Winter Reading List: Brainfood for by the Fire
Human capital is the most important capital within a company, so we believe at beopledd.
What we see is that often, when decisions need to be made about other capital issues, (HR) managers tend to trust scientific research to help them make that decision. But when it comes to human capital, many (HR) managers seem to prefer to mainly trust on their gut instinct to decide on things. However, there is some very interesting evidence-based work that can help companies build a stronger human capital.
What do we mean by “evidence-based management” and what makes it so important? Evidence-based management is an approach that involves using multiple sources of scientific evidence and empirical results as source of knowledge. Being an evidence-based consultant means using the scientific literature to answer questions, inspire strategic decisions, and form long-term plans. This type of consultant carefully considers the quality and relevance of the information on which he bases his decisions. Think about this: When going to a doctor for a diagnosis, which doctor would you prefer? A doctor who believes her own experience is enough to make accurate diagnoses and provide solutions? Or a doctor who also makes sure she’s up to date with the latest medical research? The same applies for (HR) management issues. When you only trust your gut or own experience, you don’t know whether the solution you came up with will work for the stated problem in your organization. Instead, try to look at different sources, based on scientific research. This approach has a much stronger predictive value than just following your gut.
So if you’re still looking for a New Years’ resolution: Next time you are struggling with topics such as motivating employees, setting goals, encouraging entrepreneurship, managing mergers, using financial incentives, conducting management training, improving performance, and selecting and evaluating employees, try to use evidence based information to find a solution. We recommend the following three books to get you going. And don’t forget that we at beopledd are more than happy to help you with all your questions! Simply contact Raf Vanzeer for more information.
1. Daniel P. (2009). Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. New York: Riverhead Books.
Not the most recent book, but a must read if you want to learn about what really motivates people. For years - and even still today - people assumed that employees are mainly motivated by money. Daniel Pink explains in his book why this is not true. Based on fifty years of scientific research of human behavior and motivation, he explains that people are driven by three aspects of motivation - autonomy, mastery and purpose - and provides his readers with solutions and tips on how to increase performance.
2. Colquitt, A., L. (2017). Next Generation Performance Management: The Triumph of Science over Myth and Superstition. Charlotte: Information Age Publishing.
Everyone who ever tried to get some insights on performance management knows that there is an abundance of information on the topic. Years and years people have tried to reinvent this topic, because they know the “old school way” of doing performance reviews doesn’t work in the modern world. But in many organizations, the performance review cycle is just a copy of what is done in other companies. Alain Colquitt refers to this as “Last Generation Performance Management” or PM 1.0. He calls out the classic assumptions and beliefs about PM 1.0 and focuses instead on the fundamental purpose of PM today. He uses scientific research to encourage HR professionals and business leaders to abandon PM 1.0 and offers alternative and practical solutions, referred to as “Next Generation Performance Management” or PM 2.0.
3. De Cuyper, S., Raes, E., & Boon, A. (2019). High Impact Teaming: bewust, effectief, efficiënt samenwerken. Amsterdam: Business Contact.
This book can help you get a realistic view on how a team achieves results and how they can work together in an efficient way. The authors acknowledge that there is no exact formula for great teamwork, but they provide insights on how top teams cope with complex puzzles. They call it the “High Impact Teaming model”, with crucial elements such as individual impact, team learning, safe teaming, visioning and organizing as fundaments for teamwork. Unfortunately, the book is (for now) only available in Dutch.