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Office Survival Tips Review For #Careerlions

Office Survival Tips Review For #Careerlions

My boyfriend went on another city trip without me last weekend and got me several gifts that were waiting for me when I arrived home Friday. While it doesn’t beat coming home to him, it was a great way to start the weekend. Especially since the gifts included cake from one of my favorite bakeries and a book that I had been eyeing up at the airport bookstore the last couple of weeks. I devoured the book in a little over a day. The book is called Werken doe je huis maar (translates to: Working you do at home) by Japke-d. Bouma. A Dutch book obviously, which to my knowledge has not been translated into other languages. Today, I will share with you a short review of the book, the main tips and tricks that it covers, and some funny quotes and insights.

The Verdict

The book is about how you can best survive the office, especially open space offices. Bouma used to write a weekly column about this very same topic in (Dutch newspaper targeting young professionals). This was bundled in a book in 2015 and this book is a more actualized version of that book.

For the #careerlion Dutchies reading this, I really recommend buying a copy. This book is hilarious. While I don’t agree with all of her opinions and judgements, I certainly see many similarities and can for sure see things from her perspective. She has a great way to write about her experiences and insights. Including a good dose of Dutch sarcasm and rationalizing. Bouma has a nice Dutch and down-to-earth look on the office life prone to hypes.  


My favorite part of the book is about the office being “too cold for women”. At the office, I am now clustered with all the women that tend to get cold at the office. Climate control seems to big our biggest common enemy that we have to fight on a daily basis. I love how Bouma highlights this frustration between facility management, men, and women at probably most offices and especially open spaces. Spoiler alert: research has indicated that offices are indeed too cold for women as the temperature norms date back to the sixties when men wore three piece suits to the office.


As I said before, the book has some great insights on surviving the office life. Here are some of my favorites:

  • Everyone is just bungling around. Your colleagues and boss also don’t necessarily know what they are exactly doing. Even though it seems like everyone at the office knows everything, they are just people as well. I think this is a very valuable insight that I really needed to learn myself when I entered the working-life. Also, I have noticed that some people can be really intimidated that everyone knows what they are doing. Once in a while I think it is good to let others in on this secret.

  • Open spaces are distracting for everyone and getting all your work done in an open space is a struggle for us all. Don’t get frustrated with yourself that your concentration span is not good enough or you are not productive enough. The office is about collaboration and socializing. If you really need to finish your work before a deadline, just arrange to work from home or a quiet meeting room once in a while. Whatever you do, don’t blame yourself!

  • We spend most of our waking hours at the office. Invest in your colleagues and make the office a fun place to be. Joke around with your colleagues, gain weight together having office snacks and celebratory cakes, and most of all: ENJOY.  

Did I enthuse you to get your own copy? What are your office survival tips? Care to share any with us?

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