The best organizations have the best people. Financial incentives drive company performance. Firms must change or die. Popular nostrums like these guide companies’ everyday decisions. Yet too many business adages are built on flimsy information, “miracle cure” hype, and flawed thinking about “best practices.” When leaders make choices based on inaccurate knowledge, they put their organizations at risk.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Hard Facts describes a better way of making management choices: evidence-based management. Based on an approach that is growing in significance in medicine and the policy sciences and education, this book shows leaders how to find and use better evidence in business and why this approach produces superior results.
Through evidence-based management, business leaders face the hard facts and act on the best evidence—trumping the competition. They also view common beliefs about effective management practices with healthy skepticism. To demonstrate the dangers lurking in such beliefs, Hard Facts examines 6 widely held—but flawed—half-truths in management topics such as leadership, strategy, change, talent management, incentives, and the connection between work and the rest of life. The book describes how to identify and apply the approaches that are best for their companies, rather than blindly embracing what seems to have worked elsewhere. Such guidelines include:
- Beware of old ideas clothed in new labels
- Develop a healthy skepticism toward “the next big management idea”
- Adopt an attitude of wisdom