Genuine Curiosity

Author Dwayne Melancon is always on the lookout for new things to learn. An ecclectic collection of postings on personal productivity, travel, good books, gadgets, leadership & management, and many other things.


Get out of your own way at work

I just finished reading one of the best “coach in a book” type of books I’ve read in a very long time.  The book is Mark Goulston’s, “Get Out of Your Own Way at Work...And Help Others Do the Same: Conquer Self-Defeating Behavior on the Job.”

This book provides very clear guidance on 40 different problem areas that can limit your success at work, each covered in a separate chapter.  index_goyowaw The topics covered include

  • Being Competent but Out of Touch
  • Procrastinating
  • Being Afraid to Fire People
  • Quitting Too Soon
  • Not Forgiving
  • Expecting Your Boss To Appreciate You

and many more (you can see the entire table of contents which includes all the topics in Amazon’s preview of the book).

Chock full of goodness

Each section provides a clear description of how each of the self-defeating behaviors might manifest itself, some specifics about the “damage” the behavior can cause, great quotes, and many of the sections include stories from Goulston’s research to further illustrate the point.

The things I liked best were:

  • “Usable Insight” observations sprinkled into the text (example: “You have more control over trying or quitting than you do over succeeding or failing”).
  • The specific, usable “Action Steps” at the end of each of the 40 chapters that provide real (not idealistic or unrealistic) steps you can take to try to improve.

It’s like self-service coaching

I think anyone can benefit from this book.  When I read through all of the sections, I definitely recognized quite a few areas where I could improve and the advice in the book felt just like it was coming from a wise business coach.  Not bad for a book that costs around 10 bucks.

Go check out the topics in the table of contents.  If any of them sound familiar (and you want to improve in any of those areas), then pick up a copy of this book.

You can also find some good information and inspiration at Dr. Mark Goulston’s excellent blog.