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The definitive guide to working with -- and surviving -- bullies, creeps, jerks, tyrants, tormentors, despots, backstabbers, egomaniacs, and all the other assholes who do their best to destroy you at work. "What an asshole!" How many times have you said that about someone at work? You're not alone! In this groundbreaking book, Stanford University professor Robert I. SuttThe definitive guide to working with -- and surviving -- bullies, creeps, jerks, tyrants, tormentors, despots, backstabbers, egomaniacs, and all the other assholes who do their best to destroy you at work. "What an asshole!"How many times have you said that about someone at work? You're not alone! In this groundbreaking book, Stanford University professor Robert I. Sutton builds on his acclaimed Harvard Business Review article to show you the best ways to deal with assholes...and why they can be so destructive to your company. Practical, compassionate, and in places downright funny, this guide offers:Strategies on how to pinpoint and eliminate negative influences for goodIlluminating case histories from major organizationsA self-diagnostic test and a program to identify and keep your own "inner jerk" from coming outThe No Asshole Rule is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and Business Week bestseller....

Title : The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780446698207
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 256 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't Reviews

  • Dave
    2019-03-27 21:00

    I bought this because I thought I worked with assholes. (Well -- that, and a few others had enjoyed reading it.) I discovered that I work with garden-variety assholes, not certified ("flaming") assholes -- though I have in the past. Note that the author is an academic and wanted to enforce the "no asshole" rule in his own department. This doesn't just apply to corporate settings.The real revelation he gives is what he calls "total cost of asshole ownership". This insight alone will land the book on my CEO's desk.(1) Damage to victims and witnesses (lower productivity, high turnover, others unable to deliver information to or work with assholes)(2) Management consequences: time and effort spent "cooling out" employees and victimized customers; time spent recruiting and training replacements(3) Legal and HR: legal liability for severely flaming assholes (sexual harassment, etc)(4) Organizational damage: stifled creativity; inability to improve established systems; inability to attract high caliber employees.

  • Christopher
    2019-04-18 22:06

    What a disappointment. This book should have written itself: who can't write a good book about assholes? The world is full of them, and Sutton's biggest problem should have been trying to sift through an inexhaustable supply of good stuff and funny bits. Instead we get a boring, humorless collection of basic psychology principles, statistics, and common sense. Entire pages are devoted to mindless recitations of research findings and statistics. The anecdotes are boring and focus around a very short list of people. Half of what's said is so obvious it doesn't need to be included. In short, Sutton himself is the asshole for wasting my time.I don't think that the problem here is that I didn't understand his intent. I get that he is not just trying to compile a bunch of funny asshole stories and frat humor. It is also clear that Sutton knows his stuff: I do not disagree with any of his conclusions, and most of the underlying psychology that he spells out rings true with the little I can remember from college. My problem is simply that the book didn't have to be so damned boring. I do not want to know the results of all 17 studies that studied nearly the exact same thing. I do not need to hear a tepid example of someone's boorish behavior and then spend four pages listening to Sutton plod his way through conclusions and observations that were immediately obvious from the get go. And why did they have to be such lame examples to begin with? Where's the guy that gets all amped up on coke and completely flips out at work and pees on his secretary's desk and knocks out his boss and has to be dragged away by a team of security guards? Instead, we get people who interrupt other people at work and use aggressive body language. Had Sutton really opened up the forum to his readers and compiled a good list of truly astounding, bar-raising, standard-setting Grade A assholes, and written the book under the assumption that his readers were at least marginally intelligent and therefore don't need every obvious fact and conclusion painfully spelled out for them, we might have ended up with something worth reading. Instead, we have a lifeless little exercise in tedium that brought tears of boredom to my eyes, right up until I ripped them out with a fork so I didn't have to keep reading. Save the twenty three bucks, use it to buy some paint, then watch it dry. It sure beats reading this book.

  • K
    2019-04-19 17:15

    I've referenced this before but will again. Long ago, I read a particularly stupid chick lit book which would be entirely unmemorable except for one line that stayed with me. Our heroine, contemplating life, muses about the following question: Do jerks look in the mirror and know they're jerks?This question has come up for me a lot in general, and was particularly relevant as I read this book. I sought this book out after reading this article forwarded by my cousin, which I found insightful and validating. The book, unfortunately, though entertaining and insightful at times, was quite flawed.First off, for a book about, well, you know, jerks, it was actually kind of dry and repetitive. Sure, I was glad the author chose to include research rather than simply shooting his mouth off about the topic as all of us are capable of doing, but the details of the studies he invoked did not prove particularly enlightening and sometimes felt like filler.Second, which relates to my original question, I wondered who the audience was. My guess is that jerks don't know they're jerks, and that anyone picking up this book believes it describes other people. So a lot of it is arguably preaching to the converted rather than effecting actual change among people who need to read it. The quiz to test whether you're an, uh, jerk, was a bit problematic in my view in that it would require a great deal of self-awareness and insight for an actual jerk to answer these self-reflective questions accurately, and by definition he probably couldn't be that much of a jerk then, could he? A jerk who knows he's a jerk must feel at least a bit of remorse, no? This question can be debated, but I found the book a bit inadequate in this way.So the one chapter which I felt actually related to the majority of this book's likely readers is the one about surviving other jerks in the workplace. Although the unfortunate reality is that we can't change other people and there are forces greater than ourselves at work, the author offers some tips for how to cope when you're surrounded by workplace bullies which may well be applied to the jerks in your personal life as well. I'll summarize them here:1. Instead of trying to fight battles you can't win, learn ways to practice detachment and let their behavior roll right off you; remember not to take them personally or blame yourself for their inappropriate behavior.2. Keep your expectations for jerks' behavior realistically low.3. Find small ways to increase your sense of control in this situation, whether through building a support network at work, learning how to stay calm in the face of assault, picking small battles to fight that you can realistically win, etc.4. Limit your exposure to jerks' behavior.5. Try to get out of the situation if you can; even if the abovementioned techniques help you cope, don't allow them to lull you into complacency and out of seeking another job, because constant exposure to jerky behavior can have effects on your own character and on the way you see yourself.Of course, there are some problems with these techniques as well which the author acknowledges -- seeking support at work can quickly morph into multiple unproductive gripe sessions which just leave everyone feeling bad. The author didn't really have an answer for this, other than trying to focus on staying positive and on picking and winning small battles.Anyway, while this book focused on an interesting topic and had a few good insights, it wasn't a great book. I recommend you go with the article instead.

