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Best Books to Help You Tackle Office Politics in 2021

When Office Drama strikes, it's important to look outside your office to find some breathing space. We've put together a list of must-read books to tackle office politics that you can refer to when challenging situations arise at the workplace.

15 Must-Read Books for Tackling Office Politics

If you are a leader and/or work in the field of Human Resources and are tired of the office politics and drama, these hand-picked recommendations of books should definitely be part of your reading list. Not only will they equip you to defuse tension, but also put you on a road to a happier, healthier and more productive worklife.

Am I The Only Sane One Working Here?: 101 Solutions for Surving Office Insanity

Am I The Only Sane One Working Here?: 101 Solutions for Surving Office Insanity

- Albert Bernstein

Gossipy coworkers, unmanageable managers, and cranky clients have got you pulling your hair out and gnawing your nails down to nubs. From teammates who drop the ball on deadlines to corporate bullies who try to run your show, your work environment can be lethal to your health and your career. Al Bernstein shows you how to understand the situation, how to keep the craziness from bothering you, how to keep things from getting worse, and how you can make them better.

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Dealing with People You Can’t Stand: How to Bring Out the Best in People at Their Worst

Dealing with People You Can’t Stand: How to Bring Out the Best in People at Their Worst

- Dr. Rick Brinkman, Dr. Rick Kirschner

Dealing with People You Can’t Stand has been helping good people deal with bad behavior in a positive, professional way for nearly two decades. Whether you’re dealing with a coworker trying to take credit for your work, a distant family member who knows no personal bounds, or a loud cell phone talker on line at the grocery store, Dealing with People You Can’t Stand gives you the tools for bringing out the best in people at their worst.

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Shredded: Inside RBS: The Bank that Broke Britain

Shredded: Inside RBS: The Bank that Broke Britain

- Ian Fraser

This might not be an obvious pick for this list, but reading Shredded certainly spells out why you should work to build a work culture that is inclusive of wellbeing whilst taking measures to prevent workplace bullying. The book demonstrates why there is a strong business case for tackling individuals who exploit their position. A bullying culture inside the Royal Bank of Scotland was part of the reason it failed. Its failure then became a factor that led to the financial crisis.

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Managing With Power: Politics and Influence in Organizations

Managing With Power: Politics and Influence in Organizations

- Jeffrey Pheffer

The problem facing managers and organizations today is one of implementation of decisions and how to get things done in a timely and effective way. Problems of implementation are really issues of how to influence behavior, change the course of events, overcome resistance, and get people to do things they would not otherwise do. In a word, power. This book provides an in-depth look at the role of power and influence in organizations, and that its effective use is essential to strong leadership.

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HBR Guide To Office Politics

HBR Guide To Office Politics

- Karen Dillon

Every organization has its share of political drama: Personalities clash. Agendas compete. But you need to work productively with your colleagues,even difficult ones, for the good of your organization and your career. The HBR Guide to Office Politics will help you succeed at work without being a power grabber or a corporate climber. Instead you’ll cultivate a political strategy that’s authentic to you.

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Surviving The Toxic Workplace: Protect Yourself Against Coworkers, Bosses and Work Environments That Poison Your Day

Surviving The Toxic Workplace: Protect Yourself Against Coworkers, Bosses and Work Environments That Poison Your Day

- Linnda Durre

Do you dread going to work? Dealing with pestering coworkers, unmanageable managers, angry clients can take its toll on your job performance. And in these difficult economic times, no one can afford to lose their jobs. In this book, syndicated author and psychotherapist Linnda Durre teaches you how to pinpoint and treat these office maladies with effective communication and conflict negotiation techniques that are sure to bring you peace of mind and peace at work.

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Secrets to Winning at Office Politics: How to Achieve Your Goals and Increase Your Influence at Work

Secrets to Winning at Office Politics: How to Achieve Your Goals and Increase Your Influence at Work

- Marie G. Mclntyre

Office politics are an unavoidable fact of life in every workplace. To accomplish your personal and business goals, you must learn to successfully play the political game in your organization. Whether you are a new player or a seasoned veteran, this book can help you increase your personal power without compromising your integrity or taking advantage of others. This smart, practical guide shows you how to stop wasting energy on things you can't change and start taking steps to get what you want.

