|The Carrot Principle: How the Best Managers Use Recognition to Engage Their People, Retain Talent, and Accelerate Performance [Updated & Revised]
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Got carrotphobia? Do you think that recognizing your employees will distract you and your team from more serious business, create jealousy, or make you look soft? Think again.The Carrot Principle reveals the groundbreaking results of one of the most in-depth management studies ever undertaken, showing definitively that the central characteristic of the most successful managers is that they provide their employees with frequent and effective recognition. With independent research from The Jackson Organization and analysis by bestselling leadership experts Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, this breakthrough study of 200,000 people over ten years found dramatically greater business results when managers offered constructive praise and meaningful rewards in ways that powerfully motivated employees to excel.
Drawing on case studies from leading companies including Disney, DHL, KPMG, and Pepsi Bottling Group, bestselling authors Gostick and Elton show how the transformative power of purpose-based recognition produces astonishing increases in operating results--whether measured by return on equity, return on assets, or operating margin. And they show how great managers lead with carrots, not sticks, and in doing so achieve higher
* Customer satisfaction
The Carrot Principle illustrates that the relationship between recognition and improved business results is highly predictable--it's proven to work. But it's not the employee recognition some of us have been using for years. It is recognition done right, recognition combined with four other core traits of effective leadership.
Gostick and Elton explain the remarkably simple but powerful methods great managers use to provide their employees with effective recognition, which all managers can easily learn and begin practicing for immediate results. Great recognition doesn't take time--it can be done in a matter of moments--and it doesn't take budget-busting amounts of money. This exceptional book presents the simple steps to becoming a Carrot Principle manager and to building a recognition culture in your organization; it offers a wealth of specific examples, culled from real-life cases, of the ways to do recognition right. Following these simple steps will make you a high-performance leader and take your team to a new level of achievement.
"The Carrot Principle: How Great Managers Use Employee Recognition"
An Essay by Adam Gostick and Chester Elton
For organizations that do it right, it's a bit like discovering gold in your backyard. Employee recognition, long considered a benefit that costs money, can actually be a management tool that makes money. At first blush, the idea is counter-intuitive. As leaders, we've become accustomed to viewing recognition programs as a cost of doing business. But employee recognition is evolving. A groundbreaking research study of 200,000 employees, unveiled in our new book The Carrot Principle, presents a new paradigm: Applying employee recognition techniques within a context of goal-setting, open communication, trust and accountability, (what we have come to call the Basic Four) accelerates the impact of all of these critical management skills.
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Since its original publication in 2007, the New York Times bestseller The Carrot Principle has received rave reviews in The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, and The New York Times, and has helped a host of managers to energize their teams, and companies to dramatically boost their business results. The book was even adopted by the prestigious FranklinCovey International training and consulting group for its leadership training. This updated edition couldn't come at a better time, as the economic downturn requires us all to come up with creative and cost-effective ways to stimulate growth and productivity.
Revealing the groundbreaking results of one of the most in-depth management studies ever undertaken, The Carrot Principle shows definitively that the central characteristic of the most successful managers is that they provide their employees with frequent and effective recognition. With independent results from HealthStream Research, and analysis by bestselling leadership experts Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, this breakthrough study of 200,000 people over ten years found dramatically greater business results when managers offered constructive praise and meaningful rewards in ways that powerfully motivated employees to excel. These managers lead with carrots, not sticks, and in doing so achieve higher:
In a new chapter, Gostick and Elton report on the results of an extensive study, conducted by leading research authority Towers Perrin, that confirms the extraordinary effectiveness of the Carrot Principle approach all around the globe.
Drawing on case studies from leading companies including Disney, DHL, KPMG, and Pepsi Bottling Group, Gostick and Elton show how the key to recognition done right is combining it with four other core traits of effective leadership. Gostick and Elton walk readers through exactly how to use the simple but powerful methods they have discovered all great managers use to provide their employees with this effective recognition, which can be learned easily and will produce immediate results.
Great recognition can be done in a matter of moments -- and it doesn't take budget-busting amounts of money. Following these simple steps will make you a high-performance leader and take your team to a new level of achievement.
- Excellent Read!
The best of the carrot series. Great case studies and wonderful new data showing the power of employee recognition done well - highly recommended!...more info
- Awesome Book - a must read for anyone who deals with people
This book gets to the underlying problem (and the solution) in our world today. We have to put service before self, and others first. When we sincerly care about others, loving each other as commanded, anything is possible....more info
- Helps to externalize and reflect on ideas you may have already intuited
I picked up this book because I was looking for some hard research to present to my CEO (at a small tech startup). I expected to find a mix of statistical surveys and ten-step programs. Instead, the book is very easy to read, and it includes both anecdotal and statistical examples woven throughout. It also discusses how to directly apply the principles of positive reinforcement directly to your daily work as a manager and to your organization as a whole.