  • Kim Bailey
    2019-03-28 23:07

    Perhaps this information was a little more relevant and a lot less obvious when the book was written? (copywright is 2007) But I found most of the information to be quite dry. It's mostly common sense, in my opinion. Assholes are assholes ... in or out of the workplace. And no matter how you catagorize them, they have an impact on everyone around them ... if you're a human being and NOT an asshole, I'm pretty sure you've experienced this ... heck, I'm certain most assholes have experienced another of thier kind at some point.There were some fun little ancedotes provided. It's always interesting to read about bigshots acting badly ... sort of like watching TMZ when a star throws a tantrum ... makes the rest of us 'normal' folks feel better about ourselves. There were some funny (at least I found it humourous) tips on how NOT to be an asshole ... as well as some sort of useful advice on managing them in the workplace.This would be a good read for People Managers with no common sense ... but the ones who are usually a problem, probably wouldn't be to open to the information. In other words ... this book is really only useful to make those who aren't assholes feel like they stand a chance in hell of dealing with those who are.

  • Jeff Yoak
    2019-03-27 18:15

    This book seriously rubbed me the wrong way. The author does a little initial work useful in being precise about what he means by "assholes" and offers the rather trivial conclusion that we shouldn't be one, hire them or tolerate them. The rest amounts to foot-stomping at best and bewilderment at worst. Assholes give people the "silent treatment" but in response we should "talk to them as little as possible." Retaliatory behavior as bad or worse than the initial "asshole" behavior is advocated throughout. Can you imagine celebrating bus driver trainers telling new drivers they get three accidents per year without disciplinary action, so to save them up and never have accidental accidents so that they can punish the real asshole drivers they encounter? How about the desirability of keeping one or two assholes around to abuse to make sure to model how not to behave for others?I found all of this so bad that at times I thought I was being put on. I half-expected the author to come out with something like, "If the last 10 pages have seemed in any way appealing to you, you're probably an asshole." That never happened.

  • Caroline Gordon
    2019-04-02 15:08

    Anyone living the corporate life should read this book. It's as much about not becoming an asshole yourself as dealing with the ones around you, which is important because the best of us can be reduced to bad behaviour in the wrong environment.But - I know you really just want the quick story, how do you survive the assholes at work - my choice bits of advice are:- pick your workplace carefully, try to not to join in the first place if the assholes rule- if you got it wrong, get out as soon as you canIf you are stuck, for a short or long time in a workplace where the assholes rule try these:- imagine this metaphor - you just got pushed out of the raft (by the assholes) now they are buffeting you along in the rapids. The standard advice for this is float on your back with your feet in front, so if you hit the rocks you can just push off. So channel this when you get cornered in a meeting with assholes. Put you feet out, ride the rapids and wait for the calm at the bottom. This is not pleasant but it will pass.- Don't think you need to be an asshole to get ahead, there are many organisations where this is not tolerated and they are more successful for it (studies prove it)- Steve Jobs is the exception not the rule, and a dangerous exception for giving anyone the licence to think behaving badly will work for them.

  • Jason
    2019-04-03 18:59

    From this book, I learned how to identify a**hole behavior in others and in myself. Sutton's book is a remarkable and frank exploration of how a**hole behavior can destroy organization, and a reminder that such behavior should not be tolerated anywhere. Sutton's blog, [], should be a must-read for everyone who works in any organization.

