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Beyond the chicken coop

Seidler book offers lessons in leadership

By: Dave Baxter

Posted: 01/23/2018 9:15 AM

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A new book tells the story of how one man overcame extreme poverty and hardship to go on to have a successful life, while also offering tips and advice to others on what they can do to succeed in life and overcome barriers.

Roy Seidler says he endured a childhood plagued by issues such as poverty, an often-absent father, and a mother who struggled just to feed her eight children.

"We were really, really poor growing up," Seidler said. "Poor to the point we were living off charity and handouts.

"I was estranged from my dad at 14 and often he wouldn’t send any money to my mom, so there were literally times where there was nothing to eat."

Seidler recalls how at one point he and his family were forced to live for a few months in a chicken coop.

"It was dire, it was very, very dire," he said.

Seidler, a Giroux resident, recently released the book ‘The Chicken Coop CEO: Lessons in Life and Leadership,’ a book he said is part autobiography and part an instructional manual for succeeding in life.

The first section of the book walks the reader through the progression of Seidler’s life from poverty to the point where he eventually became Seine River School Division superintendent.

"I realized a lot of my goals and my dreams and I continue to try and do that," Seidler said. "One of the themes of the book is no matter how rough things start out in life it’s possible to overcome and succeed."

While the first section of the book offers an autobiographical looks at Seidlers’ life, the second and third sections provide what Seidler said is a manual for readers for becoming successful people and strong leaders.

Part two of Seidlers’ book focuses on the traits that Seidler said people must have to become strong leaders including humility, a managed ego and the ability to admit mistakes.

"It’s about the importance of having a level of self-awareness, and having that ability to control your ego, to self-criticize and to listen to other people," he said.

The third and final section of the book offers tips on how strong leaders deal with others, manage their interpersonal skills, and deal with issues such as decision-making, dealing with change and time management.

Seidler will hold an official book launch at McNally Robinson on Grant Ave. in Winnipeg on Feb.2 where he will read selected sections from the book, talk to the audience about the process of creating the book and sign copies.

The book launch, which will feature wine and cheese, begins at 7 p.m.

The book is available at a number of book stores in Manitoba and also at

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