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The Five Essential Leadership Questions
Living with Passion, Leading through Trust

Written by R. John Young
Business & Interpersonal Relations Hardcover
December 2007


This is the book that all chief executives would like their up and coming managers to read! They know from experience that when an executive fails, it is most often not because of a lack of industry knowledge or technical expertise; rather it is because of their poorly developed knowing of themselves and others, their lack of respect for those they manage, hopelessly inadequate listening skills, clumsy communication, and, not surprisingly, a loss of trusting relationships. All of which erode the foundation for true profitability and organizational health.

As a leader, you must understand the soul of your business, have a clear vision for the future of the enterprise, and be able to passionately describe how you plan to take the organization to that ideal place. You must live with passion and lead through trust.

For over 30 years Dr. R. John Young has been using his proprietary models and techniques to develop trusted and effective leaders. His research into why some leaders flounder while others flourish has led him to the identification of the five essential leadership questions. All leaders must be able to answer these questions if they hope to be trusted by those with whom they must collaborate and by those they lead. These are the foundational questions whose answers separate the authentic from the inauthentic, the grounded from the lost, and the true leader from the word itself.

This book, together with its companion workbook, is a veritable self-assessment tool that will help you truly understand yourself, the people you lead, and, most importantly, your motives for wanting to lead. It speaks to the measurable effect that well-rounded and well-grounded leadership has on a company's bottom line. This book expands the definition of profitability to include the often untracked and unmeasured elements of leadership.

Paradigm for Profitability©


Healthy organizations are led by trusted and effective leaders. Clearly, it will require a new paradigm if human capital is to enjoy its rightful place in contributing to enduring profitability. The essential questions that Dr. Young challenges you to ponder are predicted upon his Paradigm for Profitability©.


R. John Young, Ph.D., founder and chairman of the McLaughlin Young Group, is an international authority on leadership development. For more than 30 years he has been helping executives live with passion and lead through trust. Dr. Young conducts his seminar, Trusted and Effective Leadership--Reclaiming the Creativity to Lead Change, in his native country of Ireland and in other locations around the world. Dr. Young can be reached at

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"I have known Dr. Young and his work for more than a decade. The principles and approach that he articulates in this book can be transformational for the new leader and the experienced."

CRAIG MOON, President and Publisher, USA Today

"This book illustrates Dr. John Young's signature approach of reaching into one's personal foundational experiences to draw strength, vision and inspiration. The author is to be commended for his emphasis on leading an organization with trust and his framework for how this can be established."

CAROLYN Y. WOO, Dean, the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame

"Leadership is a calling devoted to teaching, learning, and change. In The Five Essential Leadership Questions, Dr. Young probes deeply into the heart and soul of leadership and connects it directly to the mind and body of business."

LAWRENCE D. MCCLURE, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Liz Claiborne, Inc.

"John Young has provided a road map to leadership success that touches issues and concerns that routinely confront managers. This is a book for leaders of every age and managers in every field."

JOHN SEIGENTHALER, SR., Chairman, Freedom Forum First Amendment Center and Diversity Institute

"I began my work with John some years back, respectfully believing that we already had a wholly healthy organization. Thankfully, I began a journey to apply the principles now described in this book and, as a result, not a day now goes by that I don't seek to exert my leadership in our organization in ways that will improve our organizational health."

CRAIG A. PHILIP, President and Chief Executive Officer, Ingram Barge Company