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The Human Workplace: People-Centred Organizational Development Paperback – 3 Oct 2017
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"The principles set out in The Human Workplace are helpful for any company that emphasizes purpose and identity, connection with the company, each other and the community, as well as co-creation and two-way dialogue with employees. This is a helpful guide on how to grow by design." (Mark Levy, Airbnb's first Head of Employee Experience 2017-09-07)
"Andy Swann knows better than most that things just aren't that straightforward. Bringing his work at the coalface of organizational change with him, he leads us through the challenges, debunks the fads and offers practical and effective ways of not only coping with the challenges of the future but possibly even enjoying them." (Euan Semple, Author, Speaker and Business Strategist 2017-09-07)
"This book is pragmatic, relevant, current - it should be required reading for all leaders claiming "People are the most important thing to me" and selectively pointing at other companies saying "I want that one" without understanding the elements, i.e, people." (Andy Meikle, former Chief People Officer, JustGiving and Founder, Folk Consulting 2017-09-07)
"The Human Workplace offers a thoughtful and incisive examination of our complicated relationship with our work, its meaning and our attitudes. In this comprehensively researched book, Andy Swann considers the full scope of how we work, from the interpersonal to the networks and communities on which we rely, and how this is translating into today's society. In an age of digitization and artificial intelligence, Swann repeatedly finds that applying our shared humanity is the most important element of a high-performing workplace. From case studies to personal reflections, he explores engaging workplace comparisons and finds ingenuity at work in work. This book made me reconsider how we should shape the future of work and appreciate that it will be those who are constantly learning in our high-speed world that will deserve success for their teams and a resilient future for their organizations." (Tim Pointer, former HR Director, Dixons Carphone and Founder, Starboard Thinking 2017-09-07)
Provides tools and advice for achieving a people-centred organization of any size, from small start-ups to large corporates
Includes case studies from companies including Microsoft, Schneider Electric, CGI, Universal, Lego, SAP and BBC Worldwide
Articulates clearly the benefits of a people-centric approach to organizational design
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A really easy read, but not simplistic. An engaging tone but not using hyperbole or trendy fads. A sensible approach but full of inspirational elements.
If you think "this place could be better" whether you're the founder, leader or any part of the enterprise, you could take this book, set off a series of conversations and experiments and make your workplace a more human one.
Many companies do a reasonable job at developing their employees (but many need help here too!), but they are less attentive to the position of these employees and the structure, culture and processes that they inhabit. A bit of the equation can be missing, and this book will help fill in any missing links and optimise existing structures. It is a practical book, designed for doing, although of course you get a good amount of theory and practical real-world research data too, accompanying the advice, case studies and practitioner interviews that fill this deceptively small but powerful book.
The changes need not be that drastic or costly either. A possible refocus of thought can be sufficient, benefitting from design thinking to optimise the structure (a ‘tune-up’ for the business). The book will see change for both individual, team, department and organisation-at-large, oiling the connections and streamlining processes. Rest assured, it should not be a traumatic, controversial or courageous process. Quite the reverse, it might start to fall into place as things proceed. The book is aimed more towards the human resources professional, but it would not hurt other senior operational executives to cast an eye over it and understand the value of truly ‘seeing the bigger picture’. After all, it should be in everybody’s interest to have the corporate machine running at peak operational efficiency, shouldn’t it? If you let it, the book will have you thinking outside of the HR-mandated function.
A refreshing read, aided by clear, accessible text that will surely grab your attention. Where change is needed, it can be a great companion, and for those companies that believe they already have everything running well it can be a great checklist and verification aid. Just in case something could still be refined, as is quite likely as the people-centric organization shouldn’t be cast in concrete in any case.