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ConnectionCultureBookConnection Culture: The Competitive Advantage of Shared Identity, Empathy and Understanding at Work

Connection Culture provides a new way of thinking about leadership based on the universal human need to feel connected to a group (which is in contrast to feeling unsupported, left out or lonely).   The book describes a connection culture that helps people and organizations thrive verses “cultures of control” and “cultures of indifference” that drain the life out of people and sabotage organizational performance.  Connection Culture includes inspiring stories of great leaders who created connection cultures, scientific evidence that people and organizations need connection cultures to thrive, and descriptions of ways to connect that include attitudes, uses of language and behaviors.  Written for busy leaders with little time to waste, Connection Culture is concise, inspiring, and practical.


Praise for Connection Culture

“Packed with rock-solid evidence, disturbing statistics and moving stories, this short but passionate plea for connectedness at work and in life delivers a wake-up call. How connected you feel to other people at work turns out to be the primary driver of your sense of engagement as an employee, but Americans in particular have let relationships and community suffer. Experts Michael Lee Stallard, Jason Pankau and Katharine P. Stallard explain why people need to connect. They find that record numbers of U.S. workers are stressed, unhealthy and addicted as a result of ignoring the benefits of close, caring relationships in favor of more work, solo entertainment and a casual approach to marriage. The few organizations that include employees in decisions, respect them and encourage relationship building and bonding ultimately outpace their competitors. GetAbstract recommends this quick read to leaders who want to build places where the best people want to work and connect.”
– GetAbstract

“Practical suggestions for employers who want to change their organizational culture.”
Financial Times

“[Stories] about the companies who have got it right…are memorable.”
Los Angeles Times

“A wonderful book…Connection Culture isn’t a very long or wordy book, but it’s loaded with lessons.”                                      –Small Business Practices

“A great leadership guide for leaders at every level.”
Frances Hesselbein, President and CEO, The Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute

“This is more than a great read; Michael’s connection strategy is a game changer for leaders.”
Vernon Clark, Admiral, U.S. Navy (Ret.), Former Chief of Naval Operations

Connection Culture provides ideas, actions, and pathways that servant leaders can use to not only enhance performance, but more importantly to build a strong culture.”
Howard Behar, Former President, Starbucks International

“Running an organization of some 8,000 people, I have found Michael’s experience, guidance and philosophy helpful in understanding and improving our company’s performance on multiple metrics.”
Carter Murray, Worldwide CEO, Foote, Cone & Belding

Connection Culture is right on target and a book that every leader should race to get his or her hands on.”
Karla R. Peters-Van Havel, Chief Operating Officer, The Institute for Management Studies

Connection Culture lays out a compelling case for a culture of connection in every organization, and provides a framework for leaders who want to apply positive personal values in practice in their organizations and teams.”
John Young, Group President, Global Established Pharma Businesses, Pfizer

“You must read this book. It’s vital to the success of our organizations, our communities, our families, and the human race.”
Janis Apted Yadiny, MLS, Associate Vice President, Faculty and Academic Development, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

“Our organization has benefited greatly from the principles in Connection Culture. It is a must read for anyone leading an organization.”
Mike Cunnion, Chief Executive Officer, Remedy Heath Media

“This deep exploration of connection culture explains the positive effects of using these skills and offers dozens of ways to get started on the journey.”
James DaSilva, Senior Editor, SmartBrief on Leadership

Connection Culture offers a wealth of information, insights, and counsel that can help any organization develop a connection culture.”
Robert Morris, Business Book Reviewer, and U.S., UK, and Canada

“Don’t wait another moment. Get a copy of Connection Culture for yourself and for your colleagues. They will thank you.”
Tom Jansen, Team Leader, Strategy, Strategic Performance Office, Boy Scouts of America

