Who Moved My Cheese?: An A-Mazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life

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With Who Moved My Cheese? Dr. Spencer Johnson realizes the need for finding the language and tools to deal with change—an issue that makes all of us nervous and uncomfortable.

Most people are fearful of change because they don't believe they have any control over how or when it happens to them. Since change happens either to the individual or by the individual, Spencer Johnson shows us that what matters most is the attitude we have about ...

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Who Moved My Cheese?: An A-Mazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life

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With Who Moved My Cheese? Dr. Spencer Johnson realizes the need for finding the language and tools to deal with change—an issue that makes all of us nervous and uncomfortable.

Most people are fearful of change because they don't believe they have any control over how or when it happens to them. Since change happens either to the individual or by the individual, Spencer Johnson shows us that what matters most is the attitude we have about change.

When the Y2K panic gripped the corporate realm before the new millenium, most work environments finally recognized the urgent need to get their computers and other business systems up to speed and able to deal with unprecedented change. And businesses realized that this was not enough: they needed to help people get ready, too.

Spencer Johnson has created his new book to do just that. The coauthor of the multimillion bestseller The One Minute Manager has written a deceptively simple story with a dramatically important message that can radically alter the way we cope with change. Who Moved My Cheese? allows for common themes to become topics for discussion and individual interpretation.

Who Moved My Cheese? takes the fear and anxiety out of managing the future and shows people a simple way to successfully deal with the changing times, providing them with a method for moving ahead with their work and lives safely and effectively.

Sometimes simple problems require simple answers. In just 96 pages, this humorous story uses simple metaphors and characters to encourage readers to embrace change and to adapt to new situations with an open mind and a motivated spirit. It follows four fictional characters, Sniff, Scurry, Hem and Haw, as they search for fulfillment in the maze of life.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
If you're struggling to adjust to changes and transitions at work, then you'll definitely want to keep a copy of Spencer Johnson's short but effective parable somewhere nearby. Johnson's gift for taking complicated, sometimes overwhelming feelings and making them manageable as well as open to change is the key to this book's amazing success. The "Cheese" (with a capital "C") referred to in the title is simply a metaphor for whatever it is that we desire most in life -- recognition, acceptance, money, relationships, possessions, freedom, or anything, tangible or intangible, that becomes invested with desire. The problem with the world, of course, is that the Cheese is portable, leaving Johnson's characters -- two mice (Sniff and Scurry) and two "littlepeople" (Hem and Haw) -- to navigate a mazelike world in a somewhat desperate search for fulfillment and satisfaction.

In today's volatile work environment, the pithy points that Johnson makes as his characters struggle to find a kind of self-empowerment are worth bearing in mind. At the heart of the book is the assertion that "Old beliefs do not lead you to new Cheese." As Haw, the individual who is most open to the possibilities of change, discovers, "You can believe that a change will harm you and resist it. Or you can believe that finding New Cheese will help you, and embrace the change. It all depends on what you choose to believe." Perhaps this is the ultimate and quite hopeful message is the true heart of Johnson's story: Choosing to adapt will enrich your life, leading you onward to the new possibilities created in the ever-changing world of today's workplace. (Sunil Sharma)

Library Journal
This is a brief tale of two mice and two humans who live in a maze and one day are faced with change: someone moves their cheese. Reactions vary from quick adjustment to waiting for the situation to change by itself to suit their needs. This story is about adjusting attitudes toward change in life, especially at work. Change occurs whether a person is ready or not, but the author affirms that it can be positive. His principles are to anticipate change, let go of the old, and do what you would do if you were not afraid. Listeners are still left with questions about making his or her own specific personal changes. Capably narrated by Tony Roberts, this audiotape is recommended for larger public library collections.--Mark Guyer, Stark Cty. Dist. Lib., Canton, OH Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Christy Ellington
This quick read of simple ideas will provide at least one character to relate to and some advice to hold on to during a busy day.
—(The Christian Science Monitor)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780399144462
  • Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Pages: 96
  • Sales rank: 933
  • Lexile: 900L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Spencer Johnson, M.D., is the originator of The One Minute Manager System ™ and co-author of The New York Times bestsellers The One Minute Manager ®, The One Minute Sales Person, and One Minute for Myself. His other bestsellers include Who Moved My Cheese?; The Precious Present; and Yes or No: The Guide to Better Decisions.

