Steve Albrecht Pfeiffer/Wiley, $38
Tough Training Topics is a terrific guide to dealing with the crunchiest issues we face inside companies these days, the Big Four that give people hives and heebeejeebies: office violence, substance abuse, harassment and dealing with conflict and difficult people. Anyone who has had to work with any of these distressing conditions knows that there is no set text—until now.
As happens so often, the chapter that has the most power is one that could be easily overlooked given the serious nature of the issues involved. This time it is Chapter Three, "Tough Topics and Tough Crowds." It is a treatise on learning styles the likes of which I have never seen anywhere, and I read a lot of books.
Another excellent chapter is on employee orientation, a much-underutilized stage of relationship development within a company. Proper orientation can have a tremendously positive impact on employee retention, especially as orientation and re-orientation are put into play over the long haul. Both the new and the old have to be given reasons to join and stick around.
Steve Albrecht shares a number of winning ideas and strategies to make us all look good. The least you can do is invest some time and money in his book. —S.C.