From Publishers Weekly
The key to a successful business is affording your employees more breathing room, claim journalist Carney and management professor Getz. Using examples of worker-centric companies countrywide, they make the case that the more freedom employees are given, the more rewards the company will reap. Starting with the history of workplaces—Thomas Jefferson's theories figure prominently—and a plethora of stories of such successful companies as FAVI, USAA, Vertex and Harley, the authors concentrate heavily on the importance of running a why company—making sure employees know why they're doing what they're doing—rather than a how company, in which employers instruct their employees on how to do their jobs. Much space is given to the art of listening to employees, building an environment that allows them to grow and self-direct, breaking away from hierarchical and bureaucratic corporate structure, treating workers as equals and motivating them to self-motivation. Worthy prescriptions all, but without the backing of wide-reaching data or larger vision, repetition replaces argument—and the whole suffers. (Oct.)
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"Brian Carney and Isaac Getz have used their powerful concept of freedom to serve as a crucial foundation for their imaginatively framed ideas in the broader area of commerce. A most interesting and original work."
––James MacGregor Burns, author of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winning Roosevelt: The Soldier of Freedom, 1940—1945
"Human energy and creativity are key to any successful enterprise–yet most organization theories unwittingly suppress the power of employees. With dozens of vivid stories, Freedom, Inc.
shows how successful firms tap into the human spirit, building a culture of accomplishment and human fulfillment. A must-read for every manager and entrepreneur."
––Philip K. Howard, author of Life Without Lawyers
and The Death of Common Sense
"I've never thought that any of the things I've done were radical. They just seemed natural. . . . My total focus is on our work. . . . What can I do to keep making the work better and better and better and better."
––Stan Richards, founder and head of The Richards Group
"If the [work] environment is right, then we do the product right and we make a ton of money and have a blast. . . . In this culture there is zero tension and there is absolute trust."
––Bob Davids, founder of Sea Smoke Cellars
"I had to make the jobs more meaningful. . . . If you enrich the jobs you enrich the people."
––Robert McDermott, former CEO of USAA