He has written more than two dozen books dealing with medicine and the behavioral sciences, and has millions of copies of his books in print in twenty-six languages, including the popular children’s book series ValueTales ™.

Dr. Johnson received a B.A. degree in psychology from the University of Southern California, an M.D. from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, and medical clerkships at Harvard Medical School and the Mayo Clinic. He lives with his family in Hawaii.

Few names are as recognized in American business as Ken Blanchard’s. His One Minute Manager ® Library has sold millions of copies and been translated into more than twenty languages, and he has written or co-authored a number of other popular books as well. Ken is a captivating and sought-after speaker and business consultant, who has shared his unique approach with a multitude of Fortune 500 companies.

Ken has received many awards in management and leadership. He has won the National Speakers Association’s highest honor, the “Council of Peers Award for Excellence,” and the Golden Gavel from Toastmasters International, and was inducted into the HRD Hall of Fame.

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    1. Date of Birth:
      January 1, 1940
    2. Place of Birth:
      South Dakota
    1. Education:
      B.A. in psychology, University of Southern California, 1963; M.D., Royal College of Surgeons
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

A Gathering
One sunny Sunday in Chicago, several former classmates, who were good friends in school, gathered for lunch, having attended their high school reunion the night before. They wanted to hear more about what was happening in each other's lives. After a good deal of kidding, and a good meal, they settled into an interesting conversation.
Angela, who had been one of the most popular people in the class, said, "Life sure turned out differently than I thought it would when we were in school. A lot has changed."
"It certainly has," Nathan echoed. They knew he had gone into his family's business, which had operated pretty much the same and had been a part of the local community for as long as they could remember. So, they were surprised when he seemed concerned. He asked, "But, have you noticed how we don't want to change when things change?"
Carlos said, "I guess we resist changing because we're afraid of change."
"Carlos, you were Captain of the football team," Jessica said. "I never thought I'd hear you say anything about being afraid!"
They all laughed as they realized that although they had gone off in different directions-from working at home to managing companies-they were experiencing similar feelings.
Everyone was trying to cope with the unexpected changes that were happening to them in recent years. And most admitted that they did not know a good way to handle them.
Then Michael said, "I used to be afraid of change. When a big change came along in our business, we didn't know what to do. So we didn't adjust and we almost lost it.
"That is," he continued, "until I heard a funny little story that changed everything."
"How so?" Nathan asked.
"Well, the story changed the way I looked at change-from losing something to gaining something-and it showed me how to do it. After that, things quickly improved-at work and in my life.
"At first I was annoyed with the obvious simplicity of the story because it sounded like something we might have been told in school.
"Then I realized I was really annoyed with myself for not seeing the obvious and doing what works when things change.
"When I realized the four characters in the story represented the various parts of myself, I decided who I wanted to act like and I changed.
"Later, I passed the story on to some people in our company and they passed it on to others, and soon our business did much better, because most of us adapted to change better. And like me, many people said it helped them in their personal lives.
"However there were a few people who said they got nothing out of it. They either knew the lessons and were already living them, or, more commonly, they thought they already knew everything and didn't want to learn. They couldn't see why so many others were benefiting from it.
"When one of our senior executives, who was having difficulty adapting, said the story was a waste of his time, other people kidded him saying they knew which character he was in the story-meaning the one who learned nothing new and did not change."
"What's the story?" Angela asked.
"It's called Who Moved My Cheese?"
The group laughed. "Ithink I like it already," Carlos said. "Would you tell us the story? Maybe we can get something from it."
"Sure," Michael replied. "I'd be happy to-it doesn't take long." And so he began:
The Story of Who Moved My Cheese?
Once, long ago in a land far away, there lived four little characters who ran through a maze looking for cheese to nourish them and make them happy. Two were mice named "Sniff" and "Scurry" and two were littlepeople-beings who were as small as mice but who looked and acted a lot like people today. Their names were "Hem" and "Haw."
Due to their small size, it would be easy not to notice what the four of them were doing. But if you looked closely enough, you could discover the most amazing things!
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Table of Contents

