The Great Game of Business Blog

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Why We Want to Do Away with Jobs

Sep 17, 2020 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
How often have you heard this: “All we ask you is to do the job, nothing more.” Well, I don’t want people just to do a job. I want them to have a purpose in what the hell they’re doing. I want them to be going somewhere. I want them to be excited about getting up in the morning, to look forward to what they’re going to do that day. Maybe it’s a matter of tricking people into wanting to come to work. I say “tricking” because I don’t think it’s a natural thing. Most people would rather be doing something other than work—I certainly would—but they feel they don’t have any choice. Companies reinforce that feeling. They not only tell people just to do the job, they set up the work so it is just a job. They say, “Drill as many of these holes as possible, as fast as possible, and don’t think about anything else.” That’s one way to run a company. What you wind up with are workers who think a job is just a job. I call them the living dead.
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What Does It Mean to Lead Like a Human?

Aug 26, 2020 by Adam Weber 5 Comments
Manager or Monster? Across Emplify’s entire data set, the most common challenges we see are companies promoting top-performing employees into management and then leaving them to their own devices. Unfortunately, when they become managers, they lack support from the business to transform them into truly inspiring leaders. Instead, they fall back on antiquated management styles that sow disengagement among the people they manage. These old styles of management are directly opposed to what I believe it means to lead, and were the driving force behind me writing my new book, Lead Like a Human.
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4 Reasons Your Employees Aren't on the Open-Book Bandwagon

Do you feel like your leadership team is finally ready to take the leap and open the books? But, you're worried some of your team aren't as enthusiastic as you hoped they would be? If you’re ready to start sharing your financial and operational information with employees, but you get the sense they’re just not ready yet, there could be some very logical – and common – reasons why. Today we discuss the top four reasons employees aren't ready to jump on the open-book management bandwagon. Maybe there's one or two that apply to your team. 
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To Be or Not To Be (Coached) — That is the Question

Feb 14, 2020 by Jeff Thomas 0 Comments
As a proud self-implementor, we have been trying to take our commitment to become a Great Game™ practitioner seriously for the last couple of years. We’ve been to the workshops, (Get in the Game™, MiniGames™, High-Involvement Planning™) and getting a lot out of each one we've attended. We’ve been training our staff in the business of business, instructing them on how to read financial statements, and have opened our books. We’ve done a few Mini-Games and are even reading the new books (which are extremely helpful for giving us insights and motivations into how to better implement The Game.)
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The 5 Myths of Management

  In The Great Game of Business, Jack Stack shares his experiences and lessons learned throughout the years, including what he was taught about management early in his career. What was the most important lesson he learned about management? Ignore almost all of those "best practices."  What he was being taught and what he had learned about management were entirely different! He discovered that the practice of management is filled with myths guaranteed to screw up any company, and we've compiled our blogs on the 5 Myths of Management here:
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4 Questions to Ask for Successful Succession Planning

Jan 7, 2020 by Keith Boatright 0 Comments
At SRC Holdings, we see our succession management program as one of our most important strategic advantages. It is also one of our greatest challenges because our managers must not only be good at their jobs but also good at building and maintaining our culture. Every year, we dive deeply into our workforce and employment data to evaluate ownership succession planning results while actively supporting the progress and alignment of our strategic workforce goals. During this process, the big objective is to complete detailed strategic workforce planning. The goals of this process can be achieved by answering four basic questions: 
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Creating & Distributing Wealth: Are You Doing Your Part To Raise the Standard?

Dec 26, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
One thing that scares me about our economy is the whole trend of downsizing. What’s really going on is that companies are getting rid of people and replacing them with machines. They view people as a contingent liability. They’re missing the fact that productivity depends on people. I don’t disagree that machines can make you more competitive. They can absorb overhead. They don’t take breaks. They don’t go on vacation. They don’t sit around wasting time. What machines can’t do is figure out how to make money. Only people can do that. If you have people who know how to make money, you’ll win every time.
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Why You Need to Get Rid of the Employee Mentality

Dec 18, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
The big payoff to us for playing The Game is that we become a more educated, more flexible organization. We can respond instantaneously to changes in the market. We can turn on a dime for a customer if we have to. We can respond to problems in the length of time it takes to place a phone call. We can do all that because we have a company filled with people who not only are owners, but who also think and act like owners, not like employees. That’s an important distinction. Getting people to think and act like owners goes far beyond giving them equity. 
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As a Leader, Are You Living Up to Your End of the Employment Bargain?

Nov 22, 2019 by Jack Stack 0 Comments
I have always believed that you take on a big obligation when you hire somebody. That person needs to bring home money, put food on the table, take care of children. You can't take that obligation lightly. Of course, the individual has obligations to the company as well. Employment is a two-way street. But as much as possible I want it to be someone's choice whether or not he or she leaves the company. It really bothers me to see people laid off through no fault of their own. To prevent that from happening, we have a contract among ourselves. Everything we do is based on a common understanding that job security is paramount—that we are creating a place for people to work not just this year or five years from now, but for the next fifty years and beyond. We owe it to one another to keep the company alive.
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What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger: Surviving the Recession by Starting with Why

Anthony Wilder is a full-service, custom architecture, construction, and interior design provider founded by the husband-and-wife team of Anthony and Liz Wilder. The Wilder team has been creating award-winning projects in and around the Washington, DC, metropolitan and tri-state area for more than twenty years. Back in 2006, the company was setting records in helping their customers’ dreams come true as the housing market boomed. Revenues were way up, and the firm had built up a two-year pipeline of backlog work to come. Everything was going great, and as the old saying goes, “Why fix something that isn’t broken?” And then the recession hit.
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Using MiniGames™ To Drive Open-Book Leadership At H-E-B

Oct 17, 2019 by Darren Dahl 1 Comment
“Open-book management” was one of the popular phrases that got applied to the leadership system, The Great Game of Business®, that Jack Stack and his associates at SRC created back in 1983. But as Stack himself has said many times, most people don’t like to be managed. They like to be lead instead. In that spirit, perhaps it’s time we start thinking of the Great Game as a form of what we might call “open-book leadership.” A fantastic example of open-book leadership in action comes from the front lines of a grocery store in Austin, Texas—H-E-B. Starting back in 2016, the large grocery chain began sending managers and employees—who H-E-B calls “partners”—to the Gathering of Games conference to help inspire them in rolling out Great Game™ practices throughout the company.
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Our 10-Step Approach to GGOB Implementation

In more than 35 years practicing The Great Game of Business® at SRC, as well as three decades helping thousands of companies implement The Game in their own companies, we have determined the fastest, most efficient and most reliable path to Rapid Financial Results and Lasting Cultural Change™ follows a set process.  We honed and developed the 10-Step Approach to GGOB Implementation to guide companies implementing The Great Game of Business in their organizations. 
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About The Great Game of Business

Our approach to running a company was developed to help close one of the biggest gaps in business: the gap between managers and employees. We call our open-book approach The Great Game of Business. What lies at the heart of The Game is a very simple proposition: The best, most efficient, most profitable way to operate a business is to give everybody in the company a voice in saying how the company is run and a stake in the outcome. Let us teach you how to develop a culture of ownership, where employees think, act and feel like owners.