Encouraging the Heart: A Leader's Guide to Rewarding and Recognizing Others (J-B Leadership Challenge: Kouzes/Posner) Paperback – 25 Mar 2003
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"Beyond the terrific stories and examples, Encouraging the Heart is a wonderful tool for creating a workforce that cares. In today′s economy of job–hopping and nanosecond loyalty, can anything be more valuable?" (Patrick Lencioni, author, The Five Temptations of a CEO, and president, The Table Group)
"Kouzes and Posner have done it again. Encouraging the Heart is an insightful, easy–to–read book that shows modern leaders how to foster pride, courage, hope, ownership, and achievement. It′s a wonderful mix of research findings and practical observations drawn from the authors′ extensive experience with leaders." (William C. Byham, Ph.D., president and CEO, Development Dimensions International) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Beyond the terrific stories and examples, Encouraging the Heart is a wonderful tool for creating a workforce that cares. In today′s economy of job–hopping and nanosecond loyalty, can anything be more valuable?"
― Patrick Lencioni, author, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, and president, The Table Group
"Kouzes and Posner have done it again. Encouraging the Heart is an insightful, easy–to–read book that shows modern leaders how to foster pride, courage, hope, ownership, and achievement. It′s a wonderful mix of research findings and practical observations drawn from the authors′ extensive experience with leaders."
― William C. Byham, Ph.D., president and CEO, Development Dimensions International
Top Customer Reviews
The book offers 100's of suggestions to be an encourager. Not that I have used them as a recipe, rather a stimulus to find my own.
`The secret of success is to stay in love. Staying in love gives you the fire to really ignite other people, to see inside other people, to have a greater desire to get more things done than other people'.... John H Stanford in Encouraging the Heart...by Kouzes and Posner.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
In this context, James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner identify seven essentials to encouraging the heart. According to Kouzes and Posner, when leaders do their best to encourage the heart, they:
1. Set clear standards- The first prerequisite for encouraging the heart is to set clear standards (goals and values or principles). To be successful in encouraging the heart, it's absolutely critical that everyone cherish a common set of standards. It's certainly not very encouraging to be in the dark about what we're expected to achieve, or never to know where we stand relative to what's important. Only when we know the standards can we set our sights for success.
2. Expect the best- High expectations or low expectations both influence other people's performance. Only high expectations have a positive impact on actions and on feelings about oneself. Thus, passionately believing in people and expecting the best of them is another prerequisite to encouraging the heart.
3. Pay attention- One way of showing you care is to pay attention to people, to what they're doing, and to how they're feeling. If you are clear about the standards of behavior you're looking for and you believe and expect that people will perform like winners, then you're going to notice lots of examples of people doing things right, and doing the right things.
4. Personalize recognition- Before recognizing someone, the best leaders get to know people personally. They learn about their likes and dislikes, their needs and interests. They observe them in their own settings. Then, when it comes time to recognize a particular person, they know a way to make it special, meaningful, and memorable.
5. Tell the story- Although the live example is the most powerful of ways to publicize what people do to exemplify values, there are other media available to leaders. Newsletters, annual reports, advertisement, even voice mail and e-mail can be used to encourage the heart and teach positive stories about what people do to exemplify our values. These media sure are a lot more powerful than posting our values on a wall somewhere.
6. Celebrate together- Public ceremonies bring people closer together. As we move to a more virtual world, where communication is by voice mail, e-mail, cell phone, videoconference, and pager, it's becoming ever more difficult for people to find opportunities to be together. We are social animals, and we need each other. Those who are fortunate enough to have lots of social support are healtier human beings than those who have a little. Social support is absolutely essential to our well-being and to our productivity. Celebrating together is one way we can get this essential support.
7. Set the example- Setting the example for encouraging the heart starts by giving youself permission to do so. It starts with putting it in your daily planner. It starts with putting a sign by your door. It starts when you talk to everyone about it. It starts when you turn a routine task into something fun. It starts by giving to others first. It starts when you get personally involved. When leaders do get personally involved in encouraging the heart, the results are always the same: the receiver and the giver both feel uplifted. The reflection in the mirror is the one you portray.
Practicality: "We wanted to offer a set of principles, practices, and examples that would provide leaders with a repeatable process -- a set of essential actions --they could apply in their own settings."
Principle: "In this book, we not only demonstrate that encouraging the heart is not soft; we show how powerful a force it is in achieving high standards and stretch goals."
Curiosity: "We've been intrigued for some time by this finding that] "female constituents do not report that their leaders encourage the heart any more than do male constituents, regardless of the gender of their leader] and we wanted to explore the practice in depth to see if we could understand more about these differences."
Finally, "...because we wanted to add our voices to the discussion of soul and spirit in the workplace."
Kouzes and Posner note that the word "encouragement" has its root in the Latin word "cor" which literally means "heart." (So does the word "courage.") To have courage is to have heart. To encourage -- to provide with or give courage -- literally means to give others heart. For me, there are at least three especially important core concepts: First, love what you do. Love those for whom you are responsible. And love them enough to set high standards for them and then give them hope that you and they can meet those standards. Second, don't think of leadership in terms of position, title, power, status, etc. Rather, think of it in terms of initiative. Encourage, recognize and reward initiative whenever and wherever you find it throughout your entire organization. Third and finally, practice what you preach and do that every day. The most effective leaders care....and care deeply. They have credibility because their values and behavior are in unshakable alignment. They have earned others' trust.
Those who share my high regard for this book are urged to check out David Maister's Practice What You Preach, Tim Sanders' Love Is the Killer App, David Whyte's The Heart Aroused, and Larry Davis' Pioneering Organizations.
Some employees quit just to find a better paying job, but it's usually the lack of rewards and appreciation that start employees looking around in the first place. Rewarding and recognizing others is essential to keeping good employees-and Kouzes and Posner show you how to do it. While some leaders are naturals at touching people's hearts, most of us have a lot of learn. This important book is a great guide.
I am a human resources manager at a utility company. We have many engineers and managers who are familiar and attracted to harder mangement concepts of process, rules, and equations, but are sometimes confounded as to why, with people, 1 + 1 consistently = 3. This book takes a big step toward answering that question with research, examples and tips to try. It shows that managing without recognition and encouragement is like running an engine without oiling it --possible - if not totally enjoyable - in the short-term, but with very negative long term consequences.
For those who like this book, I also recommend James A Autrey's "Love and Profit: Art of Caring Leadership." (available on amazon.com) or the videotape of Mr Autrey's presentation of that material. We changed our company personnel policies to reflect these management concepts and it helped with a culture shift we are working on at the company.
Encouraging The Heart is one of the five key leadership practices presented in the Leadership Challenge by Kouzes and Posner both leaders and experts in this field. Encouraging the Heart is more than a set of skills. It is a way of being and valuing, a perspective that moves leadership from the left side of the brain to a combination of mind of heart. This encouraging of the heart is also one of the most difficult leadership practices to "walk" and "talk". Kouzes and Posner acknowledge this difficulty and the vulnerability entailed in adopting and enacting this way of leadership at work and at home.
Encouraging the Heart goes beyond a simplistic "just do it" to show us how to REALLY do it-- to encourage the hearts of self and others. This newest book of Kouzes and Posner is powerful because it provides realistic ways to enact and live the principle of leadership. These changes can be a springboard for enhancing effectiveness in their other four practices of leadership-- "Challenging the Process, Inspiring a Shared Vision, Enabling Others to Act, and Modeling the Way." I suggest a standing ovation and shouts of "encore" for Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner so that we may encourage their hearts to give us four more books, one on each of the other leadership practices on which they have enlightened us. Thank you and Bravo!
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