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Working With You is Killing Me: Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work
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Working With You is Killing Me: Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work

3.58  ·  Rating details ·  473 Ratings  ·  81 Reviews
Two well-respected management experts deliver an authoritative manual that provides valuable insights for turning conflicts in the workplace into productive working relationships.
Paperback, 256 pages
Published March 14th 2007 by Business Plus (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

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Rating details
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Melissa Harnisch
Aug 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone from msgrb
I have whole chapters memorized to get me through the day without hurting anyone
Jun 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: improvement
This was a quick read and easy skim. The point here is that you get "hooked" someone gets under you skin and gets to react emotionally. You have unhook.

They provide a four step strategy to unhook. With lots of applications.

There is also a chapter on managing up and another on managing down. Both were helpful. Of course everything seems easier said then done.

Unhooking is hard.
May 10, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone needing to "unhook" for their work situation
The advice is simple enough, but I can't stress how helpful it was to read it. The title alone brings welcomed humor to the bad situation you may be experiencing...
Jun 19, 2011 rated it it was ok
The general 4-step method this book provides for dealing with co-workers is pretty solid; and I liked that it made clear that you can't change other people, only the way you respond to their weirdosities.

But the range of situations presented was limited, and didn't include many of the common things my friends and I have faced in the workplace. After explaining the general method, it gets repeated for various setups without much additional detail. I skim-read the end of the book because I felt l
Aug 31, 2012 rated it it was ok
While this book was interesting, and one I very much felt I needed to read, I didn't feel it would solve all my earthly problems at work. The primary message of the book was, "You can't control another person, but you can control your reaction to that person." Perhaps my wounds are too actively raw for me to appreciate this sort of advice right now. Maybe I need to go rent the movie Dirty Work instead.
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Alissa by: Jane
I love where I work and enjoy my co-workers, but this book provides practical solutions for those problems that continually come up in the workplace. I also was pleased to learn that I have been practicing the art of “managing up” for a few years.

This is a quick read - about 250 pages, and easy to read to. It’s another one that will go on my management shelf.

Aug 03, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: workers who feel they have no options
Shelves: non-fiction
I learned a few new coping techniques for working with some of the types of people described in the book. It provides practical tips for interacting with difficult people at work (and in your life in general) and seeing how you yourself may be one of these difficult people.
Sep 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Unlike the other books in this genre, this one isn't trying to sell you more than just the book. (ie: Get on our website, sign up for stuffs, find out your strengths!, use our programs!...blah, blah, blah). There was a lot of good information about how to redirect energies into getting work done instead of listening to the BS that goes on around you. The problem I saw was that this is very specific to office environments. They tried not to be, and it was a good effort, but at the end of the day, ...more
Mar 08, 2011 rated it liked it
Title aside, the book's more about what YOU can do to make things better, rather than a magic wand to wave at the difficult people you work with. Not all situations may be applicable to you, but all situations come with scenarios and step-by-step enforceable solutions.

It's definitely a worth-while read if you want some coaching on improving your "sticky situation" handling skills. In an ideal world, you work for a boss who's get excellent managing skills and genuinely cares for your professional
James Pritchert
Jun 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone in a business setting
This is a very practical look at the workplace and how to manage oneself in it. The book provides some very workable strategies for surviving in any work setting. The authors took me through nearly every scenario that I have experienced in my work life. I feel somewhat empowered in that the strategies they offer are the same ones I have developed over my working career. They do offer methods that I have not tried in the past but I will make those methods a part of my working repertoire. I believ ...more
Feb 15, 2010 marked it as started-but-not-finished
Eh, there are no simple fixes for work stress. Here's my summary of the 2 chapters I read, which were kind-of helpful...
Issue: Crazy happens
Step 1. Unhook physically (take a walk or practice deep breathing)
Step 2. Unhook mentally (don't take it personally, think about it from a 3rd person perspective)
Step 3. Unhook verbally (tell them, "damn you crazy")
Step 4. Unhook using a business tool (follow up with an email that says, "damn you crazy" or put that on their performance review or in a job des
Christine Farmer
Dec 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kick-ass-9-to-5
work relationships are not easy - even for those of us who have a great team of coworkers.
i found some really good, practical advice in this book.
i recommend it if you're having trouble with people you work with!
Jul 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: instructional
Some useful techniques but really repetitive.
Barry Davis
Feb 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Subtitled “Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work,” this extremely practical book is designed to provide guidance for work relationships, whether you are a boss, a line worker, a supervisor, or any combination of the above. I was particularly impressed with the step-by-step guidance provided through numerous scenarios that are presented for each point. Each chapter closes with a short review of the key topics covered. The three “unhooking” steps are demonstrated with business situations - ...more
Oct 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
I've previously worked at jobs where either my boss or co-workers were "difficult." They were difficult either consistently, or at least for periods of time. Though I've always tried to do my best and handle things like that with as much grace as possible, I felt it'd also be helpful to read something about proven ways to emotionally deal with, and proactively address, issues that come up at work (especially when they are because of other people's difficult personalities or lack of experience ma ...more
Jan 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: own
Working With You Is Killing me has interactive sections allowing you to pinpoint the issues that may be causing you to lose your sanity at work. Each chapter gives multiple scenarios of real workplace occurrences and how these situations can be handled. The authors take time to acknowledge that every individual is not capable of handling situations the same way. They have cleverly provided adaptation techniques that may be applicable for various personality types.

