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Mars and Venus in the Workplace: A Practical Guide for Improving Communication and Getting Results at Work

Overview

John Gray claims that by understanding the differences between men and women in the workplace anyone can identify and respond to various business approaches in a manner that earns greater respect and promotes increased cooperation. By recognizing how men and women interpret behaviors and reactions differently, a person can make more informed choices about how to make the best impression.

Mars and Venus in the Workplace analyzes the differences in the ways men and women ...

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Overview

John Gray claims that by understanding the differences between men and women in the workplace anyone can identify and respond to various business approaches in a manner that earns greater respect and promotes increased cooperation. By recognizing how men and women interpret behaviors and reactions differently, a person can make more informed choices about how to make the best impression.

Mars and Venus in the Workplace analyzes the differences in the ways men and women communicate, solve problems, react to stress, earn respect, promote themselves, experience emotional support, minimize conflict, score points, and ask for what they want. By showing the many ways men and women misunderstand and misinterpret each other in the workplace, John Gray offers practical advice on reducing unnecessary conflict and frustration. Filled with his trademark communications charts and practical advice on everyday office issues, Mars and Venus in the Workplace will enable readers to achieve their goals and make the workplace a source of fulfillment.

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Editorial Reviews

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Whether you're an assistant, a CEO, a technician, or a team manager, you've realized that personal dynamics, like it or not, affect the bottom line. And author John Gray asserts that "nowhere in the workplace do our differences show up more dramatically than in the area of communication." From water cooler chat to problem solving, everyday interactions, and getting promoted, the contrasting languages of Martians and Venusians no longer need remain a stumbling block on the path to success. Becoming fluent in your neighbors' "alien" language is a practical, easy and effective way to increase productivity, enhance the work environment and pave the way to professional fulfillment and achievement.
Publishers Weekly
Gray made a splash with his bestselling Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, attributing stereotypical traits to each gender and advising the other how best to respond to or work around these characteristics. Building on that theory, Gray claims that "men and women think, feel, and communicate differently in the workplace," and applies his hypothesis to the business environment. As in his previous books, Gray's writing style is repetitive, bolstering a few simple ideas with plenty of generalizing and gender clich s. While alleging that the traits he assigns to men and women are innate rather than learned or cultural describing them as driven by "instinct," "basic nature" and "a function of one's level of testosterone" he offers no proof of this theory, simply assuming that his audience trusts his presumptions. Many of Gray's sweeping statements don't ring true, e.g., his assertions that men don't mind being interrupted while women do, or that women care about relationships, not competence, where they work. Gray does offer some generic, useful advice, such as keeping personal emotions out of the workplace while making sure that one's personal life provides stress relief and opportunities for self-expression. In identifying common personality types and traits, though, Gray might have simply said that some people are Venusians while others are Martians, instead of using tiresome gender stereotypes. While he's unlikely to win new converts with this rehash of his now familiar material, Gray's faithful fans will not be disappointed. Agent, Linda Michaels. (Feb.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402893063
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 12/24/2001
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.59 (h) x 1.08 (d)

Meet the Author

John Gray, Ph.D., an internationally recognized expert in the fields of communication and relationships, and the author of twelve bestsellers, has been conducting personal-growth seminars for thirty years. He is a Certified Family Therapist (National Academy for Certified Family Therapists), a consulting editor of the Family Journal, a member of the Distinguished Advisory Board of the international Association of Marriage and Family Counselors, and a member of the American Counseling Association. John lives with his wife and three children in Northern California.

Biography

To those well versed in therapy-speak and the self-help world, the name John Gray can provoke some eye-rolling and sarcasm: Men are from Mars, women are from Venus. Yeah, yeah, yeah. We genders need to "learn" to "communicate."

What's remarkable is Gray's role in making this concept so well known. In 1992, when Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus was published, the idea was anything but pedestrian. Indeed, Gray sparked both revolution and debate in the world of gender politics.

His case is simple: "Men mistakenly expect women to think, communicate, and react the way men do; women mistakenly expect men to feel, communicate, and respond the way women do. We have forgotten that men and women are supposed to be different. As a result our relationships are filled with unnecessary friction and conflict," he wrote in the first chapter of Men Are from Mars. Though the idea is not radical, the implication met with criticism from feminists who said that it tried to reinforce stereotypes; and with accolades from stricken couples who found that Gray did, in fact, help them communicate and understand each other better.

Though naysayers have called into question both Gray's message and his credentials, his appeal is undeniable. Word-of-mouth has proved strong enough to drive sales of Gray's book and its companions -- targeted at everyone from dating singles to coworkers -- into bestsellerdom, with the first title alone selling more than 15 million copies. He has also become a cottage industry of gender relations, with seminars, media appearances, and audio titles bolstering his books.

Gray's style tends to be simple and direct, with analogies along the lines of the title: "Men Are like Blowtorches, Women Are like Ovens" and "Men Pursue and Women Flirt" are typical chapter headers. For those mired in the tricky morass of dealing with the opposite sex, the author's no-nonsense approach is appealing.

In 1999, Gray departed from his relationships milieu to the broader palette of life fulfillment with the parenting guide Children Are from Heaven and How to Get What You Want and Want What You Have, a guide to achieving success while bolstering one's spiritual life via meditation and awareness of worldly challenges. It's a strong statement coming from someone who lived for several years as a monk, but Gray's strong suit with readers remains his relationship tomes. Since the original Mars/Venus title, he has created a franchise that now straddles the realms of love and personal success. His advice obviously rings true with millions of readers.