  • Rod Hilton
    2019-04-07 17:17

    I heard about "The No Asshole Rule" in a technical conference talk about building out an engineering team. The notion of the book struck me as simultaneously obvious and groundbreaking. The basic premise is this: we all know that it sucks to work with assholes, so let's not beat around the bush and actually formulate an official company policy to not hire assholes.It made me think back to so many interviews I've done with various candidates over the years, and the pow-wow meetings after where we tried to decide on hiring or not. I remember one in particular, where we all recognized one candidate had a fantastic skillset, and we felt like we'd regret not hiring someone of his caliber. But there were a lot of coded messages in the discussion as well: "I'm worried he may not be a good cultural fit", "will he be an effective member of a team?" and so on. What we were really asking, though I'm not sure we were willing to say so at the time, was "this guy was kind of an asshole, right?" We wound up hiring him and quickly realizing that he was a dipshit, and he became the first person I've ever seen outright fired at that company. For a time, he was actually part of the interview committee as well, and the book was dead on saying that assholes hire other assholes, because he threw a fit about us wanting to hire someone that he despised. He basically made a "him or me" ultimatum, and we chose the candidate over him. If we'd had the No Asshole Rule in place, we could have more openly discussed his assholishness, and decided not to waste our time.Now, one struggle I had was thinking, well, I'm kind of an asshole. So how does this affect me? Author Robert Sutton's definition of asshole came in very handy for me in this regard. There are two tests for an asshole. Test One, when talking to the asshole, does the target feel oppressed or humiliated? I'm definitely guilty of doing this, so things weren't looking good. But Test Two is, does the asshole aim his or her venom at people who are less powerful? Ah, good, I'm in the clear. My venom is always directed at equally-powerful peers or more powerful individuals. It's true, I can be very blunt with criticism, and I've on more than one occasion called people out for being unprofessional. I've even used the phrase "professionally negligent" a few times. I'm sure this has made people feel bad, but there's something I appreciate about brutal honesty, and I appreciate the same level of honesty directed at myself. But I've never directed this at people who were less senior than me, or in a lower position, generally it was senior engineer to senior engineer. So I guess I'm safe?The book contains references to a number of studies in which assholish behavior was found to be detrimental at work, as well as a number of stories about specific companies who suffered from assholes, and stories of companies who went out of their way to weed out assholes and were rewarded for it. A lot of these stories and studies, I felt, needed stronger citations. There's a collection of 'Additional Reading' at the end, but the entries aren't cross-indexed with the actual mentions in the book, I'm not sure if a lot of the claims are cited at all. Anecdotes about companies I can understand, but public studies and experiments are another matter, I think they should have been easier to source.One particularly interesting point made was, if you find you have assholes at your company that you can't do anything about, don't let them be involved in the hiring process, as they're likely to hire additional assholes. The book overall had lots of good tips, I also highlighted the suggestion to "Fight as if you're right, listen as if you're wrong" as a good tactic for conflict resolution at work (or really, in life). My favorite bit: treat certified assholes as incompetent employees. Dead-on.There are lots of issues I have with the book, however. For all the great advice, it's got plenty of terrible advice as well. There's a very large section on how to deal with assholes at work that you can't get rid of. This follows the sections on how not to hire assholes in the first place, and how to get rid of assholes, so it's reasonable to have a section on how to work in an environment with permanent assholes, or asshole bosses. But I found the advice generally depressing. The advice basically boils down to, "don't let them get to you." One particular story is cited where a woman was being harassed regularly by her co-workers, and in a particularly assholey meeting she just relaxed and didn't care about what people were saying. This example is mentioned repeatedly in the book as a stellar example of how to deal with assholes. At one point the advice is given to "develop indifference and emotional detachment." This just seems like horrible advice to me. Maybe it's because I'm privileged to feel comfortable leaving a hostile job, but the advice seems to boil down to lay down and take it, but don't let it affect you. Man, FUCK THAT. Stand up for yourself, tell asshole dipshits to fuck themselves with a rake, get physical if you have to. Maybe it's pride or machismo or I don't know what, but if I was being treated the way that some of the examples in the book were being treated, there's no scenario that plays out where I just tolerate it and try not to let it bother me. I'd just leave, or make it my life's goal to get that person fired so I didn't have to. I'm absolutely not going to let someone talk to me like that, and nobody else should either. I'm not a human being at home and someone else's doormat in the office; I'm a human being 100% of my day, and I deserve to be treated like one, no exceptions.In fact, a lot of the "just put up with it and don't let it bother you" advice came off like the kind of advice an asshole would give to people with no backbone, to keep the author and other assholes elevated above everyone (the book acknowledges that assholes do tend to get promotions). It's like the advice a fascist would give to the disenfranchised to keep them quiet. These sections of the book made me wonder about the authors intentions, like maybe he was actually a secret asshole trying to keep oppressed people oppressed for his own benefit. Here are a few choice quotes: "just get through each day until something changes at your job or something better comes along" and "passion is an overrated virtue in organizational life, and indifference is an underrated virtue" and "hide from your tormenters". The book also advises to win little battles against assholes to "sustain your spirit" and tells the story of someone who put laxative in treats that she knew an asshole would eat. This is just petty, childish bullshit (and criminal, in the laxative case). Passive aggressive little wimps and weaklings do stuff like this, and quite frankly it makes me feel like they DESERVE to be stepped on and steamrolled by people. Stand up for yourself, call assholes out for being assholes, and if you get fired for it, so be it. How could you live with yourself saying "yes sir" to someone mistreating you all day every day, but then snickering to yourself because you put ex-lax in his coffee? Just fuck off with all that, grow a pair. Shit.There's also a section how to keep your inner asshole in check. This was very valuable to me, as I definitely can be an asshole, and it's probably something I should reign in. That being said, the book acknowledges the advantages to being an asshole, especially with regards to promotions and rewards. And I've seen the same thing in my professional career, the assholes tend to stand out among the crowd, and are promoted to leadership positions for it. In recent years, I've actually tried to be MORE of an asshole because I've seen the advantages it offers and yes, I've seen it work quite well for me. I almost want to separate Assholes into two categories: Truth-tellers and Bullies. The key difference between these two kinds of assholes is that Bullies punch downward while Truth-tellers punch upward (and sideways). Both kinds of assholes seem to get rewarded for it, but I have few qualms about being a Truth-teller. Being a truth-teller gives you so much practice acting like an asshole that it's easy to transition into Bullying, and I need to be careful about that - that's good advice. But don't throw out the baby with the bathwater, there are nontrivial virtues to asshole behavior, and it's easy to live with yourself while being an asshole as long as you aren't picking on people who are lower on the foodchain.Overall, the sections of the book about not hiring assholes, and making The No Asshole Rule an official policy at your company are great. The discussions about how to treat assholes at work, and how to get rid of them are excellent. But the sections on how to tolerate assholes at work made me depressed, and even angry at both the author and the would-be advice-follower. I highlighted a lot of things from the book, and I think I've come away from it a better person (or at least, with a heightened awareness of when I cross over into Certified Asshole territory). I think the book is worth reading for anyone who is in a position of power at their company, such as managers (to avoid being assholes), or people with enough seniority that they do interviews for new team members (to avoid hiring assholes). But for lower ranks who want to simply know how to deal with assholes at work they can't do anything about, I don't recommend this book. For those people, it's full of passive aggressive little nuggets of immaturity, and advice to mentally check out of work and just hope the problem goes away. I cannot stress enough how repulsive I find that advice, and how much more effective I think it would be for those people to simply fight fire with fire and become assholes themselves. Being an asshole sucks, but it's better to be an asshole than a coward.

  • Sandra
    2019-04-16 20:57

    Very meh, but well-intentioned, so 3/5.

