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Preface

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2010

Casey Ichniowski
Affiliation:
Columbia University, New York
David I. Levine
Affiliation:
University of California, Berkeley
Craig Olson
Affiliation:
University of Wisconsin, Madison
George Strauss
Affiliation:
University of California, Berkeley
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Summary

Many managers are frustrated by a bewildering array of advice about what works in the workplace. In 1995 the National Center for the Workplace and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation sponsored a conference on the links between workplace practices and organizational performance. This volume presents revised versions of five papers from that conference, coupled with two invited chapters, an introductory chapter, and a concluding one that outlines obstacles to diffusion and draws out lessons for public policy.

The introductory chapter (by the editors and Thomas A. Kochan) reviews the problems researchers face in identifying the effects of workplace practices. With these cautions in mind, it then summarizes the literature on such practices. Results show that systems of innovative human resource management can have large effects on business performance. Success comes not from any single innovation, but from a coherent system encompassing pay, training, and employee involvement. Finally, although a majority of contemporary U.S. businesses have adopted some innovative work practices, only a small percentage have adopted a coherent new system.

This volume contributes to a growing consensus about effective workplace practices. It combines detailed studies of single industries (automobile assembly, apparel, and machine tools) with cross-industry studies of financial performance. The chapters are among the very best on the adoption and effects of innovative workplace practices. The research described here has better measures of both workplace practices and organizational performance than does most past research. In addition, most of the chapters analyze data spanning many years.

Type
Chapter
Information
The American Workplace
Skills, Pay, and Employment Involvement
, pp. vii
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2000

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  • Preface
  • Edited by Casey Ichniowski, Columbia University, New York, David I. Levine, University of California, Berkeley, Craig Olson, University of Wisconsin, Madison, George Strauss, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The American Workplace
  • Online publication: 01 February 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620027.001
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  • Preface
  • Edited by Casey Ichniowski, Columbia University, New York, David I. Levine, University of California, Berkeley, Craig Olson, University of Wisconsin, Madison, George Strauss, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The American Workplace
  • Online publication: 01 February 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620027.001
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Preface
  • Edited by Casey Ichniowski, Columbia University, New York, David I. Levine, University of California, Berkeley, Craig Olson, University of Wisconsin, Madison, George Strauss, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The American Workplace
  • Online publication: 01 February 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620027.001
Available formats
×