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Dying for a Paycheck: How Modern Management Harms Employee Health and Company Performance--And What We Can Do about It

Jeffrey Pfeffer

In this timely, provocative book, a Stanford business professor contends that many modern management practices are toxic to employees--hurting engagement, increasing turnover, and destroying their physical and emotional health--and to company performance, as he offers ways to build human sustainability at work.y at work.

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Book Information

Publisher: HarperBusiness
Publish Date: 03/28/2018
Pages: 272
ISBN-13: 9780062800923
ISBN-10: 0062800922
Language: English

What We're Saying

March 16, 2018

Jeffrey Pfeffer explains why making employee health and well-being integral to the company’s culture and values is not only good for the employees, but a competitive advantage that is also good for the company’s bottom line. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

November 20, 2018

Our editorial director Dylan Schleicher takes us inside the issues of management and workplace culture by looking inside the best books 2018 offered on the topic. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

March 05, 2018

Business Books to Watch in March

By Dylan Schleicher

These are the books we'll be digging further into in March. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

Full Description

In one survey, 61 percent of employees said that workplace stress had made them sick and 7 percent said they had actually been hospitalized. Job stress costs US employers more than $300 billion annually and may cause 120,000 excess deaths each year. In China, 1 million people a year may be dying from overwork. People are literally dying for a paycheck. And it needs to stop.

In this timely, provocative book, Jeffrey Pfeffer contends that many modern management commonalities such as long work hours, work-family conflict, and economic insecurity are toxic to employees--hurting engagement, increasing turnover, and destroying people's physical and emotional health--and also inimical to company performance. He argues that human sustainability should be as important as environmental stewardship.

You don't have to do a physically dangerous job to confront a health-destroying, possibly life-threatening, workplace. Just ask the manager in a senior finance role whose immense workload, once handled by several employees, required frequent all-nighters--leading to alcohol and drug addiction. Or the dedicated news media producer whose commitment to getting the story resulted in a sixty-pound weight gain thanks to having no down time to eat properly or exercise. Or the marketing professional prescribed antidepressants a week after joining her employer.

In Dying for a Paycheck, Jeffrey Pfeffer marshals a vast trove of evidence and numerous examples from all over the world to expose the infuriating truth about modern work life: even as organizations allow management practices that literally sicken and kill their employees, those policies do not enhance productivity or the bottom line, thereby creating a lose-lose situation.

Exploring a range of important topics including layoffs, health insurance, work-family conflict, work hours, job autonomy, and why people remain in toxic environments, Pfeffer offers guidance and practical solutions all of us--employees, employers, and the government--can use to enhance workplace wellbeing. We must wake up to the dangers and enormous costs of today's workplace, Pfeffer argues. Dying for a Paycheck is a clarion call for a social movement focused on human sustainability. Pfeffer makes clear that the environment we work in is just as important as the one we live in, and with this urgent book, he opens our eyes and shows how we can make our workplaces healthier and better.

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