  • Ron
    2019-04-19 18:16

    If the title really offends you, the book will only get worse. With that said, we've all worked with people that are jerks. This book gives some insights into how to deal with them. Miscellaneous notes:Dirty dozen• personal insults• invading one's personal territory• uninvited physical contact• threats and intimidation (verbal, non-verbal)• sarcastic jokes, teasing• withering email flames• status slaps• public shaming• rude interruptions• two faced attacks• dirty looks• treating people as if they are invisibleRules to spot them:• identify people who consistently leave others feeling demeaned• see if the victims have less power than their tormentorsdifference in how a person treats the powerless as the powerful - best measure of characterRichard Branson test - see how people treat the powerlessTotal cost of assholes - factors to consider• Damage to victims and witnesses• Distraction from tasks• More effort devoted to avoiding nasty encounters, coping with them, and avoiding blame• Less devoted o the task itself• reduced psychological safety• learning from failures, learning from others failures, • forthright discussion, honesty may not be best policy• loss of motivation and energy at work• stress induced• possible impaired mental ability• prolonged bullying turns victims into assholes• absenteeism• turnover in response to abusive supervision and peers• more time spent at workWoes of assholes• victims and witness hesitate to help• retaliation from victims and witnesses• humiliation when out-ed• job loss• long term career damageconsequences for management• time spent appeasing, counseling assholes• time spent cooling out victimized employees, customers, suppliers• time spent reorganization so that assholes do less damage• time spent interviewing, training people that have left• legal and hr management costs• settlement fees• impaired ability to attract best and brightesttop 10 steps for enforcing the no asshole rule• say the rule, right it down, act on it• assholes will hire other assholes, keep them out of the hiring process• get rid of assholes fast• treat certified assholes as incompetent employees• power breeds nastiness• embrace the power-performance paradox, have a pecking order but reduce unnecessary status differences• manage moments not just practices, policies, systems• model and teach constructive confrontation (fight as if you are right, listen as if you are wrong)• adopt the one asshole rule, people follow norms better when there are rare examples of bad behavior• bottom line: link big policies to small decenciesquelling your inner jerk - use ideas and language that make you focus on cooperationemails/social media - increase asshole behavior - don't get to see people's faces and their interactionsvirtues of nastinessgaining personal power and statureintimidating and vanquishing rivalsmotivating fear-driven performance and perfectionismbrining unfair, clueless, and lazy peopl t otheir sensesDo You Want to Be an Effective Asshole?1. Expressing anger, even nastiness, can be an effective method for grabbing and keeping power. 2. Nastiness and intimidation are especially effective for vanquishing competitors.3. If you demean your people to motivate them, alternate it with (at least occasional) encouragement and praise.4. Create a “toxic tandem.” If you are nasty, team up with someone who can calm people down, clean-up your mess, and who will extract favors and extra work from people because they are so grateful to the “good cop.” 5. Being all asshole, all the time, won’t work. Why Assholes Fool Themselves: Are You Suffering From Delusions of Effectiveness?1. You and your organization are effective DESPITE rather than BECAUSE you are ademeaning jerk. 2. You mistake your successful power grab for organizational success. 3. The news is bad, but people only tell you good news. 4. You are being charged “asshole taxes,” but don’t know it. 5. Your enemies are silent (for now), but the list keeps growing.

  • Steven Shaw
    2019-04-18 22:15

    There are a lot of assholes out there. I've run into a few more than my fair share — it seems to be par for the course when you're a contract programmer. Assholes make people feel oppressed, humiliated, de-energised and belittled. They tend to target their behaviour on those that are less powerful — so assholes in management have a larger area of destruction.These assholes can poison your whole organisation, leading to a culture of fear, lower productivity, high staff turnover, general unhappiness and gnashing of teeth.The assholes tend to think that their behaviour is justified because it helps to "get the job done". However, Sutton points out this is a kind of confirmation bias and usually "stuff gets done" despite the behaviour of the asshole - not because of it.The best method of dealing with assholes is avoidance. Don't take on a job, contract or customer if you're going to have to live with assholes. If you find yourself in a den of assholes besides your best efforts then leave as soon as you can manage it. Sutton has some advice for putting up with assholes (for those who want or need to). These include "indifference" but that's not for me — I'm grateful that I'm financially independent enough not to have to go there. The other ideas are reframing and small wins which seem better coping mechanisms to me. You may find you need to take a break after suffering at the wrong end of an asshole.Don't confuse the occasional asshole with the institutional one (Sutton calls this the temporary asshole and the certified asshole). Everyone blows up occasionally and let's their "inner asshole" out — particularly when under the thumb of an institutional asshole! Don't be too quick to label the strange or unusual as assholes. Sutton has a book on the topic: Wierd Ideas that Work. A good tip for preventing the inner-asshole from escaping is: argue like you're right, listen like you're wrong.I don't believe that assholes are virtuous despite Sutton's reluctant chapter on it. One thing that makes sense is that being an asshole may be a short-cut to power and status — that is if the weaklings around them let them get away with it :). Who doesn't know one or two loud mouth, arrogant, self-professed experts that go on a power-grab and succeed because few resisted. Don't let it happen in your organisation — unless you're leaving to join or be the competition ;). If you have to put up with the odd asshole from time to time, whatever you do, do not promote them. Keep them in a box, try to reform them or get rid of them.Remember: a few bad apples can spoil the whole bunch.

  • Sean O
    2019-04-07 23:05

    Lets say that you're being exposed to a bullying asshole. Everywhere you turn, you see this clown, and the things he says makes you sad and depressed and ineffective.Sound familiar? This book is about that guy. How to identify him (easy), how to limit him (hard), how to see it in yourself (harder), and how to deal with it when you can't do anything about it (hardest.)Basically being an asshole is five times harder on everyone else. Do yourself a favor and get rid of the asshole. Recommended to anyone who has an asshole at work. And all Americans.