Good To Know

Gray lives with his wife and three children. He was formerly married to self-help author Barbara De Angelis; the two divorced in 1984.

Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus was made into a musical stage comedy that opened in Las Vegas. It has also been translated into more than 40 languages.

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    1. Hometown:
      San Francisco, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      1951
    2. Place of Birth:
      Houston, Texas
    1. Education:
      B.A., M.A., Maharishi European Research University; Ph.D., Columbia Pacific University, 1982
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: Mars and Venus in the Workplace

Imagine that Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. A long time ago, we got together, fell in love, and decided to live together on Earth.

At that time, we were really much different than we are today. Men nurtured the family by working outside the home and women nurtured the family by working inside the home. Venusians tended to be more relationship-oriented and Martians were more work-oriented. Together, yet in separate worlds, they formed harmonious partnerships. With this clear division of labor, they handled everything and lived happily ever after.

Gradually, the Venusians tired of just taking care of the family and wanted to work in the outside world and earn money like men. They felt constricted being dependent on their mates and wanted to be independent and autonomous as well. More and more, women at different stages of life were becoming involved in the process of earning a living by making a meaningful contribution in the workplace as well as at home or in their personal relationships.

In a similar manner, some Martians began to change. They started becoming more relationship-oriented. While women were wanting to get involved in developing careers outside the home, men were realizing there was more to life than just work. A quality home life with meaningful relationships was becoming as important and meaningful as success at work. Fathers were becoming more involved in the process of parenting.

Although this was a good and natural change, it triggeredenormous confusion, conflict, and frustration in workplace. To make matters worse, Martians and Venusians suffered selective amnesia. They forgot that men and women were supposed to be different and that the differences were good.

When differences come together in harmony, something much greater can be created.

As women began to enter the work world, our planets collided. Men did not respect women at work unless they behaved like men. Many women responded and sought to prove their equality by becoming just like men. To earn respect, to become like Martians, these women had to suppress their Venusian nature. This suppression caused unhappiness and resentment.

Other women in the workplace were not willing to suppress their feminine nature. They were not respected as equals by many Martians and struggled to support themselves. They were unfairly discriminated against and were sometimes viewed as inferior or incompetent to do a "man's job."

It was a no-win situation. Women who succeeded in the workplace were overly stressed by suppressing their female nature. Women who attempted to express their female nature in the workplace were not respected by male managers, coworkers, employees, customers and clients.

It was not just women who suffered. Some men were discriminated against as well. Those men who were becoming more relationship-oriented were losing the respect of Martians who were still more work-oriented.

Fortunately, this story has a happy ending. Some men and women were able to remember that men are from Mars and women are from Venus. They were able to respect the differences. These men and women thrived in the workplace and passed their insights on to others.

Women were finally able to understand how they were sabotaging their success by misunderstanding and misinterpreting men. Likewise, by understanding women better, men were able to not only respect women but broaden their perspective and gain valuable insight into being more productive while also improving the quality of life in the workplace. Women found the key to earning the respect of men without having to suppress their Venusian nature, and men learned to achieve greater success without having to work so hard.

With a greater respect for feminine values, men can learn to work less and achieve more.

Aware men achieved greater success with less effort by learning to create trust, thereby attracting support from the growing number of women in the workforce and in the consumer market. Men and women who could earn mutual respect and trust prospered more and experienced more personal fulfillment at home as well. They became role models and mentors for others. Once again everyone lived happily ever after.

Making Your Dreams Come True

Though this is just a story, it doesn't have to remain fiction. We all dream of a world in which there is respect, trust, justice, and prosperity. We want it for ourselves, our loved ones, and most importantly we want it for our children.

Every man today wants and deserves to achieve success without having to sacrifice a rich and fulfilling home life. Every woman wants and deserves the freedom to choose meaningful employment and to create financial independence without sacrificing a quality home life.

What husband does not want his wife to be treated fairly or be respected in the workplace? No wife ever wants her husband to come home exhausted and overworked, resenting that he has to sacrifice a personal life to achieve success. Every father wants his daughters to have the same opportunities for success that his sons have. What mother wants her son to burn out and overwork in order to achieve more?

Change is in the air. It is time for both men and women to experience the benefits of increased respect and trust in the workplace.

This sounds idealistic, but it is something we can begin to achieve. No government legislation or administrative policy handed down from above can make men and women respect and trust each other more. Respect and trust in the work world must be and can only be earned.

No government legislation can make men and women respect and trust each other more, it must be earned.

The historic increase in the number of women in the workplace presents an opportunity for making significant change. By gaining the respect of men, women have the power to influence the male-dominated work world to be better and more humane than it has ever been.

The new insights revealed in Mars and Venus in the...

Mars and Venus in the Workplace. Copyright © by Ph.D., John Gray. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1 Mars and Venus in the Workplace 15
2 Speaking Different Languages 23
3 Sharing Is from Venus, Grumbling Is from Mars 35
4 Mr. Fix-It and the Office Improvement Committee 60
5 Men Go to Their Caves and Women Talk 83
6 Feelings in the Workplace 102
7 Why Men Don't Listen ... or Do They? 122
8 Rules Are from Mars, Manners Are from Venus 151
9 Setting Boundaries 177
10 Minimizing Stress with Emotional Support 207
11 Standing Up and Standing Out 233
12 Scoring Points in the Workplace 259
13 Remembering Our Differences 287
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