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Book Reviews

# Induction Training: Effective Steps For Investing In People

Michael Meighan

Kogan Page

London, 2000

Proper induction is fundamental to both the retention of, and development of staff, not simply for the benefit of these new members of staff but also because induction can have a major influence on the development of a business -it is the start of a longer process that leads on to staff appraisal and systematic staff training and development. Over the past few years a number of initiatives have emerged that make the use of induction programmes even more necessary, not only in terms of good practice but because they are now required for specific purposes. Investor in People (lIP) is a government-sponsored award that now requires organizations working towards the award to implement systematic induction for all staff. The introduction of the new National and Scottish Vocational Qualifications calls for proper induction not just for new staff but for the large numbers of existing staff who may be working towards these qualifications. The movement towards empowerment, mentoring and 'the learning organization' which are explained in this text, also means systematic implementation through communication with new and existing staff. So too does the general movement towards quality awards such as ISO9000, which require stat1\a be trained in quality management and control. This clearly should be tackled at the induction stage.

Induction Training will help you to determine the induction training needs of both your organization and the individuals concerned. Clearly showing the different approaches that need to be adopted in a variety of situations, the book provides guidance whether you are inducting school leavers, older returnees, the previously unemployed or senior staff and directors. Complete with handy action checklists and examples of best practice, this book is the ideal induction handbook.

# Evolve! Succeeding In The Digital Culture Of Tomorrow

Rosabeth Moss Kantor

Harvard Business School Press

Boston, Massachusetts, 2001

The ubiquitous dot (as in "com") after the E in "Evolve" on the book's cover may suggest to the cynical that this is another old-school change guru weighing in with the obligatory guide to making it on the Net--and months after e-commerce mania has subsided, to boot! And granted, the thumbnail keys to successful I-preneuring that form the book's structure--namely, a willingness to improvise, a desire to network aggressively with other sites, a readiness to create "integrated communities," and a commitment to creating a workplace culture that attracts and retains the best talent--aren't necessarily breakthrough insights, however cogently presented.

Kanter & Co. conducted over 300 interviews, plus surveys with nearly three times as many companies worldwide, to tease out their conclusions on what works and what doesn't when doing business online--with brash start-ups as well as brick-and-mortar giants. That serious-minded, Harvard-quality sleuthing is reflected in the long narratives that make up the meat of the book, detailing the complete online journeys of some of the world's most high-profile companies. Shortly before Evolve! went to press, Kanter added two new chapters to address the latest changes in the e-commerce market. That's a valuable update, but even if she'd skipped the postscript, Evolve! is blessedly free of reckless cybermania. And, unlike many such dot-com how-tos, it's wise enough to know that, far from having completely rewritten the rules of good business, the callow world of e-commerce has much to learn from the offline forbears it often scoffs at. For these reasons, the observations and advisories in Evolve! should transcend the inevitable fluctuations of the e-commerce market in the years to come. In other words, this is the real thing: smart, deeply researched advice from a pro whose talents are evident on every page.

# The Future Of Leadership: Today’s Top Leadership Thinkers Speak To Tomorrows Leaders

Warren Bennis, Gretchen M. Spreitzer, Thomas G. Cummings, Editors


San Francisco, 2001

Warren Bennis is to leadership what Peter Drucker is to management. Both have had long, distinguished careers, and both are prolific writers. Bennis is the author or editor of 26 books on leadership, change management, and creative collaboration-- including Managing People Is like Herding Cats (1997). This new collection of essays was organized as a Festschrift to honour Bennis at the University of Southern California's Marshall School of Business, where Bennis is a professor. Bennis starts by identifying "twelve challenging issues that leaders will need to understand and learn how to resolve if they are to succeed in tomorrow's organizations." The essayists respond by considering the organization of the future; the leader of the future; and ways in which leaders "continue to renew, energize, and develop themselves." In addition, two new "young leaders" offer their perspectives. The roster of 20 contributing luminaries includes Charles Handy, James Kouzes, Barry Posner, Tom Peters, and Mihaly Csikszentmihaly.

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Gary Watkins

Gary Watkins

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