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The Unfinished Leader: Balancing Contradictory Answers to Unsolvable Problems by Cade Cowan, Peter C. Cairo, David L. Dotlich

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INTRODUCTION

Stepping Up to Complete Leadership

Perhaps no other animal is so torn between alternatives. Man might be described fairly adequately, if simply, as a two-legged paradox.

—John Steinbeck1

In a book about how to manage paradox, we will start with one that applies to you personally: The only way to become a finished leader is to remain an unfinished one. There you go. You thought we were going to distill the many insights in our book into a clear axiom. And instead, well, we made a statement that sounds complex and ambiguous.

Although this is a risky way to start a book, we want to make a point: If you're a leader—or an aspiring one, you can't afford to be scared off by complexity or ambiguity. You have to hunger to thrive in their ...

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