1. Is this book for real?
As sure as the ISBN is 1-892503-40-9, this book is for real.
If you don't believe us, order a copy and watch as our real financial department really charges your real
credit card for thirty real dollars.
2. What is the overall message of The Art of Demotivation?
Here's a message for you: Buy the book! You're too old for Cliffs Notes, dude.
3. Who is The Art of Demotivation targeted to?
This book is targeted to managers, executives and chairmen who are fed up with the tyranny
of the Motivational Educational Industrial (ME-I) Complex, and who are seeking a radical new
approach to management. You know, one that actually works.
4. Is The Art of Demotivation geared to employees as well as employers?
Oh good heavens no. As Dr. Kersten puts it, "If you are not an executive, do not intend to become an executive, or have no hope of becoming an executive, DO NOT READ THIS BOOK." We will know if you do. Trust us. We will know.
5. Does The Art of Demotivation deal with "It's not my fault" as being one of the more pervasive phrases in the American workplace?
Dr. Kersten addresses this issue in his revolutionary section on "Responsibility Displacement,"
which discusses the sad trend of businesses failing to blame employees for their mistakes. As Dr.
Kersten writes, doing so "rob(s) employees of the dignity inherent in being moral and economic agents
with the right to experience the consequences of their actions" (156). In the world of Radical Demotivation™, "It's not my fault" just doesn't cut it.
6. Why are there so many typos?
It's not my fault.
7. Does The Art of Demotivation seek to 'bash' employees, employers, or companies?
If by "bash," you mean "hold accountable for their actions," then yes, no, and no.
8. Is The Art of Demotivation written with a malicious agenda in mind?
Far from it. If you want to see real malice, check out the hundreds of "motivational"
books published each year that patronize employees by telling them they're important,
indispensible, and dignified - misconceptions that Dr. Kersten addresses in this groundbreaking
volume. Malice is lying to the working class so you can sell them a mousepad with some smarmy
motivational axiom printed on it. That's not our style.
9. Does The Art of Demotivation deal with issues like perpetually selfish employees?
After reading this book, you will realize that "perpetually selfish employees" is a sad redundancy.
10. Does The Art of Demotivation address the issue of personal faith in the American workplace?
I can't possibly describe how much we are not going to touch this.
11. Should I, as a reader of The Art of Demotivation, take anything written in this book as a personal attack?
12. Will there be a paperback version of The Art of Demotivation?
A paperback version? Would you sell a 1997 Louis Roederer Cristal champagne in a Juicy Juice box?
We're about quality. If you want a paperback, go read the newest John Grisham book. I
think it might have something to do with lawyers.
13. Can I buy The Art of Demotivation in bookstores?
While pursuing this, we were shocked to learn that anybody could just stroll into a bookstore
and buy a copy of the book without having to prove that they were actually an executive. Until
we can work out an agreement with the major retailers involving security guards and background
checks, the book is only available through our website.
14. How can you have the street cred to write this book if you haven't been washed from the top floor
of a public company on a wave of scandal involving your personal obscene abuse of expense accounts
and ridiculous exercised stock options only to land on the shores of a lucrative severance package
recognizing your continued non-utility to the firm and generally involving use of a private jet?
Despair Ink is in talks with Kenneth Lay to write a companion volume to The Art of Demotivation.
We're trying to iron out the details, but he usually only gets one phone call a day, and he insists on
talking to his lawyer. Does anyone have Dennis Kozlowski's phone number?
15. What are your thoughts of cooperation in general?
Dr. Kersten is quite high on the idea of teams as a Radically Demotivating tool.
Why? Because "teams produce profound disappointment for three fundamental reasons: (a)
they create a false sense of hope; (b) they bring out the worst in people; and (c) employees
lack the skills necessary to perform well on a team." So in that sense, cooperation rocks!
Just don't expect anything to actually get done when you throw a bunch of incompetent
wage-earners on a team. Still, in terms of Radical Demotivation, teams pay for themselves.
16. Do you think that the same motivators/demotivators described in your book can apply to
the other spheres of human relations than business? Family relations, love,
friendship, human sexual? Can we find some parallels?
We are guessing this question made more sense in the original Serbo-Croatian.
17. Are you getting more positive or negative feedback about your book The Art of Demotivation?
If you don't count Department of Labor employees, it's all positive!
18. How does the book sell in the States? Has it got international recognition yet? Will it be translated to other languages?
The Art of Demotivation is currently No. 1 on the Despair, Inc. newsletter bestseller list.
(No. 2, for some reason, is Danielle Steel's Safe Harbour, which, despite the pretentious faux-British
spelling, is actually a sweet and touching reflection on the nature of love.) International recognition
is surely forthcoming. As for translations, look for the Swedish-language version, Konsten att
Ickedrivkraft, sometime before 2013.
19. I am a book critic for a major newspaper or magazine, and I want to write a positive review of The Art of Demotivation. Can I get a review copy?
20. I am a book critic for a major newspaper or magazine, and I want to write a
negative review of The Art of Demotivation. Can I get a review copy?
We're all out. Shouldn't you be writing a puff piece about a book club full of retirees reading The Da Vinci Code?
21. How will you navigate the likely onslaught of criticism from professional
self-esteem consultants, trade associations and the generally deluded white collar masses?
The same way we always have - with dignity, aplomb, and a muscled bodyguard named Cam who's been angry ever since "Frasier" went off the air.
22. What have employees, employers, readers, and other relevant people said about The Art of Demotivation?
A typical response comes from a Meredith Walker, a sociology professor and author of Work and
Human Dignity: A Critical Reader, who writes, "This book is (not) offensive on every possible level
... E. L. Kersten has written a terribl(y brilliant) management guide that is (not) an insult to
the noble American worker. (Buy three copies in case you) lose (two of them.)"
23. How has the press reacted to The Art of Demotivation?
With stunned silence.
24. What inspired the author to write The Art of Demotivation?
Dr. Kersten was moved to write this book after witnessing companies spend
thousands of dollars on "motivational" products that don't actually work. He
realized that someone had to stand up to the Motivational Educational Industrial (ME-I)
Complex, and he refused to be cowed into silence by the million-dollar industry of lies
that the naive among us call "inspirational companies." Sometimes, a humble man has to
take up the gauntlet when no one else will. In other words, Dr. Kersten didn't choose Demotivation - it chose him.
25. What about the author is relevant for me to remember when I read The Art of Demotivation?
Dr. Kersten has years of experience in the fields of academia (organizational communication)
and business (the customer care division of a fledgling ISP). He writes from years of bitter
experience. You can't afford to ignore his wisdom.
26. Is it possible to get Dr. Kersten's autograph on my copy of the book?
Dr. Kersten autographs each and every Chairman Edition of The Art of Demotivation
with a personal message. He can't be bothered with Manager or Executive Editions. Money talks, yo.
27. Will you release a cheesy abbreviated audio version for the "busy" executive?
Plans for this fell through after producer Brian Eno withdrew from the project. A ballet
version could be forthcoming, but I wouldn't hold my breath.