Charismatic Leadership by Kevin Murray [Book Summary – Review]


How charismatic you think you are?

Are you motivating your workers and make them feel great? Are you aware of yourself and are you sincere? Do you set tasks frequently and can you convince your team to reach out to them?

Probably you have answered yes to most of these questions. But the actual question is – do your subordinates answer yes?

The truth is that ratings of employees on all aspects of charisma, generally lower than bosses’ ratings for themselves.

But what is the deal of the boss’ charisma? We can say, simply, employees need their boss to inspire them. Trust, positivity, and motivation among employees are built by charismatic leaders, and actually, it is for the good of the business.

The writer gathered information from managers and employees, interviews made with CEOs, and his own work experience to determine the characteristics of charismatic leaders. In the summary below, you will meet some of the people he has connected with.


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Chapter 1 – Charisma is very important – and its importance is growing day by day.


For a second, think about the most inspiring leaders around the world in history. Which ones came to mind? Probably leaders like Steve Jobs, Winston Churchill, or Nelson Mandela. So what specifically is it that makes these people so attractive and inspiring? Just one word: charisma. For leaders, charisma is a must and its importance is on the march.

An effective presentation is one thing all charismatic leaders have in common. A positive impact on other humans’ emotions because of the strength of your character is an effective presence. Your employees felt good about you which makes them more dedicated to your organization and their place in it, in return, thanks to the effective presence.

Authenticity, warmth, drive, persuasiveness, and personal power, through a mixture of these five features charismatic leaders develop an effective presence. But do not be fooled – you do not have to highlight these traits for being truly charismatic. Extreme amounts of any of these five qualities can even have a clear bad effect on your business! Instead, keeping each of the five in balance is much better.

In respect of the writer’s study, leaders with modest charisma can make employees feel 65 percent more honored in their jobs, 56 percent more motivated, and 24 percent happier to go beyond in their work. This extra commitment and productivity bring along lots of other benefits, like higher profit. Actually, companies that have highly committed employees have twice the annual net profit compared to companies whose employees are not that committed.



Numbers aside, the charisma gets to be indeed more noteworthy given today’s progressively mechanized workforce. McKinsey Global Institute reports that by 2030, up to 375 million individuals universally, will need to move their jobs and gain new abilities. Moreover, the technology will cause to a much more powerful teleworking culture. With progressively smaller groups of full-time workers working in workplaces, the sort of charisma that motivates a group will be more important than ever.

Above all, according to business forecasters, the workforce will soon split into two separate groups. On the one side, there will be charismatic, innovative individuals who take responsibility for implementing changes and ensuring the success of the company., On the other side, there will be technology-focused employees working with advanced digital technologies.

All of this means that powerful leaders will be more crucial than ever to inspirit their teams and support innovation and creativity. Organizations without this type of leader might find themselves in the dust.


Chapter 2 – Originality leads to trust, and trust can bring great benefits to your organization.


Time is cash. Or is it? Trust is money, as an engineer with whom the author worked, said. He claimed that trust is the structural base of all the rest in an organization. You can influence sweeping changes with minor kickbacks if your subordinates trust you. You can make innovation more quickly. Customers, suppliers, and partners will be more comfortable while working with you.

It is required to reflect originality, the first element of charismatic leadership, for gaining people’s trust.

To show authenticity, you should know yourself properly. That is to say, you need to precisely know what makes you, you.

Begin by taking some time for individual reflection. For understanding yourself way better, you may attempt taking personality tests or making recordings so you’ll be able to scrutinize the impression you make. At last, attempt to ask others for criticism, in that way you can understand how you come across.



As an element of your personal thinking, you should also think about your essence values ​​and faiths. Think about everything that brought you the position of yours in your career. What did you get from every crucial moment and in what way did your behavior change consequently?  Your values ​​are everything that truly drives your acts now.



It is the time to start living your values with faith, after voicing them. For example, if respect is one of the most important values of yours, you should be sure that respect becomes the norm in the office. Don’t be afraid to push it – you should be visibly attached to your belief for materializing your most authentic self.

When things get harsh, the requirement for behaving with conviction doesn’t just go away, either. However, several managers hide behind closed doors after executing hard decisions. Rather than, own the decisions you have made. If it turns out that you have made a mistake, acknowledge this error too –  publicly. Even in the event of a complete failure, if you admit your mistake your employees’ respect for you, skyrockets.


