Do the Right Thing: How Dedicated Employees Create Loyal Customers and Large Profits (paperback)

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9780132763578: Do the Right Thing: How Dedicated Employees Create Loyal Customers and Large Profits (paperback)

People matter most. Everyone knows that. But most companies would rather slash costs, cut headcount, replace well-paid employees with lower-paid employees or outsourced workers, and reduce customer service. No wonder so many fail and how others focused on doing the right thing can remain profitable and growth-oriented for decades. James Parker shows why "doing the right thing" isn't just naïve "feel-goodism": it's the most powerful rule for business success. Parker's stories won't just convince readers: they'll move them. He tells how, after 9/11, Southwest made three pivotal decisions: no layoffs, no pay cuts, and "no-penalty, no-questions-asked refunds" for any customer wanting them. The result: Southwest's revenue passenger miles for 4Q01 dropped by only 0.5%, and its market cap soon exceeded all its major competitors combined. These pivotal decisions grew naturally from its culture of mutual respect and trust: Parker reveals how that culture developed, offering deeply personal insights into the principles that can make any team, organization or company strong. Discover how great leaders are found at every level, "hire for attitude and train for skills," achieve unparalleled teamwork, and actually make work fun. Powerful and inspirational, Do the Right Thing proves that if one wants to build a great business, people really do matter most.

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From the Back Cover:

The #1 Principle of Sustainable Business Success Is Simpler Than You Think ""Do the Right Thing" is about how any company can stay true to its soul. Jim Parker's deep and abiding belief in the power of people and culture in building a business of lasting worth is evident everywhere; so too is his humility and selflessness as a leader--his stories are not about his own achievements, which are many, but those of the people he led, one of the great success stories of our time."--Sean Moriarty, CEO, Ticketmaster ""Do the Right Thing" offers insightful views into the culture, leadership, and decisions that build great companies the right way. A must read for my management team. THIS BOOK ROCKS."--Kent Taylor, Founder and Chairman, Texas Roadhouse Restaurants "The book is a fun read filled with memorable stories that get at the heart of what it takes to lead in a way that simultaneously satisfies employees, customers, and shareholders. Jim Parker plays the role of eloquent detective and ferrets out the interweaving parts that distributed leadership, culture, values, and teamwork play as the underlying layers of a company's success. This is a book about heroes at all levels and the environment needed to create those heroes. A must-read for today's leaders."--Professor Deborah Ancona, Seley Distinguished Professor of Management and Faculty Director of the MIT Leadership Center,
Sloan School of Management "You'll laugh and cry reading Jim's book, and probably won't be able to put it down. It will forever change the way you view the employees in your organization."--Beverly K. Carmichael, Member, Board of Directors,
Society for Human Resource Management People matter most."You" know that. But most companies would rather slash costs, cut headcount, replace well-paid employees with lower-paid employees or outsourced workers, and reduce customer service. No wonder so many fail-while others focused on doing the right thing remain profitable and growth oriented for decades. James F. Parker shows why "doing the right thing" isn't just naive "feel-goodism: " it's the most powerful rule for business success. Parker's stories won't just convince you: They'll "move" you. Naive? No way. In this book, Southwest Airlines' former CEO proves why doing what's right is the #1 rule of business success. James F. Parker tells how after 9/11, Southwest made three pivotal decisions: no layoffs, no pay cuts, and no-hassle refunds for any customer wanting them. The result: Southwest remained profitable and its revenue passenger miles for 4Q01 held steady while the rest of its industry nearly collapsed...and Southwest's market cap soon exceeded all its major competitors combined. These pivotal decisions grew naturally from Southwest's culture of mutual respect and trust. Parker offers deeply personal insights into that culture, revealing how those same principles are used by other people and organizations, showing you that it's really not that hard to Do The Right Thing!

  • Why doing what's right is the surest way to optimize and sustain value
  • Putting people first...honestly, for real
  • Finding great leaders at every level of the organization
  • Hiring for attitude, training for skills
  • Achieving unprecedented levels of teamwork (and fun!)

About the Author:

James F. Parker served as CEO and vice chairman of the board of Southwest Airlines from June 2001 through July 2004, three of the airline industry’s most challenging years. During Parker’s tenure as CEO, Southwest Airlines was named one of America’s three most admired companies, one of America’s 100 best corporate citizens, one of the world’s most socially responsible companies, and worldwide airline of the year. Parker’s proudest accomplishment, however, comes from the fact that Southwest was the only major airline to protect the jobs of all its employees, while also remaining profitable after 9/11. He is a member of the MIT Leadership Center Advisory Council at the MIT Sloan School of Management. A lawyer by trade, he spent fifteen years as General Counsel of Southwest Airlines before being selected to lead the company. He is currently a member of the board of directors of Texas Roadhouse, Inc.

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