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Archive for the ‘Motivation and Engagement’ Category

A Culture of PurposeIn A Culture of Purpose, Christoph Lueneburger relates how leadership today faces the complex task of building a culture of purpose to power organizations. Pursuing a purpose rooted in commercial success is one of the best ways to plant such a culture in a corporation. A company’s purpose should be bigger than the bottom line. Leadership needs to poses the right combination of competencies, including change leadership, influencing, and commercial drive. Hiring talent that has innate determination, insight, and curiosity will help spread the culture of purpose throughout the organization. Such a winning culture can be cultivated further by imbuing the company with energy, resilience, and openness.

Lueneburger provides readers with the following advice:

  • Leaders with a purpose sit at the core of any culture of purpose. They should be adept at change management, especially when first developing the foundation of a culture of purpose. They should also have the ability to influence others when initiatives begin.
  • As purpose reaches all corners of the organization, leaders who have developed a strong commercial drive coupled with the practical skills to achieve measurable results become central.
  • Hiring the right talent is the only way to perpetuate a culture of purpose over the long haul. Although employees can be helped to develop competence over time, they arrive with certain innate traits that are more or less useful in the journey toward a culture of purpose. Fortunately, candidates with the right traits are naturally drawn to companies pursuing cultures of purpose.
  • Everyone in the organization should have innate curiosity, so all new hires should demonstrate this trait. With curiosity can come insight, or gut instincts that go beyond the data. Determined people are more difficult to manage, but determination is the trait that will help a company power through difficult stages in building a culture of purpose.
  • A robust culture of purpose has energy, resilience, and openness. A common purpose provides initial energy while trust developed through honest and abundant communication ensures resilience. Openness to all stakeholder voices, including critics from the outside, will sustain the organization.
  • Sustainability should not be a drag on commercial performance but a positive goal that imbues the culture of a company with energy and purpose. By moving sustainability from a distracting item on the margins to the very center of the corporate culture, leaders can build winning organizations that stand up to challenges and thrive.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

 

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91260023In The New Workforce Challenge, Andrés Hatum aims to help companies meet the challenge of absorbing the technologically savvy millennial generation into the workforce at the very time that organizations are changing faster than ever before in response to the turbulence they face worldwide. Hatum examines how firms are organizing for the future, the impact of the new organizational forms on the workplace, and the practices that firms are putting into place to attract, develop, and retain the new generation of workers. Hatum believes that the workplace and workforce need to be analyzed together in order to present the big picture. By shedding light on recent changes that organizations have gone through and likely changes to come in the future, companies can better understand how to manage the new workforce.

In his book, Hatum informs readers that:

  • Successful firms are adaptable and innovative; they combine changes in structure, such as decentralization, delayering, and project forms of organizing; processes, such as horizontal communication, investments in information technology, and new human resource (HR) practices; and firm boundaries, such as downscoping, outsourcing, and greater use of strategic alliances.
  • Agile and virtual firms will shape the marketplace and at the same time will influence and be influenced by the new workforce.
  • Heterogeneity and diversity characterize the new workforce and have replaced the previously homogeneous workforce.
  • Millennials, the generation born between 1979 and 1997, value work-life integration and a flexible workplace.
  • There are four main values that drive Millennials: multitasking, desire to integrate work and personal life, concern for society and the environment, and access to technology.
  • Companies’ are relying less on their brands to attract and retain employees and more on their Employee Value Propositions (EVPs), which consist of the features that allow companies to promote themselves outwardly and generate loyalty internally.
  • Millennial learning characteristics can be described with the acronym EPIC, which stands for: Experiential, Participatory, Image-rich, and Connected.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Keeping the Millennials, Managing the Millennials, The Trophy Kids Grow Up

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Flat ArmyStudies show that the majority of workers to be disengaged from their work and their organizations. To truly engage employees, Dan Pontefract believes companies need to adopt a “Flat Army Philosophy.” In his book Flat Army, Pontefract argues that leaders need to surrender command and control in favor of a more open and inclusive style of leadership. When they seek out authentic connections with their teams and come to understand work as an important but not existential endeavor, these leaders become truly connected and therefore profoundly effective. Such connected leaders make ample use of social media and other technologies to deepen connections across their organizations. The result is a self-generating, perpetually learning, dynamically balanced enterprise that is a pleasure both to lead and to work for.

