Book Review – Tribal Unity

Title: Tribal Unity – Getting from TEAMS to TRIBES by Creating a One Team Culture

ISBN: 978-1-365-35960-6

Author: Em Campbell-Pretty


I could not describe who this book is for any better than to use Em’s own words:

“This book is for everyone who aspires to make their workplace a great place to work”.

Karen’s Comment:

This is a personal story that starts in the world of software development. Not a world Em knew much – if anything – about. What she did know was not positive!

Em was a businessperson. She was initially the business sponsor of a $200-million program of work to build an Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW).

The program of work had multiple stops and starts over a considerable period of time. Things were pretty bad.

Em started to look to the Agile world for help. Just as she was doing this, the company had a massive restructure, which resulted in Em taking on the role of EDW General Manager and leading the IT team responsible for delivery of the EDW.

As Em says ‘This was utter madness’. She was a businessperson not an IT person. When she joined the company she didn’t even know was an EDW was! But she saw the opportunuity.

What resulted was the transformation of the worst IT team in the organization into a leading example of a great culture on a global stage.

The book follows Em on her 2-year journey to bring about this transformation including all of the trials and tribulations along the way.

She takes us on her courageous journey of building successful teams and in turn building successful tribes – a connected group of teams. She builds a one-team culture through establishment of shared identify and shared experiences.

Em’s achievements mean that she is now an international sought after speaker and a leading Enterprise Agile consultant. She is a recognised thought leader on scaling culture and creating agile tribes.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is full of great ideas that we can all leverage to make our workplace a great place to work. Learn about Unity Hour and Cocktail hour, Bubble-Up and Tribal Kaizen, and how to become an Extreme Leader.

This is must read for everyone. Who doesn’t want to work in a great place?

Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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