The Inner Edge
The 10 Practices of Personal Leadership
by Joelle K. Jay
August 2009, 290pp, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-0-313-37805-8
$45, £35, 40€, A62
Please contact your preferred distributor for pricing.
eBook Available: 978-0-313-37806-5
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The way you lead helps shape your life. The life you live will help you lead. But how do you develop your personal leadership style and achieve that better life? You turn to the coach, Dr. Joelle Jay, a master at one-on-one training in the strategies of personal leadership—what management expert Peter Drucker called “the only leadership that’s going to matter in the 21st century.”

An esteemed executive coach shows managers and leaders how they can achieve personal and professional success—and leave a mark on the world.

Dr. Joelle Jay’s The Inner Edge: The 10 Practices of Personal Leadership draws on timeless principles and Jay’s experiences with hundreds of leaders from America’s most successful and admired companies, setting out ten essential components of leading well and living well.

In The Inner Edge, Dr. Jay offers customized coaching to help leaders overcome challenges, leverage opportunities, and maximize their talents, teams, and time. Through vivid examples, conversations with accomplished leaders, insightful perspectives on leadership, and thought-provoking questions and exercises, Jay shows readers that leadership is not just a label, but a way of life. Finding your edge, gaining clarity, focusing and taking action, expanding your knowledge—under Jay’s training these and other principles become concrete achievable assets for living and leading. The result is an essential resource for helping leaders get results for their organizations in a way that capitalizes on—and enriches—their own unique identity.


  • Includes a foreword by internationally renowned executive coach Howard Morgan, cofounder and managing partner of the Leadership Research Institute and the author of The Art and Practice of Leadership Coaching
  • Provides exercises and worksheets—original versions of the same tools and techniques used by top executive coaches to help leaders succeed in their roles and for their organizations
  • Offers vivid examples and quotes from real leaders based on over 100 interviews with top leaders in some of the nations biggest, most admired companies
  • Includes reference notes for every chapter
Dr. Joelle K. Jay is an executive leadership coach and the founder and principal of Pillar Consulting, LLC. Her clients include presidents, vice presidents, and C-level executives in international, national, and local organizations.


"Jay, an executive leadership coach, outlines 10 essential components of personal leadership, with examples from company leaders she has interviewed, worked with, or coached. Arguing that effective leadership skills connect to living well, she describes how leadership must start with oneself and involve understanding the personal role in the process. She explains how readers can apply the principles of leadership in their personal lives, subsequently producing better results in business."—Reference & Research Book News, November 1, 2009

"Serious business collections must have this."—Midwest Book Review, January 28, 2010

"This book can help you achieve what really matters – as a professional and a person! A great roadmap on your journey through life! Wonderful coaching for a great life!' "—Marshall Goldsmith
executive coach and author of the New York Times bestseller What Got You Here Won’t Get You There and Succession: Are You Ready?

"The Inner Edge is a valuable resource for anyone who aspires to lead in a home, workplace, or community. It is filled with practical strategies for being a more effective leader.' "—Tom Rath
Bestselling author of How Full Is Your Bucket?, StrengthsFinder 2.0, and Strengths Based Leadership

"In The Inner Edge, Joelle Jay walks her talk. At a time when the world clamors for genuine, trusted leadership, she has delivered an invaluable guidebook for managing from the inside out. Citing behaviors of high trust, high performance leaders, Joelle shows how to take the lead in your own life and sharpen that inner edge for true balance between a life of work and the work of life.' "—Stephen M. R. Covey, author of The New York Times bestseller The Speed of Trust

