Synopses & Reviews
Almost one in four American working adults has a job that pays less than a living wage. Convenandshy;tional wisdom says thatand#8217;s how the world has to work. Bad jobs with low wages, minimal benefits, little training, and chaotic schedules are the only way companies can keep costs down and prices low. If companies were to offer better jobs, cusandshy;tomers would have to pay more or companies would have to make less.
But in The Good Jobs Strategy, Zeynep Ton, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, makes the compelling case that even in low-cost settings, leaving employees behindand#8212;with bad jobsand#8212;is a choice, not a necessity. Drawing on more than a decade of research, Ton shows how operational excellence enables companies to ofandshy;fer the lowest prices to customers while ensuring good jobs for their employees and superior results for their investors.
Ton describes the elements of the good jobs strategy in a variety of successful companies around the world, including Southwest Airlines, UPS, Toyota, Zappos, and In-N-Out Burger. She focuses on four model retailersand#8212;Costco, Mercaandshy;dona, Trader Joeand#8217;s, and QuikTripand#8212;to demonstrate the good jobs strategy at work and reveals four choices that have transformed these compaandshy;niesand#8217; high investment in workers into lower costs, higher profits, and greater customer satandshy;isfaction.
Full of surprising, counterintuitive insights, the book answers questions such as: How can offering fewer products increase customer satandshy;isfaction? Why would having more employees than you need reduce costs and boost profits? How can companies simultaneously standardize work and empower employees?
The Good Jobs Strategy outlines an invaluable blueprint for any organization that wants to purandshy;sue a sustainable competitive strategy in which everyoneand#8212;employees, customers, and investorsand#8212;wins.
"Clifton, the chairman of Gallup and an expert in innovative polling, offers well-articulated arguments covering a variety of statistically relevant data and incorporates thoughtful suggestions regarding how to shore up America's crisis-besieged fiscal practices. In defining the true proportions of the catastrophic dearth of jobs, and presenting the future as a China-driven world economy, he explains classical versus behavior economics and looks at the importance of cities, universities, and individuals as part of the solution. Individuals, he believes, are key, as are high energy workplaces and schools that can produce future entrepreneurs. However, he notes that 'approximately 30% of those students will drop out or fail to graduate on schedule... the rest of the developed world a huge advantage over the United States in the upcoming economic wars.' Clifton deplores foreign ownership of American companies: 'Any time an American company is lost to a foreign company, like Anheuser-Busch to InBev...all American flags should fly at half-staff.' He argues that strong support of entrepreneurship can counter the stagnant GDP. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
and#8220;In this brilliantly conceived and written book, Zeynep Ton shows that companies that view their workforce as an asset to be maximized rather than a cost to be minimized, have both happier workers and better business results. This book is a 'must read' for anyone that wants to think creatively about how they manage their workforce.and#8221; and#8212;Marshall Fisher, professor at The Wharton School and co-author of The New Science of Retailing
and#8220;Using years of research and analysis, Zeynep Ton has proven what great leaders know instinctivelyand#8212;an engaged, well-paidand#160; workforce that is treated with dignity and respect creates outsized returns for investors. She demonstrates that the race to the bottom in retail employment doesnand#8217;t have to be the only game being played. In fact, The Good Jobs Strategy shows that smart business leaders can create great shareholder value while creating good jobs.and#8221; and#8212;Josand#233; Alvarez, senior lecturer at Harvard Business School and former president and CEO of Stop and Shop
and#8220;Stop the presses. Tear out the front page. Employers can increase profits by paying their employees more and treating them better. Raising wages and improving working conditions is not just a matter of public policy. The private sector itself can make a huge difference.and#160; Everyone who cares about good jobsand#8212;and especially every CEOand#8212;needs to read this highly informative and thoroughly readable book.and#8221; and#8212;Peter Edelman, professor of law at Georgetown Law Center and author of So Rich, So Poor: Why Itand#8217;s So Hard to End Poverty in America
and#8220;In The Good Jobs Strategy, Zeynep Ton offers insights into how successful companies utilize operational excellence to thrive, and she reminds us that the spirit and culture of an organizationand#8212;that sparkle in the eyeand#8212;comes only from fully engaged employees.and#8221; and#8212;Michael Eskew, former CEO of UPS
Drawing on 75 years of Gallup studies and his own perspective as the companys chairman and CEO, Jim Clifton explains why jobs are the new global currency for leaders. More than peace or money or any other good, the business, government, military, city, and village leaders who can create good jobs will own the future.
