This meticulously researched book, which grew from a much buzzed-about article in the Harvard Business Review, puts into plain language an undeniable fact: the modern workplace is beset with assholes. Sutton Weird Ideas that Work , a professor of management science at Stanford University, argues that assholes—those who deliberately make co-workers feel bad about themselves and who focus their aggression on the less powerful—poison the work environment, decrease productivity, induce qualified employees to quit and therefore are detrimental to businesses, regardless of their individual effectiveness. He also makes the solution plain: they have to go. Direct and punchy, Sutton uses accessible language and a bevy of examples to make his case, providing tests to determine if you are an asshole and if so, advice for how to self-correct , a how-to guide to surviving environments where assholes freely roam and a carefully calibrated measure, the "Total Cost of Assholes," by which corporations can assess the damage.
Why I Wrote The No Asshole Rule
Guy Kawasaki - Book Review: The No Asshole Rule by Robert Sutton
The No Asshole Rule analyzes the impact of assholes on the workplace. Robert Sutton that we are all assholes sometimes , and in certain periods of our life. However the certified asshole is the one who constantly bullies or puts others down, and leave their victims angry, humiliated or afraid. Since their behavior is continuous, their effect is also cumulative, and even low reactive people can start feeling their bite after a while. However, the main rule of thumb is this: how do you feel after the encounter? Do you feel oppressed, humiliated or overall worst off? Often assholes can keep living in the organization or even advance because they treat customers and superiors well and reserve their worst behavior for people lower down in the organization.
The No Asshole Rule: Part 1
My father always told me to avoid assholes at all costs, no matter how rich or powerful they might be, because I would catch their nastiness and impose it on others. I worked in an academic department at Stanford where we openly talked about the no asshole rule and used it in hiring decisions. I had published other articles in HBR , longer and more well-researched ones, but nothing had provoked such a strong response. The first example was the most common, and it reflected the pain that people feel when they are treated terribly, whether they are models, engineers, or CEOs who feel abused by their boards. And when I have done such damage to people indeed, all of us are capable of being assholes some of the time , that is what I call myself.
This New York Times and BusinessWeek bestseller describes the damage done by demeaning bosses and co-workers to the mental and physical health of their colleagues, the ways they undermining learning and organizational effectiveness, and the often hidden financial costs of keeping the creeps on the payroll. And the book shows how to build organizations that screen-out, reform, and banish these bullies and demeaning bitches and bastards. You can read about many of the often bizarre lessons that I've learned since The No Asshole Rule appeared on my personal blog, www.