  • Angela Risner
    2019-04-18 16:16

    I came across this book about 2 years ago when I was tasked with buying some behavioral training books for a group event. I saw the title and knew exactly the person who deserved it the most. But I also knew that the person would only be offended and not learn anything.I was reminded of the title recently by another event and decided to finally read it. And I’m so glad that I did! The book is a very easy read, filled with stories about, well, assholes. I don’t think that I need to define what an asshole is, as we’ve all known at least one.So what does the No Asshole Rule mean? It means that your business makes it a point to avoid hiring assholes. It means that even though you might be a high performer, making the sales, if you treat your coworkers poorly, you’re out. It means that if your customer is abusive to your employees, they are out.The book references study after study that shows how assholes bring down your business. You can even do a cost analysis of how a particular asshole is costing you money: from the stress s/he puts on other employees who then either end up calling off sick or quitting. from the customers who leave because of his/her behavior. turning other employees into assholes (it only takes one to ruin an entire bunch). time the manager will spend calming the other employees. reduced output as no one can focus on work.The No Asshole Rule does not say that there will never be constructive conflict at work – your business needs that as well. It does suggest that you offer your employees training on how to fight with the facts and leave the emotion at home. All in all, it’s a fabulous book about human behavior that can be applied in all of your relationships. I highly recommend it.

  • Mardra
    2019-04-14 17:07

    Leading with the title, Sutton’s style is forthright, to the point – honest. Don’t let this fool you into thinking the book is filled with crassness or undocumented rants. In fact, the rules listed are concrete, well researched and documented. Sutton references case studies from companies of all sizes including Disney and Intel. He includes facts from research studies on bullying and its affects on people in both childhood and workplace environments. In addition he keeps the tone personal with antidotes from his own experiences.The section “Teach People How to Fight” early in the book is worth the cover price alone. Sutton recognizes that “the only thing worse than too much confrontation is no confrontation at all.” Organizations poised for growth and improvement must have disagreements to get to the best possible outcome. While recognizing personal feelings affect each moment, learning healthy confrontation is imperative to a company’s capacity for improvement. Sutton’s tips should be shared in every boardroom, production meeting hall, and R&D forum. Sutton goes on to teach recognition of your own asshole tendencies, including instruction on the high tech MIT gadget the Jerk-O-Meter. He continues with tips on how to “survive nasty people and work places.” A topic many readers will benefit from reading and implementing.

  • Rob
    2019-03-29 15:05

    Not very impressed with this one. It came highly recommended, but I found it shallow, skating by on the shock value its author believes his choice of vocabulary has. I kept waiting for the part where Sutton dished out all the good advice he was promising, and could hardly believe it when I realized the book was ending, it having offered so little.Here's the advice: You're probably a jerk sometimes even though you think you aren't, and you should stop. When the problem is someone else, try to tune it out until you can find a new job.There. That was a lot faster than reading this. The most useful advice I got out of it was to monitor my own behavior more closely. I don't recommend this one.

  • Putu
    2019-03-25 16:13

    Buku ini gwe beli sebagai referensi terhadap keadaan gw pada waktu itu. Ternyata ada beberapa perusahaan yg menolak adanya asshole di dalam perusahaan mereka. Emang sih -dalam buku disebutkan- kalau orang asshole itu justru adalah orang-orang yang top performance...they have great egos and know how to please the bosses. Huhu, dan gwe baru sadar ternyata buku ini telah berpindah tangan jadi milik bos EkA. Ya ngga apa2 lah...buat kenang2n deh Pak E!!

  • Cheshire Public Library
    2019-03-31 19:11

    The summary of this book says it is, “a business handbook on preventing and curing a negative work environment that explains how to restore civility to the workplace by weeding out problem employees in order to increase profit and productivity.”But, oh, it is so much more.How bad can working with, living with, and having toxic jerks in your life be? Consider some of these stats from the book: Studies show that having just one chronic jerk in a workplace can diminish performance of the entire staff by a whopping 30%-40% . Negative interactions affect mood fives times stronger than positive interactions. 25% of bullying targets and 20% of witnesses to bullying leave their jobs. Working with toxic people can increase you risk of heart attack 20%-40%.While this book was written with workplaces in mind, The No Asshole Rule can be applied to all areas of life. The author originally published his idea in the Harvard Business Review with the title: “More Trouble than They’re Worth”. And that basically sums up the No Asshole Rule. Some people, whether in your personal life or your business life, are simply more trouble than they’re worth.The No Asshole Rule can help you:1. Distinguish between people who are having a bad day (temporary assholes) and those who are persistently nasty and destructive.2. Spot the most common actions that toxic people use against others.3. Discover how to assess the actual cost of having a toxic person in your workplace or life. (Yes, you can add up the money spent dealing with destructive, mean people. Think of such things as hourly salaries of managers and the human resources department. Think of sick time taken by the people who are targeted by the jerks. Think of the costs of counseling and lawyers. Think of stress-related illnesses and medications. Think of the loss of quality of life.)4. Discover how to set up a No Asshole Rule and enforce it.5. Learn how not to be an asshole. (Reigning in your inner jerk, avoiding asshole-poisoning, and a self-test to see if you often behave like a jackass.)6. Tips for surviving an asshole-infested workplace.7. The virtues of assholes (Yes!) with the warning that being a jerk all the time won’t work.8. How a few demeaning creeps can overwhelm a horde of nice people.The bottom line is that toxic personalities, whether at work or home, demean and de-energize those around them. They cost everyone in many ways: money, time, health, confidence, etc, etc. The advice of this book is clear: Expel rotten apples as fast as possible. There is a reason, Sutton asserts, that there is a delete button on the cover of the book.I give this book Five Stars. It’s not just a valuable tool for the workplace, it is important for those who want to free themselves from anyone toxic in their lives.Reviewed by Mary

