Games At Work: How to Recognize and Reduce Office Politics
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(10 customer reviews)
"A terrific read not only for senior leaders and executives but also for employees seeking growth in complex organizations. Goldstein and Read dissect the interpersonal dynamics that affect a company's performance, provide a framework to understand the games that are commonly played in businesses around the world, and offer practical tools to correct these behaviors and improve the organization's effectiveness."
—Jacopo Bracco, executive vice president, DIRECTV Latin America
"Whether you are an employee, manager, or CEO, this book will help you uncover the games that are going on around you and in your organization and will arm you with strategies to combat the negative effects of these games."
—Corey J. Seitz, vice president, global talent management, Johnson & Johnson
"This book is a good warning sign for organizational life. A road map of potholes and wrong turns. Written in a clear and down-to-earth way, its strength is its concreteness."
—Peter Block, author, Community: The Structure of Belonging
"Play or don't play, your choice. But if you need to manage and aspire to lead, you must read Goldstein and Read's helpful treatment of the games going on all around you all the time. Prepare to be entertained and disconcerted in equal measure."
—Seán Meehan, Martin Hilti Professor of Marketing and Change Management, IMD
"Goldstein and Read provide an accessible and penetrating discussion of the twenty-two most common games at work and their individual and organizational causes, business costs, and remedies. Every working person who has ever been a victim or perpetrator of political games will profit from reading Games at Work."
—Harvey A. Hornstein, emeritus professor of psychology; former director of Columbia University Organizational Development Programs; and organizational consultant
- Amazon Sales Rank: #343088 in Books
- Published on: 2009-04-20
- Original language: English
- Number of items: 1
- Dimensions: 1.10" h x 5.90" w x 8.50" l, .80 pounds
- Binding: Hardcover
- 256 pages
"There's nothing funny about mind games in the workplace, say the authors of this sober-minded guide to understanding underhanded office maneuvers. Simply waking up to games people play and rejecting them is a big part of the battle for executives, say the authors."
—Andrea Sachs, TIME magazine, April 30, 2009
From the Inside Flap
As long as people have worked together, they have engaged in political games. Motivated by short-term gains—promotions, funding for a project, budget increases, status with the boss—people misuse their time and energy. Today, when many organizations are fighting for their lives and scarce resources there is increased stress and anxiety, and employees are engaging in games more intensely than ever before.
Organizational experts Mauricio Goldstein and Philip Read argue that office games—those manipulative behaviors that distract employees from achieving their mission—are both conscious and unconscious. They can and should be effectively minimized. In Games at Work, the authors offer tools to diagnose the most common games that people play and outline a three-step process to effectively deal with them. Some of the games they explore include:
- Gotcha: identifying and communicating others' mistakes in an effort to win points from higher-ups
Gossip: engaging in the classic rumor mill to gain political advantage
Sandbagging: purposely low-balling sales forecasts as a negotiating ploy
Gray Zone: deliberately fostering ambiguity or lack of clarity about who should do what to avoid accountability
Filled with real-world, entertaining examples of games in action, Games at Work is an invaluable resource for managers and all professionals who want to substitute straight talk for games in their organizations and boost productivity, commitment, innovation, and—ultimately—the bottom line.
About the Author
Mauricio Goldstein is the founder of Pulsus Consulting Group. His passion is to catalyze organizational transformations by creating a deeper connection of people and organizations to their essence. Mauricio has applied his innovative approach to a number of Fortune 500 companies, such as AstraZeneca, Cargill, J&J, Nestlé, PepsiCo, Sodexo, and Schering-Plough, in Latin America, North America, Europe, and Africa.
Philip Read has worked in a number of senior roles in human resources for Fortune 100 companies over the last twenty-two years. He has lived and worked in the United Kingdom, the United States, China, Switzerland, Germany, and Spain. Philip has won a number of awards for his work, including the PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Linkage, Inc. "Most Innovative HR Department" award as part of the leadership team of HR for Dow Chemical.
Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful.
Insightfull and entertaining
By A. Lewkowitz
Games at Work help us to increase our awareness on games (conscious and unconscious) played within organizations. Goldstein and Read show their ability to give us insights on identifying and neutralizing these games that are so counterproductive for organizations. At the same time, give us a lot of fun reading it! Great book!
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful.
Rules for Games
There are many ways in which well-intended, hard-working people get tripped up in the workplace, and "Games" uncovers many of them. Goldstein and Read's account of the subtle, and sometimes not so subtle, tricks and traps provides an eye-opening look into modern organizations.
The difficult choice for everyone, whether "to play" is presented clearly and with compelling support. Although the decision remains fundamentally challenging, the authors present a useful way to think about it.
This is a fascinating read for anyone who works in or with a large organization today.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
By Artur P. Tacla
Games at work is a very good surprise.
At this moment, when we've looked for new models and ways to understand and copy with organzaitional life, I read this book with pleasure and excitment
It's a very good "map" to identify our unconsciouness and invisible dynamics that make us feel weak. People and organizations. The authors have created a comprehensive tour of the forces that suround our life in organizations
As we live in a time of big transformations, is necessary to think about and to find creative forms to build new dynamics that helps us to bring back our basic humanity.
This is another essencal building block to understand human behavior
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