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Psychologically Safe Workplaces: Utopia Revisited

(139 ratings)
50 reviews
Language:  English
The book is a journey through human progress focusing on the construct of psychologically safe workplaces which has re-emerged recently.
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The book is a journey through human progress focusing on the construct of psychologically safe workplaces which has re-emerged recently. It looks as far back as the Ancient Egyptians and Greeks, highlighting the construct of utopia as applied to the world of work. It explores where we are in the world of work and how humans are treated at work. It underlines how various advances through industrial, and much more recently technological, revolutions have changed the nature of work and society. It explores if a ‘utopic’ ideal of work has ever existed or can exist. As a monograph, it will engage the readers’ interest with its story and intention.

About the author

Dr Georgios P. Piperopoulos studied sociology and psychology at American, German and Austrian Universities receiving his Bachelor’s, Master’s and Ph.D. degrees; taught at several American, European and Greek Universities at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels before retiring from his professorial chair at the Department of Business Administration, The University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece.

Dr Piperopoulos is currently Honorary Professor in Management and Marketing at Durham University Business School. He was until recently Visiting Professor at Newcastle Business School, Faculty of Business and Law, Northumbria University and before that Visiting Professor at New castle University Business School, both at Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom.

He has held a variety of managerial posts in private enterprises and public social services organizations in the USA and Europe.

He has developed and taught Leadership, Communication, Stress Management and Psychological Operations courses at the Supreme Joint War College of the Hellenic Armed Forces (Army, Navy, Air force), the Army staff training school, the Hellenic Police Continuing Education Centre and at the Greek branch of the United Nations Peace Serving Operations Training Centre.

Professor Piperopoulos has published several textbooks and many popular books in Greek and English and authored hundreds of articles and editorials in leading Greek Newspapers and magazines. He has been a frequent guest on Greek TV and radio programs as a commentator and, for several years, presented his own show titled ‘I Communicate Therefore I am’ in Greek National and Regional TV channels and Radio stations. He has delivered hundreds of public lectures to groups in Greece, Europe and the USA. has already published his books:

Fundamentals of Communication, PR and Leadership

Control Your Stress and Manage Your Time!

Managing primary and Secondary Schools – A Primer (co-authored with Dr A.N. Piperopoulou)

His daughter Dr Natasha (Anastasia) Piperopoulou lives with her son in Athens and is employed as psychologist in a public school for training and educating adolescents with special needs. His son Dr Panagiotis (Panos) Piperopoulos is Associate Professor at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT).

