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Reviewed by Randy B. Lichtman for Readers' Favorite
A fascinating book about the real life of human resources in organizations is They Did What? Unbelievable Tales from the Workplace by Cornelia Gamlem and Barbara Mitchell. The authors refer to the book as being part of a new genre, “creative non-fiction”, and it is an effective way of illustrating factual situations using characters that are fictionalized. The storytelling was very effective and I enjoyed reading a book that was more interesting than an academic textbook of case studies. The approach of using fictionalized characters as part of a management team makes the situations interesting and realistic, as the stories are based on real events the authors have experienced or heard about. Sometimes the CEO, COO, and corporate attorneys are part of the resolution, as they would have been brought into many of the situations.
The important topics illustrated throughout this book include sexual harassment, theft, hostile workplace, ineffective supervision, social media, inappropriate texting, and sending of pictures, among others. The authors show how these issues are dealt with in the real world of human resources and will provide a valuable perspective to all those who manage employees. This can also be an excellent supplemental book to a course in human resources management, as the chapters can provide for an interesting discussion. I highly recommend They Did What? Unbelievable Tales from the Workplace by Cornelia Gamlem and Barbara Mitchell. The scenarios provided are realistic and handled very professionally. Sometimes managers do not understand or appreciate the complex issues that may take place because of an employee not following procedures. The creative non-fiction approach is very effective in providing those managers with a clear understanding of what does occur and how they can play an important part in the human resource solution. Excellent book.