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One Foot Out the Door: How to Combat the Psychological Recession That’s Alienating Employees and Hurting American Business

Book Description

As many as two-thirds of our employees are either actively looking for new jobs or merely going through the motions at their current jobs. Fearful and feeling vulnerable after years of watching friends get laid off, they expect the worst to happen, and they see no reason to give it their all. This phenomenon, identified by renowned author Judith M. Bardwick as "the psychological recession," can have a devastating effect on a company’s financial health.

Based on extensive research showing how costly bad management really is, this eye-opening book offers concrete prescriptions for combating alarming trends such as high turnover, low productivity, and lackluster performance, including techniques for:

* strengthening the bonds of trust and respect between managers and employees

* customizing working conditions and rewards for individual employees

* hiring for the "best fit" between the organization’s core culture and the personal qualities and priorities of the individual

Using hard numbers and current studies that prove the direct connection between a company’s financial performance and its employees’ commitment, this book is a wake-up call to organizations desperately needing to restore the broken spirits at the heart of their companies, and enhance their bottom lines.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
    1. Dedication
  2. Acknowledgments
  3. One. Topsy-Turvy: The Sky Is Falling!
    1. The World Turned Upside Down
    2. The Crazy 1990s
    3. Collapse
    4. The Special Case of the Best and Brightest
    5. Recovery and Productivity
  4. Two. The Psychological Recession
    1. How to Recognize a Psychological Recession
    2. A Psychological Recession Is Self-Fulfilling
    3. Perception versus Reality
    4. Who Is Affected?
    5. Why It Matters
  5. Three. Feelings Matter—“Soft” Is “Hard”
    1. Heart Trumps Head
    2. People Are Not Commodities
    3. Commitment Is Not Kindness
  6. Four. Bad Management Is (Really) Expensive
    1. Many Employees Feel Negatively About Work
      1. The Number of Unhappy Employees Continues to Increase
      2. Many Employees Feel Resentful
      3. Low Rates of Employee Commitment and Loyalty Are Very Expensive
      4. Downsizing Leads to Resentment, Which Leads to Terrible Customer Service
      5. Many Employees Want to Move to a New Job
      6. Unhappy Employees Are Unproductive Employees
      7. Like Employee Loyalty, Customer Loyalty Cannot Be Taken for Granted
    2. The Gallup Surveys of Engagement
    3. Engagement and Productivity: The New Century Example
    4. What All These Data Mean
  7. Five. Good Management (Really) Makes Money
    1. It’s the Interaction Between Employees and Customers
    2. Good Management Is Profitable
      1. Motivated Employees and Profitablity
      2. Costco versus Wal-Mart’s Sam’s Club
      3. SAS Institute
    3. Best Companies to Work for
    4. Commitment Can Take Many Forms
      1. Establish Family-Friendly Policies
      2. Invest in Training
      3. Communicate Honestly
      4. Let Them Own a Piece of the Company
      5. Act with Integrity
    5. Widening the Road to Success
  8. Six. Commitment and Engagement—Not Morale or Satisfaction
    1. Nurturing Commitment and Engagement
      1. Ask the Right Questions
      2. Hire the Right People
      3. Measure the Right Attributes
      4. Morale and Satisfaction Don’t Count
    2. Getting It Wrong
    3. Getting It Right
  9. Seven. Create Significant Relationships Between Bosses and Subordinates
    1. Employee–Boss Relationships
    2. The Special Importance of Trust
    3. Trust and Communication
    4. Relationships at Work
    5. Out of Touch with Subordinates
    6. Leadership and “Average” People
    7. Leaders for the Twenty-First Century
  10. Eight. Strengthen the Bond with Employees by Customizing
    1. Humanize the Workplace
    2. Fair—But Not Identical
    3. Involving Each Employee Individually
    4. Today’s Cluster of Priorities
    5. Manage to Success: Customize Recognition
    6. Suggestions for Customization Menu Items
  11. Nine. Achieve a Best Fit
    1. Hiring for Best Fit
    2. Managing to Success
    3. Really Know Expectations and Priorities
    4. The Question of Risk
    5. Risk and Corporate Culture: Digging Deeper
    6. Asking the Right Questions
  12. Ten. Staying Ahead of the Curve
  13. Eleven. How Are We Doing Economically?
    1. Why Many People Feel Defenseless
    2. The Perception of Change Is Greater Than the Reality
    3. Scared, Passive, and Cynical
  14. Twelve. A Twenty-First Century Safety Net
    1. Goals for a Twenty-First Century Safety Net
      1. Goals
    2. Critical Elements of a Safety Net
    3. Education Reform
    4. Healthcare Reform
      1. Shoring Up the Employer-Based System
      2. Less Government and More Free Market Forces
      3. New Ideas and Different Views
    5. A New Vision for Collaboration
    6. More Ideas About a Modern Safety Net
  15. Thirteen. Psychology Is More Important Than Economics
    1. America’s Strengths
    2. The Threat from Other Countries
    3. Lose the Fear and Release the Energy!
  16. Endnotes
    1. Chapter 1
    2. Chapter 2
    3. Chapter 3
    4. Chapter 4
    5. Chapter 5
    6. Chapter 6
    7. Chapter 7
    8. Chapter 8
    9. Chapter 9
    10. Chapter 10
    11. Chapter 11
    12. Chapter 12
    13. Chapter 13