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The Connected Leader

7 Strategies to Empower Your True Self and Inspire Others

Published by Post Hill Press
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

We are not leaders having a leadership crisis. We are leaders having a human being crisis.

Connection is the antidote—yet, many of us don’t know how to connect to ourselves compassionately in order to enhance self-discovery. Without this gift, we cannot connect—in a meaningful way—to a higher purpose or engage with others to ignite inspiration.

With the help of Hardwick’s connection architecture, we can transform. By utilizing her strategies of connection, we can empower workplaces and relationships through the grace and grit, resilience and empathy that occur when our connection wiring is activated in healthy ways.

Hardwick’s willingness to share her story of struggle and triumph—along with anecdotes from the boardroom and family room—help us to awaken, heal, and courageously lead. She synthesizes the emotional, spiritual, and relational, giving us permission to look honestly at how we do damage to ourselves and others while inviting us to live and lead from a place of true well-being.

The Connected Leader is profoundly important. Karen's written a guide that is at once both practical and actionable while vividly authentic and real. Using her own broken open heart, she shows how each of us is seeking presence and connection and that the best leaders, leading from a connected soul, create the conditions for a lasting sense of belonging.”—Jerry Colonna, author, Reboot: Leadership and the Art of Growing Up

“Hardwick’s inspiring message is there’s a more fully human way to lead rooted in emotional, spiritual, and relational wholeness. Connected leadership is the way of the future. Highly recommended!”—Ian Morgan Cron, author, The Road Back to You

About The Author

Karen Hardwick is a clinically and spiritually trained psychotherapist-turned-leadership coach, podcast host, and speaker. She helps others awaken, courageously lead, and unlock the power of connection in their lives and at work. She lives in Atlanta with her son and is surrounded by her connection-warriors.

Product Details

Raves and Reviews

“This innovative and inspiring book will change the reader and change the conversation around leadership. Karen has a unique and powerful way of inviting us to put connection at the center of leadership. She urges us to throw out the old leadership models and dive deep into the soul work needed to be fully human at work, and in all of life. This is a rare business book with a heartbeat.”

– Susan Packard, Co-founder of HGTV and Author of Fully Human: 3 Steps to Grow Emotional Fitness in Work, Leadership, and Life

“I love the evolved model of The Connected Leader and every aspect of this insightful and inspirational book. Karen’s work and thinking pushes us all forward onto a path that allows us, as leaders, to become the best version of ourselves. Karen’s book is perfect for the times as we find the courage to fight the Goliaths that keep us less evolved and focused on the things that wear us down and out as leaders, and as humans. I am a big fan of Karen’s human-centered approach to leadership, the stories in this book, and how she urges us all to connect deeply to ourselves and all that matters.”

– Barri Rafferty, Chief Communications and Brand Management Officer, Wells Fargo

“Working with Karen is a joy and this book captures her wisdom and the ‘voice’ I have come to trust over the many years we’ve worked together. Understanding how to grow and evolve as a leader requires that one first deeply connects with oneself. Karen’s approach to leadership reinforces the notion that growth—both as an individual and a leader—requires self-awareness, the courage to be vulnerable, and a deep connectedness with others. The process detailed in The Connected Leader will push every leader to focus on being connected in the workplace and in one’s day-to-day life.”

– Rich Warren, President, WarnerMedia

“With courage, vulnerability, and clarity, Karen brings life to the value of being a connected leader. This is a must read for any leader or aspiring leader and my friend Karen lays out a new path for leadership.”

– Molly Fletcher, The “Female Jerry Maguire”, Coveted Speaker, and Author of The Energy Clock, Fearless at Work and The Business of Being the Best

“This book reflects Karen’s emotional intelligence. This book, like the author, gets leaders to consciously and subconsciously become comfortable with themselves—what makes them tick, what makes them successful both professionally and personally, what makes them happy and content. Understanding these unique characteristics allows leaders to connect with others on a more human level and more confidently build relationships fueled by communication and enhanced trust. Teams with honest connections are tough to break, highly motivated, and eminently more successful. Karen has figured this out; I have taken the journey with her and am a better person and leader for it. Read this book—it is the next best thing to sitting down with Karen.”

– Bob Chitty, Senior Vice President of Corporate Investments & Transactions, Intercontinental Hotels Group

“This book is a game-changer. Karen invites us to go deep into our inner worlds and she shares much of her own story, which is heartbreaking and triumphant. She knows what it means to be rigorously self-honest, open, and willing—and the huge positive impact this authenticity can and will have on your business and career. She and I have both seen this happen and know the best leaders are embracing this genuineness. And this book is an invitation to take the path toward awakening and connection since life and leadership is a journey of self-discovery. Karen lays out the imperative for a new way to lead in all aspects of our personal and professional worlds: an imperative that is about empathy not ego, courage not control, mindfulness not management. So whether you are a CEO or a teacher, a full-time homemaker or an entrepreneur, this book can help you become your best, most connected, inspiring self.”

– Cynthia Good, CEO and Founding Editor, Little PINK Book

“Karen’s work amazes me with her perspective, courage, and emotional depth. And she brings this depth of connection to the complexities of the business world, providing a much needed challenge to leaders at senior levels which powerfully translates into far better leader awareness and effectiveness. This book, which is reflective of her work, is groundbreaking—spiritual and pragmatic, challenging and confirming. I recommend it without hesitation.”

– Larry S. Levin, PD, Author of Top Teaming: A Roadmap for Teams Navigating the Now, the New, and the Next

“This deep, thoughtful work touches you at the core and will develop you to be the leader and person you were meant to be.”

– Tonya Harris Cornileus, Ph.D., Vice President, Human Resources, ESPN

“When we think about our emotional health, we tend to think about our personal lives and neglect how it coincides with our professional lives. But our emotional health impacts not only how we show up at work but how we show up as leaders. Karen Hardwick’s The Connected Leader is a great resource that helps us think more holistically about our leadership.”

– Miles Adcox, Executive Chairman of Onsite, Emotional Wellness Expert, Speaker

“I am thankful Karen shared important insights from her life journey to help all us in these chaotic times. I read this book in two days and it is one of the best leadership books I have ever read. Her words can help each of us find our inner leader to chase slowly and say hell yes to the challenges. She weaves a powerful story with lessons using Aspens, prisms, Montana, and a Mama Elk. This is an important gift she has given our generation of leaders.”

– Joe George, President, Cox Automotive Mobility

“In her beautiful book, The Connected Leader, author Karen Hardwick moves you to the halfway point of a joyful journey you had always dreamed of and knew was possible. The dream that awakens you each morning, yet, like a morning fog, quickly disappears as the busyness of your day begins: You can be the person you always knew you could be, the leader you had always imagined. The next half of the journey begins as you pick up this book, read it and live out its lessons. The time for hesitation is over.” 

– Richard Sheridan, CEO and Chief Storyteller of Menlo Innovations, Author, Joy, Inc.: How We Built a Workplace People Love, and Chief Joy Officer: How Great Leaders Elevate Human Energy and Eliminate Fear

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