What We Are Reading Today: Leadership

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Updated 04 March 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Leadership

Author: Doris Kearns Goodwin

Are leaders born or made? Where does ambition come from? How does adversity affect the growth of leadership? Does the leader make the times or do the times make the leader?
“In Leadership,” Doris Kearns Goodwin draws upon the four presidents she has studied most closely — Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Lyndon B. Johnson (in civil rights) — to show how they recognized leadership qualities within themselves and were recognized as leaders by others. By looking back to their first entries into public life, we encounter them at a time when their paths were filled with confusion, fear, and hope.
This book tells the story of how they all collided with dramatic reversals that disrupted their lives and threatened to shatter forever their ambitions, according to a review published on goodreads.com. Nonetheless, they all emerged fitted to confront the contours and dilemmas of their times.
Although set apart in background, abilities, and temperament, these men shared a fierce ambition and a deep-seated resilience that enabled them to surmount uncommon hardships.
At their best, all four were guided by a sense of moral purpose. At moments of great challenge, they were able to summon their talents to enlarge the opportunities and lives of others.


What We Are Reading Today: Playbooks and Checkbooks by Stefan Szymanski

Updated 28 May 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Playbooks and Checkbooks by Stefan Szymanski

What economic rules govern sports? How does the sports business differ from other businesses? Playbooks and Checkbooks takes a fascinating step-by-step look at the fundamental economic relationships shaping modern sports. 

Focusing on the ways that the sports business does and does not overlap with economics, the book uncovers the core paradox at the heart of the sports industry. Unlike other businesses, the sports industry would not survive if competitors obliterated each other to extinction, financially or otherwise — without rivals there is nothing to sell. Playbooks and Checkbooks examines how this unique economic truth plays out in the sports world, both on and off the field.

Noted economist Stefan Szymanski explains how modern sporting contests have evolved; how sports competitions are organized; and how economics has guided antitrust, monopoly, and cartel issues in the sporting world. Szymanski considers the motivation provided by prize money, uncovers discrepancies in players’ salaries.