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The System Made Me Do It: A Life Changing Approach to Office Politics Paperback – September 1, 1997

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This book is different in a very special way. Yes, you'll learn the typical life affirming schmoogle that will serve to make each day's burden a little bit lighter. But there are lots of books that can teach you coping mechanixms for home or work. This book is unique in a sea of titles clamoring for attention. You go on a journey with a narrator named Sunny. She has been there, done that, and will lead you along the path to your personal fulfillment. You get frank, down to earth, practical insights served up with a modicum of spirituality. A lovely book." -- BzRvueNews@aol.com:

"A new age, eclectic approach to healing dysfunctional macro-level systems (organizations, industries, and beyond) through micro-level transformation. Effective and extensive use of semi-autobiographical parables. Glossary, exercises, bibliography, and index. A unique perspective on change." (Stern's Management Review, Fall, 1997)

"In today's business world, becoming politically savvy is necessary, and developing effective coping mechanisms is equally important. The System Made Me Do It! is an easy-to-read guide providing tips on how to deal with politics in the office, steps for transforming unhealthy workplaces, and ideas for creating new organizations. The System Made Me Do It! shows how to predict moves on the office politics game board; determine what you are good at and what you enjoy; find and connect with allies; and revitalize the world of work. The System Made Me Do It! is must reading for managers and employees who want to reduce the stress associated with corporate gamesmanship. The System Made Me Do It! is highly recommended for business school libraries, corporate libraries, and the personal library collections of anyone trying to cope with today's highly competitive business environment." (The Midwest Book Review, June, 1997)

"The System Made Me Do It! A Life Changing Approach to Office Politics is a unique book in that it combines fiction with fact and instructs the reader in a way that reflects our heritage of story telling. It is a primer in systems concepts that provides a guide for transforming our environments, both personal and business, and for impacting the way we live. The reader will discover the inter-relationship between personal and system change is a reinforcing circle.

"The principal character in the book is a woman named Sunny. In Part One: Journey Outward; Journey Inward, we follow her through a series of life discovery adventures. In doing so, we begin to pick up the core values of the book. In Part Two: Tales of Five Realities, there are five tales, each with one or more central challenges. The challenges in these five tales are: how to lead without being on top; how to compete without doing others in; how to learn as much as you can without getting in over your head; how to be computer savvy without sacrificing face to face communication; how to love both yourself and others; and how to respect life in all of its forms. Part Three: Creating New Realities provides ways to attain a life changing approach. Through a deeper analysis of the five tales, we can review the key considerations for successful systems change and find ways of matching a system's energy. The appendices provide assessment instruments and tools for helping to develop a wholesome organization.

"The subtitle of the book suggests that it is 'a life changing approach to office politics.' It is so much more. It is a wonderfully organized work with keen insights and practical help that can lead one to choose an authentic path to shape one's life. A life in which work is essential in the fulfillment of one's unique purpose and existence." (The ASTD Reporter - American Society for Training and Development, July, 1997) -- The ASTD Reporter - American Society for Training and Development, July, 1997

Into today's business world, becoming politically savvy is necessary, and developing effective coping mechanisms is equally important. The System Made Me Do It! is an easy-to-read guide providing tips on how to deal with politics in the office, steps for transforming unhealthy workplaces, and ideas for creating new organizations. The System Made Me Do It! shows how to predict moves on the office politics game board; determine what you are good at and what you enjoy; find and connect with allies; and revitalize the world of your work. The System Made Me Do It! is "must" reading for managers and employees who want to reduce the stress associated with corporate gamesmanship. The System Made Me Do It! is highly recommended for business school libraries, corporate libraries, and the personal library collections of anyone trying to cope with today's highly competitive business environment. -- Midwest Book Review

The premise of Osborn's book is simple enough. She believes people in business have lost their spirit because those same systems are too intrusive, meaning they make us believe there is only one way to do things. This in turn creates the office politics of deception and manipulation as workers scramble over each other vying for control and the power to win. She states the key to changing that system is for the individual to go inward to discover their needs, wants and who they are - to ultimately look at the whole picture, inside and outside. This, she believes creates flexibility and leads to teamwork and solutions. It's written in story form, taking our heroine, Sunny, through the journey of restoring the vitality of an unhealthy work organization and along the way teaching us how to create that flexible wholeness. The form tends to be too cute for words, and chapter titles like "Sunny and the Sandbox" and "Sunny As a Shaman" almost obscure the message. Still, the book is worth the journey and has good information and techniques on working toward wholeness of spirit and business. -- From Independent Publisher

From the Publisher

Dr. Osborn has a history of providing people with techniques to escape physical and mental boxes. Her platform for system change gives a brand new twist to the nature of business.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Lifethread Pubns; 1 Ed edition (September 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0965536807
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965536806
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,797,781 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Susan M. Osborn, Ph.D., M.S.W., is a manager for a California state agency where publishing, writing, and editing play key roles. In addition to The System Made Me Do It! and Assertive Training for Women, Dr. Osborn is the author of chapters in two books: "Living Alone: Puzzles and Polarities" in New Life Options: The Working Woman's Resource Book, and "We Need More We and Less Me: How Stories Build Teams and Teamwork" in Wake Me When the Data Is Over. She has served as a staff writer for Senior Spectrum, and as a contributor to Countryside Magazine, Judo Magazine, and Bow from the Heart: The Life of Judo Master Keiko Fukuda.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mudabaruka on February 17, 1999
Format: Paperback
Read this book to understand the games that go on within companies and organizations and how to play them. Opting not to play can be harmful to your career. Susan Osborn has a wealth of experience to draw on: parole officer, social worker, human resource manager, trainer, and teacher.
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I think this is really a type of meditation book on discovering how to maintain freedom in a work culture. The author has many different types of experiences and was able to figure out an interesting approach. At first, I couldn't get into this book, but later enjoyed it once I accepted it didn't use an expected analytical method. Using these principles and thought processes, work culture is more tolerable mainly because it's far easier to reject it outright.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 10, 1998
Format: Paperback
This review is long overdue. This book will transform you and open up your world to a wider vision, expand your perception and worldview. Whether you are climbing a corporatate ladder or you are planning to or have dropped out of the corporate world and working on fulfilling your own dream. A powerful and painless way to learn systems concepts. Learn how to spiritually fulfilling worklife and personal life. Easy to read with story telling concept.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 3, 1999
Format: Paperback
I found this book to be too loaded down with philosophy and musings and not practical enough to be useful. The writing style reminds one more of a book of poetry than of a book on organizational structure and design. If one wants to read a book on how to succeed within various organizations and how to understand office politics, I recommend Kelly's "How to Be a Star at Work," Taub's "Work Smart" and even "The Idiot's Guide to Office Politics." I did not find what I was looking for in this tome and was very disappointed.
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The System Made Me Do It: A Life Changing Approach to Office Politics
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