Leadership Opportunities

Read to Lead

By Kevin Lohenry, PhD, PA-CAugust 21, 2019

Image: Shutterstock

A new offering from our LMAC will bring together bookworms interested in leadership development.

The PAEA Leadership Mission Advancement Commission (LMAC) is starting a Book of the Month Club to facilitate professional development in leadership. The book group, initially facilitated by LMAC members, will focus on a leadership book with discussion to follow at the end of the month. Our hope is to bring those interested in leadership along on a journey to learn from and with each other as we explore the literature on leadership.  

The LMAC’s first book is Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek. As a way to kick off this initiative, the LMAC will give a free copy to the first 10 people who sign up for September’s Book of the Month Club. The following are some activities you can expect:

  • Monthly discussions via the Digital Learning Hub
  • New texts focused on leading self, others, and organizations
  • Additional learning materials to enhance the experience

About This Month’s Book

Noted author and TED talk extraordinaire Simon Sinek’s best-selling book, Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, is the perfect start to the book club. The author’s observations on the most successful corporations in the world rest on the premise that success will come to a company led by leaders who understand the why in their corporate formula. He explains that the majority of leaders focus on the what then the how, but they never establish the why behind their existence. Extraordinary leaders start with the why

At the University of Southern California PA program, we explored our personal “why” as a group during our annual summer retreat and then explored our collective “why” related to our program mission and goals. Learning that all of us shared a “why” — seeking to impact the world through our work with PA students — was incredible. Some illustrated that “why” through admissions and recruitment, focusing on building a classroom where students from all walks of life shared a journey to learn how to practice excellent medicine. Others shared their desire to help students become excited about learning and build deeper connections with challenging material. For some, their “why” was focused on building a diverse pipeline of students who sought to learn more about the health professions and build meaningful careers to help their families rise out of poverty.

Sinek’s Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action provided the group with confirmation that we were exactly where we wanted to be in this stage of our various careers. 

The LMAC members are excited to help you explore your “why” through the book club. In the coming months, new texts will be highlighted to continue our exploration of leadership through the lens of leading self, leading others, and leading organizations. We hope you will consider joining us during the coming year to support your development as a leader and educator.

How to Join the Book Club

The book club will be centralized in the Leadership and Development Professional Learning Community (PLC). To kick start our first book club, we are offering free copies of Start with Why to the first ten members who comment on the book club post in the Leadership and Development PLC.

Joining a PLC takes only a minute. Follow these simple steps:

  • Log in to your PAEA Learning account, or if you don’t have one yet, request one here (then log in).
  • Click on “Professional Learning Communities” on the top menu bar.
  • Scroll down the list of available PLCs, click on any that interest you including the Leadership and Development PLC, and click “Join Group.” You may join as many PLCs as you like.
  • If you need more information, check out the PLC page on the PAEA Learning site.
Kevin Lohenry, PhD, PA-C

Kevin is a clinical professor of family medicine and director of the Keck School of Medicine of USC Primary Care PA program, as well as vice-chair for educational affairs. He also serves as the chair of PAEA's Leadership Mission Advancement Commission.