Are you the same man you are at the workplace as you are at home? Have you mastered the art of balancing your professional and personal selves? Careers can be fulfilling, but they are also a source of stress and fatigue. From addressing the taboo of emotions at work to collaboration on an international scale, here’s how to navigate your identity in this mentally violent landscape.
Bullshit Jobs: A Theory by David Graeber
It isn’t every day that you’re asked if what you’re getting paid to do is utter rubbish. When Graeber wrote an essay for Strike! six years ago, it set off a domino effect. Whether we’re making a meaningful contribution to the world is still relevant today, however a ‘bullshit job’ is not necessarily what you think it is. The audit on modern society is heavily American in context and being the extended version of the article, can come across as being, well, extensive. Our advice: do not read it as an inspirational book, but a worthwhile discussion.
No Hard Feelings: The Secret Power of Embracing Emotions at Work by Liz Fosslien & Mollie West Duffy
We know what the number one rule for judging books is, but how can you not be taken in by that title and cover? Thankfully, consistent with its exterior, the content is insightful and extremely readable. Don’t underestimate the cute illustrations as the tips are backed by research. Some might read like common sense but serve as good reminders if you’re not applying that knowledge in real life. You spend a great fraction of your life in the office, so you should definitely know how to dispel the age-old myth of no emotions at the workplace.
Originals by Adam Grant
If you’re the type to put off reading highly acclaimed titles for fear that the popularity is misplaced, it’s perfectly understandable. Even the author agrees. Along with how procrastination is not always a bad thing, Grant challenges common misconceptions about the movers and shakers we know to reveal how they share personality traits not very unlike ours. See the reality of what it takes to make a difference in this encouraging collection of anecdotes that nudges you towards a safe venture against conformity.
The Culture Map by Erin Meyer
A big part of our identity is embedded in the culture that surrounds us. In this increasingly globalised business terrain where we encounter colleagues and working styles vastly unfamiliar to what we’re accustomed to, this eye-opener surfaces the practical context of a multicultural office. Gain a better understanding of human communication and collaboration on an international scale from a first-hand perspective and other nuanced views. It may require more research, but is comprehensive for such a relevant topic.
The Room by Jonas Karlsson
This fiction hits close to home for white-collared, pigeon-holed corporates. Follow meticulous office worker Bjorn and his chance discovery of a space that’s oddly unknown to everyone else. The room increases his productivity and provides solace from his environment, but the more he uses it, the stranger his colleagues start to regard him. A great read for when you have only a few minutes to spare, this short, surreal tale is imperative for the modern employee.
These titles are available at Books Kinokuniya.