Don’t let your job search become a fantasy

The podcast Hidden Brain had a very interesting episode called WOOP, There It Is.  It seems there is a fine line between positive thinking and positive fantasies.  Positive fantasies come out of having goals (wishes), which are good to have, but they can seduce us into already feeling accomplished, thus taking your energy away.  In her book; Rethinking Positive Thinking, Gabriele Oettingen says that positive fantasies are the beginning of action but they are terrible at helping us put the effort needed to accomplish a goal.

Positive Thinking vs Fantasizing

You have probably heard the old adage “whether you think you can or you can’t, you are correct.”  Visualization is a positive thinking technique where you create a mental image of what it will look like and feel like for you to achieve a goal.  There are a TON of people that promote positive thinking and visualization from Tony Robbins to Tim Ferriss.  I do believe that the more you believe something will happen, the more likely it will come to be.

To me positive thinking turns into fantasizing when you stay in that place and never stop to think…

What will it take for me to achieve my goal?

Gabriele Oettingen says that positive fantasies are helpful if you also ask yourself “what stands in the way?”  But you must be specific… you must ask “What is it in ME that stands in the way of achieving this goal?”  She also mentions that your goal must be attainable, but I will save that for my next post from a different podcast.

Oettingen says that to use these positive fantasies we need to use mental contrasting.  BTW, there is also a WOOP app that works with her strategy and yes, it is free!

Mental Contrasting with Implementation and Intentions

Mental Contrasting with Implementation and Intentions is a fancy way of goal setting.  But it goes beyond just setting the goal, it assists you in taking steps to achieve the goal, specifically four steps:

  1. Identify a goal (wish) that you want to attain within a limited time frame.  Oettingen suggests four weeks or less.
  2. Think about what would be the BEST outcome for that goal.  Imagine the best thing.  This is positively fantasizing, so don’t stop there.
  3. Ask yourself “what stops me from reaching this goal and experiencing this outcome.”  But you have to be more specific than that.  You must ask “what is my inner obstacle that prevents me from reaching this goal.”
  4. Lastly say to yourself “if this obstacle occurs then I will…”  Envision what behavior you will show or thought you will have to overcome that obstacle.

What is it in me that stands in the way

It helps if you have a little humor and a good bit of honesty to answer this question.  Remember, no blaming others.  Look, I know the world is set against you.  It is set against all of us in one way or another so stop making excuses as to why you are not able to do the things you want to do.  You are the only thing standing in the way of your happiness and success.

WOOP there it is

Oettingen renamed this process WOOP.  It is an acronym for WISH, OUTCOME, OBSTACLE, and PLAN.  This is what her app walks you through.

  • Wish – what is the goal you want to achieve and in what time frame?
  • Outcome – what is the best outcome and results of achieving that goal?
  • Obstacle – what is it in YOU that stands in the way of achieving your goal?
  • Plan – what behaviors or thoughts will allow you to overcome those obstacles?

Break it Down

You need to use WOOP to break your goals down.  Remember, we are eating the elephant called a job offer.  You need to eat it one bite at a time.  For instance if you goal is a job offer what do you need to get a job offer?  Interviews.  What do you need to get an interview?  A good resume.  Why don’t you have a good resume?

I realize that it is not that simple but you get the gist of what I am saying.  You may not believe that WOOP can help but that is an obstacle in you 🙂

Blaming is so much easier than taking responsibility, because if you take responsibility … then you might be to blame.
Jennifer O’Neill, The Pursuit of Happiness: 21 Spiritual Rules to Success


Science may help build a better resume

Most people will tell you to leave the personal stuff off you resume; marital status, how many kids you have, religious affiliations, etc…  But it seems there may be instances when you should give a company a peek behind the personal curtain.

No, I do not regularly read Marie Claire (I don’t regularly read any one source for information) but when I saw their article about resumes I had to learn more.

The Totally Counterintuitive Thing Science Says You Should Do to Your Résumé

As a recruiter my first reaction was “No **** Sherlock.”  We often times forget that our world of recruiting is a mystery to people on the outside and what seems like common sense to us sometimes goes against norms.  Two Vanderbilt Law School economists did a study that involved resumes with a 10 year job gap.  Some of the resumes explained the job gap by stating it was due to a divorce or to raise children. The other resumes gave no explanation.  The resumes with the explanations raised their chance of being hired by 30 to 40 percent.

The reason that their chances went up was not WHY they had a gap but rather that they had a reasonable explanation.  I bet they would find the same increase if the applicants said they hiked the seven summits or decided to live with an indigenous tribe in the Amazon.  The reason for the increase is that they answered the question a recruiter always has… “Why the gap?”

How was your time in prison?

