REVIEW: “Why Should Anyone Work Here?” by Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones

By Bryony Aylmer, Graduate Account Executive, Bite

Imagine designing the best company on earth to work for… What would that company be like? How would you build and maintain it? As a leader, you need to know, in order to sustain high performance.

The old paradigm of business structure has shifted and imposing on employees the need to conform to an organisation’s requirements has been tossed aside. Rather, Why Should Anyone Work Here? highlights the importance for an organisation of accommodating their employee’s needs, and practicing flexibility, in order to attract the best talent and foster creativity.

Authors Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones have pulled back the curtain and revealed a rigid system bubbling over with bureaucratic practices and deflated employees. The title itself is a question the authors argue all CEOs must recurrently ask themselves, if they wish their business to develop and thrive in today’s world.

The book identifies six key attributes to help you do just that. The chapters focus on:

1. Celebrating difference — the concept of encouraging people to be their unique selves and businesses to ‘deliberately hire for difference’.

2. Practicing radical honesty — telling the truth before someone else does by keeping ‘communication simple’.

3. Magnifying people’s strengths — people add value to a business when the business adds value to them, building on their strengths and offering a path for improvement in areas where they may need extra support.

4. Standing for authenticity (more than shareholder value) — employees will follow suit and put your company values into practice.

5. Creating meaningful tasks is the key to engagement and organisations must strive for daily work that is ‘intrinsically satisfying’. Goffee and Jones argue that meaningful work can be achieved through the three Cs: ‘connection, community and cause’.

6. Finally, making simple rules — efficiency can be destroyed in the entanglement of regulation and sometimes the best intentions can be lost in a ‘tick box charade’. Essentially, simplifying the rules will break down the barriers to efficiency.

Here at Bite, our company values encourage us to ‘celebrate weird’ and be ‘refreshingly truthful’. Our diversity is what sets us apart. Every Biter has something brilliant and different to bring to the communications table. Our structure is flat, so our work is truly integrated — a vital ingredient to great communications work.

By being encouraged to bring our life experiences and character to the workplace, our enthusiasm is authentic and infectious — to each other and our clients. It’s what makes a workplace unique.