Putting Our Differences to Work (Hardcover)

The Fastest Way to Innovation, Leadership, and High Performance

By Debbe Kennedy, Joel A. Barker (Foreword by)

Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 9781576754993, 208pp.

Publication Date: June 1, 2008



Putting our differences to work means creating an environment where people, naturally unique and different--diverse by nature and experience--can work more effectively in ways that drive new levels of creativity, innovation, problem solving, leadership, and performance in the marketplaces, workplaces, and communities of the world. Debbe Kennedy shows how to make all the dimensions of difference--such as thinking styles, perspectives, experiences, work habits, and management styles, as well as more traditional diversity considerations like gender, race, ethnicity, physical abilities, sexual orientation, and age--tremendous sources of strength.
Kennedy draws on the latest research and a wealth of real-world examples to offer compelling evidence showing exactly how putting our differences to work accelerates innovation and contribution. She identifies five distinctive qualities of leadership that leaders must add to their portfolio of skills to make differences an engine of success. And she provides a detailed six-stage process for making the most of differences in the workforce, combining first-person best-practice stories and strategic with tactical ideas to help you put each step into action.
Kennedy has written both a personal and a practical guide that changes the prevailing rules of how to think, behave, and operate as a leader, connecting four diverse elements of business and society that have traditionally been siloed: innovation, leadership, diversity, and inclusion. She and futurist Joel Barker also look at how new discoveries, including Web 2.0 technologies, can draw us closer together in previously unimagined ways.

About the Author

Debbe Kennedy is the founder and president of Leadership Solutions Companies, an award-winning women-owned enterprise specializing in custom leadership, organizational, and virtual-communication solutions and the Global Dialogue Center. She is known for her pioneering contributions in people-focused leadership-employee communications using Web 2.0 technologies and other social media. Formerly, she had a distinguished leadership career with IBM. She is the author of Breakthrough! The Problem-Solving Advantage: Everything You Need to Start a Solution Revolution.