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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.Albert Einstein

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All You Gotta Do Is Ask

All You Gotta Do Is Ask

This book offers useful recommendations to effectively listen employees in the field. The art of questioning plays a central role in this management approach.

Author(s): Chuck Yorke, Norman Bodek

Publisher: Editions PCS Press

Date of publication: 2005

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The underlying philosophy of this short book is hardly innovative, as it basically says that ""employees in the field have all the answers and management’s role is to listen to them."" However, it does provide useful recommendations on how to go about this, based on the methods implemented by the Japanese companies with which the authors have worked, e.g. Toyota, Isuzu, Suzuki, Sumitomo, etc. The most important lesson here is the importance of proactively asking employees for their ideas, rather than waiting for them to express themselves spontaneously (""bring the suggestion box to people, rather than leaving it hanging on the wall"").
The art of questioning plays a central role in this management approach. It is the theme of chapter 22, the longest chapter of the book and critical to read. Additional key success factors (culture supporting participation, rapid implementation of expressed ideas, etc.) are scattered throughout the many other chapters, which are generally quite brief. For a quick read, we advise concentrating on chapters 1 to 14, which cover the most essential messages of the book.