Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles wrote a page turner with their book Gung Ho! A book about leadership, the lesson was delivered in the form of a story where a manager is tasked with turning around a failing plant and instead her own ideas of leadership are turned around by a maverick manager of one of the teams at this plant.
It’s a great book. I hope many people read it and take it to heart. It lays a very realistic plan for optimum performance through the honoring of the individual as more than a resource, as people with real lives, concerns, hopes, and dreams. And that when we embrace the full humanity only then will the team come together to provide high performance for the company’s objectives.
There are so many business books on leadership, yet there seems to be such a lack of it most of the time. Perhaps leadership has much more to do with every one of us than it does the people at the “top”.
The World War II term, Gung Ho!, actually came from the Chinese word Gōnghé which is short for a longer phrase meaning “industrial workers cooperative”. It’s interesting that an über-capitalist book would adopt a Chinese Communist term, but perhaps it is indeed only in the collective that we’ll ever get to participate in truly enthusiastic collaborative – and fulfilling – work.