Parts of All of Us
The Story Behind the Story
by Kenneth Blanchard, Ph.D.A Gathering: Chicago
The Story of Who Moved My Cheese?
Four Characters
Finding Cheese
No Cheese!
The Mice: Sniff & Scurry
The Littlepeople: Hem & Haw
Meanwhile, Back in the Maze
Getting Beyond Fear
Enjoying the Adventure
Moving with the Cheese
The Handwriting on the Wall
Tasting New Cheese
Enjoying Change!
A Discussion: Later That Same Day
Share It With Others
About the Author

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The Story Behind The Story
by Kenneth Blanchard, Ph.D.

I am thrilled to be telling you "the story behind the story" of WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? because it means the book has now been written, and is available for all of us to read, enjoy and share with others.

This is something I've wanted to see happen ever since I first heard Spencer Johnson tell his great "Cheese" story, years ago, before we wrote our book THE ONE MINUTE MANAGER together.

I remember thinking then how good the story was and how helpful it would be to me from that moment on.

WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? is a story about change that takes place in a Maze where four amusing characters look for "Cheese" - cheese being a metaphor for what we want to have in life, whether it is a job, a relationship, money, a big house, freedom, health, recognition, spiritual peace, or even an activity like jogging or golf.

Each of us has our own idea of what Cheese is, and we pursue it because we believe it makes us happy. If we get it, we often become attached to it. And if we lose it, or it's taken away, it can be traumatic.

The "Maze" in the story represents where you spend time looking for what you want. It can be the organization you work in, the community you live in, or the relationships you have in your life.

I tell the Cheese story that you are about to read in my talks around the world, and often hear later from people about what a difference it has made to them.

Believe it or not, this little story has been credited with saving careers, marriages and lives!

One of the many real-life examples comes from Charlie Jones, awell-respected broadcaster for NBC-TV, who revealed that hearing the story of WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? saved his career. His job as a broadcaster is unique but the principles he learned can be used by anyone.

Here's what happened: Charlie had worked hard and had done a great job of broadcasting Track and Field events at an earlier Olympic Games, so he was surprised and upset when his boss told him he'd been removed from these showcase events for the next Olympics and assigned to Swimming and Diving.

Not knowing these sports as well, he was frustrated. He felt unappreciated and he became angry. He said he felt it wasn't fair! His anger began to affect everything he did.

Then, he heard the story of WHO MOVED MY CHEESE?

After that he said he laughed at himself and changed his attitude. He realized his boss had just "moved his Cheese." So he adapted. He learned the two new sports, and in the process, found that doing something new made him feel young.

It wasn't long before his boss recognized his new attitude and energy, and he soon got better assignments. He went on to enjoy more success than ever and was later inducted into Pro Football's Hall of Fame - Broadcasters' Alley.

That's just one of the many real-life stories I've heard about the impact this story has had on people - from their work life to their love life.

I'm such a strong believer in the power of WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? that I recently gave a copy of an early pre-publication edition to everyone (more than 200 people) working with our company. Why?

Because like every company that wants to not only survive in the future but stay competitive, Blanchard Training & Development is constantly changing. They keep moving our "cheese." While in the past we may have wanted loyal employees, today we need flexible people who are not possessive about "the way things are done around here."

And yet, as you know, living in constant white water with the changes occurring all the time at work or in life can be stressful, unless people have a way of looking at change that helps them understand it. Enter the CHEESE story.

When I told people about the story and then they got to read WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? you could almost feel the release of negative energy beginning to occur. Person after person from every department went out of their way to thank me for the book and told me how helpful it had been to them already in seeing the changes going on in our company in a different light. Believe me, this brief parable takes little time to read but its impact can be profound.

