The Truth About Employee Engagement: A Fable About Addressing the Three Root Causes of Job Misery

The Truth About Employee Engagement: A Fable About Addressing the Three Root Causes of Job Misery

by Patrick M. Lencioni


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781119237983
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 11/16/2015
Series: J-B Lencioni Series
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 94,433
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

PATRICK M. LENCIONI is founder and president of The Table Group, a management consulting firm specializing in executive team development and organizational health. As a consultant and keynote speaker, he has worked with thousands of senior executives in organizations ranging from Fortune 500s and high-tech start-ups to universities and nonprofits. He is the author of ten nationally recognized books, including the New York Times best-seller The Five Dysfunctions of a Team.

To learn more about Patrick Lencioni and his other products and services—including his newsletter and free resources—please visit

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Table of Contents

Introduction vii

The Fable

Shock 3

Part One: The Manager 5

Part Two: Retirement 21

Part Three: The Experiment 59

Part Four: Going Live 167

The Model

The Miserable Job 217

The Cost of Misery 219

The Three Signs 221

The Benefits and Obstacles of

Managing for Job Fulfillment 224

Exploring and Addressing the

Causes of Job Misery 229

Case Studies 239

Taking Action 250

The Ministry of Management 253

Acknowledgments 255

About the Author 259

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Three Signs of a Miserable Job 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
M_L_Gooch_SPHR More than 1 year ago
This is a great topic and an easy read. While it is a one-trick book, the topic is so deep and varied that it can fill an entire book. A lot of managerial books that cover a single topic are often shallow and sometimes even fails to offer ways to correct the problems associated with the topic. That is not the case with this book.

The author provides a clear, operational definition of a miserable job. If you have moved around in your career (or not!) you can easily relate to these bad jobs.

I was very glad to see the author lay the bulk of the blame at the manager's feet. This is where it belongs but man. The relationship between the employee and their direct supervisor is one of the most important in that person's life.

The three signs are defined as:

Anonymity - In a recent training class for managers, I asked them to list their subordinates and then to tell me the name of the spouses and name at least one of their children. I struck out. Not a single person could pull this off.

Irrelevance - I am reminded of the two stone cutters. One said his job was hot, dusty and hard. The other enlightened cutter told everyone he was building a cathedral. What a difference between the workers!

"Immeasurement" or not being able to tell if your work is contributing to the success of the organization or themselves. For me, an analogy would be given the job of driving a car cross country but not being given a map, fuel gauge or speedometer.

Buy this book if you want to reduce your employee turnover and help with retention. This is right on point and I can highly recommend it. Michael L. Gooch, SPHR
Guest More than 1 year ago
Decent book! but I will always be miserable at work! thats why they call it work!!
duckieyazi on LibraryThing 21 days ago
This is a must read for CEOs and all managers. And 'no time to read' is an unacceptable excuse because the book can be finished in 3-5 hours. The author has used a story-telling style for the book, making the key concepts easily understood and for some parts, the book can even enlightened the CEO/manager. One particular phrase that should come across as very enlightening is: Strategy and financial reporting should take place once in a year or once in a quarter, but management takes place everyday. Guess a lot of managers didn't realise that and neglect managing people. Irrelevance, Immeasurement and Anonymity - all 3 applies to my current work situation, with irrelevance ranked number 1. My direct boss has demonstrated many times how irrelevant my work is and I always wonder why is he spending money employing someone whose responsibilities he disregard? Will I give him this book to read? I will probably give this book to the CEO of the company I am working in because certain things need to come from the CEO and very importantly, need to be communicated throughout the organization.
lfamous on LibraryThing 21 days ago
I'm enjoying reading modern fables related to business and management. This is a quick read. Enjoyable characters. AThree easy lessons:anonymity, irrelevance and immeasurement.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NathanIves More than 1 year ago
The Three Signs of a Miserable Job: A Fable for Managers (And Their Employees)by Patrick M. Lencioni examines three causes of job dissatisfaction. Focused on the executive and management teams, Mr. Lencioni illustrates the harmful effects of anonymity, irrelevance, and immeasurability on worker performance and ultimately the organization's success. He then prescribes actions that can be taken to overcome these obstacles thereby increasing employee productivity and engagement which subsequently improves organizational performance. Employee performance serves as the foundation for the organization's overall performance. When employee efforts are optimized and aligned to common mission goals, the organization realizes its greatest value potential. Creating job satisfaction and thereby earning employee engagement and promoting focused, productive work effort is the responsibility of every executive and manager. I like The Three Signs of a Miserable Job because it highlights the fundamental job satisfaction needs shared by all employees and the barriers preventing these needs from being met. As with all of his previous fables, Mr. Lencioni offers actionable steps executives and managers can take in order to eliminate these barriers. Additionally, Mr. Lencioni's recommended actions support what I believe is key to sustained, superior success; shared vision, focus, and commitment. As a business novel, The Three Signs of a Miserable Job presents its principles for improving job satisfaction through a believable, vividly illustrated, and easily related to story of two organizations struggling to improve performance. Many of the best practice recommendations found on the StrategyDriven website compliment the actions prescribed in The Three Signs of a Miserable Job; making this book a StrategyDriven recommended read. All the Best, Nathan Ives StrategyDriven Principal
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AlwaysCurious More than 1 year ago
An easy read ... enlightening examples ... easy narrative. Very informative ... of course I thought so since I related to so much of what the author wrote. There's nothing like reading part of your work history in another's account of the issue!! Probably should be required reading in any MBA curriculum .... just so those emerging MBA's have a real handle on the real world!! I enjoyed it thoroughly. Keep it on your bookshelf!!
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This is a must read for anyone who has a job, especially Leaders. The book is written in such a way that you do not want to put it down. I read this complete book in two sittings because the book is written in story form where you just want to know what is next. Contrary to what most may think about the title it is a very upbeat book that shows you how you can make an impact in your employees life with 3 simple concepts and how as an employee you can empower yourself to truely enjoy any line of work. I manage an office of around 12 people and plan on having all of my employees read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Three Signs of a Miserable Job: A Fable for Mangers (and their employees), by Patrick Lencioni, is a great and an informative book. It gives insight in ways to improve business life and relationships with your boss. If you're looking to improve your work life by finding it more rewarding then this is a must read. This book encompasses many aspects on why a job may seem miserable. Lencioni also offers some remedies that may improve a miserable job. A great book for an employer and employees as well! A must read for the working man.