Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Book Review: The No Asshole Rule by Robert Sutton

I borrowed this book from the library about three and a half years ago. I realized I never wrote a review of it, so I'll wing it from memory.

The No Asshole Rule is the absolute best business book I've ever read. It should be required reading. Here are some high points from memory:

I don't have the book in front of me, so I lack the academic definition of an asshole. A review says they're the "the jerks and bullies at work who demean, criticize, and sap the energy of others, usually their underlings."

Get Rid of Assholes: Many organizations have assholes working in them. Assholes are often tolerated because they get good results. Usually, the asshole is compared to the rest of the workers, who don't measure up to the asshole's productivity and results. However, many organizations find by getting rid of the asshole, the rest of the workers suddenly increase productivity and results; often collectively to greater levels than during the asshole's membership with the organization. The asshole usually has a negative effect on the morale of the rest of the organization, which depresses productivity and results.

Assholes Reproduce: Assholes often move into positions that allow them to hire. Most people attract like minded people. If you allow one asshole into your organization, especially into a hiring position, you could find yourself on Spaceball 1. "How many assholes we got on this ship anyway?" "Yo!"

Keep firing, assholes!

Asshole poisoning: Often, exposure to assholes can cause you to become an asshole yourself, even for a short time. The author recounted how he found himself in a meeting with an asshole, and became an asshole himself for a while.

The No Asshole Rule was informative, educational, and a hell of a lot of fun to read. I highly recommend it. We should all work together to ensure a no asshole workplace.

You can get it from my Amazon Affiliate link:

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