We: How to Increase Performance and Profits Through Full Engagement

Overview

We live in a new world where work and life are blended as opposed to balanced, and feelings of financial security and entitlement are a thing of the past. Job satisfaction is at a record low, a crisis with far-reaching impact. For businesses, a disengaged workforce means lower levels of productivity and service, and ultimately lower growth and profits. For individuals, our emotions at work spill over to the other areas of our lives and take a toll on our health and ...

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We: How to Increase Performance and Profits through Full Engagement

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Overview

We live in a new world where work and life are blended as opposed to balanced, and feelings of financial security and entitlement are a thing of the past. Job satisfaction is at a record low, a crisis with far-reaching impact. For businesses, a disengaged workforce means lower levels of productivity and service, and ultimately lower growth and profits. For individuals, our emotions at work spill over to the other areas of our lives and take a toll on our health and relationships.

In We, Rudy Karsan and Kevin Kruse dig deep to reveal the nature of work in the modern organization and share the secrets for achieving full engagement at work, based on findings from over ten million worker surveys in 150 countries and also on their own experiences leading fast-growth companies. They show the inevitable linkage between the success of the individual and the success of the organization, and how both must come together to succeed.

For managers and all professionals, We details the leadership behaviors that generate emotional buy-in and commitment from team members. Karsan and Kruse highlight the three factors that drive one's level of engagement the most:

—Growth: Team members feel they are growing in their careers and learning new things.

—Recognition: Team members feel that their ideas and accomplishments are appreciated.

—Trust: Team members trust senior leadership and feel confident about the future.

We is an indispensable guide packed with solid research, case studies from innovative companies, individual stories of personal growth and achievement, and actionable steps that will both enhance your own engagement at work and transform your approach to leadership.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Karsan and Kruse show the power of having engaged employees for business success and provide practical guidance for how to achieve it." —-Peter Cappelli, PhD.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781452651323
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/14/2011
  • Format: MP3 on CD
  • Edition description: MP3 - Unabridged CD
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author


Rudy Karsan is cofounder, chairman, and CEO of Kenexa, a global provider of business solutions for human resources.

Kevin Kruse is a serial entrepreneur, CEO of Kru Research, and cofounder of the e-Patient Connections conference.

Lloyd James has been narrating since 1996, has recorded over six hundred books in almost every genre, has earned six AudioFile Earphones Awards, and is a two-time nominee for the prestigious Audie Award.

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  • Posted February 1, 2011

    If you're lucky enough to have a job, you have to read this book!

    Your job matters more than you think. In fact, it has a startling impact on all aspects of your life, including your happiness, your health, your weight, your life expectancy, your relationships - even the intimacy of your marriage and your children's behavior at school! This is because work doesn't leave us when we leave the office. Our work-related emotions 'spill over' into other areas of our lives.

    'We: How to increase performance and profits through full engagement' is not your typical business book. Yes, it covers employee engagement, leadership and how to increase productivity. But what really distinguishes this from the crowd is that it's also a book for individuals on how to achieve happiness at work.

    This dual purpose - of looking at engagement both from an individual's perspective and from the point of view of a manager/employer - is very much deliberate as we're told that employees and their managers have a shared responsibility to work together if they are to bring about the desired state of full engagement.

    The authors - Rudy Karsan and Kevin Kruse, both leaders of fast-growing companies - claim you can tell whether employees are engaged by how often they use the word 'We' (as opposed to 'they') when describing their employer. Hence the title.

    The authors chart a brief history of the changes that have occurred in the job environment and attitudes to work: from the creation of 'jobs' and 'managers' to the shift to a work-life blend.

    For individuals, a key message is that it's unlikely you'll be satisfied in life if you aren't satisfied and engaged at work. Want to be happy with better health and a passionate marriage? Get a job that engages you!

    To be engaged, you'll need passion, purpose and pay. The authors suggest ways to assess your strengths, find your true purpose, develop your own personal brand, grow your career, enhance your working relationships, identify your preferred culture and decide on the type of organization in which you should be working.

    For leaders and managers, a key message is that your behavior has a far-reaching impact. You create the environment that enables individuals to either flourish or flounder. With a clever acronym, the authors highlight that GReAT managers focus on Growth, Recognition And Trust.

