By @SimonCocking review of The Rules of People by Richard Templar, out now, published by Pearson, priced £10.99 or €8,56. For more information see here.

A PERSONAL CODE FOR GETTING THE BEST FROM EVERYONE. We all know someone who is a natural ‘people person’. They seem to understand what people really want, what they really think and what they really mean. They can effortlessly get people onside, and keep them happy and motivated. Is there something they know that the rest of us don’t? Is it something we can all learn? The answer is a resounding yes. They know The Rules of People. These Rules are the guiding principles that show you how to connect with strangers, build strong relationships with friends and colleagues, and even get the best out of difficult people. They will help you say the right thing, do the right thing, and know instinctively how to handle every situation. You’ll have relaxed, easy relationships and you’ll be that person who gets on with everyone.

People are people…, and yet we still have to work with them, get along with them, interact with them, and try to encourage, cajole, inspire them to do what we’d like them to do. There is the expression ‘like herding cats’ but perhaps humans are an even trickier prospect. In this context a lot of what is covered in this book is common sense, but perhaps it is actually uncommon sense. Knowing something, and remembering to do it is something completely different. Until work is completely automated then we will need to deal with other people, (and when it is automated we will be out of jobs anyway). There are also some canny ideas in the book too, like Rule 63 for example ‘credit people with your own ideas’ because it is then hard for them to say it wasn’t there idea.

Overall the book isn’t aiming to be Machiavellian, rather just emotionally intelligent, and a smart operator when it comes to dealing with people, their foibles, and how they tick. While we review many business books, and not all are the lightest of reading, this book was an enjoyable read because you can’t help but reflect on your own dealings with people. Did you do things in the smartest of ways? Could you have managed the situation better, and was the outcome optimal? The best managers, CEOs, and inspiring people know when to take their own ego out of the way, and truly listen to the people around them. If, and when you can do this, you are only increasing your own chances of success, both personally, and in work.

It’s a good, easy but smart read, and we’d recommend it.

Difficult People: Dealing with Moaners at Work


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