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Talking to 'Crazy': How to Deal with the Irrational and Impossible People in Your Life

Talking to 'Crazy': How to Deal with the Irrational and Impossible People in Your Life

- Mark Goulston

Top-ranked psychiatrist and communication expert Mark Goulston shows you how in Talking to "Crazy", a life-changing book for everyone trapped in maddening personal or professional relationships. Goulston unlocks the mysteries of the irrational mind, and explains how faulty thinking patterns develop. His keen insights are matched by a set of counterintuitive strategies proven to defuse crazy behavior, along with scripts, examples, and exercises that teach you how to use them.

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E: A Novel

E: A Novel

- Matt Beaumont

Set in a London ad agency desperate to land a coveted big account, e follows the bureaucratic bungling, cutthroat maneuvers, and outrageous sexual antics of a group of Miller-Shanks employees as they scheme, lie, lust, and claw their way up (and down) the company ladder. Again, not a traditional pick for this list, E: A Novel is a hilarious, dead-on-target fiction on office politics which makes it a very interesting read.

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The Arsonist in the Office: Fireproofing Your Life Against Toxic Coworkers, Bosses, Employees and Cultures

The Arsonist in the Office: Fireproofing Your Life Against Toxic Coworkers, Bosses, Employees and Cultures

- Pete Havel

If you have ever led an organization or participated on a team and felt completely frustrated by the sabotage of another colleague, or client, this book is for you. Building a great culture is always a worthy goal but fireproofing it - is just as important. The book provides detailed practical tools and tactics you need to know how to fireproof yourself and your culture from your organization’s arsonists!

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The Empowered Manager: Positive Political Skills at Work

The Empowered Manager: Positive Political Skills at Work

- Peter Block

Empowerment produces the conditions for high performance. Especially for middle managers and below. Empowered cultures attract and retain talent. They produce high achievement, high accountability and high commitment. The Empowered Manager uncovers a roadmap to creating a more accountable culture in today's fragmented and virtual world.

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Powerful Phrases for Dealing with Difficult People

Powerful Phrases for Dealing with Difficult People

- Renee Evenson

Learning to interact effectively with difficult employees, colleagues, and bosses is an absolute essential for our success. With Powerful Phrases for Dealing with Difficult People, anyone can learn how to confront head-on the difficult situations that can arise when dealing with these personalities, before they fester and spread.

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Making Relationships Work at Work: A Toolkit for Getting More Done With Less Stress

Making Relationships Work at Work: A Toolkit for Getting More Done With Less Stress

- Richard Fox, Anneliese Guérin-LeTendre

Getting things done depends on getting along. And when relationships are difficult, it's not just our work that suffers: it's often our health and wellbeing too. The book covers all the main components of building and maintaining great relationships at work. The author, Richard Fox, is the founder of The Learning Corporation and shares his experience of working with large teams around the world to provide advice that HR Managers and business leaders will find invaluable.

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The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't

The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't

- Robert I. Sutton

The definitive guide to working with -- and surviving -- bullies, creeps, jerks, tyrants, tormentors, despots, backstabbers, egomaniacs, and all the other assholes who do their best to destroy you at work. In this groundbreaking book, Stanford University professor Robert I. Sutton builds on his acclaimed Harvard Business Review article to show you the best ways to deal with assholes...and why they can be so destructive to your company.

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Bossypants

Bossypants

- Tina Fey

Before becoming Liz Lemon and dealing with worklife drama, Tina Fey was a young girl with big dreams. Fey tells the story of how she pushed forward in the face of gender bias and being passed over for well-deserved opportunities. A key factor in Fey’s success is how she works to put politics aside while staying focused on her goals. She shares important advice on how to deal with a tough co-worker, and proves what we've always suspected: you're no one until someone calls you bossy.

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