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GoGuide Book Review sponsored by Prairie Lights Book Store Iowa City

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“Surrounded by Idiots”

Review by Terri Schlichenmeyer: The Bookworm Sez

Every day of the week, you want to pound your head against your desk. What is wrong with your co-workers?  Argh, you can barely stand it, but read the new book “Surrounded by Idiots” by Thomas Erikson, and you’ll see that the situation is not so black and white.

Five days a week, you grit your teeth and take a deep breath. That’s thousands of hours per year, spent with co-workers who bug you. So how can you get along with them? Says Erikson, “the first thing to know is that the listener controls communication. You can talk until you’re crimson-faced, but it’s all up to he who hears it. Furthermore, though you may think your co-workers are downright weird, every kind of behavior is normal.” Knowing that makes it easier to move forward and to understand.

Next, using a method of communication called DISA (or DISC), which stands for Dominance, Inducement, Submission, and Analytic ability (or Compliance), you can categorize people in your mind by colors correlating to “primary personality types.” This helps you see why people act as they do.

Reds, for instance, are the quick-reacting folks who are dominant and decisive and not always useful in making relationships. Greens, who make up the most prominent subset of people, are calm, supportive, and they generally hate change. Yellows are the sunniest of people and try to always look on the bright side. Organized blues are the Sheldons of the world, and require complete knowledge on issues before committing.

So why seek this book out? Like other tests, Erikson uses science to back up his methods of personality assesments. However, This book is more casual in its approach, more anecdote-based, and more on the lighthearted side, too, which makes it fun to read.

Get “Surrounded by Idiots” and put your business in the pink.

by Thomas Erikson | c.2019, St. Martin’s Essentials | $27.99 USA | 304 pages