Explains what makes a company a good place to work and offers specific strategies for fostering a positive work environment
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From the preface to the 2000 edition:
A Great Place to Work is one of those rare books that is actually timelier today than when it first hit the bookstores a dozen years ago.
Since its original publication, I’ve had an unparalleled opportunity to view changes in the workplace. With Milton Moskowitz, I have continued writing about some truly remarkable workplaces by updating our list of the "100 Best Companies to Work for in America" in a revised edition of our book in 1993 and, since 1998, as an annual article for Fortune magazine. During the past half-dozen years, I’ve also looked at the phenomenon of great places to work from a consultant’s perspective through my work with the Great Place to Work® Institute. This work has been especially fascinating as it’s enabled me to explore the dynamics of workplaces outside the United States, in companies located in such countries as Brazil, Canada, Korea, Mexico, and the United Kingdom.
While much has changed, everything I’ve seen has reinforced the basic concepts outlined in this book. This especially applies to A Great Place to Work’s major finding — that trust between managers and employees is the primary defining characteristic of the very best workplaces. Because this message remains as relevant today as it was in 1988, I am delighted that this book is being republished. I believe this message will continue to be relevant long into this century.From the Inside Flap:
Workers of the world – and their bosses – are guaranteed to find food for thought and a challenging framework for action in Robert Levering’s groundbreaking A Great Place to Work. Although most of us spend an ever larger majority of our waking hours on the job, no one (as Levering realized when he and his co-authors had completed research for their best-selling The 100 Best Companies to Work for in America had attempted to define exactly what can make a workplace a truly wonderful place to work – what can transform "just a job" into a daily affirmation of trust, pride, loyalty even fun.
To find out, Levering returned to the top twenty of those one hundred companies – "the best of the best" – to interview employees and managers at every level. Despite the differences in the companies they worked for and the jobs they did, technicians and truck drivers, secretaries and salesmen voiced the same enthusiasm, dedication, and sense of belonging every employer hopes for, and they attributed their attitudes to the same essential dynamics in their working environments. Most of what they had to say runs contrary to the heretofore received wisdom of management theorists, from efficiency experts to contemporary motivational cheerleaders, all of whose advice boils down to management by manipulation. The message here is radically different, and inspiring: "Good workplaces provide beacons in a fog of mediocrity and insensitivity. They offer a different vision from the dog-eat-dog, each-man-for-himself, free-the-entrepreneur philosophy that enjoys widespread currency today."
A Great Place to Work offers more than a vision of what work can be. It is the first and only guide that helps job seekers decide what questions to ask potential employers and which kinds of employers to avoid, assists employees in interpreting daily experiences at work and in determining what it is possible to expect, and informs well-meaning employers how to improve the quality of a working environment.
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