  1. Psychologically safe workplaces 
  2. The concept of ‘Utopia’ in literature 
  3. The concept of ‘Utopia’ in political economy 
  4. The Biblical ‘Garden of Eden’: ‘Paradise’ as a religious ‘Utopia’ 
  5. The Giza pyramids: History ‘made’ in Hollywood 
  6. Pericles and the Acropolis of Athens 
  7. The British Industrial Revolution 
  8. Unions and Unionism 
    1. Unionism in Britain 
    2. Unionism in the USA 
    3. Unionism in Germany 
    4. Unionism in France 
  9. Tsarist Russia and the Bolshevik Revolutions 
    1. Tsarist Russia 
    2. The Bolshevik Revolutions with Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin as the three protagonists 
  10. The Great Depression and the ‘New Deal’ Programs in America 
  11. Frederick Winslow Taylor’s ‘Scientific Management Theory’ (‘Taylorism’) 
    1. The contributions of Frank and Lillian Gilbreth to ‘time-motion’ techniques 
    2. Taylorism, Lenin and industrialization in Bolshevik Russia 
  12. Henri Fayol’s ‘Administrative Management Approach’ (Fayol-ism) 
  13. Henry Ford & his ‘Assembly Line’ production of the historic ‘Model-T’ cars 
  14. The contributions of Weber and Veblen 
    1. Max Weber’s ‘Bureaucratic Management’ Approach 
    2. Thorstein Veblen’s critique of the ‘affluent’ social class 
  15. The first Business Schools appear in 19th century Europe and the USA 
    1. A glimpse at some current critiques of Business Schools 
  16. The Hawthorne studies and the era of ‘human relations’ in industry 
  17. Human motivation and the theories of Maslow, Herzberg & Likert 
    1. Abraham Maslow’s Humanistic Psychology and the pyramid of human needs 
    2. Frederick Herzberg and his ‘hygiene-motivators’ factors theory 
    3. Rensis Likert 
  18. McGregor’s theories ‘X and Y’ & Quichy’s theory ‘Z’ 
  19. William Edwards Deming and ‘Total Quality Management’ 
I will pay my tribute to the Greek author using three well related and powerful terms: the "utopia revisited" part of the title is not at all farfetched. If the psychological safe workplace is your site of employment then you really live in an EUTOPIA and you should be thankful compared to hundreds of millions of employees across the Globe who will be living in a DYSTOPIA in the next few yearsbas they will be made tredundant by AI enriched Robots. A book worth treading carefully.
A notable book written by an academic/practitioner who has the necessary experience and the related courage to write an anti establishment text worthy of the attention of working men and women and of university students in Business Schools and Political Science departments. It challenges and provokes while simultaneously enriching HR bibliography.
The book provocatively approaches some taboo issues relating to past and current working conditions and makes some challenging predictions for the future relationships of humans and robots in work places!
The book is indeed a fascinating journey in the past, the present and the future of working conditions for humans. Dreadful prospects as robots will replace many of us.
Refreshingly and admirably bold statement on a very significant area.
Provocative, challenging, bold and down to earth truthful presentation of realities protected by myths.
A book which should be carefully read by the many millions of unemployed youth and mature workers especially in South European Nations. And if indeed Robots will replace between 400-800 million humans by the next decade what Professor Piperopoulos describes in his book deserves a strong applause for his courage to paint a reality kept behind curtains!
Surely challenging, at some points provocative but in general a very interesting thesis on a significant issue, I.e. owner-worker, managers employee relations. The book should stir a much needed dialogue among corporation stakeholders, Union bosses, employees and Human Resource chiefs.
Professor Piperopoulos through his book is simply saying shat many of us would like to hear our Union bosses saying to outer employers. A book worth reading.
Easy and soft narrative dealing heavy blows on well preserved myths concerning the well being and fate of average working men and women! Well done!
A skillful incision on a murky area well dressed in a myriad of myths supported by provocative arguments. Professor Piperopoulos dares to say what other business professors avoid.
A fresh constructive and provocative view on the classic theme of the working men and women and their relationship to owners and managers. Good read.
Catching reading on the human journey of work. Professor Piperopoulos has done an excellent job in presenting mankind's relationships of employer/employee, owner/worker throughout the ages! He is straight and makes no discounts in his theses!
Bold, provocative thesis challenging well-entrenched myths concerning working men and women.
In a capitalist system where profit is the supreme motive and 'cut throat competition' permeates the work environment, psychologically safe workplaces are indeed a utopia... Excellent, challenging book.
A devastating blow to myths and pretentious stakeholder benefiting propositions. As we will be gradually treplaced by 'brilliant' ready to serve without any demands robots psychologically safe workplaces will be a sad reminder of paradise promised and never delivered! Paradise lost...
Remarkable and revealing narrative with provocative and challenging theses. A refreshing journey from the construction of the pyramids and the Athenian Acropolis to the current prospects of the massive engagement of AU enriched robots to the workplace!
Download and read it carefully. It will richly treward you for every minute you spend absorbing is hold, provocative and challenging narrative! It will raise the appropriate guilt levels of owners, stakeholders and lavishly compensated managers while acting with therapeutic effects on daydreaming employees who still expect to realuze the now extinct HONDA type of contract between owners and workers.
The author has the needed experience along with the writing skill required to produce a significant book on a very significant subject. Provocative thesis supported by strong arguments confronting all of us with challenges of the not so distant future of work!
The author combining several decades of experience as an academic and management practitioner has created a challenging narrative! The book will be fascinating reading for university students and a provocative thesis for corporate stakeholders. One could expect a few raised eyebrows by CEOs, COOs and Union Chiefs but that is a corollary to myth denuding.
The trevival if the old theory trevives a number of relevant questions that had been left unanswered in the last few decades. Thus book answers a number if those questions in a convincing manner as it has well structured and well supported arguments and rich bibliography. Is it only politicians that make great promises never fulfilled or should we start looking for similar cases in the business world and in academics?
Bold thesis, provocative narrative and well articulated argument by an academic/practitioner who dares to challenge perhaps well intended but impossible to successfully stand the test of time theories.
