Book Review: 'Why Should Anyone Work Here?' by Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones
In their previous book, Why Should Anyone Be Led by You?, Goffee (a London Business School professor) and Jones (a professor at IE Business School) advised leaders to be “authentic:” that is to “be yourself, and much more — with skill.”
Their new book expands the concept of authenticity to the organization. “What might the best workplace on earth look like?” the authors wonder, keeping in mind that companies on great workplaces lists typically generate correspondingly great financial returns.
By studying cultures in high-performance companies, the authors identified a set of traits characterized by integrity and opportunities for self-expression. Some of the best material addresses employee development, the most concrete way to help workers become their best selves.
So, for example, the authors advise training not just for technical skills but also for human, relational skills; and creating paths to improvement for even their weak performers. As in their earlier book, Goffee and Jones stress the importance of understanding individuals’ strengths and motivations in order to make work both satisfying and meaningful.
The good news for entrepreneurs is that “small start-up businesses may have a better chance at authenticity than large bureaucratic organizations,” write the authors. But beware “the travail of high-growth businesses…that they are not forced to renege on their values.”
Editor's note: This review was written by Robert Morris and has been published with his permission.Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.