    Using research from Kenexa - which conducts 10 million employee engagement/opinion surveys in over 150 countries each year - the authors reveal that there's a five-times greater difference in shareholder value between companies with the most engaged workers and those with the least. Yet they stress that engagement alone is not enough. You also need alignment to ensure everyone is heading in the same direction!

    The book provides a toolkit of questions and action steps to help managers maximize engagement, align employees to the organization's goals, show recognition, make employees feel valued and enhance teamwork, communication and product/service quality, among other things.

    With separate sections - and key takeaways - for individuals and managers, this is an eminently readable book that is filled with case studies, questions, actionable advice and links to exclusive online bonus content, including video interviews, audio files and activities.

    Work should be enjoyable, fulfilling and engaging. If yours isn't, this book will challenge you to do something about it. But it will also support you along the way. You owe it to yourself to read this.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    An Engaging Read For Both Management And Employees

    As a consultant and entrepreneur who has worked with thousands of business owners, managers, and their employees to help them achieve corporate and personal growth, I was captivated by the opening exercise in the engaging book. By asking a simple question, the authors demonstrate the book's premise, that nothing is more important to the organization or the individual than engagement with their work. It's easy for the business owner to accept this concept. They know that productivity increases and profits grow in direct relationship to the devotion of the workforce to performance. Given the demise of job security in today's economy,however, it's a lot more difficult for the employee to recognize the value of engagement to them. Karsan and Kruse spend most of the book making that case to employees and showing employers how to change their organizations so that they can reinforce it in daily operations. Their premise is based on findings from millions of worker surveys done on behalf of their clients. Most of the case studies and anecdotal material comes from the same source. While this could have turned the book into a thinly-veiled ad for their businesses, it doesn't read that way at all. The concepts and research are presented openly, as are actionable items that could easily have been hidden behind "hire me and I'll tell you." I was particularly intrigued by the way the book is integrated into a website full of bonus material like videos, activities, exercises, and other value-added features. Each chapter ends with a one-page summary of key takeaways for both managers and employees that can be printed as a pdf from the website for future reference. Bonus material includes videos by the authors and others that expand on the concepts presented in each chapter. The website provides a great deal of extra value for the reader.

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  • Posted February 2, 2011

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    This is THE book to read if you want to be an engaged employee

    In an economy where the job market is tight, both employers and employees need to restructure the way they think about the illusory belief that work and life are separate entities. Many times I've emailed people on weekends with a work related question and have been surprised when I've received an almost instantaneous response. Naturally I would think that they needed to get a life, but now realized they were fully engaged in their work as was I. There is no such thing as "entitlement" these days and instead of trying to balance our lives with work, we need to learn to blend them together. "The 'W' approach is one that says stop striving for a work-life 'balance,' and begin to craft a work-life 'blend.'" (pg. 26) Of course if you are a clock watcher and have your eyes on that second hand as it approaches five o'clock you do need to get a life . and a new job. Your job, on one level, defines who you are and "it should be easy to see how one's employment plays a critical part in who you are and how you experience life." (pg. 36) You'll learn about the spillover and crossover effects of your job and how they impact your life and the lives of others, specifically that of your family. If you think that you "leave work at the office" you might just want to rethink that platitude after reading about the psychological effects of work satisfaction or dissatisfaction on the family dynamic. Did you know that "only 45% of workers in the United States were satisfied with their jobs?" (pg. 213) Probably no big surprise there and almost everyone is aware of the divorce rate here in the United States. This is *THE* book that both employers and employees need to foster a sense of unity in the workplace. I must admit that most business books I read are boring and redundant, as they snatch material from other books in order to simply sell a book and not an idea. I was so fully engaged in this book I spent a couple of days reading it. There are "Bonus Material" sections on this book's website that can be accessed by passwords given in the book. I watched one and it was excellent, but I might recommend that people read the book from cover to cover and then go back to watch the videos as they absorb the material. The book is realistic, impressive, and based on solid research. This opinion-based book was formulated by experienced men who "listened" to millions of workers who answered questionnaires. In the introduction Tony Hsieh states that "Our ultimate goal is to create a culture of happy, engaged, and productive employees." Yep, I think this book has the right formula! Quill says: If you want to be a fully engaged employee or have one, this is THE book to read!

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