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Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough


3 in stock (can be backordered)

Here’s a guidebook for any adult who feels socially out of step with others. Based on years of clinical experience working with adults with social learning challenges, the authors present a primer about the adult mind, social intelligence, and learning to read the social code. Practical strategies focus on the workplace, but are equally relevant in all other areas of life. This book was previously titled Social Thinking at Work, same content, new title.


3 in stock (can be backordered)

SKU: 9781936943128 Categories: ,


Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough

By Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

Ages:  Young Adult, Adult

The social mind… It’s always on the job, even when you’re off the job!

Most people are born with an intuitive sense of the social world that allows them to naturally be aware of social expectations and feeds them the information they need to follow the social code. But not everyone is born with intuitive social understanding. Social learning challenges can be especially noticeable in the workplace, where it’s assumed employees understand not only how to do their job but how to effectively work in a group, understand the hidden rules of office etiquette and office politics, and build and maintain solid professional relationships with others.

This 200+ page book is a primer about the social mind in the workplace, but the concepts and strategies are equally applicable in all areas of life. It’s largely based on the authors’ years of clinical experience working with adults who struggle socially, but may or may not identify their problems with a specific diagnosis. Many are highly intelligent and skilled employees who find it difficult to decipher the often nuanced social underpinnings that are part of daily life, on or off the job.

Individuals with social challenges want to be appreciated for who they are and how they contribute (just like all of us do!), but often their good intentions aren’t communicated in a way that others easily understand. As a result, it’s often tough for these individuals to build the relationships and reputation necessary to excel in the workplace, regardless of their expertise or how hard they work.

Adults with social learning challenges often need information about social emotional relationships broken down and explained in a way that can help them build skills and understanding, one step at a time. This book does just that – it is a constructive and detailed guide to help adults learn how to do the “social dance” in order to build stronger relationships at work and beyond. Remember, good intentions aren’t good enough!

Although the content is geared to the adult with social emotional challenges, this is a great source of information for people working in HR departments to better understand social challenges and how to guide and coach employees with these challenges.

Powerful, Practical Strategies

Good Intentions Are Not Good Enough contains easily-accessible information about core concepts that describe how we think about our own and others’ thoughts and emotions, actions and reactions, intentions and motives. In it you’ll learn to become a stronger social observer and use strategies that increase your social competence. Chapters address:

  • The social mind, social intelligence, and how social thinking is different from social skills
  • The role of our emotions and social memory in office interactions
  • The hidden rules or expectations and social memory in office interactions
  • Giving compliments, asking for help, and apologizing
  • Seven core tenets of perspective taking and understanding others’ points of view
  • Exploring the social-emotional chain effect
  • The four steps of communication
  • Indirect communication: reading between the lines
  • Fitting in: conformity teamwork and networking
  • The office hierarchy, friendships, romantic relationships, bullying, and more

Attempting to interpret others’ thoughts and emotions is as much a part of the workday as is doing our actual jobs. By learning to think socially we can change our behaviour to directly affect how we are perceived and treated.


Special Education Advisor, by Dennise Goldberg:

“`Social Thinking at Work: Why Should I Care,’ by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke is a game changer. This book provides practical advice to every adult whether you are on the Autism Spectrum, Neurotypical (NT), or somewhere in between on how to navigate the social intricacies involved with the workplace. I have long held the opinion that the ability to socialize and get along with people is as important to creating a successful career as being good at your job. Thus, success very often requires a combination of academic intelligence and social intelligence. Social Thinking at Work creates a roadmap for those individuals with weaknesses in social intelligence to `better understand the expectations of the social mind’… I highly recommend this book to anyone that has ever experienced social challenges at work but especially for those adults on the autism spectrum or with known social weaknesses.”

Special Needs Book Review:

“Social Thinking at Work: Why Should I Care? is helpful to all adults in the workplace who wish they could blend in and have a better relationship with the others they meet or work with every day. You will benefit greatly from this book if:

  • You are unable to pick up facial or verbal cues.
  • You miss subtle behaviours used to convey emotions.
  • You struggle to recognize people’s feelings.
  • You have problems entering or exiting a group.
  • In a group you do not know what to do if you are not talking.
  • You do not know how to interpret sarcasm or read between the lines.
  • You can’t get people to listen to your ideas.

Social Thinking at Work: Why Should I Care? is also for parents, educators and service providers to teach the Social Thinking required for the development of real social skills. If your are an employer or work in the Human Relations department for a company, this book will help you understand human behavior and help you be more aware of the different  feelings and needs of some of your employees.”

Read more  

“Michelle’s books… are extremely practical and full of positive solutions” – Stephen Borgman, Psychology Today

“Needing help to understand social interaction in the workplace?  Michelle Winner and Pamela Crooke are the ones to show you the ropes. This user-friendly guide to understanding social thinking on the job is a much-needed guide which simply and clearly outlines why brilliant workers might not be succeeding socially.  If you are puzzled about why your work is of exceptional quality, but you are still not accepted by your co-workers, this guide is for you!” – Donna B. Wexler, MA, CCC-SLP

About the Authors

Michelle Garcia Winner is a Congressional-award winning speech-language pathologist who specializes in treating individuals who are experiencing social and communication problems. She runs a clinic in San Jose, CA, has authored number books and speaks internationally on the Social Thinking treatment approach she developed. She serves on the panel of professional advisers of the Autism Society of America.

Pam Crooke is part of the clinical faculty at San Jose State University and senior therapist at the Social Thinking Center in San Jose, CA. Prior to joining Social Thinking, she conducted research published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders on the effectiveness of the Social Thinking Vocabulary in the teaching of students with high-functioning autism.


  • For: Parents, professionals and individuals to use on their own
  • Ages: High school students through adulthood
  • Published: 2011
  • Publisher: Think Social Publishing and North River Press
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 202
  • Item: 9781936943128
  • ISBN: 9781936943128

Additional information

Weight 0.50 g
Dimensions 23 × 15 × 1.6 cm

High School, Young Adult, Adult


Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

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