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The Way We're Working Isn't Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance Paperback – February 1, 2011


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The Way We're Working Isn't Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance + The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal + The Power of Story: Change Your Story, Change Your Destiny in Business and in Life
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press; Reprint edition (February 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451610262
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451610260
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,540 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Schwartz, CEO of the Energy Project, stretches an obvious thesis to the breaking point in his plaint on how the American workplace—theoretically where technology has allowed us to reach for more, bigger, faster—has bred an atmosphere in which workers have become disengaged from their work. We fail to take care of ourselves, he points out, and end up undermining our health, happiness, and productivity. Using a series of quadrants describing the emotional workings of both employees and companies, he argues that nothing is gained—and much is lost—by constantly pushing people to achieve more and more in less time and with fewer resources; rejuvenation and rest are necessary for creative breakthroughs and broader perspectives. All well and good, but the bulk of the book is then eaten up exhorting readers to get more sleep, exercise, eat better, and take care of their emotional health. While a reminder to cultivate engagement and mindfulness is always relevant to the modern business reader, the usable content is slim—and fluffed out beyond the point of readability. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Schwartz coauthored the bestseller The Power of Full Engagement (2003) and is the CEO of The Energy Project, bringing effective energy management coaching to organizations such as Google, Ford, Sony, Toyota, and the Los Angeles Police Department. His project and this book are shedding light on what most working folks know but don’t like to talk about: that most of us are not fully engaged or satisfied in our work environment; that we are constantly running on an unsustainable schedule that does not allow for enough sleep; and in addition to being physically tired, we are not allowed the kind of emotional, creative, and spiritual outlets that we need to be fulfilled. Schwartz notes that people at work are expected to run continuously, like machines, but unlike machines or computers, people do not function well when forced to work and process information on a continual basis, but need a balance of activities that allow for both expending and recovering energy. He proposes solutions for business leaders to maximize human potential by embracing our need for both effort and renewal. --David Siegfried --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

I heartily recommend it for everyone.
Jimmy Tan
Easy reading and lots of good information; a common sense approach to improving all of your relationships; not just for the workplace.
John Abbott
I the way he connected executive performance to athletic performance.
Henry Chamberlain

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Kelly T on February 5, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really wish I would have read the reviews and book description more closely before buying. Instead, I purchased the paperback version and wasted $12. What a waste of time this book is – I have no idea how it was/is a New York Times Bestseller (according to cover of the book). It’s the same advice your mother has been giving you for years: get better sleep, eat right, exercise, and take care of yourself emotionally. Duh! No kidding, really?! Tell me something I don’t know for my $12, please!

Even the description of the book is quite telling. Here are a few sentences from the book review/description posted by Amazon: “Schwartz, CEO of the Energy Project, stretches an obvious thesis to the breaking point in his plaint…” and “All well and good, but the bulk of the book is then eaten up exhorting readers to get more sleep, exercise, eat better, and take care of their emotional health. While a reminder to cultivate engagement and mindfulness is always relevant to the modern business reader, the usable content is slim—and fluffed out beyond the point of readability.

Not to mention the customer reviews. They look like paid or quid-pro-quo reviews to me. Something out of the Timothy Ferris model for getting good reviews on Amazon. Very few of them seem like genuine reviews. That sucks! (and the book does too!)
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39 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Joe Inc. on May 17, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the exact same book as "The Way We're Working Isn't Working", just with a different title. I'll be returning it soon.
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105 of 147 people found the following review helpful By Mark Spradley on February 1, 2012
Format: Paperback
In the third paragraph of "Be Excellent at Anything: The Four Keys to Transforming the Way We Work and Live," Tony Schwartz and his coauthors write, "The first key is fierce intentionality about managing the four key sources of energy that fuel us: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual" (p. ix). This highlighting of intentionality as the first key is unfortunate, first because it is a loaded term that once exposed undercuts everything else in this book, and second, because it is not one of the four keys of the subtitle. The four keys of the subtitle are a crude synthesis of Jung's four psychic functions with the four highest needs of Maslow's famous hierarchy, and they are the organizing principles of the book. While Maslow's hierarchy is much more culturally determined and less universally human than is usually admitted (see Hofstede, Hofstede, and Minkov, 2010, "Cultures and Organizations," pp. 213-216), it is hardly controversial. A vast number of self-help books begin with it. Under these categories, Schwartz gives good if pedestrian advice about diet, exercise, getting enough sleep and implementing better work habits. His Jungian influence comes out in his defense of the role of intuition in creativity. Intuition, he says, is "not the magical thinking that psychics claim to have . . . . [but] a nonverbal route to knowledge that arises not from rational deduction, but from seeing and sensing more deeply" (p. 212). However, this is magical thinking. The "deepness fallacy" which is central to the Jungian approach is in evidence throughout the book under the trendy guise of "fierce intentionality."

Compare Schwartz's "Jungian" intuition with intuition as described in Daniel Kahneman's book "Thinking, Fast and Slow." Kahneman describes two sorts of intuition, expert and heuristic.
Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Shahram Khorsand on February 28, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you are interested in the topic and have read many books ... perhaps this book doesn't include so many earth shattering new topics. However, there shouldn't be that many new things. It is the execution and this is where this book gave me some value. The author has a good way of explaining, giving examples and stays away from cliches.
I recommend this book, but don't expect completely new theories.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tuffbetty on May 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read a great deal of leadership and personal excellence related material. This book by far surpasses the usefulness of 99% of the books out there.
Originally titled, "The Way We Work Isn't Working," it makes a strong scientific case for getting more sleep, making time to meditate daily (and how to focus during meditation) and working in 90 minute bursts for maximum effectiveness.
But the book does more than provide logic as to why to adjust, but also how. The author shares stories of others, which makes the idea of change more real and accessible. I found the entire book compelling and very useful.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Anthony Alegrete on December 13, 2014
Format: Paperback
EXCELLENT EXCELLENT BOOK! Tony Schwartz magnificently delivers this masterpiece on learning how to truly obtain value in everything that you do (emotionally,financially, socially, and spiritually). He explains how re-energizing and renewal is a critical function to better output. Simple power naps, and biological systems play huge roles in our energy reserves. In this book, Schwartz really breaks it all down on all levels so that we can become better leaders.

A must read for leaders in ALL industries.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By dawn_in_colo on January 29, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I think this book is an excellent synthesis of information gleaned from controlled studies and the author's professional experience coaching individuals and organizations. The main title is actually somewhat misleading. As the subtitle implies, it is really a book about how to be at your best, so that you can be maximally productive at whatever you're doing--with the side-benefit of being a happier, more well-balanced person. The principles can be applied to anybody, whether a white collar professional, an athlete, a student, a stay-at-home mom, etc. This book has helped me immensely, by causing me to examine my work-a-holic tendencies and recognize that they are actually making me less productive and diminishing my overall quality of life. The strategies in this book make sense and are very effective for me.
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