Chapter 3 – Standing by leaders that demonstrating personal power makes employees happy.


In the business world, the word power evokes cruel CEO illustrations who do not mind hurting others while they reach the top. But this kind of power completely differs from the power of character and personality that make people believe in you and want to follow your way – personal power.

To show the second element of charisma-personal power, you have to look the part. Ultimately, your team takes its signs from your body language and appearance; It does not look good if you walk in the office with a frown on your face, your hands in your pockets, and a messy outfit. Therefore, smile often instead – this encourages positivity and reliance. And make sure you do not neglect your self-care.

You’ll be able to embrace a leadership mentality after you have the appearance and body language of a powerful and charismatic leader. It is about solving difficulties proactively, taking obligation for your actions, and thinking “I’ll find a way” rather than “I can’t do anything about it.”

This type of optimism is another important element of personal power. Unfortunately, in this sense, our own brains usually work against us. Instinctively, we look for threats and focus on them and that leads to stress and pessimism most of the time.



Therefore, reframing is very essential. Reframing is an effective way to find good things in a difficult situation. Meaning of it is, thinking obstacles as challenges to overcome. Suppose that you are about to have a disturbing but essential meeting with a dissatisfied client. Worrying about and seeing this situation as a potential disaster would be very easy. Rather than, why not reframe this as a chance to better understand the customer’s needs and enhance future performance?

Lastly, the meaning of personal power is having continual energy and passion. Energetic and positive bosses build up their teams in the same spirit.

You may already be emitting high energy right now, but it’s just as important that your employees emit it too. To measure energy levels, try doing an energy check. Ask every person in your workplace how energetic they are, from one to ten. Ask questions about why they feel like that or how they might feel more energetic. After you’ve done that, you can start looking for ways to recharge your team’s batteries and maintain their motive high.


Chapter 4 – A warm emotional impression gives an enduring impact.


A casual talk doesn’t come easy to Agency manager Lois because she is typically introverted. Yet she comes to the office every morning at 08:15 for chatting with her team for 45 minutes and doesn’t let being intrıverted stop her. She, warm-hearted but never unfriendly, has got to know how to switch on the attraction and radiate heartiness, which is the third component of charisma.

Look around the room the next time you got into the office. Pick someone randomly and think about how that person makes you feel. Then ask yourself why this is so.

In a short time, you’re going to realize that each individual has their own unique emotional signature. That’s the mark you gave after interacting with them. This may be positive, making you cheerful and energized. Or it may be negative, drain your energy, and make you disappointed. The time you begin to realize the emotional marks of others, question yourself: How is your emotional signature?

Your workers might be at risk for low morale and exhaustion if it’s disrespectful, distant, or critical.  Let’s say it’s positive, still, there’s no disadvantage to make it even way better! So follow Lois’s pattern and begin to correlate with your team. Get interested in them and their lives and discover what’s significant for them. Ask them individual questions and let them ask you questions as well.



For more accelerated improvement of your emotional signature, there are some ways. For beginners, make sure that you always address people with their names – this lets people feel recognized and remembered. Moreover, try asking for assistance – everyone likes to be recalled that managers are also human. Attempt asking where the restroom is, or which format a conference will be.

Needless to say, none of these tricks will work in case you don’t take your workers seriously. You should move forward your listening skills carefully and show people that you are addressing their concerns.

While talking to someone, make every effort to follow the listening contract. In other words, before you are allowed to answer and express yourself, you need to listen and understand the person you are talking with.

You also need to show some empathy. Have a go-to understand the emotional point of view of the other person, and the time you do, spoken express it with commentary like “I can see you are upset about what happened”. Later take action to show that you take their problems gravely.

Loyalty, commitment, and positivity in your organization would be encouraged by developing a warm emotional signature.


Chapter 5 – Leaders emit charisma when they are guided by a purpose.


Let’s admit it – most of the time, waking up and going to the office early in the morning can be difficult. If that is valid for you, probably it is valid for your employees too. Both managers and employees need a cause more than just a wage, to get out of bed and go to the office every day. People need a cause that they can believe in and fight for to be able to come alive. To rephrase it, they need the drive which is the fourth element of charismatic leadership.

