Terms of Engagement

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Meet Richard H. Axelrod, the author of

Terms of Engagement (2nd Edition)

Organizational change pioneer Richard Axelrod explains why the old mechanistic approaches to change no longer work and offers four essential new principles that lead to an engaged organization: I. Widen the circle of involvement, II. Connect people to each other and ideas, III. Create communities for action, and IV. Practice democratic principles.

Susan Stamm interviewed Richard for Bookends Book Club, a service of The TEAM Approach.  In this interview, the participants explore the implications of engaging employees and other stake holders to enhance the organization’s effectiveness (profitability).

Drawing on numerous examples from such companies as Hewlett-Packard, Mercy Healthcare, First Union Bank, and others, Axelrod explains in his book how the four principles of the Engagement Paradigm enable leaders to create energy and commitment instead of apathy and resistance.

He then reveals how this system-wide commitment in turn fosters the energetic, flexible, responsive organizations necessary to thrive in the 21st century. Recognizing the potential for misapplication, he also shows how engagement can disengage, and identifies potential pitfalls to avoid.

Terms of Engagement shows leaders and change management consultants that–when they successfully employ the principles of the Engagement Paradigm–they can produce organizations in which:

  • People grasp the big picture, become aligned around a common purpose, and create new directions
  • Accountability is fully distributed across the organization as people come to understand the whole system
  • Broad participation quickly identifies performance gaps and their solutions, improving productivity, and customer satisfaction
  • Creativity is sparked when people from all levels and functions-along with customers, suppliers, and other important stakeholders-contribute their best ideas
  • Capacity for future changes increases as people develop the skills and processes to meet current and future challenges

Successful strategy implementation requires people at all levels of the organization who care about the outcomes and have the necessary ownership, commitment, and will to implement the plan.

This practical guide offers innovative, practical guidance for bringing the entire organization to the level of engagement vital to successful change outcomes.

The TEAM Approach, sponsors of Bookends Book Club, is committed to helping individuals and organizations improve their effectiveness while working with leaders as well as developing teams that work collaboratively. Products and services provided by The TEAM Approach are available at our web site. Contact us for more details on how we can help your organization.