New Book Preview: 'Making Work Human: How Human-Centered Companies Are Changing the Future of Work and the World'

September 29, 2020 Jess Huckins

4-minute read

Making Work Human

More than 20 years ago, Workhuman® was built on a simple premise: Giving and receiving recognition improves performance in any business. The data shows this, again and again. Today, this premise has become a global movement and community of people who want to bring more humanity to organizations worldwide.

Making Work Human,” co-authored by Workhuman CEO Eric Mosley and Senior Vice President, Client Strategy & Consulting Derek Irvine, reveals how the once-unlikely marriage of positive human values and big data analysis empowers leaders to build the workplace of the future – a new world that is unfolding right now, before our very eyes. 

Even before the pandemic changed everything, forward-thinking companies were moving in the direction of more flexibility and remote work options. The importance of a culture infrastructure – ensuring employees can find ways to genuinely connect, even when they’re not together in a physical space – is at the heart of the Workhuman movement.

Why a “human” workplace?

Throughout the book, Eric and Derek show readers how to build a culture that meets critical human needs by ensuring people feel valued, respected, and empowered. Basing their strategy on wide-ranging research, ROI analysis, and real-world case studies, they show that when a workplace becomes more “human,” measurable business results such as profit, employee engagement, and low turnover follow. 

This book is organized into two parts:

  • Part I reviews the new realities of the workplace. Readers will see how technology, globalization, new business models, and pervasive disruption (such as the pandemic) call upon leaders to create a workplace that can attract and retain the best talent. They’ll also gain insight into how employees find energy and engagement in a culture of appreciation and learn how to create a profound connection between employees and the organization.
  • Part II focuses on the practical ways to use Social Recognition® and data analysis to address the urgent challenges in the new organization, such as performance management, compensation and rewards, diversity, equity, and inclusion, and leadership itself.

Workhuman pioneered the management strategy that has transformed business culture worldwide, and now “Making Work Human” takes you step by step through the process of implementing a culture of performance and recognition in the workplace. The book provides key insights into: 

  • How analytics and AI relate to engagement, performance, learning, well-being, and recognition – including a compelling argument of why AI, robotics, and automation can make work more human, not less 
  • How to expand equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives and strategies to include a wider range of backgrounds, life experiences, and capacities 
  • How to use recognition as an actionable strategy to move your company from simply satisfying compliance goals to creating a truly inclusive culture
  • How to transform compensation by crowdsourcing at least 1% of payroll in a peer-to-peer reward system

The 3 pillars of working human

Workhuman conducts objective studies to understand where and when recognition works. The evidences keep mounting that the more human a workplace, the more likely it is to be successful. To turn these ideas into a simple conceptual framework, Eric, Derek, and the Workhuman team have coined a shorthand phrase describing three pillars to the future of continuous performance management and culture management: thank, talk, and celebrate.

  • THANK means expressing authentic appreciation for someone’s work effort or positive behavior. 
  • TALK is the way employees grow and encourage one another toward common goals.
  • CELEBRATE is how we share our humanity, and our common purpose.

Employees have the right to a human workplace. Leaders have the power to create one. What will you, a leader at any level of your organization, do with your power? Will you spend your career in the twilight of the bureaucratic corporate model, or enlist in the movement to make the workplace better?

This is the business leader’s guide to leveraging the most powerful and transformative workforce-management strategy in a generation. “Making Work Human” shows how to seize the competitive edge and drive business sustainability. By dramatically and authentically improving the employee experience, you’ll improve business results. It’s that simple. And “Making Work Human” provides everything you need to get there. 

The book will be released by McGraw-Hill on Oct. 6 and is available for pre-order now.


Thank, Talk, Celebrate: 3 Pillars for a New Decade of Performance Management

The Importance of Human Connection in Remote Work

Human Connection Is the Heartbeat of Business

About the Author

Jess Huckins

Jess Huckins is senior content manager, sales enablement at Workhuman. She enjoys investigative journalism and true crime, fantasy football, outdoor cooking, and adventuring in the wilderness with her three dogs.

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