Surely there are company owners, corporation directors and managers who know the value of providing psychologically safe environments for their employees appreciating the mutual benefits. But when things get tough the survival instinct usually annuls all well meant intentions and "workplace paradise" is sacrificed and usually succumbs to profitability preservation.
In a world placing on the highest pedestal the "profit motive" fairy tales abound. Surely nothing could be more of a blessing for employees than a really safe psychological work environment! The nasty question centers on it being a fact or a fiction! Read this bold book, not a dragon killer but a myth denuder, and then decide for yourself....
Here is a provocative textbook written by a very experienced academic / practitioner who presents matters as they are and not as they are promised to be! Especially interesting chapter on midern Business Schools which have ptoliferated on a global scale!
Pleasantly reading narrative carrying a hold and challenging message! It will benefit university students in management as well as employees in various industries where psychological safety foes relate to productivity and output!
For working men and women a real eye opener which will provide you with the needed earplugs to save yourself from contemporary business owners and well paid managers fairy tales! Worth reading
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this noteworthy book and wholeheartedly recommend it especially to Business School students and managers...
I applaud Bookboon's decision to applaud the author of this book as "Author of the Week" as announced in LinkedIn! Professor Piperopoulos has written a book that expresses a 'silent majority' on a global scale.
Professor Piperopoulos obviously knows his stuff having combined an academic career with btroad and richly diverse practitioner experiences! He also has the talent of writing a modern, privivcative and straightforward challenging book in a pleasant style. It enriches the existing bibliography in many ways
To be recognized as Author Of The Week as professor Piperopoulis humbly announced on LinkedIn focusing on this book is a well deserved honor for a provocative, well written book! Read it and enjoy it.
A significant contribution to HR bibliography with a global perspective! Hold, provocative and challenging monograph denuding management myths in a world heading for massive replacement of humans by robots endowed with unprecedented AI. Must read!
The monograph is a symbolic garden of information offering a variety of choices to a variety of readers! University students will benefit and so will HR people. Working men and women will be able to exercise a practical benchmarking for their employment status and employers should avoid raising eyebrows after reading it. Union leaders should keep it on their PC desktop and the general public will enjoy the soft running, challenging and provocative narrative.
From Marxist theory of a world where workers enjoy their fair share of economic success which turned out as a utopia during seven decades of existence of the USSR to contemporary hedge fund modus opetrandi in current global votrporate dystopias the message has been simple:stop daydreaming and learn to survive as your unlucky fellow employees become...Redundant
Professor Piperopoulos hits the nail on the head in this provocative and challenging monograph. If the profit motive ceases to be the exclusuve corporate beacon psychologically safe workplaces would be a eutopia but while locusts prevail it is a utopia and with the prospects of AI and robots increasingly coming to the forefront they will end up as dystopia.
As jobs are wiped out from mainstreet historical stores the concept that serves as this book's title seems more of a parody and daydream than reality. The book answers eloquently a number of up to now unanswered questions while taising many which will confront us in the future when robots will replace many of us!
An indeed provocative thesis presented as a fascinating historical journey well documented and convincingly expressed!
An ode to the remaining idealistic employees who still believe that employers rank them as 'number one' in their priorities list. Professor Piperopoulos deserves an applause for this monograph.
Excellent compilation on being able to show and employ oneself without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career.
Fascinating thesis, well structured and developed narrative, provocative and challenging monograph. A statement calling the attention of working men and women, as well as employers and stakeholders on a global scale.
Psychologically safe workplaces - myth or reality? That is the question... The desired answer is 'reality' which benefits owners, employers and employees equally. The 'reality tested' answer is… myth as far as workers and employees are concerned. Here is a book that should be read carefully as it denudes myths and objectively presents realities.
For the romantics who still cherish such a myth this book will serve as a much needed cold shower! To those who propagate such concepts will come as a warning that even a best clad myth van be denuded! Well doing Union heads should read it carefully!
Refreshingly provocative, pleasant narrative and challenging monograph.
A smooth running narrative, an historical review which fliws asv pleasant reading but between the lunes emerge creatively provocative arguments on the historical and currently reviving myths of psychologically safe workplaces for the average working men and women!
To work in such a place would be poetically fantastic but in reality as long as profit is the objective and cut throat competition the name of the game professor boiler populi a is right in seeing it as a Utopia...
Not a 4 or 3 star journal text but most certainly a 5 star monograph as a modern, provocative narrative on an archaic subject namely the relationship between employers and employees. Well done!
Business school students, HR personnel, and interested members of the working classes will enjoy this modern monograph written by an academic/practitioner who obviously knows his staff and has not hesitated to challenge and provoke. Union leaders should read it as well...
A well written, inviting journey in the history of employers and employees from the ancient times iof building the pyramids and the acropolis to the modern era of globally operating multinationals.
The first part of the title is romantically provocative; the second part realistically challenging! The book is a pragmatic, useful monograph worth reading. The author denudes some popular myths and pays proper attention to the Japanese concept of "lifetime employment" not particularly welcomed by global "locust type" corporate giants.
Fascinating approach to a perpetually misunderstood subject. Work safety in the public and especially the private sector is desirable but also elusive. The book will provoke, challenge and put in their proper place those who thrive perpetuating the old Utopia.
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About the Author

Prof. Georgios Piperopoulos