James Adonis is one of Australia’s

best-known people-management

thinkers and is passionate about

employee engagement.


Everywhere you look there’s a motivational quote to greet you.

Pursue your passion! Nothing is impossible! Happiness is a journey, not a destination!

But what if there is actually scant evidence to back up these shimmering proclamations? What if positive thinking does not, in fact, lead to positive life outcomes? What if life is too short to not have regrets? In other words, what if many of our most cherished motivational platitudes simply aren’t true?

The Motivation Hoax offers sense in place of the sparkling nonsense that permeates the inspiration industry. It exposes the unrealistic clichés and misleading mantras that frequently just make you feel bad, replacing them with evidence-based insights that are no less motivating, but are credible, reliable and, most importantly, scientifically tested.

A reality check like no other, The Motivation Hoax is among the most refreshing, liberating and surprisingly comforting books you’ll read this year.


What can we learn from the great leaders of the past?

In this unique and engaging volume, James Adonis, one of Australia’s best-known leadership educators, shows how we can apply the lessons of history to the challenges of the present. Drawing on examples from Walt Disney to Joan of Arc, Adonis explores the many different aspects of good leadership, illustrating how history’s most successful leaders have used particular leadership styles to their advantage, and explaining how we can use those same techniques in the modern workplace.

The key to good leadership? Adaptability. Certain situations may require Benjamin Franklin’s pragmatism, Dorothea Dix’s dynamism, or something altogether different – the most important lesson is that the very best leaders are able to adjust their style to suit any given situation.

Covering more than fifty historical leaders, ranging from Julius Caesar and Eleanor Roosevelt to less familiar figures such as suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst, US President James Madison and environmental activist Wangari Maathai, How To Be Great is an entertaining and insightful leadership book with a difference.


In this groundbreaking study employee-engagement expert, James Adonis investigates the top causes of anger and frustration in the workplace.

You will discover:

  • How to avoid the pitfalls of incompetent managers
  • How to increase your popularity and likeability
  • How to become influential and respected
  • How to get talented people to want to work for you
  • How to build teams that are loyal, productive and successful

Unlike any other management book you’ve ever read, Adonis’ warts-and-all account of what makes employees roll their eyes and curse their existence is sure to revolutionise your workplace. Whether you’ve been managing people for days or decades, Employee Enragement will give you the insider knowledge you need to take your management skills to the next level.


‘I hope you get as many chuckles as I did out of this book and that your neck doesn’t get stiff from nodding and agreeing as one absurd cliché after another is pilloried!’ —Dr Stephen Lundin, best-selling author of Fish!

‘By unmasking simplistic clichés, Adonis cleverly suggests how to respond to the modern complex challenges of all organisations.’ — Professor Dave Ulrich, University of Michigan

Whether you’re a perpetrator or a casualty of cringe-worthy corporate clichés (or both), Corporate Punishment will challenge the way you think about the world of business and the mind-numbing management mottos that have underpinned it for decades. From teams and leadership to workplace culture and customer service, James Adonis smashes to pieces some of the most deeply entrenched business philosophies, offering in their place a progressive new thought process that’s light on rhetoric and boring theory, but heavy on practicality and imagination.

This book is a protest, a movement, a changing of the management guard. It is the breath of fresh air every modern business needs and a long overdue break from the hot air that most are forced to endure.

Supported by rich, practical experience:

James Adonis

For more than a decade, he has worked with hundreds of organisations helping them successfully lead change, engage staff, and improve performance. A truly international speaker and consultant, he has worked with leaders in Australia, New Zealand, India, Dubai, Thailand, Malaysia, Germany, and Belgium, with an impressive list of clients including McDonald’s, American Express, Coca-Cola, Qantas, Optus, Ernst & Young, Gucci, Toyota and many government departments.