The Truth About Getting the Best from People [NOOK Book]


In the Second Edition of the successful book, The Truth About Getting the Best From People, Martha Finney shares over 60 proven principles for achieving employee engagement one-hundred percent of the time.  This new edition features more than 15 new truths including: managing virtual teams, building persuasive skills, tuning into your own unconscious biases, managing multiple generations, and identifying and cultivating individual high performers.
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The Truth About Getting the Best from People

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In the Second Edition of the successful book, The Truth About Getting the Best From People, Martha Finney shares over 60 proven principles for achieving employee engagement one-hundred percent of the time.  This new edition features more than 15 new truths including: managing virtual teams, building persuasive skills, tuning into your own unconscious biases, managing multiple generations, and identifying and cultivating individual high performers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780133095241
  • Publisher: Pearson Education
  • Publication date: 12/21/2012
  • Series: Truth About
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 509 KB

Meet the Author

Martha Finney is the creator of the Career Landscapes teambuilding workshop, and a management consultant specializing in helping companies identify and build passion-driven workplace cultures. She is also the author or coauthor of 18 books, including HR from the Heart: Inspiring Stories and Strategies for Building the People Side of Great Business, with Libby Sartain, former CHRO of Yahoo! and Southwest Airlines. Her clients and interviewees include executives from Intuit, the Central Intelligence Agency, Avery Dennison, The Gap, Inc., Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Caterpillar, Kenexa, and H-P.


Martha’s work has been featured in major newspapers, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and San Jose Mercury News, as well as in Time magazine and on CNN and NPR’s Morning Edition. She is based in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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Table of Contents

Introduction     xi

PART I The Truth About Employee Engagement

Truth 1 You don’t need the carrot or the stick     1

Truth 2 You have direct infl uence over your employees’ passion quotient     4

Truth 3 You get the best by giving the best     8

Truth 4 It’s not money that motivates     11

Truth 5 Employment engagement isn’t for sissies     15

Truth 6 Real engagement gains happen after survey scores come in     19

PART II The Truth About Yourself

Truth 7 Your behaviors are your brand     23

Truth 8 You can’t give what you don’t have     26

Truth 9 “Best” doesn’t mean the same thing to everyone     30

Truth 10 Think you’re a great leader? Think again     34

Truth 11 You could be your own worst employee     38

Truth 12 Visionary or beat cop? Your choice     41

Truth 13 Your health may be compromising your leadership eff ectiveness     44

Truth 14 You don’t have to be perfect     48

Truth 15 Your career can recover from an engagement hit     52

PART III The Truth About Engaged Cultures

Truth 16 Employee happiness is serious business     55

Truth 17 Great leaders make their people cry     58

Truth 18 Better questions lead to better answers     61

Truth 19 Individual passion builds a passion-fueled customer service culture     65

