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Dave Ulrich on getting more than a paycheck out of work

While I was out at the Society for Human Resource Management’s annual conference in San Diego last month, I met with Dave Ulrich, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. Dave is the author of “The Why of Work: How Great Leaders Build Abundant Organizations That Win.” I sat down with Dave to talk about some of the ways HR can help employees find meaning in their jobs.

Some of Dave’s insights:

  • When workers find meaning in their jobs, they’re more productive and contribute more to the organization as a whole.
  • HR plays a key role in designing how an organization works, so they’re in prime position to help create meaningful work.
  • Managers need to be leaders, assessing workers’ strengths and helping them into roles where they can find satisfaction.

Check out my full interview with Dave, as well as other conversations with HR thoughtleaders from Smartbrief’s video series with


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