Brutal Job Market Molding Dr. Phil's Everywhere

The job market has sent people searching for answers, and their search has resulted in a mass exodus to the self-help aisles, creating a mini-boom in the ever popular self-help industry. But how useful is all this career advice?

Looking to quell fears of impending job loss, several print and online publications have unveiled their lists of "can't-miss" ways for Americans to keep their jobs. An About.com  list of 10 tips starts with "don't excel," followed immediately by "don't do poorly." Desperate--and by now confused--readers are later instructed to "use the mantra ‘I'm just happy to have a job.'"


Those hoping for something more, well, helpful than statements on mediocrity and self-preservation have sought out the popular business self-help racket, headlined by Stephen Covey's The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People  and its 15 million copies sold. With the Bureau of Labor Statistics showing 5.7 million jobs lost since December 2007, a troubled publishing industry is seizing a the opportunity.

The new crop of career rescuing titles started last year with the release of Stephen Viscusi's "Bulletproof Your Job: 4 Simple Strategies to Ride Out the Rough Times and Come Out on Top at Work." In the search for a voice on professional stability, the CEO of the Viscusi Group  executive search firm subsequently became a job-keeping authority.

With Viscusi appearing on everything from Good Morning America to the Tyra Banks Show, book stores have since seen a wave of similar leadership and job books. Originally a best-seller in the UK, Life's a Pitch  recently made its North American debut while Harvard Business School Press' "Think Again" ties efficient decision-making directly to certain brain processes. Even Newt Gingrich has a new leadership book. Of course, the beauty of the self-help industry, which saw $11 billion in revenue in the U.S. market alone, is that there aren't available metrics to confirm how truly helpful these books are. But the market at least shows that self-help gurus are keeping their jobs.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Dead – yes, dead – tardigrade found beneath Antarctica

A completely unexpected discovery beneath the ice.

(Goldstein Lab/Wkikpedia/Tigerspaws/Big Think)
Surprising Science
  • Scientists find remains of a tardigrade and crustaceans in a deep, frozen Antarctic lake.
  • The creatures' origin is unknown, and further study is ongoing.
  • Biology speaks up about Antarctica's history.
Keep reading Show less

If you want to spot a narcissist, look at the eyebrows

Bushier eyebrows are associated with higher levels of narcissism, according to new research.

Big Think illustration / Actor Peter Gallagher attends the 24th and final 'A Night at Sardi's' to benefit the Alzheimer's Association at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on March 9, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
popular
  • Science has provided an excellent clue for identifying the narcissists among us.
  • Eyebrows are crucial to recognizing identities.
  • The study provides insight into how we process faces and our latent ability to detect toxic people.
Keep reading Show less

Why are women more religious than men? Because men are more willing to take risks.

It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.

Photo credit: Alina Strong on Unsplash
Culture & Religion
  • Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
  • A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
  • The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
Keep reading Show less