Saturday, March 03, 2007

A**holes: certified and amateur

Warner Business Books will shortly be releasing a new book that will is destined to be a business classic, if only for its title: The No Asshole Rule - Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't, by Stanford Professor Robert I. Sutton.

Beyond the catchy title (that I'm sure just about everybody who's ever had a job can relate to), Sutton actually does have something to say about the toxic effect of a**holes on the workplace:
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. ... These findings help explain why demeaning acts are so devastating. It takes numerous encounters with positive people to offset the energy and happiness sapped by a single episode with one asshole.
There are also, according to Sutton, degrees of a**hole activity. We all may be guilty of occasional bad moods leading to "temporary a**hole" status. And then, there are those who qualify as "certified a**holes."

Many people have suggested that I should get certified, but I don't want to give up my amateur status.

Read more about the book, and Don Griesmann's full review, at

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