How Goodness Pays: A Review


I've read a lot of leadership books. Well - OK - I actually have BOUGHT quite a few books on leadership and have even read some of them. Which is why I found the new book by Paul Batz with Paul Hillen entitled "How Goodness Pays" so compelling. It's a small but powerful book jam packed with ideas on how leading with goodness helps a business engage more customers, retain more employees and make more money. Amazing - and how can one argue with Goodness?!?

Starting with their definition of Goodness in business which is: when people thrive together in a culture of encouragement, accountabilty and positive teamwork. Their research quantified the impact of leading with Goodness, and they identify the Five Goodness Pays Factors that, when present in a business, consistently lead to positive financial results. These Five Factors are:

  1. Compelling business plan - having a business plan that creates genuine employee engagement and followership.

  2. Belief that profits are healthy for all - building commitment to the idea that profits are beneficial for everyone including employees, executives and owners.

  3. Team-based culture- creating a culture that rewards a 'we is greater than me' approach (which dovetails perfectly with how Creatis define our value of Teamwork).

  4. Timely and transparent decision-making - gain employee respect by making decisions in a timely fashion and being accountable for the behaviors and results that come from these decisions.

  5. Magnetic ethics -  attracting good people by role modelling what is and what is not acceptable (which parellels the Creatis Doing What's Right value).


At Creatis, we use the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) to run our business ( I found many parallels between the principles of How Goodness Pays with EOS and the core values of Creatis - especially in the Cornerstones of Goodness they define which include:

  1. Rewarding excellence - culture is formed by what gets rewarded, so consistently reward the ones that are consistently producing excellent resutls.
  2. Living generously - teams form more quickly and people give their best effort to leaders who are generous in sharing their time, thoughts, energy and resources
  3. Promoting fairness - fairness becomes a cultural norm when leaders treat all employees with the same level of respect
  4. Spreading positivity - organizations thrive when leaders are consistently providing a positive environment that also includes accountability and the chance for people to do their best work


I can particularly identify with the content from Paul Hillen, who brings the pragmatic, practioner's voice to the book.  Paul's hard-charging and direct leadership style served him well during his executive leadership roles in large companies, and the book outlines how he changed his approach after he learned his team didn't trust him and his leadership style was labeled a 'bag of hammers'. Read those parts - it really struck home with me.

I've only begun my How Goodness Pays journey and look forward to sharing more results as we apply these concepts at Creatis. In the meantime, you can find out more information at  

Tags: Creatis , Managing Change , team, CreatisValues


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