A humorous yet practical five-step guide to ridding ourselves—and our companies—of the bureaucratic bottlenecks and red tape that plague every office.

by Martin Lindstrom
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, January 2021

A few weeks after employees began working from home, it didn’t take business leaders long to be seduced by the obvious efficiency benefits and slam-dunk cost savings arguments. From the perspective of employees, the usual boundaries between work and home that once protected their emotional lives from workplace stresses vanished as a single gigantic online channel of bureaucracy was piped straight into their homes and apartments.”
How come every Zoom call lasts exactly 1 hour no matter how mundane the call is? And why did all the toilet-breaks disappear as Zoom became everyday work life in our bedrooms? Why has a simple action like buying office equipment turned into a 6-people-committee decision followed by a 5-level approval process? When a 264 page PPT deck kicks off with “Welcome to the Christmas Party Planning Meeting”… it’s time to call the Ministry of Common Sense – to put an end to it once and for all! It’s time to get rid of the wasted time red tape, to remove the silly rules and recover common sense to serve our customers better. Laser-beam insightful, side-splittingly funny and packed with solutions, THE MINISTRY OF COMMON SENSE will show you how to transform your company. When you’ve stopped crying with laughter, that is…

Martin Lindstrom is the founder and chairman of Lindstrom Company, a global branding & culture transformation firm, operating across five continents and more than 30 countries. Time Magazine has named Lindstrom one of the “World’s 100 Most Influential People,” and for three years running, Thinkers50 has selected Lindstrom to be among the world’s top 50 business thinkers. Among the companies he advises are Burger King, Lowes, Boar’s Head, Beverly Hills Hotels, Pepsi, Nestle and Google. Lindstrom is the author of seven books including several New York Times bestsellers that have been translated into 60 languages. The Wall-Street Journal praised his book Brand Sense as “one of the five best marketing books ever published,” and his book Small Data as “revolutionary,” and Time called his book Buyology “a breakthrough in branding.”

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