"The instrument of leadership is the self, and the mastery of the art of leadership comes from mastery of the self. That means that the quest for leadership is first an inner quest to discover who you are. That is the premise of Joelle Jay's exciting new book, The Inner Edge, and in it she guides us on a path to discovering the self who leads. It's an engaging, respectful, and encouraging book that presents real stories about real leaders who struggle with the answers to important leadership questions. She offers highly relevant and realistic examples of how we can all become the best we can be. With ten practices that are intuitively sound and grounded firmly in the lives of leaders, Joelle offers useful advice and applied exercises on what we can each do develop our capacity to be successful in leadership and life.' "—Jim Kouzes, award-winning coauthor of the bestselling, The Leadership Challenge, and Dean's Executive Professor of Leadership
Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

"Get past thought and word on pages. Lift your nose from the grindstone. Join Joelle at the kitchen table over a cup of coffee where the conversation is all about you – as a person, as a leader. Discover and get back whatever pleasures you inadvertently left behind while becoming accomplished.' "—Ron Campbell, President, Center for Leadership Studies

"Really great leaders need to work on themselves. To be effective in this environment, we need to take care of who we are as leaders to sustain our well-being and effectiveness. In The Inner Edge, Joelle Jay helps define the leaders of the future, and this book will show them how to define themselves.' "—Cece Sutton, President, Retail Banking Group, Morgan Stanley

"The Inner Edge is a good compendium of prescriptions for personal leadership. It is intelligently organized and has a workbook style that makes it a good self-study reference. The topic of personal leadership is significant and gets even more important with the generational challenges we will be facing in our workforce, as it provides a good way to combine our way of life with the demands we experience in the workplace.' "—Randy MacDonald, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, IBM

"The Inner Edge reveals a powerful but simple truth. No matter what our role in life, we are all leaders. Joelle Jay's book provides us with a step-by-step plan to maximize our effectiveness as 'personal leaders' so we can learn to meet the demands of our hectic lives in a way that is productive, effective, and harmonious.' "—Paula Kruger, former EVP, Mass Markets, Qwest

"As a leader, you have to stay curious. You have to develop human capital. It’s one of the great investments. When leaders read The Inner Edge, they will be investing in themselves, and their companies will reap the rewards.' "—Patrick Byrne, Chairman and CEO,

"I'm a firm believer that even if you master all the leadership competencies and attributes that comprise every leadership model there is, you still can't lead others until you lead yourself. We are all amazingly transparent and until people see who we are . . . and until we look inward ourselves, it's all for naught if The Leader Within isn't home. Joelle gives you the tools to find yourself and not let go.' "—Steve Bailey President, National Management Association

"Where leaders get sideways is when they separate their personal values from their behavior in their business life. We just have to look around and we see countless examples of the carnage that leaders have allowed when they get out of alignment with their core values. Sometimes, we have so much noise and outside things coming at us that we don’t take the time to listen to our inner voice. In The Inner Edge, leaders get though provoking advice to help them stay in alignment.' "—Ted Dysart Managing Partner, Heidrick & Struggles

"The Inner Edge is a valuable resource for leaders. Emerging leaders will find it a good instrument to use and read as they begin their leadership journey, and seasoned leaders will find it reaffirms what they need to be doing (and may have forgotten!) to be effective as leaders.' "—Janine Pecsi Director of Talent Development, Gensler

"As soon as I read The Inner Edge, I could see its value for our organization. I put it to work right away – doing the exercises and using it with my team to develop our vision and strategy. A couple of weeks later I went back to look at it from a personal angle and was able to see the ideas in a whole new way. The Inner Edge does what many books on leadership neglect to do. It takes the whole leader into account.' "—Janet Heppner Jones, Managing Director, HYH Group

"When I was growing up in the television news business I often told stories of being the ‘only red dress in a room full of gray suits.’ There was both a literal and a symbolic reality to that. Not only was the path one of doing exactly what the boss and the company wanted, including the adherence to rules, the long hours, and the 24/7 commitment to breaking news - but there was little help in learning how to walk even that path, let alone think that I was more than my job description, and could help create the path that was best for me. The Inner Edge will be invaluable to this generation of leaders.' "—Nancy Bostdorff, former TV News Director for The New York Times Company and CBS affiliate KTVN
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