  • Alexey
    2019-04-10 21:14

    Книга довольно любопытная. Во-первых, автор не боится назвать факт правильным словом, не впадая в политкорректность (при этом русское слово "мудак" даже лучше отражает суть, чем оригинальное asshole). Во-вторых, на нескольких примерах он показывает, почему мудаки в компании — это зло. Вообще, почти вся суть книги отражена в её названии. Просто не работайте с мудаками. И по первым главам казалось, что больше там ничего и не будет, кроме примером, почему с ними плохо работать. Да, "воды" многовато, но всё же есть и ценные мысли.Автор разбирает по пунктам, что такое "сертифицированный мудак" в его понимании. Это помогает примерить критерии на кого угодно, чтобы понять, насколько тот или иной человек действительно плох для бизнеса и личного самочувствия.Затем он развенчивает на других примерах ещё один миф: что этакий "мудак" — это профессиональный и высоко-продуктивный сотрудник. Тут я склонен с автором согласиться. Если такого якобы продуктивного сотрудника убрать, другие начинают вместе давать больше пользы.Самой полезной оказалась глава, где автор предлагает взглянуть на самого себя. Даже ещё не вчитываясь в детали, я осознал, что порой и сам веду себя не очень-то корректно на работе. Радует, что это проявляется редко, и лишь в последнее время. Значит, не всё ещё потеряно, можно контролировать. Как — тут у автора довольно банальные советы, лежащие на поверхности.А вот, казалось бы, самая важная часть — противодействие мудакам, когда у вас нет выбора — автором раскрыта слабо. Она есть, но показалась мне недоработанной. Есть интересные советы, но... если вы глубоко погрязли, спасёт лишь уход в другой коллектив. Об этом автор тоже говорит, к слову.В целом же мне не хватило более взвешенного анализа. Примеров много, но ожидал какой-то выстроенной аналитики и концепции. Однако в итоге — примеры и повторение одного и то же тезиса: не работай с мудаками и не будь мудаком сам.

  • Mete Rodoper
    2019-03-30 21:19

    Author Dr. Robert Sutton defines the asshole character and tells the readers what this character can do to the teams and organizations. As per the author, these persons may damage the motivation of the individuals in a team and this may in return lead to higher turnovers and also damage the balance sheets. To avoid various kinds of damage he suggests a few ways to apply the no asshole rule at various levels of an organization. In the worst case, if the individual or the organization or the team cannot apply this rule immediately, he suggests a few ways to minimize the damage caused these characters.This is a very easy book to read for all levels of an organization. Many people can quickly identify persons in this category and their impact. Also, the book helps readers to recognize certified bullies in daily life. The individuals who can distinguish these characters can take precautions to avoid the harm they cause, sometimes by confronting them or sometimes by ignoring. Furthermore, I, also, liked this book's simple and not scientifically overwhelming real life examples. They are very to the point and anybody can relate to.Having said that it is an easy book to read, I would prefer that the subtitles and chapters have been clarified better. Having long subtitles and unclear divisions were causing unclear cuts between these different portions of the book for me.

  • Sarah Souther
    2019-04-06 23:07

    Ten years later, this book is even more relevant. It's sadly obvious that we can't always rely on organizations to ensure their employees are treating each other with respect. In too many cases, we can't even rely on them to notice or stop a range of behaviors that range from subtlety demeaning to outright assault.Its too much to expect a business to be moral, but one would think they would do it for the bottom line. Sutton points out that money is lost due to poor communication (avoiding creeps, not pointing out flaws in a plan to someone who will publicly humiliate you), sick days, reduced initiative, and loss of other talented staff. At worst, these people can cost millions in lawsuits and settlements. He demonstrates that no one in an organization brings in enough money to offset this. Assholes only thrive where there is complicity.

  • Bobparr
    2019-03-30 19:02

    Titolo figlio di una innegabile operazione di marketing, il testo è interessante in quanto scritto da un docente universitario americano [che usa slang come un adolescente] che ha istituzionalizzato in un libro e in ricerca quello che solitamente si fa quando si ha a che fare con persone sgradevoli. Alcuni spunti interessanti, risente tuttavia della solita aria che hanno tutti i libri di know-how statunitensi (una base di già sentito, una spruzzata di creatività, buon senso a kili, decorato con guarnizioni di check list e nuvole di banalità).

  • Laurie
    2019-04-21 15:14

    Required reading -- the kind of "self-help" book I can easily get behind.

  • Emily
    2019-04-05 21:16

    Recommended by Alexis

  • Lena Nechet
    2019-03-28 22:19

    Surprisingly good.

  • Arsia Takeh
    2019-04-12 20:17

    Helps a lot to identify the A.H.s and learn the ways to avoid them. Very practical!

  • Arseniy Gushin
    2019-04-16 23:20

    Scanned the book through, found no value for me. Maybe I just haven't seen real assholes in my career, I guess I'm lucky ;)

  • Laura
    2019-04-09 23:07

    So I’ve somehow found myself in management, and I’m trying to figure out how to do it. This book came well recommended. Heavy on the “don’t hire assholes.” A little light on survival strategies when they are there already. Among this book’s bits:1. Proposes two tests for determining if someone is an asshole: Test One: After talking to the alleged asshole, does the ‘target’ feel oppressed, humiliated, de-energized, or belittled by the person? In particular, does the target feel worse about him or herself?Test Two: Does the alleged asshole aim his or her venon at people who are less powerful rather than at those who are more powerful? 8. 2. “Assholes have devastating cumulative effects partly because nasty interactions have a far bigger impact on our moods than positive interactions – five times the punch, according to recent research.” 30. 3. big study in the UK determined that for companies of a 1000 people, the average annual cost of bullying was just shy of $2 million in replacement costs alone. 45-46. 4. If you can’t get rid of your assholes, DO NOT LET THEM ON YOUR HIRING COMMITTEES because “assholes will breed like rabbits.” 66. 5. Emotional contagion spreads asshole behavior. “[A]cting like an asshole is a communicable disease. Once you unleash distain, anger, and contempt or someone unleashes it on you, it spreads like wildfire.” 96. 6. “It’s easier to resist at the beginning than at the end.” Don’t hire them; don’t take jobs with them. 7. People react differently to confrontation all the way down to cortisol levels. 117. 8. There is a helpful self test to figure out if you are an asshole. 124-26. 9. There’s no moral imperative to be passionate about a job where they don’t treat you with dignity and respect. 136. 10. If you have to work with an asshole, go for small wins. 147.

