Corporate Crap

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 31 Jan 2019

Member Reviews

Though the book's description states it "takes a humorous look at the business practices that lead employees to look for new employment," readers cannot be sure if this is really a humorous book or not. The book does have some humorous moments, but it also works to be a serious work including various research references in the text and observations. So to be honest, one cannot really be sure if the author is being serious or not. Do note that although he cites articles and studies, the book lacks a formal bibliography and/or works cited page. 

The book contains a prologue, 23 chapters, and an epilogue. Some of the chapters' topics are: 

    Exit interviews
    Corporate jargon

The book has some pluses and minuses. On the positive, the author has plenty of experience, and he has many tales to tell, some of which he features in the book. The book also has a lot that may speak to corporate workers. Some of it may also speak to academia, though I wonder if that is due to similarities or the fact that academia keeps getting more corporate. On the negative, as I said, the vagueness of the humor. Also the author tries to keep an illusion of neutrality, but it does not always succeed. He can go back and forth taking sides. Rather than sincere, he thus comes across a bit mercenary; your mileage may vary on this. 


The book is a relatively easy read with very short chapters. You can just read a bit here and a bit there until you finish it. 

Overall, I thought it was OK. Much of the content I've seen in other books about business b.s., so this is not really new or groundbreaking. It is presented in an easy and accessible format. I'd say for libraries this would be an optional selection for public libraries. I would not really recommend it for academic libraries. It makes some good points, and it has some humor, but that is about it.
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This was a  funny and a quick read. It was an interesting perspective inside of corporate world. I would recommend people to read this book if you want to laugh. It is very easy to read. It didn't take me long to finish the book.
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I can't remember what I was expecting from this book. It was the title that appealed to me, well it's not what you expect to see on the front cover of a book in the business section.

The author examines a series of different business practices, situations and explains through his own experience why they are exactly what the title suggests.

I felt like I was reading a collection of articles that a grumpy old bloke had written for the local weekly paper about what is wrong with the corporate world after a career in which he had achieved very little.

Then each chapter includes some common sense descriptions of what the corporate world could do to improve the way it operates. 

For me these later parts of each chapter are more appealing than the first parts.
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DNF at 62%. I kept trying to enjoy this book, but I just couldn't. This book is just Howard Harrison complaining about all the things he didn't like in his years of working coporately. As someone who is new in the workforce, I was hoping Harrison would give advice on ways to avoid or maneuver the corporate crap.
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One of the words I chose to describe this book was sadly humorous. For anyone who has spent most of their lives working for a corporation this a story that rings true everyday for a majority of us.
On the same note this rings as a cautionary tale for younger generations entering the work force at present.
This is a must read for all of those who work in a corporate setting and for those who will hopefully take a way of personal responsibility and ownership as to why us cronies make it so miserable for each other.
Sadly that would be striving for a perfect world.
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Hilarious read although does have some valuable lessons too. I've had the same levels on nonsense throughout my 30 years in NGOs although, thankfully not the open plan/cubicle accommodation but only because I was in a listed 16th century building where 'they' couldn't fiddle about to any extent. The meetings - well, I spent a lot of time calculating the cost of them, in travel and non-productive time,  rather than the tedious reports being read out or Powerpoint presented. Acronyms - a hoot. One of our local "Business Officers" produced a list for newcomers to help them out but this was not approved by senior management, of course. There were various sub-committees set up as a result to produce...a formal list for new employees that was essentially the same as the original one - but with approval. If Senior Management should  read this, perhaps a moot point in itself, I wonder whether they will take notice of very valuable comments - for example, ask the relevant people for their views before designing and imposing new whatever is but one place to start (we had new IT where everything had to have a valid post-code, no developer having considered that many of our remote sites had no such thing, so no-one could input data for such sites!) but it was fun to read.. 

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
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A good book. Doesn't really say anything new regarding how corporations treat employees. It is told in a compelling entertaining style. For any one that is feeling frustrated working for a corporation (or thoughtless leadership) - reading this book should give the reader a sense of empowerment.
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Having personally carved out four decades of experience in the corporate world, the author came well-armed. The well-written narrative took me through the ups and downs (mostly downs) of life in the corporate world. As the carefully constructed chapters flew by, I came to realize that sometimes the truth can be funnier than let's say, an intended joke: "Say Joe, did you hear the one about...?" 

From beginning to end my chuckling never ceased while reading about many of the ridiculous protocols and behaviors that are an everyday occurrence in the workplace. Anyone who's ever had any contact with the corporate world would find great pleasure accompanied with welcome laughs with this easy-to-read book. 