I found that Chapter 3, If the R
Nov 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: management
I found this book because the authors have come out with a new book and the review I read referred to this work. Give that life at my job has been interesting, I could not pass this up. This is, for me, the right book at the right time.

Like many books about work, there are stories about various work situations and clever ways to deal with those times that you have to work with people you are not getting along with. There is nothing particularly new here, but I liked the terms used and the list
Dec 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business-books
Working With You is Killing Me Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work by Katherine Crowley takes a slightly humorous approach to having to work with a cast of 'boundary busting' characters. You get great advice on dealing with toxic relationships at work ranging from annoying co-workers, fatal attraction subordinates, and ill-tempered bosses. I love the authors' idea of detaching and depersonalizing from the employee, co-worker, and/or boss. Culture is such a part of business now and managing your own role in the organization becomes essential when you can't control the behavior's o ...more
Oct 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
just as joseph campbell, using jung's concept of the collective unconscious, broke down the archetypes and tropes found throughout the world's creation myths and stories, this book breaks down the various archetypal personalities of both office bosses and employees alike. i had quite a few a-ha moments as i recognized myself in some of the character-types as well as co-workers and bosses, past and present. but in addition to breaking down the typical cast of characters, this book posits a four-s ...more
Jeanne Boyarsky
Apr 15, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: business
Step 1. Unhook physically (walk/run/etc)
Step 2. Unhook mentally (what's happening? what are the facts? what's the other party's part? what's your part? what are my options?)
Step 3. Unhook verbally (no judgement/accusation/anger)
Step 4. Unhook using a business tool (email, written doc)

I also liked the point that "should" is a problem. - "I shouldn't have have to repeat" - makes worse because that's not playing you part.

The rest of the book was examples of applying these steps to assorted
Feb 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
I like to pick up books of this type every so often -- I not only learn about the people around me, but I also learn a lot about myself as a manager.

I recently attended a workshop called "Managing Emotions Under Pressure". This book could go hand-in-hand with what I learned in that workshop. Everyone around us (from co-workers to vendors to clients to family) has the ability to push our emotional buttons -- it's not necessarily the people you work for. It is my (your) job to figure out how to "d
Feb 03, 2015 rated it liked it
Fairly straight forward and simple book about getting along with difficult personality types. This includes if you yourself are one and if you are also managing or being managed by one. Not a bad way to think about it. The main take away is to detach. There are a lot of helpful hints. I liked that it likened managing to parenting. There really are parallels and I do believe that every employer/manager does have a responsibility to develop people in that sort of way.
Jul 20, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: management
Was talking to the Borders customer service manager, and she recommended this one as well.

Not bad... a few Ah-HAH moments where you read something that completely describes either yourself or a painintheneck at work. There's some practical tips that tends to start with some form of physical activity like working out or taking long walks.

Just... Why can't it say something more constructive like, "Take a deep breath. Head out the door and go shopping"?
Oct 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
This title intruiged me, so I had to read it. There are always difficult personalities in every office and I was hoping that by reading this, I'd have a few more strategies up my sleeve to not allow these sour folks to spoil my day at the office.

I found this book to be interesting and it did offer some good ideas. I liked the grid at the end where you can compare what you are looking for in a corporate culture to what you are actually experiencing at work.
Oct 25, 2012 rated it liked it
Lest any of my co-workers see this review, rest assured, this book was read as a management text for how to help staff resolve conflicts in the workplace.

As another reviewer mentioned, the book is far too repetitive in the writing. It does give some solid tips and the scenarios presented provide one with good scripts to coach those more passive staff through dealing with issues at work.

The end section on management as parenting was spot on.
This book is a must for anyone in the workforce. It is so important to be able to get along with people at work and some of them make that part of the job difficult. This book will guide you through the process. It also offers guidance for standing up for yourself without jeopardizing your career.
Dec 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: good work advises
Shelves: in-my-library
Audio Book.

It is a good book with many great advises in terms of dealing with diffrent kind of people you meet in your work wheather they are coworkers or bosses. It is nice because of the advises in addition to the sufficient numbers of example they give. It has advises for you Employees or Employers/Supervisors

Thank you,
Aug 03, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: self-help
It had some useful tips on dealing with people that are hard to work with. The approach give seems a little but much at times but maybe I'm too nice. For instance sending an email to enforce asking someone not to do something that bothers you can be a bit much in certain situations. I'm keeping the book as a reference but it wasn't quite as good as I was hoping.
Sep 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: self-help-books
Have a coworker that decided to hate you for no reason? Is he/she pushing your buttons everyday? read this and it will help you prevent doing what they want you to do...freak out and make you look bad so they can blame you! So dont freak out, pick up this book it helped me! It will pick you up, give you the hope, the power, smarts, and self esteem you need to deal with that workplace bully!
Dec 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book is a must for anyone in the workforce. It is so important to be able to get along with people at work and some of them make that part of the job difficult. This book will guide you through the process. It also offers guidance for standing up for yourself without jeopardizing your career.
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