Thank you all so very much for voting on which cover to use for the new, greatly expanded version of my book. Without further ado, here’s the winner:
The book cover image that I liked best and would have chosen came in third place! The cover that came in first place by a wide margin and won the contest was “Breaking free of shackles”, as pictured above. Second place in the cover voting was “Stressed worker”, which is the current cover on the book and is pictured here:
This surprised me too. It obviously works as a cover, since the book as sold well over time. But, it looks dated and not as professional to me. Perhaps I am just tired of looking at it? Anyway, the current cover coming in second place, and beating out my personal favorite which came in third place, shocked me. It just goes to show how beneficial it is to ask people what they like, want and need, rather than to just assume that you know best (although, taking the attitude of “I know best” seems to have worked for Steve Jobs and Apple).
Here is the cover that I personally would have chosen, that you voted into third place, “Fist with Clouds”:
Your Votes for the New Title
My working title for the new version of the book was “Workplace P.O.W.’s” I wanted to try to make “POW” stand for Prisoners Of a hostile Workplace. The analogy seemed right to me, but the sound and acronym wasn’t a perfect fit. Once again, it was a good thing I didn’t just run with it myself. Here’s how you voted about the new book title:
|Q2. Please rank the book titles in order from the one you would be most likely to buy to the one you would be least likely to buy.|
|Responses||Rank 1||Rank 2||Rank 3||Rank 4||Weighted
|Prisoners of a Hostile Work Environment||156||85||95||42||1(1111)|
|Work Laws Exposed||107||115||84||72||2(1013)|
|How to be a Bulletproof Employee||82||110||96||90||3(940)|
So my working title came in last! The old book title, like the old book cover, came in second. Again that stuns me. Do people really like “Work Laws Exposed”, or is it just comfortable because you are used to it?
I love the winner: “Prisoners of a Hostile Work Environment”. I think that sums up how people truly feel when they are subjected to a bullying boss or co-worker. It feels disorienting, sickening, and there is often a sinking belief that you are trapped and alone.
I think this title really captures the emotional prison of being bullied at work.
But, as you all know, the book is about taking back control of your work life and learning that you are not alone and you do have rights. That’s where the “sub-title” comes in. My favorite of the potential subtitles was “Join the Resistance and Break Free”. Take a look at where my favorite subtitle rank in your voting:
|Q3. Please rank the following SUB-TITLES in order from the one you would be most likely to buy to the one you would be least likely to buy.|
|Responses||Rank 1||Rank 2||Rank 3||Rank 4||Rank 5||Weighted Rank
|How to Take Control of Your Job and Protect Yourself||211||101||30||15||23||1(1602)|
|How to Fight Back and Break Free||51||81||148||67||33||2(1190)|
|How to Fight Back Against the Jerks at Work and Save Your Job||84||95||46||30||125||3(1123)|
|How To Join the Resistance and Break Free||10||47||86||165||72||4(898)|
|Join the Resistance and Break Free||24||56||70||103||127||5(887)|
This is why I don’t bet on horses. Clearly, the best subtitle explains exactly what problem-solving advice the book will provide to readers. And, the one you all voted for does that very well. I had liked “Join the Resistance” after a reader suggested it. For people who have read the book and want to join a movement to change our culture, “Join the Resistance” is perfect (more on that in my next post). But, for people who still feel like prisoners, “Join the Resistance” probably feels like too much work to even deal with until the intense pain of their situation stops.
So again, you all schooled me on what people really need, as opposed to what I think sounds inspiring. So, here is the complete cover, title and subtitle exactly as it will appear when the revised and expanded book hits Amazon on Labor Day.
What do you think of the final cover, title and sub title? Let me know in the comments section below what your impressions are, whether bad or “meh” or “love it.”