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The following self-assessment audits may be purchased through this website. They are supplied in hard-copy format. To view them in more detail, please click on the links below:


NOTE 1: Bulk discounts apply. 20% off when ordering three or more copies. Additional copies may be the same title as the first copy, or may be the other titles in the Prometheus-designed series (listed above).

NOTE 2: Prices include postage and packaging.

To purchase a copy please click here.


The Search for Leadership: An Organizational Perspective The Search for Leadership: An Organizational Perspective (paperback)
Author William Tate
Publisher Triarchy Press
May 2009
ISBN 978-0-9557681-7-0
List price £28.00 Offer price £25.00

The Search for Leadership: An Organizational Perspective (hardcover)
Author William Tate
Publisher Triarchy Press
May 2009
ISBN 978-0-9557681-8-7
List price £40.00 Offer price £35.00

Most organisations – public, private and third sector – know they need to offer better leadership. But, in trying to do so, they too often look in the wrong place. Experience tells us that even heroic leaders are no better than the systems they work in. Flawed systems strangle leadership. The answer?

Stop polishing the fish and tackle the water they swim in!
The Search for Leadership shows why it is naive to expect much leadership from individual managers acting alone. Only when we start to see leadership as a property of the organisation can we begin to improve it.

William Tate pulls no punches in his examination of leadership in business, politics and institutions like the police and the Health Service. Using forensic analysis, cogent argument and damning case studies, he shows why conventional leadership models and programmes miss the point and waste our money. In their place he presents a proven and practical ‘Systems Thinking’ approach that will transform the way leadership is developed, applied and held accountable for delivering results.

The Search for Leadership is a comprehensive study of the way leadership operates in organisations. The book is split into two parts – the Thinking Challenge addresses the theory of systemic leadership while the Intervention Challenge tackles the practicalities of implementing a systemic approach to leadership and leadership development in any organisation.

The book tackles both aspects on a theme-by-theme basis and chapters examine issues like:

  • the difference between managing and leading
  • what is working and what’s not
  • why the process of leadership needs to be managed and how to do it
  • ways of improving leadership, besides development
  • how to balance supply of leadership talent with the organisation’s demand
  • gaps down which leadership escapes
  • how to stop wasting leadership
  • the importance of the context in development, but why this is not enough
  • differences between management and organisation development in building leadership
  • the contribution of leadership competencies
  • how to develop a leadership culture
  • how to arrest the natural processes of decline and decay
  • how the learning of leadership is affected
  • how to talk the language of systems and how to think systemically
  • what is below the surface in the organisation’s parallel shadow leadership system
  • a range of processes by which leadership can be properly held to account
  • how to diagnose organisations to discover where the potential lies for releasing leadership and how to achieve that.

Developing Corporate Competence Developing Corporate Competence: A high-performance agenda for managing organizations
Author William Tate
Publisher Gower
ISBN 0-566-07670-5
Price £60.00 (hardback)

This book, published by Gower, remains a powerful exposition of many of the organisation development principles underpinning organisational leadership. These include how to make learning processes effective and how to convert individual competence into corporate benefit. This book was nominated for the ‘Management Book of the Year’ award by the Management Consultancies Association.


I was aroused by the comment: ‘being a successful manager does not correlate with being an effective manager’. Like Paul at Damascus, I became aware that I was being offered something new and different. … I began to accept that I was reading an outstanding text. … If you are interested in improving managerial and company performance, then give up listening to the politicians, and buy, beg, borrow or steal this book.

Dr Maurice Cleasby
Chief Examiner, British Institute of Administrative Management

This is a useful and challenging book for any practitioner working in the field of competency, particularly those seeking more fully to understand and develop organisational contexts and structures within which individual competencies can be developed and applied.

