By George Langelett
River Grove Books, $17.95, 230 pages
Bad managers. We’ve all had them. Some don’t value their employees; some don’t take responsibility for anything; some merely subscribe to what they view as an “old school” mentality that is, in reality, toxic to a productive work environment. As someone who very recently suffered through the latter management style, finding How Do I Keep My Employees Motivated? in my mailbox was both exciting and amusing—and I greatly wished to be able to give my copy to my boss after I finished reading it.
The book, according to the back cover, offers suggestions for how to: “Empathize, and become a manger who can effectively influence each of your employee’s attitudes, behaviors, level or motivation, and professional growth.” Via compassion and empathy-based management. Sounds like a lesson many, many managers are in dire need of—if only we, the employees, can manage to force them to read a copy of the book.
Authored by George Langelett, PhD, a professor of management and economics at South Dakota State University, the book features chapters with titles such as: “Empathizing with Employees During Times of Crisis” and “The Practice of Empathy-Based Management.” So much management theory—or at least practice—seems largely devoid of empathy, being so focused on the bottom line, that many a dissatisfied employee will probably wish Langelett could come to their company and provide management training courses to their superiors.
The book is academic but understandable and Langelett provides an extensive bibliography and list of recommended further reading, as well as worksheets to help managers gauge their progress on this empathy-based course. Get a copy for your favorite office tyrant today! Just make sure to drop it off anonymously…
Reviewed by Ashley McCall