Wolfe draws upon more than twenty years of experience as a human resources executive at top companies in the world. He presents real-life examples of how leaders can embrace authenticity and foster empathy, trust, and inclusion. Vulnerability is scary because it exposes us, but it’s also one of the most powerful tools we can use to shift a relationship. Wolfe shows how leaders can forge deeper connections at work, better understand themselves, and inspire others to be more open and genuine. Effective leadership goes hand in hand with empathy and expression. It’s a vast responsibility to be a role model for your organization and your community, but it also reaps infinite rewards.
Leaders cast a long shadow, and their daily choices about how to lead the conversation about inclusion and belonging at work can make – or break – healthy workplace cultures. But how do leaders actually do this? How do they discover and then apply a new way of leading? Through sharing their most “human” selves. In this book, Wolfe wisely focuses on 8 ready-to-apply principles for how to do this, each vividly illustrated, as well as a strong call to action about how to challenge ourselves – because we are all leaders, at any level – to evolve towards a new definition of how to show up as ourselves, and for others – a way that illuminates the path for many, and focuses on unleashing the potential of cultures of belonging, where everyone can thrive. A must-read!
Human Beings First puts humanity back into leadership. Gone are the days when leaders could just focus on performance and revenue, treating employees as commodities who should be grateful for a job. Leaders – the good ones – are focused on empathy, belonging, and psychological safety, knowing that’s the greatest way to get the best out of employees. Paul Wolfe’s book Human Beings First gives a dynamic look into understanding people at a biological, psychological, and emotional level as a tenant of leadership in an enlightening and refreshing way. His deeply personal and profound experience of using an empathetic and expressive leadership style acknowledges all the feelings one might exhibit especially in challenging times. Feelings are fact and in fact, they are biological responses and as the book notes they “are the messenger of needs”. Every single leader who wants to truly invest in their people should read Human Beings First.
When I think of Paul, I think of someone who has built and scaled great cultures; a passionate advocate of DE&I; a pioneer in the future of work. For those reasons alone, any leader can learn a tremendous amount from the insights he’s collected during his impressive career.
What Paul surfaces in Human Beings First is so incredibly important: We are in a new era of leadership, and that requires new skills and capabilities. It requires vulnerability and putting our humanity first. And what I love about this book is that it offers tangible ways to do that. As an executive recruiter, I speak with dozens of leaders every day from early-stage startups to the Fortune 100. I know what qualities companies are looking for and what makes leaders thrive. And I assure you, what Paul shares in his book is critical to it.