While many of these principles seem obvious once you "hear them out loud", I had not considered them so explicitly before reading this book. Seeing them externalized really encourages you to reflect on your existing work relationships. I've already noticed an impact on my teammates after one week; I can't wait to see how far we can go in one month!
[disclaimer: I've only read through chapter 7 of 10. Nonetheless, it's earned my recommendation!]...more info
- Good ideas
This is a good reminder of the importance of recognition. I wrote the book, Success With People - A Complete System for Effectively Managing People in any Organization. I recommend this book from time to time in my work to clients who want to dive deep on ideas for recognition. It's an easy read with good ideas that can be implemented within my system....more info
- Reely good book
This is a important book 4 every employee regardless of business status.
It gives an important point of view on the importanse and effectiveness of recognition and feedback methods. I sure it will assist to anyone who works with or manages people....more info
- Great Resource
The Carrot Principle contains some common sense TRUE principles that can help any organization at any level. Just by trying to individualize recognition as outlined in the book we are already seeing payoff in engagement within our organization. I'm looking forward to reading some of the other books by Gostick...more info
- How to establish and then sustain a "carrot culture"
Note: The review that follows is of the updated edition (published on April 7, 2009) that includes results from a major global study in which more than 200, 000 managers participated.
Various surveys conducted among millions of workers indicate that "feeling appreciated" is of great importance to them. In fact, it is ranked #1, #2, or #3, together with "doing work that has value" and "working for an employer I respect." Nonetheless, believe it or not, a recent study conducted by the O. C. Tanner Company indicates that 74% of leaders worldwide still don't practice recognition with their employees. In this book, Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton explain why there is reluctance "to embrace the power of recognition." At this point, I need to make a distinction between formal (institutional) recognition and informal (situational) recognition. Probably no other organization makes more effective use of formal recognition than does Mary Kay. With all due respect to pink Cadillacs, the fact remains that this company has identified hundreds of other ways to say "Well-done!" and celebrate outstanding performance.
With regard to informal recognition, I wish to share a personal experience that occurred when I arrived at a client meeting (it is a Fortune 50 company) and was being escorted from the reception area to the CEO's office by his administrative assistance. We walked past one office and I stopped, having noticed through the open door a framed "something" on the wall. It was the office of a senior vice president and he was not there. "Everyone notices that," she said. "Here, take a look." We entered the office and I examined what was under the glass: more than a dozen multi-colored Post-its, each personally inscribed with brief, congratulatory comments addressed to "Warren" for a winning proposal, an excellent presentation, etc. "He's so proud of those little notes that he went out and got them all framed." I cannot say that "Warren" would rather have the Post-its than a new Cadillac but that's beside the point anyway. Everyone appreciates being recognized. They welcome appreciative recognition. The 74% of managers who deny or ignore those facts are making a very, very serious mistake.
With regard to this book's title, Gostick and Elton explain that in business, "a carrot is something used to inspire and motivate an employee. It's something to be desired. In fact, it tops the list of things employees say they most want from their employers [or at least is among the top three]. Simply put, when employees know what their strengths and potential will be praised and recognized, they are significantly more likely to produce value." In this context, recognition's function is to serve as an incentive and the reward (as the Post-its example indicates) need not be monetary. "In fact, "Gostick and Elton note, "one-third of the people you give a cash award to will use that money to pay bills."
They organize their material within three Parts: The Accelerator (i.e. leadership needed to establish and then sustain a "carrot culture"), Carrot Culture (i.e. its design, "building blocks," and operations), and Managing by Carrots (i.e. determining the nature, extent, and funding of awards). They provide managers with a cohesive, comprehensive, and cost-effective program by which to "engage their people, retain talent, and accelerate performance." According to recent Gallup research, only 29% of the U.S. workforce is positively engaged (i.e. loyal, enthusiastic, and productive) whereas 55% is passively disengaged. That is, they are going through the motions, doing only what they must, "mailing it in," coasting, etc. What about the other 16%? They are "actively disengaged," doing whatever they can to undermine their employer's efforts to succeed.
So, a combination of formal (institutional) and informal (situational) recognition "accelerates business results. It amplifies the effect of every action and quickens every process. It also heightens your ability to see employee achievements, sharpens your communication skills, creates cause for celebration, boosts, trust between you and your employees, and improves accountability." Those who read this book and then decide to introduce or revise a recognition program will need the convincing, indeed compelling support for doing so that Gostick and Elton provide in their brilliant book. I presume to add that establishing and then sustaining a carrot culture requires recognition initiatives that create a climate of appreciation. Don't wait until you have recruited an army of those who share your vision, don't wait until a full-blown program is in place. Show your appreciation now, at every appropriate opportunity, if only with a brief expression of praise as I do now with Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton: Well-done!...more info
- The Carrot or the Stick?
