Book review: Never Mind The Bosses

Emma De Vita reviews the new book by Robin Ryde, which argues that power and resources have shifted in the workplace from the few to the many

Never Mind The Bosses, by Robin Ryde
Never Mind The Bosses, by Robin Ryde

With punk-style graffiti on its cover, this book's subtitle is Hastening the Death of Deference for Business Success - although the author, Robin Ryde, is more about 'the cash' than The Clash.

Over the past few decades, Ryde argues, power and resources have moved from the hands of the few and been dispersed to the many - not only in politics, but in the workplace too.

For managers, this means accelerating the "death of deference", because deference prevents them from being agile, innovative and ethical.

Ryde does not define the dropping of deference as a lack of respect, or the devaluation of knowledge, expertise or experience; it is more about losing the controlling mindset, a "them and us" attitude and the pervasive fear of failure.

Managers should reduce the level of deference in their organisations by making colleagues change the way they communicate with them and each other, says Ryde. It's about being more open, taking on responsibility, being authentic and ethical and empowering others to get on with their jobs. Essentially, it's about treating colleagues like adults - so isn't it about time you acted like a grown-up?

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