National Book Tour Launch A Huge Success!

By • on October 15, 2008

The number one question I keep getting asked during my recent book signing tour is, “Why Running with the Rhinos?”, so let me tell you about the original inspiration for this book. You might be surprised to hear that what really inspired me to put this book together was a trip to the zoo where I had the pleasure of watching an enormous black rhino.

Why was I at the zoo instead of working? Well, because as you’ll find in my book one of the most important things I believe in is that you can lead without sacrificing the vital time you must also have with your family. I have four sons and so have taken a trek to the zoo more times than I can count and this particular day I had the luxury of spending time watching this particular rhino.

The rhino was charging intently and fearlessly at another rhino and an inner voice said, “Take notice. There’s something important to be learned here.” We all hear this inner voice by the way and the more we lead by collaborating with this voice and recognizing its importance the better off our lives will be.

That day was the first step toward me writing my book. It represented a commitment to studying something new and taking the journey without knowing the destination.

As it turns out the journey I was taking was learning how utterly exceptional the rhino is as an animal and how those traits could be applied just as easily to extraordinary rhino-leaders. Think Steve Jobs, Herb Kelleher, those young geeks from Google – all of these leaders were and are still rhinos.

I spent hours of research bringing the rhino to life including even sketching this beautiful animal at the zoo for hours, jotting notes about their behavior and getting every book I could about rhinos.

In writing Running with the Rhinos, the rhino revealed itself to me as a majestic tower of wisdom, the perfect metaphor for what it takes to be a leader in today’s complex world. The rhinoceros symbolizes the vision, understanding, communication, power, endurance, conviction, support, heart and, most important, the balance that those desiring to be leaders must integrate into their lives.

Now more than ever many are struggling through very real challenges in terms of the recession, keeping up with the global economy, being in demand 24/7 and yet there is a way to find balance.

We all seek equilibrium between who we are and who we want to become; between our inner world and the chaotic environment we are a part of; between our work life and home life; between profit and principle; power and wisdom, strength and compassion, might and heart.

The rhino leader encompasses and balances all of these attributes and is still able to successfully lead the winning charge on the tundra. I hope that you’ll find your “inner-rhino” in reading my book and I look forward to hearing your insights.


By Marc Johnson on October 16th, 2008 at 2:19 pm

Mr. Warren,

Thank you for your extra time during your book signing. I absolutely love the rhino metaphors in the book! Thank you for introducing me to many of your students and other industry leaders. I gained so much from their encouraging words. Thanks again for the invitation.

Marc Johnson