The problem is that leaders dont know how to create jobs especially in America. What they should do is recognize that the world is in a war for jobs. It seems that leadership has lost the will to win, especially in America, but this is a competition for our lives.
To win, leaders need to compete. Everyone does. The public school system needs to inculcate kids with the knowledge theyll need to compete in the jobs war. The business community needs to double the psychological engagement of workers so that it can compete with cheaper labor. The healthcare system must stop wasting the resources that we need to spend on job competition. Society needs to realize that entrepreneurs, not government, are the source of new jobs and put all its energy behind them. Perhaps most importantly, leaders need to recognize universities, mentors, and especially cities as a supercollider for job creation.
If that can be done and it can be done; leaders have done it before new good jobs will result. Theres not moment to waste: the war has already begun.
In The Coming Jobs War
, Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton boldly asserts that job creation and successful entrepreneurship are the worlds most pressing issues, outpacing runaway government spending, environmental degradation, and even the threat of global terrorism.
The book is grounded in findings from Gallups World Poll, which reveals implications of the jobs war on everything from economics to foreign policy to Americas moral authority in the world. And it offers a prescription for attacking the jobs issue head-on. Clifton says the solution to creating good jobs must be found in cities, not the federal government. Promoting entrepreneurship and job creation must be the sole mission and purpose of cities leaders.
Winning the jobs war requires all hands on deck, and failure is not an option, especially for the U.S., which has been the global leader in promoting freedom and entrepreneurship. Americas place in the world is at stake, with other countries poised to surpass a sputtering U.S. economy growing at only 2% annually.
While the statistics are dire, Clifton remains optimistic about Americas ability to win the jobs war. The Coming Jobs War offers a brutally honest look at Americas biggest problem and a cogent prescription for solving it.
WHAT EVERYONE IN THE WORLD WANTS IS A GOOD JOB
In a provocative book for business and government leaders, Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton describes how this undeniable fact will affect all leadership decisions as countries wage war to produce the best jobs.
Leaders of countries and cities, Clifton says, should focus on creating good jobs because as jobs go, so does the fate of nations. Jobs bring prosperity, peace, and human development but long-term unemployment ruins lives, cities, and countries.
Creating good jobs is tough, and many leaders are doing many things wrong. Theyre undercutting entrepreneurs instead of cultivating them. Theyre running companies with depressed workforces. Theyre letting the next generation of job creators rot in bad schools.
A global jobs war is coming, and theres no time to waste. Cities are crumbling for lack of good jobs. Nations are in revolt because their people cant get good jobs. The cities and countries that act first that focus everything they have on creating good jobs are the ones that will win.
A research-backed clarion call to CEOs and managers, making the controversial case that good, well-paying jobs are not only good for workers and for societyand#8212;theyand#8217;re good for business, too.
About the Author
Chairman and CEO
Since 1988, Jim Clifton has served as CEO of Gallup, a leader in organizational consulting and public opinion research. His most recent innovation, the Gallup World Poll, is designed to give the worlds 6 billion citizens a voice in virtually all key global issues. Mr. Clifton has pledged to continue this effort to collect world opinion for 100 years in 150 countries.
Under Mr. Cliftons leadership, Gallup has achieved a fifteenfold increase in its billing volume and expanded Gallup from a predominantly U.S.-based company to a worldwide organization with 40 offices in 30 countries and regions.
Mr. Clifton is also the creator of The Gallup Path, a metric-based economic model that establishes the linkages among human nature in the workplace, customer engagement, and business outcomes. This model is used in performance management systems in more than 500 companies worldwide.
Mr. Clifton serves on several boards and is Chairman of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. He has received honorary degrees from Jackson State, Medgar Evers and Bellevue Universities.
Table of Contents
1.and#160;An Unnecessary Sacrificeand#8194;1
2.and#160;Great Operations Need Great Peopleand#8194;18
3.and#160;The Penalties of Going Cheap on Retail Laborand#8194;37
4.and#160;Model Retailers: Who Knew It Could Be This Good?and#8194;55
6.and#160;Standardize and Empowerand#8194;99
8.and#160;Operate with Slackand#8194;153
9.and#160;Seizing Strategic Opportunitiesand#8194;173
10.and#160;Values and Constraintsand#8194;191
and#160;and#160;and#160;About the Authorand#8194;228