The premise is wholly original, but fairly simple: in today’s business world, most employees and employers have fallen out of love with one another and are practicing “bad sex” in the form of calculated, mechanical, passionless work relationships. By paying more attention to the trust and intimacy issues that take place in the workplace, however, and thinking beyond mere short-term profitability, the authors of this book believe that companies can transform and revitalize the way that work today gets done.
Granted, while the consistent equation of work relationships with sexual relationships might be a bit unsettling for some readers, we found the metaphor to be a rather refreshing and novel device for helping examine common workplace dysfunctions and their potential solutions. And yes, as you might imagine, even the term “dysfunctional” was addressed in both a business and sexual context! Feelings of employee powerlessness are described in one chapter, for example, as “impotence” — and common workplace perks and benefits are characterized as a form of “corporate Viagra” that managers use in an artificial attempt to stimulate worker passion, effectiveness, and loyalty.
Overall, this unique framework and the authors’ playful sense of humor (both of whom work and reside in the Seattle area) are what make this book stand out from a sea of other crowded titles dealing with leadership and job performance. The book touches upon dozens of important business topics including employee retention, incentive planning, teamwork, and communications, and at the end of the day, it raises a lot of excellent (and overdue) questions about how people today relate to their employment roles.