HR Books Review: ‘Herding Tigers’
Should you manage creative teams differently than technical teams? Do you need a different style with designers than engineers? How does motivating creative people differ from coaching sales professionals?
Todd Henry explores those questions and more in his book, “Herding Tigers: Be the Leader Creative People Need.”
What I Liked About the Book
“Herding Tigers” is an excellent primer on what it means to work human. Todd asks directors and managers to lead from the heart and work passionately to protect their teams from office politics, corporate bureaucracies and processes that kill the creative spirit.
What I also liked about this book is that it’s not a super-long and challenging book to read. Most management books put me to sleep, but Todd has done something special here: he tells stories, he teaches, and he offers tactical advice and guidance through additional resources on his website.
I read this book on a beach and live-tweeted my reactions and some of the best quotes. If I can focus this book on Topsail Beach, you can tackle a chapter each night.
More Things to Consider
Todd Henry takes the position that creative teams require special leadership. I’ve only managed HR and marketing professionals, but every industry thinks it needs a special level of leadership. Maybe it’s true, but I’m not so sure.
The principles outlined in the book — from time management to conflict-resolution — are rooted in common sense and could be applied to various jobs. Whether you’re an accountant or a graphic designer, you want a boss who’s in your corner and has your back. You want your work to matter. You want to feel safe from political shenanigans.
Maybe creative teams express themselves differently, but I’m not sure about that, either. Sales teams might have extroverts and creative groups may prefer to work in introverted ways, but all of us want uninterrupted time to think and create.
Or at least that’s what I think. What do you think?
Buy This Book
HR professionals work alongside creative professionals to create employee communication documents, develop recruiting campaigns, and implement new software modules. “Herding Tigers” will help you improve your leadership language skills and understand how to communicate more effectively.
It never hurts to read a new book with good ideas about how to work human. In that way, “Herding Tigers” offers excellent advice on how to be an advocate for your people while driving towards business goals and objectives.