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Roar: How to Build a Resilient Organization the World-Famous San Diego Zoo Way Hardcover – May 14, 2016
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While there is notable content, it did not offer the novelty that I would expect from a 200+ page instructional publication.
If you want a book on a similar topic which I would consider to be 5-star-rated, a highly recommend Nina Simon's "The Art of Relevance".
Anyone eager to replicate the zoo’s success will benefit from reading Roar. Tim and Sandy have thrown the doors wide open and shared a surprisingly transparent view of what has been done, what’s being done, and what’s planned within the zoo’s talent management functions. You’ll learn what pains led the zoo to seek change, how they weathered the adjustment period, the types of processes, programs and tools that were implemented, and even a sampling of the partners that they’ve worked with along the way. And, like me, you’ll smile and marvel at the number of creative zoo-related names they used to brand their many people-centric programs.
If you’re thinking this is all nice, thanks, but you aren’t very similar and their story won’t be relevant… read a bit further into the book. Roar doesn’t just talk about what’s been done within the zoo; it divulges a model for developing resiliency among your own organization. In fact, the combination of strategic, broadly-applicable advice interspersed with detailed implementation examples is one of the book’s strengths.
To summarize Roar’s message, the authors suggest that without resilience, you survive. With resilience, you prosper.
If you want to prosper, Roar is a great source of practical ideas, models to emulate, and a framework for building organizational resiliency. And, discussion questions at the end of each chapter reinforce the brainstorming process that will set you on the path. Give it a try! At the very least, you’ll have learned more about one of America’s great institutions.
p.s. My review would be five stars if the book included more tools to apply the resilience model beyond the discussion questions.
John F. Schierer
Human Capital Executive