Heretics to Heroes: A Memoir on Modern Leadership
Heretics to Heroes by Cort Dial reveals potent business and life lessons through the story of Cort’s life and career. The format is unique, because it’s a non-fiction business book that reads much like a thrilling fiction tale.
As noted in my full review below, what struck me most about Heretics to Heroes was the author’s clear commitment to his principles, values, and ethics. Sure, he’s an executive consultant who has helped major, international corporations save billions of dollars – but he’s not your typical high-powered suit.
Despite the impressive bottom line results he’s achieved for his clients, Cort is a true humanitarian leader who cares about people. He seeks to alleviate human suffering, protect people from harm (physical and emotional), and treat others with genuine respect. Best of all, he knows how to combine the two: results + humanity in the workplace.
This is exactly the type of leader the world needs, especially right now in America – at the institutional levels of business, politics, education, and beyond. People want and deserve a leader who sincerely cares for them and represents their best interests. Moreover, everybody is sufficiently tired of half-witted, narcissist clowns running the show.
As an aside: what the clowns don’t understand is that money and power do not equate to leadership. Money and power create influence through authority structures, economic leverage, and fear. By contrast, true leadership creates influence through the authentic pursuit of a noble mission; through shared causes, beliefs, and empathy. True leaders rally support from the hearts of their followers; they have no need to exert force and control like the clowns, for their people actually want to follow them – cooperation is mutually sought rather than wrestled to submission.
Even though Mr. Dial isn’t running for public office, his message gives me hope. There are times I’ve wondered if there are any men like him left, working to influence others in positions of power and authority with a genuinely positive message. Yet here he stands, and it’s clear how much he’s already done to do good.
Needless to say, this book gets my highest recommendation. It’s one of the best, if not the most authentic business book I’ve read in quite some time.
My rating: 9.7/10.0
Cort Dial’s Heretics to Heroes is a fascinating read. It packs the story-telling allure of a great fiction, yet meets the highest standards of information quality you expect from a top-shelf business book. Through the incredible story of Cort’s life, you are taken on a journey filled with inspiring lessons on business, leadership, and life.
What struck me most about Cort’s story is his obvious commitment to morals and ethics. He’s clearly devoted to doing the right thing and inspiring others to do the same. To use an analogy, Cort is a Luke Skywalker in a world full of Emperors, Darth Vaders, and Stormtroopers who mindlessly serve their empire. He is married to his principles and has a strong sense of purpose, which is increasingly rare in today’s business climate.
Frankly, Millennials like me have become jaded by unscrupulous leadership in business, politics, academia, and similar institutions. We have all but lost faith in the generations before us to do what’s right, and we worry about the example they have set for future generations to come.
This is what makes Heretics to Heroes such a bright, shining light in the darkness.
For me, Cort’s message was a reminder that hope is not lost. That there is still good in the world. That with the right vision and leadership, business and humanitarian goals can be achieved together. That ambition and empathy can be united in a harmonious relationship, rather than viewed as separate and conflicting matters that would stifle each other’s productivity.
Cort Dial is a source of inspiration and hope, and his book is testament of his commitment to authentic leadership, justice, and social consciousness. He is humble yet powerful in his own way; his book delivers a clear, positive, and certain message during an uncertain time. I believe he is the kind of leader the world so desperately needs right now.
Whether you are an institutional leader or a simple bystander looking for a great story, Heretics to Heroes will entertain, enlighten, and instruct you in ways most books never will. Very impressive and would recommend for anyone’s reading list.