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The Art of Engagement: Bridging the Gap Between People and Possibilities [Hardcover]

Jim Haudan
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 30, 2008 9780071544856 978-0071544856 1

"Haudan's approach helps organizations bring strategies to life by engaging the hearts and minds of their people.”
-Marcus Buckingham, bestselling author of Go Put Your Strengths to Work

Almost any business leader will admit that creating a strategy is far easier than executing it. That's because the majority of organizations don't know how to bridge the canyons that exist between executives, managers, and front-line employees. Most strategic initiatives fail when a company tries to execute strategy despite its people rather than through them.

As CEO of consultancy Root Learning, Jim Haudan has more than twenty years experience helping businesses bridge these canyons and achieve their strategic goals. Here, he shares his secrets for driving this strategic execution. Refreshingly accessible, this important book presents executives, managers, and team leaders with a proven, effective way to communicate, empower, and motivate employees at every level of an organization.

Through stories, illustrations, and insightful observations Haudan explores the concept of engagement in business--from the “roots of engagement” to the six reasons why so many workers rank themselves as disengaged to the keys to unlocking engagement in any organization. He also includes a framework for implementing the process of strategically engaging employees as well as a self-assessment for checking your own company's level of strategic engagement.

The Art of Engagement equips you with a range of tools--sketches, illustrations, and highly visual “learning maps”--to help employees speak the same language, see from the same point of view, and connect their individual actions to the success of the whole company. Included are:

  • Engaging visual learning tools designed to help you communicate more effectively with your workforce
  • Proven methods for successfully engaging employees at every level of an organization
  • Real-world case studies of such organizations as Harley-Davidson, Pepsi Cola, and Blockbuster

A strategy may look perfect on paper, but it's worthless if leaders forget that human beings have to implement it. The Art of Engagement arms you with the knowledge and the know-how to engage your employees and drive effective strategic execution.


Frequently Bought Together

The Art of Engagement: Bridging the Gap Between People and Possibilities + Carrots and Sticks Don't Work: Build a Culture of Employee Engagement With the Principles of RESPECT + Employee Engagement 2.0: How to Motivate Your Team for High Performance (A Real-World Guide for Busy Managers)
Price for all three: $42.24

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

“We're using the insights in The Art of Engagement to redesign every element of our training systems. We've eliminated the manuals and PowerPoints, and we are building everything around visual images that stimulate dialogue and drive action.”
-Tom Davin, CEO, Panda Restaurant Group, Inc.

“Root Learning's Strategic Engagement Process has proved invaluable in ensuring that our executives, managers, and frontline employees all know and understand how their efforts directly connect with our strategic plan.”
-Rich Meelia, President and CEO, Covidien

“This book represents a career full of learning that Jim and his colleagues have acquired through years of helping organizations link 'boardroom' strategy to front-line execution."
-Connie Colao, Chief People Officer, Taco Bell

“Dialogue is the oxygen of change. The principles in The Art of Engagement have been vital in assisting Textron to change our conversations-which ultimately changed our results.”
-Lewis Campbell, CEO, Textron

“Haudan's ideas have helped us find new and compelling ways to engage every single employee at Harley-Davidson. These insights were a important contributor to the Partnership Philosophy--a philosophy that was pivotal to our success.”
-Rich Teerlink, Former Chairman and CEO, Harley-Davidson

“Jim Haudan and the team at Root Learning have been instrumental in helping our brand grow through employee engagement. This has strongly contributed to creating a common vision and strong ownership of our Hampton brand.”
-Gina Valenti, Senior Director, Hilton Hotels Corporation

About the Author

Jim Haudan Jim Haudan is CEO and co-founder of Root Learning, an international management consultancy. He and his colleagues have helped hundreds of companies worldwide to engage their employees in the execution of strategy through the use of dialogue and visualization.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (July 30, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780071544856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071544856
  • ASIN: 0071544852
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #157,700 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A How-To Book for Human Capital August 30, 2008
Format:Hardcover
Human capital is a concept that has been evolving to explain a major portion of the intangibles underlying market valuation of a company. Jim Haudan is providing the key to leveraging human capital. Investment of financial capital is routinely justified by monitoring the return on investment. Investment of scarce resources in human capital can deliver outsized returns, as Haudan clearly illustrates.

There is a difference in performance between a company whose employees routinely deliver discretionary effort and a company whose employees are marking time until the end of the work day, work week, or retirement. The contrasting depiction of engagement and disengagement in this book shows the path to energizing employees, who then deliver results.

