Wisdom Is Not Enough: Reflections on Leadership & Teams

Jeff Appelquist
Beaver’s Pond Press (2011)
ISBN 9781592983735

Reviewed by Joseph Yurt for Reader Views (11/11)

Jeff Appelquist is someone that many people interested in the subject of leadership would like to sit down and talk with. A former U.S. Marine Corps rifle company commander, he is a successful entrepreneur, consultant and speaker and the founder of President of Blue Knight History Seminars. In his new book, “Wisdom Is Not Enough,” Appelquist again interprets moments in history to modern-day leadership lessons, as well as especially noteworthy lessons from today’s leadership battlefield. This book underscores his unique ability to find his lessons in diverse places.

In his first book, “Sacred Ground, Leadership Lessons from Gettysburg & The Little Bighorn,” Appelquist mines true-life events and stories from the Civil War that provide lessons for aspiring and experienced leaders in all fields of endeavor. That book won the Writer’s Digest International Awards first place prize for nonfiction. “Wisdom Is Not Enough” offers timeless lessons from an even broader range of historical, world events, and from the latest current events.  

The book’s content is provided by a powerful assemblage of forty articles by the author for the Dakota County Tribune Business Weekly written over a period of eighteen months from the spring of 2009 to the fall of 2010, and as Appelquist notes, “a tremendously difficult time when both the American and world economies struggled mightily.” The articles are divided among five groups: “Decision Making,” “Strategy,” “Communication,” “Relationships,” and “Learning,” with eight articles in each group. Each article explores an aspect of leadership or team dynamics through unique perspectives.

Although an avid historian, Appelquist’s writing style is not academic. He brings history and current events to life through his engaging knack for storytelling. Every article offers intriguing insights and introspections and practical lessons that demonstrate how today’s leaders can become great leaders who consistently develop teams that perform at a high level.

In “Wisdom Is Not Enough” Jeff Appelquist offers powerful proof to explain why. And his carefully considered articles provide compelling answers to what is. Like his first book, “Wisdom Is Not Enough” gives the reader a stimulating, original take on leadership. I highly recommend.

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