear Clay Scroggins read it to them. The audiobook really allows Scroggins’s personality and flair to come through while reading an already-entertaining book.

How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge is a wonderful reminder for all of us, no matter our title, position, or authority, that leadership is built upon relationships. But it is especially helpful for students participating in summer internships. Students can use the book to incorporate the lessons they are learning in law school and apply them in their summer internships to make good impressions and help their organizations. As the least senior team members, this book can give them practical tips and suggestions for discovering who they are and how they fit into the organization, how they can make a positive difference, and even how to challenge, in a constructive and respectful manner, the more senior lawyers with whom they work.

A note about Clay Scroggins: As the lead pastor for North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, Georgia, this book has a religious slant. Although not overbearing, I did want to mention it so that readers will know going in.

I thouroughly enjoyed this book and am sure that you will too!

– Stephen