Tuesday, September 11, 2012

‘Social Thinking at Work’ provides detailed explanation

Book cover: "Social Thinking at Work"

Social Thinking at Work: A Guidebook for Understanding and Navigating the Social Complexities of the Workplace by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke is a worthy addition to my list of books for people on the autism spectrum.

Social Thinking at Work provides a detailed explanation of a subject that people are expected to grasp intuitively.

Winner and Crooke describe this ability as a “social radar system.” Those of us without that innate ability can be seriously disadvantaged -- hence my emphasis on the value of this book.

I believe I would have been spared a lot of loneliness and frustration at my inability to connect had this book been available to me when I was a young adult.

The use of good social skills, according to the authors, is more than just “acting nice.” Rather, it involves “the ability to effectively adapt our social behavior around others according to the situation, what we know about the people in the situation, and what our own needs are.”

Detailed chapters explain social thinking, good communication skills, and other aspects of social thinking. The authors address various situations that a person can expect to encounter at work, including frank discussions of bullying and sexual harassment.

Of particular benefit is an examination of using social media, given the insight about a person it can give to a potential employer.

Readers are given an opportunity to apply what they learn through Social Behavior Mapping: describe the situation, the behaviors they produce and whether it was expected or unexpected according to the situation.

The reader can document how the behavior was interpreted, the feelings it caused in others and the consequences. Finally, they can document their reactions to how people then treated them.

Social Thinking at Work is co-published by Think Social Publishing, Inc. and the North River Press Publishing Corporation.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a review copy of this book from the publisher. The opinion expressed is my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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