Jeff Yoak's Reviews > The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't

The No Asshole Rule by Robert I. Sutton
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's review
Aug 30, 12

bookshelves: audio-collection, read-in-2012, probably-never-read-again
Read from August 28 to 29, 2012, read count: 1

This book seriously rubbed me the wrong way. The author does a little initial work useful in being precise about what he means by "assholes" and offers the rather trivial conclusion that we shouldn't be one, hire them or tolerate them. The rest amounts to foot-stomping at best and bewilderment at worst. Assholes give people the "silent treatment" but in response we should "talk to them as little as possible." Retaliatory behavior as bad or worse than the initial "asshole" behavior is advocated throughout. Can you imagine celebrating bus driver trainers telling new drivers they get three accidents per year without disciplinary action, so to save them up and never have accidental accidents so that they can punish the real asshole drivers they encounter? How about the desirability of keeping one or two assholes around to abuse to make sure to model how not to behave for others?

I found all of this so bad that at times I thought I was being put on. I half-expected the author to come out with something like, "If the last 10 pages have seemed in any way appealing to you, you're probably an asshole." That never happened.
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Guida Brown I wish I'd've read your review before I bought and read the book. It would have saved me money and angst. Spot on.

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