- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Perennial; 1st edition (June 1, 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0887307108
- ISBN-13: 978-0887307102
- Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 0.5 x 6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,885,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Beware of Those Who Ask for Feedback: And Other Organizational Constants Paperback – June 1, 1994
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For the more than 100,000 readers who benefited from Never Confuse a Memo with Reality, this sequel continues to provide simple but immensely important insights for success in the corporate world.
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The author says his "continuing source of material are those thousands of employees, at all levels of all organizations, who tell me the truth and make me aware of what a struggle it can be to thrive in today's complex organizations."
The author describes this second collection of business related aphorisms as "a book of business bread and butter." He says he has continued his attempt, begun in his first book NEVER CONFUSE A MEMO WITH REALITY "to capture the conventional wisdom that people in business should know--but either ignore or never learned in the first place." He sees several advantage to his writing style:
"First, it represents what many people know is the truth about life in today's organizations. Second, it is accessible: It features no complex models or theories that make anyone feel guilty or inadequate for not understanding. Third the lessons from the book apply. No matter what their level, industry, or position, people understand. Fourth, there is humor in the book that makes people chuckle about their own situations. And, lastly, the price is right."
As in his first book, the advice offered is simply expressed and sometimes overgeneralized. But inevitably, what is familiar for one person will be a new insight for another. Once again, the author presents a checklist. A reader may wish to reject any individual item on it as in appropriate for his or her particular situation, but it is a valuable guide to both self-appraisal and organizational appraisal.
There are 371 aphorisms or collections of aphorisms in this book. From my experience of more than 40 years in the workforce, the 40 most valueable are as follows:
#1. Always tell the truth to employees and your boss. It's easier to remember what you said.
#3. "Just because you're a supervisor doesn't mean you have a license to be a jerk."
#7. "Beware those who ask for feedback. They are really asking for validation.
#20. "Be more results-driven than methodology driven."
#23. "Trust your instincts. There is a reason why people value your experience. You should as well."
#29. "In your written work, say something meaningful in the first sentence."
#31. "Too much resistance to a new system or change probably means there's something wrong with it. Employees will usually act in the organization's best interest. Listen to them."
#43. "Doing a great job often means you'll get more work. Understand this and use it to your advantage."
#57. "Work gravitates to the most competent."
#71. "Never confuse making people happy with what needs to be done."
#86. "Hope is a required ingredient for success."
#95. "Progress is made when the choices that are presented are limited and clearly defined...."
#120. "When the outcome of a meeting is to have another meeting, it has been a lousy meeting."
#124. "Start with a rough draft as soon as possible and fill in the details as you go. You'll find the end product will be similar to the original intention."
#125. "To what end? is always a good question to asky at the beginning of a big project."
#130. "Never give up on projects until they are implemented."
#140. "The goal is not to be busy. The goal is to contribute something of worth that will make you glow."
#154. "Worry about the big things, and the little things will fall into place."
#181. "There are no such things as communicationns, turnover, or morale problems. They are symptoms of other problems--usually autocratic managemetn. Don't try to fix the symptoms. Fix the problems."
#183. "Never be embarrassed about where you grew up, where you went to school, how you look, your name, or anything else that it's too late to fix. Be proud of who you are."
#192. "Next steps from meetings must always be clear."
#201. "Casey Stengel said some people make things happen, some people watch things happen, and some people say what happened. Be in the first category."
#213. "Learn what the labor movement is all about, how it's changing, and what it means to your industry. Be unbiased as you learn."
#214. "Spend time understanding what "real work" is. like working on an assembly line or driving trucks. It will ground you in reality."
#233. The most effective suggestion system is the one where the CEO puts a sign over his or her door that says "Suggestion Box."
#243. "Organization change will not occur unless employees believe it is in their best interest."
#250. "When giving a talk, think of what people will remember. And that's only one or two things."
#261. "Pessimistic futurists are to be ignored."
#277. "Understand the concept before spending lots of time on the mechanics and the details."
#281. An abundance of worker's compensation issues either means people are getting hurt or people don';t want to go back--or both.
#283. "'Career path' implies a well-worn route. The truth is that you make your own way running around the organizational bushes and brambles."
#296. "Listen to field people."
#297. "Technology eventually evens out. Compete on service and talented people."
#318. "'Find a passion and follow it' is all the career advice you'll ever need."
#322. "Ask yourself, 'What can I be an expert in?' and become one."
#327. "Bite off more than you can chew and chew it well."
#331. "Facilitate or lead meetings with a point of veiw about what needs to be done and how we get there. Be open to changing your mind."
#367. "Convert training into experience as soon as possible."
This is an excellent book for someone new to working in or with a business organization of any size. It is also an excellent book for mid-career people looking for a checklist on how they are doing, and a general guide both to doing things better and doing better things. Finally, it is an excellent books for those suffering from burnout, lack of focus, or overwork.