By Judith E. Glaser
Platinum Press, $24.95
Creating WE is like a 12-step program for executives and managers who are addicted to power. It's about checking ego at the door and focusing on building a positive, productive, healthy culture through WE-centric leader behavior. Behavior that is WE-centric (rather than I-centric) is leadership behavior that helps the organization grow, transform and thrive.
Throughout, Glaser compares the human body to the organization. "Cancer cells draw the energy and health out of healthy cells," she says. Similarly, leaders who "lack sensitivity, react territorially, blame others for problems and produce unhealthy, toxic environments" draw the energy and health out of the organization. The secret to restored human health can be found in three principles: nourish, grow and learn. Attend to those principles, she says, and you can bring a toxic organizational culture back to health.
The book is divided into three parts: Believing WE, Learning WE and Being WE. It's full of charts, tables, tips, and activities that readers can use to help create a healthy organizational environment.
In reviewing books month after month, I've discovered that sometimes when consultants write books they shamelessly promote their consulting practices and inflate their egos by using their own case studies as examples of consulting perfection. Glaser (a mere mortal) uses numerous case studies from her own practice as practical examples of concepts presented, but totally leaves ego out of it. The vulnerability she shares in her story of working with the Donna Karan Corporation made her seem like a normal, down-to-earth person who models the values and principles she's trying to pass along to us. —J.L.