  • Jeff Scott
    2019-04-23 15:19

    An essential book that details the cost of workplace assholes. I read once that when there is a problem with an employee (such as those indicated in this book) it's important to address how the problem affects the company and the bottom line as opposed to one's personal feelings. This book details how to deal with assholes, how to handle them, and what to do if you can't get out of a bad work situation. What I like most about the book is looking inward. The first step should be looking at yourself, are you an asshole? How do you treat other people, how do they feel after interactions, are they avoiding you? This book doesn't have hard research or documentation other than the damage done to companies with toxic employees. There are other books that have come out in the same vein as Sutton's that I would recommend that addresses that research thoroughly. The Cost of Bad Behavior and The Civility Solution are both two books that deal with the more technical side of this problem and I think are useful in developing a strategy against toxic employees and workplaces. I have read Sutton's blog for many years so much of the stuff in the book is a repetition of that information. The book is quick read with solid points on how to identify if you are an asshole, how to identify assholes (especially the difference between people having a bad day or moment and those that consistently treat people poorly), and what to do if you cannot leave a job situation that is toxic. I would highly recommend this book even if you don't feel that you are working with toxic employees are people, but especially if you feel that you are. This book will help you get through it. Best Passages from the book: -Negative interactions has a fivefold stronger effect on mood than positive interactions--so nasty people pack a lot more wallop than their more civilized counterparts. p. 31...units with the best leadership and coworker relationships reported the most errors: units with the best leaders reported making as many as ten times more errors than the units with the worst leaders...nurses felt "psychologically safe" to admit their mistakes. p. 40"...powerful people construe others as a means to one's own ends while simultaneously giving themselves excessive credit for good things that happen to themselves and their organizations. p. 74Fight as if you are right, listen as if you are wrong. p. 81 (lessons for constructive conflict)the no asshole rule is meaningless unless you treat the person right in front of you, right now, in the right way. p. 89the first step is to view acting like an asshole as a communicable disease. Once you unleash disdain, anger, and contempt or someone unleashes it on you, it spreads like wildfire. p. 96Ruth's "Satan's Cesspool Strategy":Reframe the nastiness that she faced in ways that helped her become emotionally detached from the assholes--even downright indifferent to what was happening. Don't struggle against larger forces that she couldn't control. She focused instead on small ways to gain tidbits of control, including helping fellow victims cope with the jerks by teaching the victims her strategy, giving them emotional support, and concentrating on helping the good people in the company. She picked small battles she could win and took small steps to undermind the worst of her tormenters. p. 131Reframing: when people view difficulties as temporary and not their fault, and as something that will not prevade and ruin the rest of their lives, this frame protects their mental and physical health and enhances their resilience. ("learned optimism") p. 132...happiness reflects the difference between what you expect versus what you actually get in life--so if you keep expecting good things to happen, but they never do or take a turn for the worse, you will suffer constant unhappiness. The trick is not to expect jerks will change their behavior. Keep your expectations for their behavior low, but continue to believe that you will be fine after the ordeal is over. That way, you won't be surprised by your colleagues' relentless nastiness. p. 134detached indifference, simply not giving a damn, might be the best you can do to survive a workplace that subjects you to relentless humiliation. p. 138Rigorous research confirms that the feeling of control--perceiving that you have the power to shape even small aspects of your fate--can have a huge impact on human well-being. p. 139...find places and times where you can hide from your tormentors. Meet with them as rarely as possible. Schedule meetings that will be short...p. 142

  • Kenneth A. Mugi
    2019-03-29 14:59

    SUMMARYThe No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't (The No Asshole Rule) is an intriguing book that makes a comprehensive case against hiring (and retaining) jerks in the workplace even if they are high earners. It's written in the style of a professional business book with anecdotes and hypothetical situations filling in the gaps where data is lacking. It's well written and, for the most part, quite interesting.WRITINGRobert Sutton is a business author and academic who writes about the challenges faced in the workplace. His style is easy to read, well structured and thoughtful. I couldn't say that Robert Sutton has a 'unique voice' like Stanley Bing or Rachel Maddow, but it's functional and tells the story Mr Sutton wants to present to the reader.If the content wasn't as interesting, I think I would have taken a few days to finish this small book because when the fascinating data runs out, there isn't anything to hold you. It feels like Robert Sutton primarily writes articles for magazines and all he's done is stretch one of those articles into a small novella. His style would definitely work for a magazine, but he's no Johnathan Chait.Still, it does what it sets out to do: persuade you assholes are not good for your workplace, and that's all that really matters.CONTENTI was actually surprised by The No Asshole Rule's reliant on data and research to make it's case. When I bought it, I thought it was going to be an anecdote filled book that showed how assholes wreck the workplace. I was mildly shocked to see the research done on assholes (or workplace bullies) and how they affect the company and staff surrounding them.Unfortunately, the data intensive arguments get a little slim by the middle and I found myself nodding off when the same anecdotes were used over and over again. There's also a bit of contorting that goes on in the last third where Robert Sutton tries to identify what an asshole is. More importantly, he tries to argue that they can be a necessary evil. Mr Sutton kind of stretches an experiment about littering into an HR situation that has a stack more moving parts than the experiment ever did.A couple of times I felt (perhaps incorrectly) that Robert Sutton was reading far too much into the data to seem even handed in his approach. To make himself appear realistic to the readers about the challenges faced by people in the workplace. I think it would have been better if he said that assholes, despite their positive properties, were a risk and hazard to a company. Also, to say that workplaces with assholes suck. End of story.Overall though, I enjoyed it and the final (added) chapter was really interesting. It was compelling to see how 'accidental' assholes occur and how even how the worst assholes can see themselves as being great people. (Even though they probably aren't due to their reliance on confirmation bias).PRICEI've actually lent the book so I can't give an exact price, but the book cost me around $25. I still believe that's a difficult price to justify in a recession and The No Asshole Rule is a tiny paperback so I don't quite understand the cost. But the market's awesome for setting prices, man. So, y'know, whatever.SUMMARYDespite some of its technical failings and its bumpy middle, I enjoyed The No Asshole Rule. It gave me some sound tips for surviving my current workplace and excellent research to look at when I am in a position of HR responsibility. I enjoyed Robert Sutton's candor and the nuance (at times) of his arguments. If it was half the price, I'd probably recommend it but at $25 it's a steep entry for something you should be able to get at the library and read in a day.If you live in the US (or use US Amazon for your books) you can purchase The No Asshole Rule over here.