My thanks go out to NetGalley and Dog Ear Publishing for this ARC in exchange for an unbiased review.
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As a fellow curmudgeon, I appreciated Howard's condemnation of brainstorming, mission statements, Myers-Briggs, standing meetings, and outlandish CEO pay. He points out the silliness of formalizing mentoring and team building “exercises,” but he also objects to employee social events and even shaking hands which veers into oddball territory. It's not clear who this book is written for. Perhaps he intended to enlighten the indoctrinated, but at the end he suddenly encourages his readers to “rise above” as though it's a pity party. The tone is generally bitter, not funny, especially when he recounts the experience of being fired immediately after a holiday party and his wife's being let go after she caught a black woman shoplifting. He makes some excellent arguments, but what could have been a humorous and witty read comes off ultimately as unpleasant.
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Funny and a quick read - at parts went a little too into detail, but very interesting to anyone who has/does work in corporate America!
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This book was an interesting read, but as a low-level employee, I feel like I did not get as much out of this as I could have. As I was reading, I kept thinking that this would be a great read for those that are in positions of power. It really puts some of the crazy things companies do into perspective. I've had to deal with most of the issues mentioned in the book, so I understood the author's views. There were a few that I have not experienced, and after having read about them, I'm going to cross my fingers that they never happen.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Author: Howard Harrison
Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing
Publication Date: 01 Oct 2018
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Corporate Crap by Howard Harrison is a refreshing and mildly entertaining read that hits all the right notes about well...Corporate Crap. There are so many things that happen in corporate work environment that we take it for granted without ever stopping to think about them such as their rationality and relevance to either the company or employee. For example, what's up with all those meetings where hardly anyone is paying attention but goes on just because it's the corporate culture and is on a standing schedule every Monday morning. Those brainstorming sessions to invoke creativity among employees oh and by the way they don't call them employees any more rather they are called associated or team members and by other such names. The author calls on all these idiosyncrasies of corporate world in this book aptly titled Corporate Crap. It's an easy read and appropriately priced and will make a good gift for your manager or CEO. Ha ha ha!! :-)
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I received a digital copy of this book via NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This is a hilarious read for anyone who works or has worked in an office setting. It’s a must-read for anyone who seems to be frustrated in their office situation. This author takes real-life frustrations and situations to hilarious heights and shows just how crazy people can get and how crazy everything all is.
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Ha!  No workplace is perfect. And this book proves it!  This book was hilarious! It's a quick read that, universally, everyone can relate to it.  Howard Harrison has written the definitive guide to what we all have experienced at one time or another, in one place or another in our careers. I think maybe it would make a good gift to someone just starting their first job, some one in mid-career, and for sure as a retirement gag gift of what the person WON"T be missing! Great read! Quick, easy and loads of laughs!
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I thought reading this would give me some insight into how big companies work . I didn't learn anything new , The company I work for is going through big changes but we 're all still a number . This book seems like rehashed material.  I wouldn't pay for it . Sort of book that ends up doing the rounds in charity shops .
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A quick and dirty read and a relief if you wonder whether your office is the only one that's totally crazy. Appreciated the in depth look at ones such as Meyers Briggs, but not dragging out little things like meetings, seating plans. Also liked how he made the connection that while he calls it corporate crap, we know it's endemic.
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Corporate Crap is a book you have to read just because of the title. Everyone has their own battle stories, and I imagine most people will be looking for recognition of their own situations throughout the book. They will be rewarded. Howard Harrison has covered pretty much everything that is bad, wrong, hypocritical and absurd in corporate life. 

Harrison keeps it short and easy to digest. So it’s not investigative journalism so much as pointing at the naked emperor. The chapters are three or four pages. They cover hiring, interviewing, firing, bosses, cubicles, pay, reviews, parties, lunch, consultants, layoffs, meetings, brainstorming and many more.

There are memorable passages. The remorseful inventor of the office cubicle calls most installations of the office cubes as “monolithic insanity”. But they’re still a big step up from the open plan.

Meyers-Briggs questionnaires are a perversion of Carl Jung’s theories, and separating employees into extroverts and introverts achieves absolutely nothing. Unless the company is one of those that discriminates against introverts, of course.

People make decisions based on the quality of a handshake. Handshaking is corporate crap at its purest, Harrison says.

What Harrison doesn’t do is the why. Corporate life is basically crowd control. Two guys in a garage can figure out anything between them, but when a company has four levels of management, tens of thousands of employees around the country or the world, and regs to follow, all kinds of idiocy pops up.

Corporate Crap is the kind of book that needs to be preserved for discovery by some future anthropologist. It gives a concise and precise picture of working life in corporate America, evidence for why people were so unsatisfied with their working lives, and important clues to the decline and fall.

David Wineberg
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