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I make no secret of my ferocious reading habit and the value on place on reading as a way to develop and learn as a leader. I was gifted this book recently, thanks to this wonderful person and the HR book club. 

Rebel Talent is a book that reframes the potentially negative sway on rebels and describes the value and potential in rebelling.  Star Wars was obviously there first, this book though takes Han Solo and gives us 8 principles of rebel leadership. The theory is that for creativity, solving complex problems and being able to adapt with the ever changing environment and expectations (sound like healthcare to anyone) you need a rebel leadership mindset. 

Francesca Gino takes these concepts and gives you a story in each chapter to illustrate the idea. She tells the stories well, they are relatable and come from a variety of backgrounds and businesses. Her stories are so engaging, they make the concepts come alive for you. 

I normally read quite fast and test out a few ideas (early adopter here) to see if they will work for me. I'm not great at taking notes while I read, and as I tend towards to skim read (not a details person either) when I look at a book in hindsight I sometimes wonder how best to share what have been the key messages for me.

But forever a learning and adapting mind I have, I took notes this time. OK post-it notes, and looking at them now I think they sum up some ideas in the book pretty well. I do recall wanting to learn more about Napoleon (if anyone is looking for a gift for me). 

The final chapter sums up the 8 principles, this article gives a good overview of these principles if you want to dig a little deeper.  

  1. Seek out the new - have diverse and wide interests

  2. Encourage constructive dissent - it's OK to disagree, you'll get to the crux and the best outcome

  3. Open conversations, don't close them - plus the language - add and invite feedback.

  4. Reveal yourself - and reflect - focus on strengths, know your talents.

  5. Learn everything - then forget everything - mastering the basics is a lifelong project.

  6. Find freedom in constraints - when you have less time, less resources you've got to get creative.

  7. Lead from the trenches - get your hands dirty, Napoleon would not have been in the executive suite.

  8. Foster happy accidents - a mistake may unlock a breakthrough.

So are you a rebel - and if so what type of rebel are you? As it happens there is a test (of course) to discover what type of rebel you are and how you can build on the natural rebel strengths you have and what else you can add to your rebel repertoire.

Want to learn more:-
How to be a rebel leader
Only got time for 5 tips
How about 3 minutes