  • LG (A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions)
    2019-04-08 19:17

    In this book, Sutton 1) defines workplace assholes, 2) describes the damage they can do to their workplaces and to themselves, 3) outlines how workplaces can try to implement a “no asshole” rule, 4) describes how you can keep from being an asshole, 5) provides tips for dealing with workplace assholes if your workplace isn’t making a concentrated effort to keep them out or deal with their behavior in some way, 6) and describes some of the benefits of occasionally being an asshole and/or having one around. And probably a few other things I forgot to list. Sutton’s workplace assholes are basically what other books call workplace bullies, although I agree with Sutton that “asshole” is probably a better word to use. I think the average adult would probably connect with it more. I started reading this in the hope of learning more and better strategies for dealing with workplace assholes. Unfortunately, although this was an engaging read that I largely agreed with, it didn’t really give me what I’d hoped for.It started off promisingly. I loved that, in his introduction, Sutton never once said that people dealing with workplace assholes should probably just quit. Quitting isn’t an option for a lot of people. Maybe you’re tied to a particular geographic area because of your family, spouse, kids, etc. and there are few or no similar jobs in the area. Maybe the job market is terrible. Maybe your finances are tight and you can’t afford the uncertainty of a job search or possibly having to move somewhere else. Maybe you prefer the “devil you know.” What it comes down to is that there are lots of reasons why people might not want or be able to leave a bad workplace situation. I was hopeful that Sutton would have some good suggestions. I agreed with a lot of the stuff that came after that. Yes, people with good leaders are more likely to admit they've made mistakes - there’d be less fear that they’d be punished for them, so they could admit them and then try to rectify them instead of hiding them. Yes, workplace assholes tend to make more enemies than they know. Yes, their employees waste a lot of time complaining about them and trying to work around them. Yes, a workplace where assholes aren’t tolerated is more likely to run smoothly and have better morale.There were a few examples that made me wince. There was one organization that went to the effort of determining the TCA (Total Cost of Assholes) for one particularly nasty high-performing employee. Although he was considered a high-performer, he’d also cost the company when his company-provided anger management courses and high assistant turnover were taken into account. The total amount he’d cost the company was determined to be around $160,000, although in reality it was probably higher than that if the effect he had on everyone who had to work with him was taken into account. Management sat him down and told him that $96,000 of this total would be taken out of his year-end bonus. I was incredulous. From the sounds of things, a demotion, an actual cut in pay rather than just his bonus, or possibly even firing him would have been more appropriate. To be fair, Sutton also thought that the company went too easy on the guy. I wished that he’d been able to do some kind of follow up. It would have been nice to know if the guy’s bad behavior had continued and he’d eventually been fired, or if this apparent slap on the wrist had somehow managed to serve as a wake-up call for him. There are other things that made me raise an eyebrow, though. At one point, Sutton talked about how Southwest Airlines strived to create an asshole-free workplace by hiring people who fit their culture. Specifically, employees needed to be warm and friendly to both passengers and fellow employees. Unfortunately, not everyone wants to be friends with their coworkers. In Sutton’s anecdote, one particular employee who felt this way was told that he might be happier elsewhere, and he eventually did get a job with another airline. This entire anecdote bothered me because it wasn’t really about a workplace asshole - it was just a guy for whom his job was just a job. Also, as a book reviewer I took issue with another one of Sutton’s examples. Near the end of the book, Sutton talked about how workplace assholes will sometimes be nasty towards others in front of senior management because it can make them seem smarter than their targets and those around them who are quieter and kinder. In order to explain this, Sutton brought up an article in which perceptions of “nice” and “nasty” book reviews were compared. “Amabile found that negative and unkind people were seen as less likable but more intelligent, competent, and expert than those who expressed the same messages in kinder and gentler ways.” (161) I haven’t read the article in question, but I very much disliked the way Sutton made use of it. There’s a vast amount of difference between book reviews and people talking to colleagues in front of senior management.The two chapters that seemed like they’d be the most helpful were Chapter 3, which discussed implementing a “no asshole” rule in your workplace, and Chapter 5, which included tips for individuals faced with workplace assholes. Chapter 3 was actually pretty decent...except that it required the entire workplace, but especially upper-level management, to be committed to an asshole-free workplace. Saying that your workplace is committed to open communication and friendliness is nice, but it means nothing if, say, employees are permitted to make biting remarks about each other in public with apparent impunity. And besides, what do you do if your workplace assholes are your upper-level management? I was excited to see what sorts of suggestions Sutton would include in Chapter 5, but I was ultimately let down. He didn’t quite come out and say it (at least not until the last couple pages of the book), but it was clear that most of the suggestions were aimed at surviving your workplace until you could finally leave. The suggested strategies included things like: remember that the abuse isn’t your fault, lower your expectations (hope for the best but expect the worst), develop indifference and emotional detachment, try to limit your exposure to workplace assholes, build support networks in your workplace, and look for small ways to seize bits of control over your workplace life. There were a few helpful tips here and there, but most of them were things that people dealing with workplace assholes are probably already doing. Several of them were things that even Sutton admitted could potentially make the situation worse. This wasn’t a bad book - it just didn’t have much of what I was looking for. If you’re currently dealing with a workplace asshole (or several of them) who’s above you on your organizational chart, I’d say it’s pretty safe to just skip to Chapter 5 and see if you can get anything helpful out of it. If you’re in a truly terrible situation and are in a position where getting a job somewhere else is a possibility for you, reading the whole book might give you the push you need. If you're upper-level management at an organization or if you supervise a lot of people, Chapter 3 could be very useful to you. In the end, though, don't expect this book to be some kind of magic bullet, and be prepared for some of it to be a bit contradictory.Rating Note:I struggled with rating this. My disappointment with Chapter 5 and my frustration with the book's sometimes conflicting advice made me want to give this 2.5 stars, but overall I decided it was more of a 3-star book. It did at least have a few helpful nuggets of info.(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)