The Optimistic Workplace: Creating an Environment That Energizes Everyone

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9780814436196: The Optimistic Workplace: Creating an Environment That Energizes Everyone

When it comes to work these days, we're expected to do more with less--but is this nose-to-the-grindstone philosophy the best way to run a business? Alarmingly low employee engagement numbers indicate otherwise. So, if pushing everyone harder isn't the path to productivity, what is?

Supported by the latest research, this eye-opening book argues that our best work is the product of a positive environment. That's good news for you as a manager. While you can't personally transform the corporate culture, you can influence the workplace climate and create meaningful and lasting change.

Advocating a steward model of management, "The Optimistic Workplace "reveals how to:

  • Explore personal and organizational purpose--and align them for astonishing results - Overcome resistance and skepticism
  • Build camaraderie and deepen loyalty
  • Increase intrinsic motivation
  • Help your team find meaning in their work
  • Identify goals collaboratively and track progress
And more Examples from companies large and small demonstrate how this people-centric focus ignites employee potential, increases innovation, and catapults the organization to new levels of performance.

Far from being a wish-upon-a-star discussion of workplace happiness, this book presents an array of surprisingly simple strategies as well as practical 30-, 60-, and 90-day plans designed to focus your actions and make employee optimism not just a worthy goal--but a real and measurable result.

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From the Inside Flap:

A lot of organizations say they’re “upbeat.” They claim their offices are “fun,” and “relaxed.” A quick look around, however, usually reveals a dusty foosball table and the same old hamster wheel mentality.

But what if you could transform your workplace into an environment where everyone is truly engaged, motivated, and positive? What if you could increase problem-solving ability, reduce stress and infighting, limit turnover, and boost productivity? And what if you could do all this at virtually no cost?

Welcome to The Optimistic Workplace.

This is not just another feel-good book. Drawing on the latest research from social science and organizational psychology, it offers detailed examples from companies large and small that have created positive workplaces. It gives you real tools to help you identify and measure the attributes not just of a theoretically ideal workplace, but of your ideal workplace.

You’ll also learn how to:

· Overcome skepticism about cultivating workplace optimism

· Turn work into a fulfilling part of employees’ lives

· Strengthen and redefine the relationship between leader and employee

· Unleash people’s potential to do great work

· Create a pocket of excellence even in uninspired workplaces

· Help your team find meaning and purpose beyond quotas, deadlines, and numbers

The Optimistic Workplace includes a step-by-step breakdown of how to personalize the lessons in the book for your situation through the processes of:

Planning: The first 30 days, in which you assess opportunities, identify needs, anticipate obstacles, and communicate goals and your vision for reaching them.

Implementation: The next 30 days, during which you collaboratively create the desired feel of the workplace, sketch out a plan for increased optimism, and identify ways to measure your progress.

Monitoring: The final 30-day period is for continuous evaluation of attitudes and progress, adjustments based on collaborative experience, and analysis of results.

As a manager of people and processes, it’s too easy to think of yourself as just one in a collection of moving parts. What you really are is a steward, a guide who mentors, motivates, supports, and partners with your team members. And yes, you care about them and their experience in your workplace. An environment where this care is on display every day is one in which people want to succeed—and so they will.

Shawn Murphy is an independent consultant with 20 years of experience helping organizations create workplace optimism. He is the cofounder and CEO of Switch & Shift, a company dedicated to helping leaders shift their mindsets about their role in creating positive workplaces. The Huffington Post listed Shawn as a top leadership blogger and influential HR expert on Twitter in 2013, and HR Examiner named him a Top Trend-spotter in HR in 2012. He has been named as a Top 100 leadership speaker by Inc.com.

Connect with Shawn:

Twitter@TheShawnMurphy

His website: www.switchandshift.com

From the Back Cover:

The Optimistic Workplace is bursting with ideas that are both imaginative and practical. It’s a rallying cry for a more uplifting world of work.” — Adam Grant, Wharton professor and New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take

The Optimistic Workplace is a joyful read. At a time when we’re hearing how engagement at work is stuck in a rut and leaders just can’t be trusted, it’s really nice to see something that offers a better future . . . now. Shawn Murphy’s book is rich with examples from businesses that are putting to work a new work ethic. It’s an ethic based on values, meaning, purpose, and balance. It’s an ethic that stresses stewardship and leadership, hope and happiness, openness and caring. The Optimistic Workplace is certain to uplift our spirits. It’ll also prove to you that it pays to be positive.” — Jim Kouzes, coauthor of the award-winning and bestselling The Leadership Challenge and the dean’s executive fellow of leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

“Just as sunlight and rich soil lead plants to thrive, optimism provides the nutrients of a flourishing organization. Shawn Murphy shares his journey of diving deep into organizations filled with this positive energy and, in doing so, teaches us all how to add to our own. Take the journey with him!”— Rich Sheridan, CEO, Chief Storyteller, Menlo Innovations, and author of Joy, Inc: How We Built a Workplace People Love

“Behavior is often a function of environment, and environment is a function of leadership. In this well-researched and applicable read, Shawn Murphy outlines how to build the positive environment that yields positive behavior.” — David Burkus, author of The Myths of Creativity

The Optimistic Workplace is an essential exploration of what makes work fun, meaningful, and ultimately worth doing. If you’re serious about building an extraordinary workplace then you need to know the insights in Shawn Murphy’s new book.”— Ron Friedman, Ph.D., author of The Best Place to Work

“Murphy has hit upon the ‘Rosetta Stone’ for business—how to believe in something while still delivering results. I loved it. Optimism is the essence of innovation—the idea that you can do something better, but with a purpose. This is a must-read for any emerging manager or leader imagining success in the 21st-century economy.” — Ron Ricci, Vice President, Customer Experience Services, Cisco

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