cars driving

Leadership by the Book

To complement this issue's themes of employee engagement and performance reviews, we recommend the following books:

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink (2011)

This engaging book examines the differences between decades of research on motivation and common business practices. The author asserts that the best way to motivate people is not through monetary rewards. He looks at research and reveals surprising real-world examples—such as the failure of Microsoft Encarta versus the success of Wikipedia—to show the keys that unlock the very human needs that drive us and inspire success and satisfaction.

Hard Goals: The Secret to Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be by Mark Murphy (2010)

The author proposes that it's not enough for goals to be "SMART" (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-limited). Instead, he advocates for goals that are heartfelt, animated, required, and difficult—or, in other words, "HARD." Along with covering each of these HARD aspects, the book explores setting and executing goals.

Hundred Percenters: Challenge Your Employees to Give It Their All, and They'll Give You Even More by Mark Murphy (2009)

In this book, Murphy focuses on challenging people and how making things hard can be rewarding. He recommends "tough love" leadership practices to inspire your employees to give 100% every day, provides strategies for dealing with "toxic" employees, and includes numerous tools and examples. One reviewer asserts that the book "provides the tools managers need to take 'average' employees and create a culture of accountable, fully engaged people."

Intrinsic Motivation at Work: What Really Drives Employee Engagement by Kenneth W. Thomas (Second edition, 2009)

Thomas draws on timely research to get to the heart of employee engagement: intrinsic motivation. Thomas shows how only intrinsic rewards—rewards that come from the work itself—inspire true commitment and ownership. Along with identifying four key intrinsic rewards, this book explains how those rewards build engagement, provides a diagnostic framework for determining which rewards need enhancing, and offers tools and tips for encouraging intrinsic motivation in others.

Spring 2012 | Return to issue home