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The Coming Jobs War Hardcover – October 4, 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 220 pages
  • Publisher: Gallup Press (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595620559
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595620552
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (114 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #93,027 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"...fascinating - and frightening - new book..." --Charles M. Blow, The New York Times, September 17, 2011

From the Inside Flap


In a provocative book for business and government leaders, Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton describes how this undeniable fact will affect all leadership decisions as countries wage war to produce the best jobs.

Leaders of countries and cities, Clifton says, should focus on creating good jobs because as jobs go, so does the fate of nations. Jobs bring prosperity, peace, and human development — but long-term unemployment ruins lives, cities, and countries.

Creating good jobs is tough, and many leaders are doing many things wrong. They’re undercutting entrepreneurs instead of cultivating them. They’re running companies with depressed workforces. They’re letting the next generation of job creators rot in bad schools.

A global jobs war is coming, and there’s no time to waste. Cities are crumbling for lack of good jobs. Nations are in revolt because their people can’t get good jobs. The cities and countries that act first — that focus everything they have on creating good jobs — are the ones that will win.

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Customer Reviews

This book was very detailed and well written.
Gallup has learned through their world wide polling that one thing we all have in common is that everyone in whole world wants a good job.
I agree with Clifton that leaders of countries and of the cities within them must make job creation their #1 priority.
Robert Morris

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

140 of 158 people found the following review helpful By Alan R. Cheville on November 29, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book after a friend who is a voracious reader mentioned it was what she was currently reading and seeing the many five star reviews. I had reasonable expectations despite the fact I am leery of any conversation that frames itself using the word "War". Unfortunately for me this book did not live up to its five star rating or my expectations.

The "Coming Jobs War" essentially is a plan to avert societal collapse. While I agree with many of the prescriptions that Jim Clifton brings forth throughout the book, the book is just that- prescriptive in both tone and content. The book is written in the style of a bad self-help book or perhaps like the legion of "how to win in business" type books. As in such books "The Coming Jobs War" makes a sweeping generalization which is then supported by vague statements using pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo.

While elements of the plan to avert societal collapse make sense, and many I agree with, they are presented in a linear, deterministic manner which completely miss the complex, systemic approaches that will be needed to address the issues the book seeks to contribute its voice to solving. Even worse, this book fails to provide much data to back up its claims or meaningfully acknowledge other thinkers and theories that supportable or refute the claims being made. While there is an extensive list of references at the end, they exist independent of the rest of the book (at least in the Kindle edition I read).

"The Coming Jobs War" suffers in other ways that alienated me as a reader from the important (and likely valid) points raised:
- Entrepreneurs are given mythic, superhero status. The impact, societal benefit, or long term sustainability of the entrepreneur's idea is irrelevant.
Read more ›
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81 of 103 people found the following review helpful By W. E. Kettunen on October 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover
There are many things about this fascinating new book from Gallup Chairman Jim Clifton that will stop you in your tracks, but the most profound for me is that the current state of our country, and perceived prospects for the future, has redefined the American dream. No longer are peace, family, independence and freedom of religion at the top of the list for most Americans. It's having a good job.

Some of the information Clifton reveals is staggering, like the fact that 40-50 years ago Detroit was the richest city in the world, but because of poor local leadership over the last several decades hundreds of thousands of good jobs have been lost and the city has become a socioeconomic disaster. Or that 20 years ago passage of the Gore Act gave US companies the lead in commercializing the internet - and attracting top technical and entrepreneurial talent from around the world -- something that has accounted for virtually all the growth in the US economy since the mid 90s.

Clifton's writing is compact, thought provoking, motivational, scary and realistic. But it's also hopeful. It's a compelling book based on years of Gallup polling and research and a must read for everyone who cares about the future of our communities, cities and country.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Reed P. on December 8, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read many online reviews before downloading this book. Both sides of the political spectrum seemed to hate it, arguing that it is over simplistic and just plain wrong-headed or biased. Frankly, that's exactly why I found myself curled up non-stop reading the entire book in one sitting. It is NOT politically correct, sure. But Clifton's observations merit serious consideration. To anger the right wing, he argues that with GDP driving jobs, and with "good" jobs driving the economy, significant cuts in the federal budget will be counterproductive, both in the short and longer term. A smaller government cuts off vital support to the many services and supports that a growing economy needs (pre-K through higher education, basic scientific research, safe streets, etc.). To aggravate the left wing, he makes a good case that "taxing the rich" simply cannot generate enough revenue to even come close to making up for fiscal shortfalls, so entitlement programs must inevitably be dialed down. Then, his take on healthcare will offend just about anyone who is not at an ideal body weight, doesn't exercise, eschews preventive medical exams, and wants to claw out every last day of life in an expensive terminal illness. Well, as a medical industry executive for the past 30 years, my first reaction was to challenge his claim that healthcare costs are nothing but a drag on jobs growth (after all, what's wrong with an industry that employs 1/5 of all American workers . . . many in what he defines as "good" jobs . . . in every single town and city in the country, improves health, and for the most part cannot be outsourced to China). Yet, in the end, I'm forced to agree with his points, even on healthcare.Read more ›
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27 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 16, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This book by Jim Clifton on the rising importance of jobs and their absence to people across the world does a great service to readers by presenting informative and mostly rigorously collected data.

The problem with this book is that it contains a large number of contentious and unsupported interpretations.

The book expects readers to take as facts, statements that have long been challenged and disproved. For example, he states that a "good job" is one with a steady paycheck from an employer and 30+ hours per week. Is that job safe? Will it lead to death or disability?

A more glaring example is the continued almighty allegiance to GDP growth as the primary driver of human well-being. The data available to the book directly contradict this assumption. Do persons in countries with the highest GDP have the highest quality of life? Do they have the highest life expectancies? The United States has the highest GDP and the highest rate of imprisonment. These obvious facts are conveniently ignored by Clifton in service of his naive personal view that free enterprise and job growth are the only good pathways to global well-being.

Is the world facing a jobs crisis? Yes, absolutely. Are the potential solutions proposed in this book the best and most reasonable solutions? No, absolutely not.
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