According to Pontefract:

  • Employees are generally disengaged from the work they do and the organizations for which they do it. Work disengagement springs from the traditional hierarchical style of management that views workers as the “brawn” to managements “brains.”
  • The historical roots of employee disengagement stem from the British charter companies of the 16th century, the European armies of the 18th century, and the Scientific Management ideas that shaped American companies in the late 19th century.
  • “Connected leaders” break down traditional hierarchy in favor of a flat organizational structure. They treat employees as complete human beings and connections are encouraged across all levels and work areas.
  • The connected leader trusts their employees, involves and empowers them, empathizes with them, and helps them develop their careers. A key aspect of all of these traits is consistent and open communications with all team members.
  • The traits of the connected leader begin as behaviors that they must practice and exercise daily until they are habit. Eventually, the connected leader moves beyond merely practicing these attributes to truly living them.
  • Participative leadership requires continual, authentic, and reciprocal interactions with team members and the leader’s wider internal and external network. Education is a key component of the Participative Leader Framework and must be practiced consciously and formally.
  • The “Action Model” for the collaborative, or connected-participative, leader begins with connecting to all stakeholders and weighing their input. Next, the model calls for the leader to communicate a plan of action to all stakeholders, and then become immersed in executing that plan. The leader confirms with stakeholders that they are satisfied with the result and then congratulates all involved by focusing on the behaviors they brought to the project to make it successful.
  • To truly benefit from the Flat Army philosophy, one must embrace Web 2.0 technologies for conversation, education, and network presence.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: The Employee Engagement Mindset, The Enemy of Engagement, The Connect Effect

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88408705The purpose of Stop Complainers and Energy Drainers is to teach people how to spot a complainer and fix the problem quickly. Complainers and energy drainers in the workplace can have strong negative effects on a company through lost work, loss of good employees due to an unhealthy work environment, and damage to a company’s reputation. Complainers inhibit innovation and growth in companies while negatively affecting daily productivity. Linda Swindling attempts to help readers identify the types of complainers they are dealing with, understand the reasons for their behavior, and learn strategies and solutions to deal with them. The options, strategies, and solutions provided can help turn chronic complainers into chronic contributors and let everyone get back to work.

Swindling offers the following advice to readers:

  • Every complainer has their own motivations for behaving the way they do. Understanding their reality versus their outward reactions is key to helping them change their own behavior.
  • Workplace productivity can suffer from energy drains. Energy drains come in many forms including: technology and software that is complicated or not understood by its users; bottlenecks; too much work for a given timeframe; misaligned values between the company and workers; and depressing work environments.
  • Not all complaining is counterproductive. Constructive complaining can be beneficial to a company’s growth.
  • Changing chronic complainers into chronic contributors can go far to improving a company’s morale, promoting effective communication, and increasing productivity.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Make Difficult People Disappear, Three Signs of a Miserable JobEngagement Is Not Enough

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86407323Today’s economy, with its insatiable need for great ideas and effective implementation, does not reward stifling environments and underdeveloped staffs. Instead, it demands smart work at full throttle. To unleash productive power, organizations look to their leaders. Global competitors and the advancement of new technologies require leaders to be constantly in motion as they lead their organizations to success by creating cultures of transformation. In Leaders in Motion, Dr. Marta Wilson offers her proven method for unleashing the full potential of every organization by helping leaders tap their potential to create and motivate cultures of transformation and achievement.

Wilson offers the following advice to leaders wishing to spur cultural change in their companies:

  • The race to win organizational health, wealth, and creative power begins with personal mastery, and the journey toward personal mastery begins with a commitment to integrity.
  • Organizational transformation is based on personal transformation.
  • The starting point for authentic organizational transformation is the leader, who must be committed to personal transformation.
  • To master their enterprises and the interpersonal connections within them, leaders must first master themselves.
  • Transformation requires personal mastery built on authenticity, integrity, consciousness, and willingness to embrace change.
  • Learning how to practice new reactions is an essential element of transformation.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: People Follow You, Positive Leadership, Corporate Culture

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Research has shown that when employees are focused and fully engaged, they are more productive at work. In Contented Cows Still Give Better Milk, Bill Catlette and Richard Hadden suggest that employees are more likely to happily work to the best of their abilities when their employers adopt leadership habits that make the organization a great place to work. They describe the practices that have helped top companies hire, cultivate, and retain satisfied employees that are dedicated to building wealth.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Happiness at Work, Make Work Great, Love ’em or Lose ’em

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Many people believe that permanently changing their habits is difficult, if not impossible. However, through behavior change, it is possible to significantly improve results in many different areas of life. In Change Anything, Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler explain the science behind personal change, and define the steps that anyone can take to increase chances for success when attempting to transform their careers, health, financial situations, relationships, and more.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Change Your Questions, Change Your Life, The Personal Efficiency ProgramCreating Your Own Destiny

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