As you turn the pages, you will find three sections in this book. In the first, A Gathering, former classmates talk at a class reunion about trying to deal with the changes happening in their lives. The second section is The Story of Who Moved My Cheese?, the core of the book. In the third section, A Discussion, people discuss what The Story meant to them and how they are going to use it in their work and in their lives.

Some readers of this book's early manuscript preferred to stop at the end of The Story, without reading further, and interpret its meaning for themselves. Others enjoyed reading A Discussion that follows because it stimulated their thinking about how they might apply what they'd learned to their own situation.

In any case, I hope each time you retread

WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? you will find something new and useful in it, as I do, and that it will help you deal with change and bring you success, whatever you decide success is for you.

I hope you enjoy what you discover and I wish you well. Remember: Move with the cheese!

Ken Blanchard
San Diego, 1998

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Interviews & Essays

An Interview with Spencer Johnson

Spencer Johnson's Who Moved My Cheese?, a simple parable about two mice and two "littlepeople" dealing with unexpected change, has become one of the bestselling business books of the past year. Business editor Amy Lambo recently interviewed Johnson about why so many people are embracing his cheesy tale.

barnesandnoble.com:  The trends and buzzwords in business books are changing more rapidly then ever. Yet your simply tale, Who Moved My Cheese?, has had remarkable sales over a long period of time. How do you explain its incredible longevity as a bestseller?

Spencer Johnson:  It's amazing. The idea is really practical and valuable to people...plus a lot of it is timing. I know I invented this little story so I could heal myself during a time when I wasn't dealing with change very well. That was in 1978. I didn't write the book until 1998. In fact, I wouldn't ever have written the book if Ken Blanchard hadn't called me about two years ago. He said, "When are you ever going to write Who Moved My Cheese?" I told him, "I'm not sure I'm ever going to write it." I didn't want to get back into the world of number of copies sold, where you are on the bestseller list, size of the advance. When you're younger, all of that stuff seems very exciting, but it doesn't really give you a sense of meaning or purpose. Then Ken said, "Do you have any idea how many people this could serve?" He reminded me how many stories we've heard from people over the last 20 years who, after hearing a simple five- or ten-minute oral version of the tale, would say, "That little story helped save my marriage," or "It changed my career," or whatever. So there's something in the simplicity and the nonthreatening nature of the story that people can basically interpret for themselves and get what they want to get out of it. And that seems to be a lot more powerful than reading a book that tells you what the answers are and what you ought to be doing. Who Moved My Cheese? is a simple parable, and while reading it, you discover some things you've probably been thinking about beforehand. It brings them up in such clear terms. What Ken Blanchard said tapped my interest in using simple, practical truths to reduce stress.

bn.com:  Where did that interest originate?

SJ:  Good question. I was always interested, since I was a little boy in being a doctor. I grew up in Hollywood, California. A lot of my parents' friends were in the motion picture industry, but I saw their doctor friends as more solid. I admired them; there was a peacefulness in them, a sense of purpose that I liked. So I became very interested in being a surgeon. I went to the Royal College of Surgeons and Harvard Medical School and all the right places to get the most high-powered training. I was educated to sort of distrust the simple as being so simple that it didn't solve problems. It was during those years of looking at all of the complexities of medicine that I began to make a distinction between simplistic, which was not enough, and simple, which was everything it needed to be, but no more. So I really became fascinated with experimenting to see how the simple would work. I came across a great comment recently from Jack Welch, whom many people consider one of the most effective CEOs in the country. He said that insecure managers create complexity. You can't believe how hard it is for people to be simple, how much they fear being simple. They worry that they will seem simple-minded. The most clear, tough-minded people are always the most simple. Now, Welch is a guy who lives in a pretty complex, large corporation. He too has learned the power of embracing what is simple. I think you have to be much more secure and much less angry to trust the simple. You've got to be in a pretty good place to trust those simple, obvious answers and, most important, to use them.

bn.com:  As I was rereading your book, I kept thinking of all of the books and articles that have been dedicated to Silicon Valley -- its overwhelming pace, it's cannibalistic drive. Is Who Moved My Cheese? a book that sells among the Valley crowd?