“Connection works when we work on connection. Michael Stallard connected with Jason Pankau and Katharine Stallard to help us fully connect at work. The authors draw us in with their stories, convince us with their evidence, guide us with their recommendations, and conclude by inviting us to mark the day we finish the book as that start of freshly enlivened, engaged, and enriched connections creating a thriving work culture.
David Zinger, Employee Engagement Global Expert and Founder of the Employee Engagement Network

“Every manager needs to read this book—it will foster healthier work environments and make my job a lot easier!”
Ted George, M.D., Clinical Professor, George Washington School of Medicine, Senior Investigator, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Author, Untangling the Mind

“The message of Connection Culture is profoundly personal yet ultimately universal. If you think you know what connection really means, you’ll come away with a whole new perspective once you have read this gracefully written book.”
Bruce Rosenstein, Managing Editor, Leader to Leader, Author, Create Your Future the Peter Drucker Way

“Leadership is about relationships. In Connection Culture, Michael Lee Stallard reveals the art and science of creating a culture that builds relationships and drives performance.”
David Burkus, Author, The Myths of Creativity

Recent Press

SmartBrief on Leadership: What’s a connection culture, and how do we get there? What You Don’t Know About Building a Connection Culture Is Hurting Your Business

Fast Company: What the Hottest Word of the Year Means for Your Business

Financial Times: Review: ‘Connection Culture’ by Michael Lee Stallard Three Ways to Identify a Connection Culture

Los Angeles Times: “Connection Culture” Says When Workers Thirve, Companies Do Too

Fox Business: Column by Michael Lee Stallard Why Successful Leadership Depends on Connections

American Management Association: Column by Michael Lee Stallard

Amazing Workplace: Michael Stallard and Creating A Connection Culture, Identifying and Resolving Disconnection, And The Importance of Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

Blogging on Business: Connection Culture: A Book Review By Bob Morris

About the Author

Stallard PhotoMichael Lee Stallard is president of E Pluribus Partners. Michael and his colleagues speak, teach and provide consulting services to organizations. Clients have included FCB, GE, Google, IRS, Johnson & Johnson, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, NASA, Scotiabank, TCU and Yale-New Haven Health System.

Michael is the primary author of Fired Up or Burned Out: How to Reignite Your Team’s Passion, Creativity and Productivity and a contributor to several other books.  He writes for the CEO Advisor column of Fox Business and contributes to SmartBrief. Michael guest lectures at several universities and institutes and is a faculty member at the Institute for Management Studies.

Prior to founding E Pluribus Partners, Michael was chief marketing officer for businesses at Morgan Stanley and Charles Schwab. Earlier in his career, Michael worked as an executive at Barclays and Texas Instruments.


Pankau Photo 1015Jason Pankau is a cofounder and partner at E Pluribus Partners.  He speaks, teaches workshops, and serves as a consultant and coach to leaders at a wide variety of organizations.

Jason is a contributor to Connection Culture, Fired Up or Burned Out and What Managers Say, What Employees Hear. He has contributed articles to leadership publications including Leader to Leader and Leadership Excellence.  In addition to his work at E Pluribus Partners, Jason is president of Life Spring Network, a Christian ministry.

Jason earned a B.S. from Brown University in business economics and organizational behavior/ management. He was captain and pre-season All-American linebacker in football, school record holder in discus, and national qualifier in track while at Brown. Jason earned a Masters of Divinity from Southern Theological Seminary.


Katie Stallard PhotoKatharine P. Stallard is a partner at E Pluribus Partners. She is a gifted connector, speaker, and teacher who brings diverse experience in marketing, administration, business, and non-profit organizations to her role. Katie has co-authored and contributed to articles appearing in various publications including HR Magazine and Leader to Leader.  Audiences and seminar participants enjoy her sense of humor and practical advice. Katie has worked in marketing for Tyndale House Publishers, a leading global Christian book publisher; for a Forbes 400 family helping to manage their diverse holdings; and currently leads communications for a highly-regarded church in Greenwich, Connecticut. She also has extensive experience helping and serving on the boards of education and social sector organizations. Katie graduated cum laude from the University of Illinois with a degree in business administration.