ILA Podcast

Everyday People, Extraordinary Leadership

Phronesis: Practical Wisdom for Leaders

with Jim Kouzes


Jim Kouzes, named one of the ten best executive educators in the U.S. by the Wall Street Journal, joins Scott to talk about his latest book, Everyday People, Extraordinary Leadership.

Quotes from This Episode

“And we so we asked the question, ‘what do you look for and admire in a new leader, someone whose direction you would willingly follow?’ and the number one quality was ‘honesty.’ The number two quality or characteristic people look for and desire in a leader was ‘competent.’ Honest and competent are the two most important ingredients.”

“So what this data tells us, you add it all up, and you say, ‘Yes, sure, we can write about CEOs. And we can write about famous leaders.’ But those aren’t the most important people, individuals look to as a model for how they would lead. The most important leaders are those people who are closest to us, whether it’s a parent, or a teacher, or coach when we’re younger, or an immediate supervisor at work. And that’s really important for people to keep in mind. When you’re leading, and you’re someone’s immediate manager, you could be their role model for leadership. The same goes for parents.”

“It’s true that leaders need to be able to articulate a vision of the future…But if it’s going to be something that people want to follow, then they have to see themselves in the picture.”

About Jim Kouzes

Jim Kouzes is the co-author of the award-winning, best-selling book The Leadership Challenge and more than a dozen other books on leadership including the 2021 book Everyday People, Extraordinary Leadership. He is also a Fellow of the Doerr Institute for New Leaders at Rice University. The Wall Street Journal named Jim one of the ten best executive educators in the U.S. and he has received the Distinguished Contribution to Workplace Learning and Performance Award from the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) among many other professional honors.

Host Scott J. Allen

Scott Allen

Scott J. Allen, Ph.D., is the Standard Products—Dr. James S. Reid Chair in Management at John Carroll University. He is an associate professor and teaches courses in leadership, management skills, and executive communication. He is also a communications coach, consultant, author, podcast host, and entrepreneur. For almost two decades, he’s worked with clients to improve their leadership and communication skills. Learn more about Scott here.

About Phronesis

Phronesis: Practical Wisdom for Leaders offers a smart, fast-paced discussion on all things leadership. Scott and his expert guests cover timely, relevant topics and incorporate practical tips designed to help you make a difference in how you lead and live.