Jerks at Work: Toxic Coworkers and What to Do About Them

Jerks at Work: Toxic Coworkers and What to Do About Them

by Tessa West
Jerks at Work: Toxic Coworkers and What to Do About Them

Jerks at Work: Toxic Coworkers and What to Do About Them

by Tessa West


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A practical and hilarious guide to getting difficult people off your back, for anyone pulling their hair out over an irritating colleague who's not technically breaking any rules

From open floor plans and Zoom calls to Slack channels, the workplace has changed a lot over the years. But there’s one thing that never changes: you’ll always encounter jerks. Jerks at Work is the definitive guide to dealing with—and ultimately breaking free from—the overbearing bosses, irritating coworkers, and all-around difficult people who make work and life miserable.
Social psychologist Tessa West has spent years leveraging science to help people solve interpersonal conflicts in the workplace. What she discovered is that most of our go-to tactics don’t work because they fail to address the specific motivations that drive bad behavior. In this book, she takes you on a rollicking deep dive of the seven jerks you’re most likely to encounter at the office, drawing on decades of original research to expose their inner workings and weak points—and ultimately deliver an effective game plan for stopping each type before they take you down with them.
Jerks at Work is packed with everyday examples and clever strategies, such as how to:
  •  Stop a Bulldozer from gaining influence by making sure they're not the first to speak up in meetings
  •  Report a Kiss Up/Kick Downer to a manager who idolizes them without looking like the bad guy
  •  Protect your high-achieving team from Free Riders without stifling collaboration
  •  Use a Gaslighter’s tactics to beat them at their own game
For anyone who’s said “I can’t stand that jerk!” more times than they’d like to admit, Jerks at Work is the ultimate playbook you wish you didn’t need but will always turn to.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780593192306
Publisher: Portfolio
Publication date: 01/25/2022
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 501,699
Product dimensions: 8.40(w) x 5.60(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Tessa West is an Associate Professor of Psychology at New York University, where she is a leading expert on interpersonal interaction and communication. She has published over 60 articles in the field of psychology's most prestigious journals, and has received multiple grants, including from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. She is the recipient of the Theoretical Innovation Prize from the Societ for Personality and Social Psychology. She writes regularly about her research in the Wall Street Journal.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 Kiss Up/Kick Downer 17

2 The Credit Stealer 39

3 The Bulldozer 67

4 The Free Rider 91

5 The Micromanager 119

6 The Neglectful Boss 143

7 The Gaslighter 167

Conclusion 193

Acknowledgments 199

What Type of Jerk Do I Have at Work? 201

Quiz 1: Am I a Jerk at Work? 203

Quiz 2: Am I a Effective Ally? 227

Notes 245

Index 257

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