This book by Gostick and Elton offers extensive research that makes an undeniable connection that the "carrot" a metaphor for recognition is the missing ingredient to help managers inspire performance and accelerate results.
I found that before I was through I had highlighted and earmarked almost every page - the research is that compelling. A must read for busy managers striving to achieve greater business results....more info
- An Indispensible Tool
As an HR practioner, business executive and manager, I found "The Carrot Principle" and indispensable tool. The authors were able to put into concrete and real terms a very simple, manageable and understandable way that helped me to employ the use of recognition in my business, and life for that matter. The principles they outline in this book will help you, no matter what your business or trade. ...more info
- Great resource for any manager
Anyone who manages others; be it a parent, business owner or athletic coach, needs to read this book. You'll be able to get the most out of those around you....more info
- Substantive quid pro quo!
As global market competition increases, the focus on retaining effective and productive employees is ever more intensive. Consequently, the premise of this book revolves arounds empowering employees with substantive rewards as a powerful and meaningful method of achieving concrete results. Although it was well researched and offered concrete evidence for an often overlooked aspect of work place satisfaction, it was so wordy it became a boring and redundant; thus my conservative rating. ...more info
- An excellent book
I would recommend this book highly to any manager or entrepreneur. It is an excellent value! ...more info
- If the Company does well, the people should do well
I read an interesting book on the weekend called, The Carrot Principle -" How the Best Mangers Use Recognition to Engage Their People, Retain Talent, and Accelerate Performance by Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton. Clearly this is a title that would attract anyone who is trying to lead a company.
The gist of the message is covered in the title which is appropriate rewards motivate people. One thing that I like about the book is it talks about goal setting, communication trust and accountability, and the use of carrots as an accelerator to make all of this work faster and easier.
The book has a multitude of statistics and studies which of course adds to the credibility.
One thing that I have found over the years is formalized carrot programs become stilted and can even become entitlement instead of being earned. Similar to performance metrics a" sometimes they focus on the wrong thing and are given to people for performing only one part of the job when inherently the job is more complex than just one dimension.
This said, the book definitely reminded me that I need to work harder at recognizing performance.
I have a simple compensation philosophy (and I know the carrot is not all about compensation) and that is "if the company does well, the people should do well", or in other words, the company should pay what they can afford to pay which allows staff to participate in success....more info
- Opened my mind up to some big ideas
I've tried some of these ideas in my company before but it really got me thinking about what to do NOW and how I can energize my employees. I just had one of my employees die and a number of my company's associates went to the funeral with me. I was amazed at what the people who did the eulogies said about this fellow who had worked for us for about a year and a half. There were things about him that I had no idea about. So I wrote a message to my employees about it. As I was finishing up the message I read a chapter in this book that covered exactly that. You have to manage one person at a time and really get to know people in order to really motivate them. How true it is!...more info
- A Win (Employees) Win (Companies)!
Based on an extensive study of managers and employees, this book clearly shows the financial and organizational benefits of building "recognition cultures" - including a clear set of principles and ideas with which to begin yours! A very helpful resource for owners, executives, department managers, and Human Resource and Organizational Development professionals....more info
- Illustrations in Kindle edition poor
The illustrations in the Kindle edition are poor. These diagams contain text which is unreadable, even when you zoom in. Perhaps this is a problem with the converions where text appears on a grayscale backgound. Annoying....more info
- way less than what I expected
I did not have so much high expectation on this book. I only wished if I could had taken away a new idea or two. Even the slight expectation has been met. No substance at all. ...more info
- One of the most helpful workplace books I've ever read...
The Carrot Principle is an extremely insightful look into what really matters to workers and what motivates them to go above and beyond the norm. The real-world analogies and the 125 ideas for recognizing employees will go a long way towards improving everything from employee retention to the bottom line....more info
- another HR book
This is another one of the Human Resources(HR) books which takes a single premise, recognition and creates a whole book around the premise. There was too much verbage here, too much 'Sara Jones from Memphis reports that our tactiocs worked great for her'. I felt as though this book was an infomercial....more info
- Best Management Book I've Read
This book should be required reading for all managers. The recommendations are based on solid data. The text is well written and easily understood, with a lot a good examples. You think most of this would be common sense, but in practice there are too few managers who actually practice, let along know, these principles. These principles can also be applied to life in general, especially if you have kids. I highly recommend this book along with "The Marine Corp's Way" management book. ...more info
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