Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
The Schmuck in My Office

The Schmuck in My Office

How to Deal Effectively with Difficult People at Work

Jody Foster, M.D., MBA with Michelle Joy, M.D.

St. Martin's Press




"This is a timely must-read for managers and anyone who has ever had to deal with a difficult coworker; it addresses a ubiquitous problem in a proactive, positive manner that should get the desired results." - Publishers Weekly

Everyone has a “schmuck” in their office---a difficult, disruptive person who upsets the workplace, confuses coworkers, and causes concern. It’s hard to understand why schmucks act the way they do, but one thing is certain---they seem to come in all shapes and sizes. . . .

- Narcissus---the condescending attention-seeker who carelessly steps on everyone’s toes
- The Flytrap---the bringer of chaos whose emotional instability causes an office maelstrom
- The Bean Counter---the orderly perfectionist who never gives up control, even when it’s full-steam-ahead to disaster
- The Robot---the unreadable stone wall who just can’t connect

Sound like anyone you know? These are just a few of the more prominent types of difficult people at work. In The Schmuck in My Office, Dr. Jody Foster explains the entire spectrum of people we may think of as schmucks, how they can decrease productivity, destroy teams, and generally make everyone else unhappy. Along with nailing down the various types, she looks at personality traits and explains how dysfunctional interactions among coworkers can lead to workplace fiascos. She helps readers understand schmucks as people, figure out how to work with them, and ultimately solve workplace problems. She also makes readers consider the most difficult thing of all: despite where your finger may be pointing, sometimes you are the “schmuck”! Let Dr. Foster teach you how to make your workplace a happier and more productive one.



When I was in business school, a classmate came to me with a disturbing story about his office. “Some guy, we think we know who it is,” he said, “goes to the bathroom every day, takes a dump, and after he’s...


Praise for The Schmuck in My Office

"Reading The Schmuck in My Office is like taking a top psychiatrist to work with you. You’ll gain fascinating insight into the people who poison workplace culture and wreck others’ peace of mind. Even better, you’ll learn strategies for dealing with them productively." - Marshall Goldsmith, executive coach, business educator and New York Times bestselling author, ranked the number one leadership thinker in the world —Thinkers50

“Dr. Foster offers business people a simple, intuitive, and occasionally hilarious typology for spotting types of difficult people at work. Which type of disruptive person is this? How did they get that way? How to handle them? This book is a refreshing contribution to the field.”- Geoff Smart, Chairman & Founder of ghSMART and New York Times bestselling author of Who and Power Score.

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Jody Foster, M.D., MBA with Michelle Joy, M.D.

JODY FOSTER, MD, MBA, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Vice Chair for Clinical Operations in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania Health System and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Pennsylvania Hospital. She attained her MBA, with a concentration in finance, from the Wharton School.

MICHELLE JOY is currently a forensic psychiatry fellow at the University of Pennsylvania interested in the intersections between clinical medicine and the humanities.

Jody Foster

Jordan Cassway Photography

Jody Foster

Michelle Joy

Jordan Cassway Photography

From the Publisher

St. Martin's Press

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