SJ:  Apparently it's selling like crazy among them. We're finding many companies from Dell to Apple to IBM are ordering Who Moved My Cheese? in multiple copies. The way that the book is so effective is...when people watch these little characters during the course of the story they stop and say, "Oh, my god, I think I recognize one of these characters." I think high-tech professionals are almost experts at letting go of old cheese and going after the new, because their products become obsolete so quickly. They're not married to the paradigms that we were raised with. They're probably at the cutting edge of letting go of old products, old beliefs, old ways of doing stuff...because if they don't, they're literally out of business.

bn.com:  Why the metaphor of two mice and two "littlepeople" in a maze? Did it just come to you in a flash?

SJ:  I was taking myself very seriously when I was going through life changes. And I realized that I needed to laugh at myself, particularly at my mistakes. I had heard a story some years before about the difference between mice and people -- mice don't keep going to the same place when they find there's no cheese. People keep going back to the same spot and spend a lot of time complaining that the cheese isn't there. So I created a story with characters in it that would get me to laugh.

bn.com:  What was the catalyst in your life that brought this on?

SJ:  The big "D" -- divorce. It was not much fun. And certainly I wasn't going to experience it. That was for the other person to go through, not me. It was a really humbling, eye-opening experience.

bn.com:  Your book has been a big seller among corporations. Do you think Who Moved My Cheese? translates well for entrepreneurs and independent contractors?

SJ:  It seems pretty universal. It's very much for freelance entrepreneurs and noncorporate folks as well. The Red Cross is using it. Ohio State University's athletic department uses it for incoming freshman athletes to help them with the change of going from being big cheeses in high school to a huge university with 20,000 to 40,000 students. Ohio State liked it so much they took it to the NCAA. The NCAA sent out a notice to 450 colleges and universities, suggesting that it would be very useful, not only for faculty but also for students. It's really spread out to so many areas beyond what I conceived when I wrote it.

bn.com:  Am I off base when I say that the biggest criticism you probably get for this book is that it's, pardon the pun, cheesy?

SJ:  I think that's true. First of all, you have to acknowledge that it is cheesy. Lighten up and say, "Yeah, that's true." You don't resist it, you don't defend it. Some people say, "This is the dumbest book I've ever read. I knew everything in it." I already know something about those people, even though they're right. I also know the chances are that nine out of ten of them are not living the book's message. Yes, we know you know it; now what are you doing? You get that reaction particularly when someone gives them the book and says "Here, you need this." One person said, "Getting a copy of this book is like getting a bottle of Scope from your boss." I really like to listen to those readers' comments. I have rewritten this book eight times since it was published. I remember in BusinessWeek the reviewer slammed it, saying "Does the author really think that rodents are smarter than people?" He made a very good point, I thought. In the seventh edition we did a front piece that said, The four characters in the story represent the four parts of ourselves, from the simple to the complex. Sometimes we can sniff out what's going on around us, and sometimes we can scurry into action. Other times, we're like the character "Hem" and we resist, and we like what's comfortable and we're afraid of changing. There are times when we can be like the character "Haw," and we can laugh at ourselves, and move on, and adapt. You just have to accept that a certain percentage of people don't need [this book], don't care for it, or aren't ready for it, and you have to respect that. Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of people seem to enjoy it.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 354 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 354 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    Entertaining Lesson

    A short story about 2 mice and 2 'little people' in a maze looking for cheese. <BR/><BR/>Of course 'cheese' is just a metaphor for what you want in life (such as money, the ideal job), and the 'maze' represents where you are looking for what you want (such as your family, an organization). As the story goes, one of the characters (Haw) learns to deal with change successfully and writes what he has learned on the maze wall. In this way, the reader gets the main points in the book and can learn too how to deal with life's changes. <BR/><BR/>A little book that is big on wisdom, many should find it entertaining and useful. Also recommended The Sixty-Second Motivator -another short story that is to the point and practical