The Art of Engagement offers an abundance of wisdom in how any organization can benefit from the hearts and minds of its membership. These incredible resources are all too often wasted, but the chances of that will be far less for those business leaders who embrace Haudan's lessons of engagement.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Field Guide to Strategy Execution August 25, 2008
Format:Hardcover
For executives searching for innovative ways to execute strategy effectively, Jim Haudan's "The Art of Engagement" is an excellent field guide for that journey. Many will want to keep it as a deskbook, especially for those dark days when strategy stalls, or never gets off the ground.

Haudan offers a refreshingly practical approach to executing strategy by engaging people to think and act much differently about strategy. It is about how to use strategic conversations and visualization of systems to accelerate strategy execution through people. Haudan's company, Root Learning, connects diverse group of people to complex messages through creative engagement methodologies that generate ownership of those messages. In short, Root Learning helps people "get" strategy and want to particpate in implementing it.

Loaded with innovative ideas and lessons learned from Haudan's 20 years of helping executives in some of the world's largest companies bring their strategies to life, the book also offers readers an opportunity to test some of Haudan's proven methods through free downloads of strategic learning applications discussed in the book.

Here is a caveat: Don't buy this book if you think you can execute strategy despite your people, and not through them. Quite frankly, it will waste your time.

But if you want to learn about proven methods to engage the hearts and minds of your leaders, managers and front line to execute a shared mental model of strategy, then grab a bunch of copies for your team and test the concepts.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Taping into The Human Spirit August 27, 2008
Format:Hardcover
One of the most daunting accomplishments to which any one organization can aspire is breaking the code on how to create an environment where employees enthusiastically not only pour their minds and bodies into their work but also their heart and spirit as well.

Providing employees the opportunity to understand and influence their work and how they contribute to achieving the overall mission of the organization is highest form of recognition any company can give.

The Art of Engagement provides a terrific framework to begin thinking and acting on those participative management practices that if done well can elevate an organization to a whole new level of performance.

I recommend Jim Hauden's book to any entity who truly believes the people within their organization deserve the opportunity to understand and feel inspired about their job and the organization for which they work.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Overlooked Skillset for Leaders October 22, 2008
Format:Hardcover
This is one of the better leadership/management books I have come across in the last few years. The best high school, college, and pro coaches are those that are able to help players visualize success and winning- while fully engaging their hearts. Many leaders today are skilled at strategy development and planning, but if they are not capable of facilitating the right dialogue, creating accountability, and executing their plans, they will never reach their goals.

Jim Haudan and the folks at Root Learning have provided great insight into the skills and tools needed to help leaders understand the importance of "the common line of site," and how to create the critical conversations and visual images that lead to results.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inventive program for engaging your employees June 1, 2009
Format:Hardcover
Organizational leaders spend considerable time and effort carefully developing strategies to advance their corporate goals. However, they often fail to communicate these strategies compellingly to their employees - the people who must execute every step. Therefore, it is no surprise that most such strategies fail. Management consultant Jim Haudan recommends a strategy-sharing approach using visuals, metaphors and stories to engage employees. He offers tactics for getting them on board to execute your strategy and organizational directives. One negative: Many of the illustrations (reductions from original table-size artwork) are busy and even fuzzy. Some feature tiny text, which illustrates - in the breech - Haudan's point about using clear visuals to communicate and engage. Otherwise the book is superior, very insightful and nicely written. Haudan uses case studies to demonstrate the effectiveness of his employee engagement process. getAbstract believes leaders can benefit from learning his tactics for communicating strategies so employees understand them, support them and actually implement them.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A timely read for anyone in healthcare
I reviewed Jim Haudan's The Art of Engagement: Bridging the Gap Between People and Possibilities because it was full of timely insights. Read more
Published 3 months ago by K. Cohn
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for people who need to know how to engage with others
I bought this because I have met the author. The ideas in the book were consistent with what I know.
Published 7 months ago by Jackie Perrone
5.0 out of 5 stars was assigned coursework, but enriched my knowledge
reading this book is like an "ah-huh!" for anyone who hated a job and its leaders and could not completely pinpoint why. Read more
Published 13 months ago by laurainthesky
5.0 out of 5 stars The Art of Leadership
The Art of Engagement: Bridging the Gap Between People and PossibilitiesThe Art of Engagement is easy to ready, insightful and a must reading for anyone who wants to be an... Read more
Published on May 4, 2012 by Joseph Giovannoni MA, MS, APRN
5.0 out of 5 stars Want to be a better leader?
This book is clean and to the point. There is also a link to their web-site and membership to the online community they have developed where you can interface with others who are... Read more
Published on April 23, 2011 by Kevin Usilton
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional, enlightening, and entertaining
The best business book I've read in 2009. Jim Haudan has managed to accomplish the two most important (and difficult) outcomes to which an author of a business book can aspire. Read more
Published on May 3, 2009 by DWillis
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