Dear customers, please be informed that our shopping cart will be unavailable between August 21 and September 1, 2014, as we will be making some changes to serve you better. To minimise any possible delivery disruption, we encourage you to make your purchases before August 21. We appreciate your understanding and apologise for any inconvenience.

Wiley
Wiley.com
Print this page Share
E-book

The Three Signs of a Miserable Job: A Fable for Managers (And Their Employees)

ISBN: 978-0-470-89399-9
272 pages
June 2010, Jossey-Bass
The Three Signs of a Miserable Job: A Fable for Managers (And Their Employees) (0470893990) cover image
A bestselling author and business guru tells how to improve your job satisfaction and performance.

In his sixth fable, bestselling author Patrick Lencioni takes on a topic that almost everyone can relate to: the causes of a miserable job. Millions of workers, even those who have carefully chosen careers based on true passions and interests, dread going to work, suffering each day as they trudge to jobs that make them cynical, weary, and frustrated. It is a simple fact of business life that any job, from investment banker to dishwasher, can become miserable. Through the story of a CEO turned pizzeria manager, Lencioni reveals the three elements that make work miserable -- irrelevance, immeasurability, and anonymity -- and gives managers and their employees the keys to make any job more fulfilling.

As with all of Lencioni s books, this one is filled with actionable advice you can put into effect immediately. In addition to the fable, the book includes a detailed model examining the three signs of job misery and how they can be remedied. It covers the benefits of managing for job fulfillment within organizations -- increased productivity, greater retention, and competitive advantage -- and offers examples of how managers can use the applications in the book to deal with specific jobs and situations.

Patrick Lencioni (San Francisco, CA) is 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 and executive teams in organizations ranging from Fortune 500 companies to high-tech startups to universities and nonprofits. His clients include AT&T, Bechtel, Boeing, Cisco, Sam s Club, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, Allstate, Visa, FedEx, New York Life, Sprint, Novell, Sybase, The Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Lencioni is the author of six bestselling books, including The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. He previously worked for Oracle, Sybase, and the management consulting firm Bain & Company.

See More

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

See More
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 six nationally recognized books, including the New York Times best-seller The Five Dysfunctions of a Team.
See More
Lencioni, a consultant, speaker and bestselling author (The Five Dysfunctions of a Team), pinpoints the reasons behind and ways around what many consider a constant of the human condition: job dissatisfaction. According to Lencioni, job-fueled misery can ultimately seep into all aspects of life, leading to drug and alcohol abuse, violence and other problems, making this examination of job misery dynamics a worthy pursuit. Through the "simple" tale of a retired CEO-turned-pizzeria manager, Lencioni reveals the three corners of the employee unhappiness pyramid—immeasurability, anonymity and irrelevance—and how they contribute to dissatisfaction in all jobs and at all levels (including famously unfulfilled celebrities and athletes). The main culprit is the distancing of people from each other (anonymity), which means less exposure to the impact their work has (immeasurability), and thus a diminished sense of their own utility (irrelevance). While his major points could have been communicated more efficiently in a straightforward self-help fashion, his fictional case study proves an involving vessel for his model and strategies (applicable to managers and lower-level staff alike), and an appendix-like final chapter provides a helpfully stripped-down version. (Aug.) (Publishers Weekly Annex (Online), July 30, 2007)

"Lencioni knows how to spin a good yarn and he weaves in plenty of advice…this book is essential reading." (British Airways Business Life, October 2007)

"…well-written fable…a must-read" (Accounting Technician, October 2007)

"...filled with actionable advice...A must-read for managers and employees alike seeking to get the most out of their jobs."  (Securities & Investment Review, November 2007)

“…written in such a way that you'll find yourself wanting to know what happens to the characters“ (Personnel Today, March 2008)

"As with all lencioni's books, this one is filled with actionable advice you can put into effect immediately." (PublicNet, September 24, 2008)

"This is a page-turner that unravels the mystery of job satisfaction for any manager. Whether you manage six or sixty-thousand people, it is essential reading."
—Trevor Fetter, president and CEO, Tenet Healthcare Corporation

"In a sea of generic books on employee engagement and empowerment, Lencioni throws us a life preserver. His book is a masterful tale which I highly recommend to leaders and anyone else trying to build more personal satisfaction in their work."
—Kevin D. Wilde, vice president, chief learning officer, General Mills, Inc.

"Lencioni provides a powerful message to all who lead people, one that will produce exceptional loyalty and results. This simple book can make a huge difference."
—Robert W. Savage, chief operating officer, Taco Bell Corp.

"I love this clever and insightful book! It will remind any manager, at any level, why they became a manager in the first place!"
—Greg Cross, senior vice president, Hilton Hotels Corporation

"Don’t let the simplicity of his message fool you. Lencioni provides powerful, practical real-world solutions for improving results by putting people first. I found many new ideas for self-improvement that I can’t wait to try!"
—Jeff Lamb, vice president, people and leadership development, Southwest Airlines

See More
Back to Top