    12 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2004

    Everyday Workers Beware

    Let's get right to the point. If your boss comes up to you one day and tells you that you should read this book (or even worse, hands you a copy), start looking for a new job. Because your days of peace of mind and security in the work place are over. The book is small enough to be read over a lunch break (how convenient), with large print and lots of pictures that look like Sunday Comics rejects. You'll be better served grabbing the latest classifieds and circling new employment possibilities while you finish off your meal. The book uses a simple metaphorical story about two 'rats' (workers) who go to the 'same place everyday' (work) to get their 'cheese' (money). But one day, when some unseen person moves the 'cheese,' the rats are forced to do things they wouldn't normally do just to get the same reward they've been getting all along. Any middle of the road worker who has ever had to work twice as hard after an episode of 'corporate downsizing' just to get the same amount of money out of his paycheck (or even worse, keep his job) should be able to relate. This choice of metaphorical characters should tell you everything you need to know about what the author (and the corporate executives of America) think about the middle of the road American worker. They don't care about the well being of their employees. Your boss will tell this book is about change, and how to accept it in your life and in the workplace. And to an extent that's true. If you want to believe that change is inevitable, there's nothing you can do about it, and you're willing to let your boss bully you around until he decides that some one half your age can do your job half as well as you're already doing it for half the price, you'll fit right in to the environment your employer is trying to create. Because to them, you're just a pawn. And if you don't do exactly what they say (or if they just get tired of looking at you, whichever comes first) they'll take your share of the cheese and give it to some other 'rat.' It¿s sad to think how simplistic this book is. Even a child could read it. Parents who are stupid enough to enjoy this book can start brainwashing their kids early on in life, so when it¿s time for them to enter the workforce they¿ll think being mistreated in the workplace is perfectly normal and even acceptable.

    10 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2001

    One Character Short

    Although this book addresses four different reactions to change and is primarily addressing business situations, it claims to be for aspects of life outside of business as well and in this regard falls one character short. The character missing is the one who asks 'Who cares who moved the cheese, why don't we get out of this maze?' The assumption that we must be in this maze is never questioned by any of the characters. In this light the book is a good example of propaganda for capitalism, but not a good challenge to think 'outside the box', or, in this case, the maze.

    8 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2003

    I found the author's tone condescending...

    I didn't appreciate the simplistic child like analogy...it just feeds into current poor management trends. But I did "see the handwriting on the wall", and left the company that required we all read it.

    7 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2000

    I didn't like it.

    I am a teacher and was required to read this book for staff development. I found it to be somewhat offensive. The overall feel I got from reading this is 'sit down, shut up, and quit your moaning'. I don't think that's an effective way to deal with change.

    7 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2001

    Rats in a corporate maze

    I'm glad I didn't buy this book with my own money. My copy was given to me by 'unnamed company' and it did nothing to improve morale. It actually made our employee outlook even worse. The analogy is degrading. The message I got from the book is to accept poor management with unfocused goals, do what you are told, and be happy with where the powers-that-be move your cheese. Change is inevitable, but this message stinks. What good points were made in the book only highlighted the fact that 'unnamed company' didn't do these things for the employees.

    6 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2009

    Waste of Money

    This book may very well be the stupidest book a human has ever written. It is condescending and an enormous rip-off. It certainly does not even come close to deserving the praise given to it. The reviewers must have felt such immense relief to finally finish the book, that it skewed their judgment.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2006

    Treats You Like A Mouse In A Corporate Maze

    This has got to be the most over-hyped book in history. Why has it sold so many copies? Corporations buy it in bulk and hand out thousands of copies to employees because 'Who Moved My Cheese?' tells employees to not question authority and happily accept any change that comes along. The parallel between mice trapped in a maze and employees stuck in cubicles is striking. When change comes it's not anyone's fault, certainly not anyone in authority, so the best way of dealing with it, advises Dr. Johnson, is to look at the bright side, scurry off to find new cheese and --- oh, yes --- LAUGH at yourself. So the next time downsizing leaves you demoted or out on the street, or a new compensation plan mysteriously cuts your wages, don't forget to laugh at yourself. Just the way management is laughing at you, little mouse.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2002