Paul Victor
Competency Bulletin

Developing Managerial Competence Developing Managerial Competence - A Critical Guide to Methods and Materials
Author William Tate
Publisher Gower

It sometimes seems as if every day witnesses the arrival of a new programme, product or service purporting to improve management proficiency. At the same time new initiatives crowd onto the scene. How can the management development specialist, let alone the manager himself or herself, steer a sensible course through these swirling, and probably shark-infested waters. William Tate's much-needed book - a companion volume to his Developing Corporate Competence - takes a searching look at the confused and confusing management development marketplace…

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Leadership in Organizations Leadership in Organizations: Current Issues and Key Trends
Author William Tate (ch. Linking Development with Business)
Editor Professor John Storey

Leadership development has traditionally concentrated on individual managers and their needs, treating them as the client. Typical activity develops managers’ generic leadership ability in relation to those reporting to them; i.e. leadership as high-end people management. This is valued by learners and considered useful for their jobs, careers and marketability. Such activity is tactical in nature, being semi-detached from the business’s own needs and agenda. Other than showing concern for the ‘transfer of learning’ problem, developers mostly leave the learners themselves to make the connection with the business and the workplace. All parties are fairly comfortable with this arrangement, including the employer underwriting the development. Yet it leaves much to chance from the business’s standpoint. Contrasted with this familiar picture are some more strategic options for development's focus, where there is scope for a firmer link to the business.

Buy online from Routledge

Demerging Organisations Demerging Organisations - A Guide to Best Practice
Author William Tate
Publisher Financial Times Management (an imprint of Pearson Education)

In the face of pressure to increase shareholder value, conglomerates are turning to demerger to deliver the expected returns. But this is a complex, traumatic and potentially costly process with its fair share of failures. With the help of this report you can overcome these obstacles. Drawing on the author's considerable experience of demerger consultancy for the Burton Group, the briefing offers expert guidance on best practice for managing demergers.

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Personnel Management Personnel Management
Author William Tate (ch. 'Management development', co-authored with Professor John Storey)
Editors Stephen Bach and Keith Sisson

An increasing awareness of the significance of the management of people to competitiveness, alongside new practices and new paradigms such as 'human resource management', demand a critical appraisal of both the theory and practice of personnel management.

Click here


Systemic Leadership Toolkit

Systemic Leadership Toolkit
Author William Tate
Publisher Triarchy Press
October 2009
ISBN 978-0-956263-12-4
List price £55.00 Offer price £49.50

In The Search for Leadership (published in Summer 2009 by Triarchy Press), Bill Tate showed how leadership needs to be considered from an organisational perspective rather than from the conventional perspective of developing individual leaders.

Now, in the Systemic Leadership Toolkit, he has put together a practical guide that addresses this need. Based on the author’s extensive consultancy work on leadership issues, the Toolkit uses a Systems Thinking approach and a series of self-assessment questionnaires to guide you through the entire improvement process.

Use the Toolkit to diagnose and understand the leadership gaps that prevent your business from flourishing, then use it to create implementation strategies for improving the way leadership operates. The Toolkit is designed to offer a stand-alone improvement process for any organisation – but it can also be used in collaboration with an internal or external specialist/consultant.

The central mantra from both the book and this Toolkit is ‘Stop polishing the fish and tackle the water they swim in’. The organisation is the fishtank in this metaphor, and good leadership is achieved and maintained by paying attention not to the state of the individual fish but to the surrounding environment.

In the systemic leadership model, individual leaders still provide personal leadership, but in a way that is mindful of the needs of the organisation. The organisation, in its turn, is responsible for creating the conditions in which this is possible.

The Toolkit is designed to help an organisation’s managers:

  1. To build a collective awareness of the current leadership process, practice and future needs in the organisation as a whole.
  2. To reach practical conclusions around the scope for improvement.
  3. To generate the commitment and energy to do something about the current situation.
  4. To decide on, plan and implement changes.

The Toolkit, which is designed to be run as a self-assessment audit in any organisation, has 9 modules - each reflecting one of 9 key themes from The Search for Leadership.


Linking Development with Business
This guide is based on Leadership in Organizations, (editor John Storey) published by Routledge, 2003.

Developing Corporate Competence
This guide is based on the book of the same title, author William Tate, published by Gower, 1995. It contains many of the charts, checklists and aide memoire.

Electronic copies of these guides cost £5



'Organisational leadership wins', CEO Today, William Tate, 2007

'Looking inside the organisation for leadership', Developing HR Strategy, William Tate, May 2007

'Working with the shadow side of organisations', Developing HR Strategy, William Tate, May 2006

'Training people for a better future', Finance Today, William Tate, May 2005

Free resources

The following free resources are downloadable from this website,
click on the following links:


Past newsletters


Implications of Futures Studies for Business, Organisation, Management and Leadership (Council for Excellence in Management and Leadership)


Emergent Business Models (Council for Excellence in Management and Leadership)

Further resources

Other resources are available from the general Prometheus Consulting website.

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