Authors Yael C. Sivi and Yosh C. Beier have been quoted as saying: “Work, it turns out, gives us the opportunity not only to be more effective and collaborative but also to truly understand ourselves.” This kind of mentality is reflected and enhanced on with the release of their new book, Growing Up at Work: How to Transform Personally, Evolve Professionally, and Lead Authentically. Whereas most books in the leadership advice categories are decidedly anti-sentimental in just about every sense, Growing Up at Work as the nature of its title implies doesn’t shy from being compassionate. In fact, said compassion is a core ingredient to facilitating successful relationships while at work, Sivi and Beier write.


Putting deliberately humanistic touches on one’s conduct, even in the fast-paced nature of the rat race, forms one of the core building blocks ensuring long-term success in today’s world. “In our experience, the very best leaders transcend personal limitations so they can act with maturity, self-awareness, honesty, dependability, and kindness. We believe that emotionally mature leaders create healthy employees, teams, and organizations—and by extension, enhance their influence. Professional growth and personal growth are intertwined, and authentic, positive, lasting leadership growth requires self-awareness and openness to deep personal growth—in other words, growth from the inside out,” Sivi and Beier layout in the book’s introduction. “While there is no quick fix, our experience has shown that extraordinary results are possible.”

Sivi and Beier outline the entirety of their philosophy in the book’s first couple chapters, before zooming in on select microcosms of said information to really unpack the concept of christened ‘compassionate leadership’ principles. What they advocate for, while succinctly put, is part of a growing social trend that seeks to blend at home intimacy with professional conduct. The traditionalist decorum and humanistic removal of business transactional behaviors has started to shift, Sivi and Beier write. Now is the time when one’s own self-determinative qualities are synonymous to their ability to work efficiently, collaborate productively, and remain the lean horse for the long ride in a fifteen-round fight. What makes the authors individually stand out on this is their coming from a place of informed observation, versus the kind of whirlwind sentimentality critics can target.


They back up their findings with actual scenarios showing the methodology’s benefits in action, complete with real-world examples presented under a pseudonym. “Over time, we’ve learned that the kind of personal transformation we describe in the client stories is best supported through a general set of lifelong practices that transcend specific dilemmas,” Sivi and Beier write. “…The most rewarding and meaningful changes in life aren’t the result of a quick fix. Rather, change is the result of daily, intentional, and conscious choices that enable us to shift out of habitual ways of thinking into newer approaches to our lives.”

The book communicates this, along with some decidedly altruistic and even somewhat spiritualistic touches, without ever resorting to cheap literary tactics. These kind of pitfalls even the greats can succumb to, but lucky for us Sivi and Beier have too much style to let that happen…

Kendall Townsend