Waterstones Counterproductive

4.3 out of 5 stars
Waterstones Counterproductive
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Price: £21.99

Brand: Waterstones

 

Description: As online distractions increasingly colonize our time, why has productivity become such a vital demonstration of personal and professional competence? When corporate profits are soaring but worker salaries remain stagnant, how does technology exacerbate the demand for ever greater productivity? In Counterproductive Melissa Gregg explores how productivity emerged as a way of thinking about job performance at the turn of the last century and why it remains prominent in the different work worlds of today. Examining historical and archival material alongside popular self-help genres-from housekeeping manuals to bootstrapping business gurus, and the growing interest in productivity and mindfulness software-Gregg shows how a focus on productivity isolates workers from one another and erases their collective efforts to define work limits. Questioning our faith in productivity as the ultimate measure of success, Gregg's novel analysis conveys the futility, pointlessness, and danger of seeking time management as a salve for the always-on workplace.

 

Category: Books

Merchant: Waterstones

Product ID: 9781478000907

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ISBN: 9781478000907

 
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Author: i.mewburn

Rating: 5

Review: A really interesting take on ‘productivity’ - quite academic, but accessible. I particularly liked the parallels she drew between domestic labour manuals and modern day productivity discourse

 

Author: Thierry G

Rating: 4

Review: This is a well-researched book on the history and many ills of the modern workplace. The author takes a critical look at how the productivity and mindfulness industries appeal to the desire for individuals to take control over their lives, and how these industries fail to address the underlying root issues of the corporate world (and even make it worse). This part, which constitutes the bulk of the book, is well researched and argued, and a bit of an eye-opener. Based on these insights I was hoping to find more practical solutions in this book, which are sadly lacking. The suggestion of moving from individual productivity to collective "productive atmospheres" is interesting, but a bit nebulous and unconvincing, not helped by weak case studies like WeWork and Daybreaker, or the author's admission that she likes using Slack - a tool that encourages the very multi-channel, always-on culture taken apart earlier in the book. It feels like the author simply ran out of steam by the stage it was time to write up conclusions and suggestions, which is a shame because she's clearly onto something. Maybe something for the next book...

 

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