    This is NOT process improvement

    This book is all about how the individual needs to change in order make things better. The entire book runs counter to the process improvment movement. Rather than blaming the individual for their lack of ability and/or desire to change, the organization should be looking at system issues. If the system is broken the individual will not have the willingness or even the ability to change. This book does a disservice to the individual by placing blame (It is your fault you have decided not to go in search of the cheese) rather than encouraging group problem solving.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2002

    Supporting a Nation of SHEEP

    This book is GARBAGE! It is overly simplistic and is grossly misunderstood and used as a tool to avoid treating people with respect. Remember the Disney film 'The Lion King' when Poombah, the warthog, declares 'You've got to put your past behind you'....that's the philosophy here. Disregard anything bad that happens and let it go...it is past history. According to this book, the employees and stockholders of Enron and WorldCom should not waste time asking 'why' and just move onto finding the next source of cheese. How convenient for the people who are responsible for those messes.

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2001

    Who ReMoved My Execllence?

    ---If the Cheese Book had been passed around Washington's troops the winter Washington crossed the Potomac.--- The colonies would all be saluting the Union Jack today. --- Not one continental soldier would have responded to the speech Washington had read to his men. --- The words, 'These are the times that try men's souls'--- would have been unheeded by the freezing troops. They would have all been scurrying around looking for the fastest way home. --- Americans would all be saluting the Union Jack today. Hail, Britannia! ---In this tale, I could find no impulse to better conditions? ---Nor could I see where it show that one person can make a difference? ---Nor could I see striving for excellence or even the potential for excellence? ---While cute on the surface, I found the story degrading. Setting 'little men' trapped in a Skinner box competing with rodents of equal size for the same survival niche may project a popular view of the world. Unfortunately, that Weltanschauung is not a productive one for bettering the human condition. ---I have found that part of what makes men civilized that they can choke down their fight or flight instincts and carry on with a cause when times get tough? ---This little story plants the subliminal seeds of defeatism. It is a world of little victims that have to figure out how to look out after their own skins. Clearly the way to survive is to be more like rodents. ---This story may not be an excellent tool in softening up employees for lay off if that is your objective as it appears to lower morale. ---As that is how it is appears in the context of required reading at the site of one of my clients. ---The feedback I get is that the story is making them feel stupid for having attempted being ¿TEAM PLAYERS. Being Team Players has always been the management mantra up until the required reading arrived. ---Team players are supposed to look past their own personal interests in the pursuit of the overall team objective? --- Team play includes potentially sacrifice in the achievement of a goal? ---In counterpoint this little tale forwards a world of fair weather friends and sunshine patriots. Where team players are suckers, and loyalty is to be scoffed at. Or at least that is the feedback that I have gotten. I took it the same way. ******An uninspiring morale breaker *******

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2000

    Residue from the Reagan years in a cute new package...

    Given the basic argument of the text, I believe that 'Bend-over for corporate downsizing,' would be a more accurate title. Give this book to let your employees know how little they actually matter.

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2000

    What Well-Publicized Trash!

    'Who Moved My Cheese?' is very disappointing with respect to the price to poor quality book production ratio, the silly, kindergarten-like drawings and the banal nature of the author's message. It seems that certain readers, who praised this book as a panacea for changes in one's personal life, have unfortunately missed the point. This book was obviously written to excuse the callous changes, which managers impose on the workplace. After all,as listed in the book, it is endorsed by managers from more than 70 corporations. As such, this book is abominable. The degrading manner in which employees are threatened with change or loose your jobs and are portrayed as simple brained mice or 'littlepeople' is highly objectionable, insulting and shameful! Let's brush aside this well-publicized, biased trash. If you would like to read a really entertaining, hilarious book about the workplace and see, for a change, what those 'littlepeople' think about management follies and 'vices', then the American satire 'Management by Vice' by C.B. Don, is highly recommended instead!