Truth 20 Authentic is better than clever     69

Truth 21 Retention begins with hello     72

Truth 22 The bad will do you good     75

Truth 23 Your biggest complainer may be your best supporter     78

Truth 24 You can sell an unpopular decision     82

Truth 25 Flex is best     85

Truth 26 Nobody cares if you don’t mean to be mean     89

Truth 27 Controlling your temper is a labor-saving device     93

Truth 28 There is no “but” in “I’m sorry”     97

PART IV The Truth About Motivation

Truth 29 Engagement happens one person at a time     101

Truth 30 If you’re a manager, you’re a career coach     104

Truth 31 The candidates you’re seeking may not be the ones you need     107

Truth 32 Ask for cheese—you might get the moon     111

Truth 33 You lead better when you get off your pedestal     114

Truth 34 Trust is your strongest persuasion tool     118

Truth 35 If they aren’t buying it, they aren’t doing it     121

Truth 36 Overselling an opportunity can cost you precious talent     124

Truth 37 Focusing on what’s right can help solve what’s wrong     128

Truth 38 High performers are motivated by a piece of the action     131

Truth 39 All the generations want the same thing     135

PART V The Truth About Performance

Truth 40 Compassion promotes performance     139

Truth 41 A hot star can brighten your whole team     142

Truth 42 B players are your A team     146

Truth 43 High performers have enough coff ee mugs     149

Truth 44 Discipline deepens engagement     152

Truth 45 You don’t have to inherit the problem employees     155

Truth 46 Performance appraisals are really about you     159

Truth 47 New hires can inspire current employees     162

Truth 48 Terminations are an engagement tool     165

PART VI The Truth About Creativity

Truth 49 Innovation begins with y-e-s     169

Truth 50 Everyone can be creative     172

Truth 51 You stand between inspiration and implementation     176

Truth 52 Failures promote progress     179

Truth 53 People don’t quit their bosses, they quit their colleagues     182

Truth 54 Extreme pressure kills inspired performance     186

Truth 55 Creativity is a balancing act     189

PART VII The Truth About Communication

Truth 56 Open questions ignite inspiring answers     193

Truth 57 Serving your employees means managing your boss     196

Truth 58 Bad news is good news     200

Truth 59 Trivial conversations are essential     203

Truth 60 The way you listen speaks volumes     206

Truth 61 Crap happens     210

Truth 62 Engaged employees need to know more     213

PART VIII The Truth About Teams

Truth 63 Absence makes the employee happier     217

Truth 64 Your team has untapped talent     221

Truth 65 People need to fi ght their own battles     224

Truth 66 Games don’t build teams     228

Truth 67 Answers build teams     231

Truth 68 Your team can lead you to greatness     234

Truth 69 You’re still the boss     237

References     240

About the Author      242

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As a people leader, your job is simple: You are the link between organizational mission-critical objectives and the effort your employees invest in achieving those objectives. And you just have to keep those two pieces working together smoothly. See? Easy.

Yeah, right. As a people leader, your job is to inspire your employees to bring their personal greatness to work every day and to invest their best in your business. And that’s a hard job. It’s an emotional roller coaster. You experience the exquisite highs of engagement and teamwork when everyone is pulling together. Your heart breaks when you have to make really tough decisions that negatively affect the personal lives and well-being of people you truly care about. And it can be absolutely frightening when you’re dealing with hair-trigger personalities who really don’t belong in a safe workplace.

But even more routinely—and just as challenging, if not more so—you have to deal with yourself and your beliefs about life, about people, and about motivation and trust. Every day. Even on the ho-hum days. And that’s when we get down to some pretty simple principles. Although this book by no means trivializes all the behaviors and beliefs that go into bringing out the greatness in your employees, the material you’ll discover in these pages is based on a few very accessible assumptions:

  • People leaders discover that leading is impossible when they forget that they’re people first. It may be paradoxical, but nothing makes a person come face to face with real—or perceived—limitations faster than apromotion into a managerial spot. On the outside you may be projecting, “Can do!” (or at least hoping you are), but on the inside you may be saying, “Uh oh, what have I gotten myself into?” Your first managerial assignment? Manage yourself into keeping in mind that you’re not expected to be perfect. You’re just expected to reach a little further for some brand new stretch goals.
  • Most people want to do good work in a job they love. Marketing consultant (and former Senior Vice President of Marketing for Starbucks) Scott Bedbury speaks about what he calls the “Five Human Truths.” We need to be understood, feel special, feel as though we belong, feel that we’re in control, and know that we have the chance to reach our potential. Although these feelings may not necessarily be what we want from a cup of coffee, they’re certainly what we want almost universally from the work we do. (But ask me at 4 in the morning when I’m cranking against deadlines, and I may have a different answer for you.)
  • Great people leaders don’t have to be clever, complicated, politically astute, or even especially wise. But they do have to be kind, honest, focused, positive, and authentic. If your company is committed to supporting you as you cultivate a grounded, authentic, compelling leadership style, you will see first-hand that creating great employees isn’t about being magically charismatic. It’s about being you.
  • There is no “u” in team, but there should be. As a people leader, you’re also a team member. Sometimes you’re the coach; in fact, you might often think of yourself in the top leadership spot. But you’re also the water carrier. And if your team is working so well and independently that all they need is a regular infusion of refreshment, that’s a great position for you to play.

Enjoy this book. When you learn that creating great employees can be fun and personally rewarding, the first great employee you’ll create will be yourself.

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