Lots of top executives are quite logical and always focused on the bottom line. However, there is a big problem when it comes to motive: financial metrics are not as interesting to employees as they are useful.

Because of that, you should always have a clearly described goal that motivates everything you do as a team and as an organization. Express this in a brief and sweet wording in parallel with the company’s mission statement. For instance, TED’s “To spread ideas” or Tesla’s “To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.”

However, the drive is not just about things you do, it’s also about the way you do it. This implies, always developing how your team works.

One method of motivating and inspiring employees is the power of appreciation. Most of the time, leaders do not praise, or worse, they get all the applause when things go well. A person that trying to be a charismatic leader cannot make a such mistake!



Sally caught on that. Department of counseling services business of her had confronted some problems and all of a sudden they needed to greatly raise the number of new clients they acquired.

This effort seemed great at first, but Sally went to the team members’ desks every day and asked that the things team was doing to create new meetings with customers. Whenever she heard a new idea, she announced it to the rest of the team. What is more, good ideas were quickly combined into the regular processes of the organization. The team focused on development.

After 18 months, incredibly, Sally’s team had ended up being the best-performing department of the company. The frosting on the cake? Sally’s team was more motivated than others in any other part!


Chapter 6 – Persuasion motivates your staff to implement the plan.


One of the most common phobias around the world is public speaking. Actually, some people even more afraid of that than death!

Unfortunately, public speaking is a must and an unavoidable thing for lots of people’s careers. The great news is, with exercise, expertise in persuasion which is the fifth and last component of charismatic leadership, can be significantly developed.

In case you want to be a much better public speaker, there are numerous ways and hints you can study – such as laying out your actual points on a notecard, controlling your breathing, and making a powerful opening. But most importantly, you need to be charismatic.

That is to say, having an emotional effect on your audience, and powerful stories are one of the greatest ways to do this. A story that captivates people’s heart creates a relationship that making your audience felt connected to you and your speech.

Then in which way can you tell the most impressive story? Start by relating the story to your values. Let’s assume that boldness is one of them. You can tell a story of an employee that made brave choices to win over a customer, or another story about a fearless step that led to a turning point in your career, to show that.

At that moment, the importance of persuasion is so much more than public speaking; in discussions with your team and customers, persuasion is extremely important, again. In spite of that, about 70 percent of managers in the United States said they were usually uncomfortable while talking with their employees. In a similar way, most of the UK managers do anything to dodge a negative discussion with an employee.



The time you foresee a discussion, difficult or otherwise, having a general idea about the result you want to get, helps. Are you trying to enlighten your team about modifications, improvements, or processes? Is the discussion more around solving a difficulty, or are you attempting to move forward an existing approach?

Keeping that in mind, without being too persistent, you can direct the conversation precisely the way you want it. To the other person, ask questions for leading to a solution, and you will often see that they get there all by oneself. Even greater, making them feel that they have a say on things, will make them much more dedicated to the plan.

You are approaching to become a really inspiring leader thanks to your new power of persuasion integrated with other elements of charisma. Besides motivating and encouraging your team to do great things, you will also bring real benefits to your business in the shape of raised profits, innovation, and productivity.


Charismatic Leadership: The Skills You Can Learn to Motivate High Performance in Others by Kevin Murray Book Review


Lots of people believe that charisma is a thing you’re born with or something that just really unique individuals have. But in contrast – it’s absolutely possible to develop your charisma. You’ll have a multitude of new methods to inspire and motivate your team by improving persuasion, authenticity, warmth, drive, and personal power. For becoming the leader your team deserves and demands, it is the time!


Give your team stretch targets.

The writer found that, in his research, employees’ need to feel valuable and important is more significant than wage, work environment, and even the vision of the organization. For your employees, one thing that can actually cause a feeling of success is stretch goals which mean hard to achieve but still achievable. Congratulate their hard work, whenever your employees successfully reached their stretching objects. This will cause their brains to be flooded with feel-good chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin, and these will increase their confidence in you and their motivation to work harder.



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Savaş Ateş

I'm a software engineer. I like reading books and writing summaries. I like to play soccer too :) Good Reads Profile: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/106467014-sava-ate

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