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2012


    My workplace required this book to be read by all of us mice after they moved our cheese. What they did was lower our pay and added more responsibilities to our jobs. At the same time they restructured and fired all those that were not pulling their weight or voiced their opinions. As a scare tactic perhaps? Its a book that tries to make you understand change and to deal better with changes that you have no control over. Did it help? Not really! I'm still bitter but I have a job...yea me.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2009

    This book should be in schools -- Grade Schools to College

    The ideas are put in such a simple way that they are easy to understand.. they are life changing and/or enabling.. it gives a person the capability to live with change even a life altering change .. without feeling like your giving up your values or lowering your standards.. it makes dealing with change acceptable and it is not focused on any individual political, medical, spiritual or other issue.. it is truly generic.. it is a good primer on how to deal with a changeable world and not become bogged down by it.. and it should be read and re-read at differnt life stages...

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2005

    Are you kidding me?

    I HAD to read this book for my management position at the largest corporation in the world. It really helped me understand that I was working for IDIOTS. How depressing is it when one educates himself, excels into management, and then is required to read a picture book that made me feel like a RAT that should not think for one's self? These types of books are bought in bulk by many major corporations to distribute to their peons with the hope that you will 'buy into' the 'be flexible' concept and do what your told. I could sum the book up in one sentence: Don't question your superiors if you don't want your paycheck (cheese) to move. G-d forbid senior management actually managed their people instead of handing them this book as a panacea for bad morale.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2002

    You've got to be kidding!

    Sorry, but the authors have taken an old sales training story - and wrapped Bob and Carol, Ted and Alice around it. The concept is condescending and lame. Really I'm jealous - I've got to come up with some simplistic scam that will catch the minisecond attention span of the airport reader.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2001

    Zero stars would be more befitting

    This is a trite allegorical that was written for corporations to hand out to their Baby Boomer employees to rattle their cages and warn them about their impending replacements. Subterfuge against labor organizations and unions. No hemming and hawing about it: this is a cheesy little hard bound pamphlet that stinks. But, if you like to be condescended to, it may be right up your little maze-like alley!

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2010

    Stating the obvious.

    This book was recommended to me as a very inspiring book geared to those unhappy in their current careers. I however found no inspiration whatsoever and am totally confused at the high ratings this book recieves.

    This entire book, written in a childlike, condescending manner, completely states the obvious, offers no inspiration, doesn't give any helpful tips, and you could basically see where this book was going after about the first page. I found myself rolling my eyes many times during the quick and dumbed down read.

    Yes I know I need to "find new cheese" when it starts to disappear and that the "cheese" isn't going to magically re-appear. Yes I know it takes hard work, dedication and it isn't always going to be easy. Isn't that what we are taught from a very early age. But reading a ridiculous book about mice running through a maze wearing track suits and sneakers tied around their necks while they find rooms of cheese is not helping me in my quest to find work that I love, or, despite that fact that I know I need to, inspiring me to get out there into that so called maze. The only thing this book did for me was wish I had spent my money on something else. On the other hand I can see this book helpful in teaching young children about what lies ahead for them in the working world.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2009

    Great Book

    I was first introduced to this book by one of my employees. I had just become the Training Manager for my company and was having a hard time dealing with all the overwhelming changes. My employee told me to read it. It was given to her when she graduated college. I make reference to the changes that were occuring because that is what this book was meant for. It was meant to help those deal with change. Although the book is a fast read (it took me a whole hour to read it), it keeps you intrigued to find out what happens. It gave me forsight on how to deal with change and not to be afraid of change. I now have given the book to all of my friends who have had to deal with a life changing event. I have given it to those who are afraid to make a leap in life because of the changes that may occur. If anything, this book will turn on a light bulb and give you a little help on managing the changes in your life that you are afraid to accept. Enjoy!

    2 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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