Some books have a very narrow and deep focus, like a PhD writing among the pages. Not this title. In the The Great Workplace, authors Michael Burchell and Jennifer Robin encourage broad thinking and free-range ideas on building a great workplace. So sit back and let your mind wander. Savour the written word. We all know intuitively that a great workplace is — well — great! We’d rather laugh and smile at work than frown in anger and frustration. We would rather have fun and be healthy rather than mope around and eat junk and never see the sun. We would rather have great coworkers who do their jobs and delight us, rather than sour pusses who scowl and procrastinate and make us look bad. So why are there not more workplaces like this? Often the leadership is out of touch. The leadership often thinks that it’s too costly to have a happy workforce, that it takes too much time, and that happy workers aren’t productive — after all, they squander their time away doing frivolous joyful things, right? Wrong.
Burchell and Robin argue forcefully that there is a business case to be made for creating and sustaining a great workplace — from leadership, to teams, to meaning, to individual contributions. Their book is based on years of business research, with examples from a number of Fortune 500 companies across industries. If this book doesn’t convince leadership that it’s time to talk deliberately about corporate culture, then you might consider writing your own pink slip and taking this book to a workplace that will listen.