The Work Revolution requires making a shift from static business models and rules to dynamic problem solving and guiding principles. The role of the leader becomes that of a support person, while individuals take action to find answers to the why question. This shift is summarized in Table 4.8.

Table 4.8 Summary of Impact, Not Activities, for Organizations, Leaders, and Individuals

Organizations Discover the core competencies of the organization, and express them in a problem-based mission statement.Develop a robust set of guiding principles that inform decision making at every level of the organization.Define measures of success, and invest in systems and technologies that show the connection between efforts and results.Ditch all the policies and rules that are disconnected from results and focused on activities.
Leaders Teach individuals to think strategically about their work.Ask a lot of questions to figure out what to do, then set people free to figure out how to implement the solutions.Give frequent feedback on the impact of people’s work.
Individuals Ask why. Then ask why again. Or ask, “What problem are we trying to solve?”Give one another permission to call “bullshit,” to question the importance and reason behind everything.


1. Taylor, Frederick Winslow. The Principles of Scientific Management. New York: Harper, 1911.

2. Ibid. Shop Management. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1911.

3. U.S. National Center for Education Statistics. Digest of Education ...

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