Fun Works - AchieveMax® Top Ten Book Review
Fun Works: Creating Places Where People Love to Work
by Leslie Yerkes
Books on this subject have been around for decades. I have many of them on my own bookshelves and have seldom referred to any of them in the spirit of research, study or bench marking. I'm afraid you'd hear similar remarks from the average CEO, manager, leader, supervisor, HR specialist, etc. However, the business world and its challenges are changing, and I think it's time we revisit this subject of having fun at work. What better time to do so as experts all agree that we are rapidly approaching an era of difficulty in attracting and retaining talent at a time when potential employees have so many choices.
Another interesting trend has emerged recently as more and more organizations are seriously pursuing the status of "Employer of Choice." I can attest to the fact that this pursuit is not grounded in a sudden concern for the welfare of employees at every level. I see growing evidence that wise leaders and organizations everywhere are realizing the importance of creating a culture or environment that encourages employees to enjoy their daily routines, look forward to coming to work, manifest more creativity, and, therefore, enhance productivity. The bottom line for the organization, of course, is progress, growth, profitability, and longevity. If it's that easy, why doesn't every business simply create this unique, obviously productive culture? The operative word here is "unique." By the way, it's also not that easy. However, one of the key ingredients in creating and sustaining this desirable environment is undeniably simplistic. Allow your people, at every level, to have fun at work! What a radical concept-that fun and work are not mutually exclusive!
I mentioned earlier that there have been many books published on this subject. However, the majority of them contain excessive "fluff" and are little more than a collection of stories that illustrate random examples where others have brought fun into the workplace. I suggest you'll find this book much different.
Let's begin with the author. Leslie Yerkes brings much to the table as a savvy management consultant. She co-authored the best-selling 301 Ways to Have Fun at Work. She then toured the country conversing with people and giving speeches on her book. She's researched companies who are known for their successful integration of fun and work. She then visited each one of them and talked face-to-face with as many of the founders and current staff as was possible. She took photos and collected visual memories that lead to the stories in this book. She not only knows what she's talking about-she believes it wholeheartedly!
In this guidebook, Leslie shares 11 Principles of Fun/Work Fusion that she discovered in her research studies:Give Permission to Perform
Challenge Your Bias
Capitalize on the Spontaneous
Trust the Process
Value a Diversity of Fun Styles
Expand the Boundaries
Hire Good People and Get out of Their Way
Embrace Expansive Thinking and Risk Taking
She provides the "Why" as well as the "How" and not just the "What" of each of these principles.
After an introductory overview, Leslie devotes a chapter to each principle. While the principles are important, of even greater importance is the case study approach validating how a particular company-a different company for each principle-applies the principle. These companies include Pike Place Fish Market, Southwest Airlines, Harvard University Dining Services, Employease, and six other organizations that share their insights with us. At the end of each chapter, a "heart key" shares thoughts designed to increase the reader's ability to apply the principle.
An additional feature, "Another Voice," closes each chapter with a comment from an author, manager or business owner to further illuminate the principle. Leslie also provides other resources which include comments from over 30 authors, speakers, and businesspeople as well as an inventory you can use to benchmark how much fun is present in your organization's work environment.
Leaders and managers of all organizations should include this book in their corporate library. It will certainly be an invaluable resource.
More than 100 business book reviews written by Harry K. Jones are available at www.AchieveMax.com/books/index.htm">http://www.AchieveMax.com/books/.
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www.AchieveMax.com/motivational-speaker-harry.htm">Harry K. Jones is a professional speaker and consultant for AchieveMax®, Inc., a firm specializing in custom-designed keynote presentations, seminars, and consulting services. Harry has made presentations ranging from leadership to employee retention and time management to stress management for a number of industries, including education, financial, government, healthcare, hospitality, and manufacturing. He can be reached at 800-886-2MAX or by visiting www.AchieveMax.com">http://www.AchieveMax.com.
Signature (a Random House website) looks at the many 2018 Golden Globes nominees based on books:
It is officially that time of the year awards season is upon us. As usual, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has kicked things off with the announcement of the 2018 Golden Globe Awards nominees. The literary world is represented in this year's lineup with a smattering of great adaptations leading the charge in both film and TV. While the slate of nominees is populated with a few of the marquee titles you'd expect "Game of Thrones" got it's annual nod, for instance a few surprises cracked the surface as well. It looks to be another interesting year at the Golden Globes. Let's have a look.
Merriam-Webster's Word of the Year for 2017 is feminism. The word was a top lookup throughout the year, with several spikes that corresponded to various news reports and events.
In an opinion piece in the Irish Times, John Boyne writes:
So I'm going to make a claim now that will probably get me kicked out of the Fraternity of Underappreciated Male Authors (FUMA) and blacklisted from the annual Christmas football game. Here goes:
I think women are better novelists than men.
There, I've said it. While it's obviously an enormous generalisation, it's no more ludicrous than some half-wit proudly claiming never to read books by women. For the record, purporting to love literature while dismissing the work of female writers is like claiming to be passionate about music while refusing to listen to anything but Ed Sheeran. However, I'm going to try to back up my sweeping statement...
The great Simeon Booker, one of the bravest journalists of our time, faced dangers far worse than a petulant president's social media feed. Booker refused to be cowed--and ultimately helped change the nation. His life's work should be a lesson to us all about the power of truth to vanquish evil.
Booker died Sunday at 99. At the height of his career, few could have imagined he would live so long.
As Washington bureau chief for Chicago-based Johnson Publications, publisher of the newsweekly Jet and the monthly magazine Ebony, Booker went to the Deep South to cover the most tumultuous events of the civil rights movement--life-threatening work for an African American journalist.
William H. Gass, a proudly postmodern author who valued form and language more than literary conventions like plot and character and who had a broad influence on other experimental writers of the 1960s, '70s and beyond, died on Wednesday in St. Louis. He was 93.
Mr. Gass was widely credited with coining the term "metafiction" to describe writing in which the author is part of the story. He himself was one of the form's foremost practitioners.
Barnes & Noble, which posted a wider loss last quarter and sent its shares tumbling, is scaling back ambitions to become more than a bookseller.
The retailer had hoped that toys, games and other items would shore up its results, especially as Amazon ate away at its traditional business. But its non-book sales have flagged the past two quarters, and now the company is putting its focus back firmly on reading.
Shelf Awareness reports on the growing "Cider Monday" movement by indie booksellers in response to the big online shopping day known as Cyber Monday. In this low key but fun event stores offer their customers "a warm welcome and a cup of delicious cider" to thank them for shopping local.
Dictionary.com's choice for its Word of the Year is "complicit." It says online searches for the word spiked three times this year...
On Saturday, hundreds of booksellers across the USA took part in Indies First and Small Business Saturday, organizing all kinds of in-store activities, offering a range of deals, hosting parties and engaging in the staple of Indies First since the event was founded by Sherman Alexie in 2013: having authors work in their favorite indies as booksellers. Shelf Awareness reports on some of the events.
Meanwhile, in the UK, bookstores celebrated the first inaugural Saturday Sanctuary
to "celebrate bookshops as a place of calm and respite from our hectic daily lives."
A New York Times opinion piece by Daniel T. Willingham lays out the argument that American's poor reading skills cannot be blamed on modern technology but on a misunderstanding of how the mind reads - that functional literary is grounded not just in the ability to read words but in having the factual knowledge to put what one is reading into context.