College of Business and Innovation

Needy People
Working Successfully with Control Freaks and Approval-holics

Needy People

In his latest book, Needy People: Working Successfully with Control Freaks and Approval-holics, University of Toledo Professor of Management Dr. Dale Dwyer immediately identifies a work situation everyone encounters:

“We all know them… the Control Freaks and Approval-holics of our organizations and our lives.  These are the people who drive us crazy at work.”  Dwyer suggests that their annoying behaviors have their roots in high needs for control, approval, or both.

“We’ll call the person who most drives you crazy at work ‘Chuck.’  Everybody has a Chuck, and everybody’s Chuck is different,” Dr. Dwyer acknowledges.

Dwyer notes that we all have a need for control and a need for approval, but it is the extreme cases that cause frustration for leaders, direct reports, and co-workers who have to deal with them every day.  Through his consultations with leaders, both new and experienced, Dwyer identified six key challenges for people high in needs for control and approval: 

  1. Lack of Emotional Control (i.e., Impatience, Anger Management, Bullying)
  2. Inability or Unwillingness to Delegate  
  3. Lack of Communication Skills (i.e., Interpersonal and Fear of Public Speaking)
  4. Inability or Unwillingness to Deal with Conflict
  5. Tendency Toward Perfectionism
  6. Difficulty in Making Decisions   

 Throughout the book, Dr. Dwyer takes readers through an extensive self-analysis process so they can improve on their own ability to better deal with the Chucks in their lives.

Needy People
offers self-assessment techniques, explores how control and approval needs influence key challenges, discusses the “myth of perfection,” and looks at the ramifications of these challenges on trustworthiness within work relationships, suggesting some ways to address them—including what to do about them if they arise with your “Chuck.”

 Dr. Dwyer hopes that “readers of the book will learn how to spot the triggers for control and approval so that we can all improve our ability to work with and lead the Control Freaks and Approval-holics of our organizations and our communities.”

Needy People: Working Successfully with Control Freaks and Approval-holics is available in print and Kindle versions on, and through Amazon in 12 countries, as well as through Audible and iTunes.

 Dr. Dale J. Dwyer joined The University of Toledo faculty in 1989 and is Professor of Management and former Chair of the Department of Management.  Dr. Dwyer received the “University Outstanding Teaching Award,” a distinction conferred only once upon a faculty member, as well as the first UT “Student Impact Award” in 2011.  He is the author of the top-selling SHRM-published book, “Got a Minute? The 9 Lessons Every HR Professional Must Learn” (2010), as well as “Got A Solution? HR Approaches to 5 Common and Persistent Business Problems” (2014), both with co-author Dr. Sheri A. Caldwell. 

Last Updated: 1/22/18