My first reaction to a large gap is “hmmm, prison?”  If you don’t explain something most HR people and hiring managers will assume the worst.  I even encourage people to put a reason for job changes on their resume.  Nothing big, just a short explanation under each position, maybe in a smaller font and italics; Laid Off, Recruited to XYZ Company, etc…

Remember, your resume’s job is to get you the interview, the interview gets you the offer.  If I have 100 applicants (not uncommon) for a position I am first looking for ANY reason to kick people out.  Unexplained gap… GOODBYE!  Harsh?  Yes, but do you want to know what really happens to your resume / online application or do you want me to be nice?  As I say “The truth hurts some people but I have learned to live with it.”

Stay at Home Parents

When I was looking for a full time job three years ago I had some gaps myself.  I stayed at home for six years to raise our triplets.  One thing I did that helped was doing some contract work during those six years.  I think it is AWESOME if someone stays at home to focus on their family.  But I always encourage people to begin with the end in mind.  You need to volunteer or work periodically on a contract basis in the profession you want to work in later.  If you don’t you could get left behind.  These days business moves just a bit beyond light-speed.  You must keep up or you will have a large skill gap (perceived or real) when you decide to re-enter the working world.

Volunteering or periodically working on a contract basis can also fill resume gaps.  Let’s say you stay at home for 6 years till your kids get into school.  This is all hypothetical 🙂  You look around and find a mother’s day out program.  I am not going to mention that the name of these programs is sexist 🙂  This is a GREAT opportunity to give the kids some socialization with others and it gives a stay at home parent a chance to volunteer or look for a part time or contract job to keep their head in the game.  That sounds like a win-win to me.

The best way to handle employment gaps is to prevent them.


Being told no is feedback you can use

Once again Question of the Day has provided a great perspective that you can use in life and more specifically, your job search.  Unfortunately, we usually take criticism personally.  There are many reasons that we take it personally:

We are too close to the event – After a public speaking engagement I like to get feedback from people on what I did well and what I can do better.  But I ask them to send me their feedback via email or tell me the next day.  Right after I talk I am still too close to the event to even be reasonably objective.

We are too close to the subject – Being in HR I write a good bit of what becomes “policy” that others need to be able to understand.  That means that there are usually 5 – 10 revisions with a lot of red ink on them.  I quickly learned that what I write is not me.  These people are not saying I am bad.  Although my writing has been aAnd I am sure it will be again 🙂

We think the person is criticizing us – OK, they may also think that they are criticizing us but they are also wrong.  You are NOT a sum of your actions / decisions… you just think you are.  You need to separate yourself from your work.  While your work does reflect on you it is not who you are.  Even if you still think it is, don’t you want to get better?  That takes the courage to be vulnerable and to accept criticism.

Rejection is a form of feedback

Stephen Dubner says that he looks at rejection as a form of feedback.  If you can make this leap to making rejection impersonal, you can learn from rejection and use it to your advantage.  If not, you shut down and it takes much longer to learn from your mistakes.

Rejections can be a positive thing.  Every time you are told no in your job search you then know something didn’t work.

You are the problem

I don’t mean this in a negative way but as my mother always says, “If I (you) are not part of the problem, then you cannot fix it.”  True, sometimes companies have a hiring process that is truly broken.  I even know some companies that are aware of this but sometimes it takes a long time to make changes.

Let’s look at an analogy… If you are like me, you know the rule for turning valves on / off; lefty loosy, righty tighty.  At my kid’s school some plumber either has a wicked sense of humor or they think it is opposite day.  The knobs on some of the sinks are backwards.  So, I could either focus my time and energy on trying to get them fixed or I can just change my behavior and get on with things.  Yes, there is an argument for taking the time to fix it, but let’s fix it after you reach your goal.

Ask for Feedback

When you get turned down for a position ALWAYS ask (politely) for feedback.  Most people will not give you feedback but some will.  Here are a few ways to ask for feedback in a positive way:

Thank you for letting me know you are no longer considering me for the XYZ position.  Are their any other positions at ABC company that you feel I may be a better match for?
Thank you for following up with me about my application.  I am really excited about starting a career in XYZ (marketing) but I realize that it takes experience.  What positions would you suggest I apply for that could lead to a position like the one I applied for?
I appreciate you updating me on my status as a candidate.  Any feedback from the interview process would be much appreciated.

Many people will not reply or will reply with something that says they do not give interview feedback.  If they don’t give feedback don’t get angry, there is usually a good reason.  In my experience I do not give feedback because I have had people get in arguments with me.  Remember, they are not saying YOU are a bad match, they are saying your KSAs, goals, or personality don’t fit.  Those you CAN change, if you want to.  When following up there are a few key things to keep in mind:

  • Be Polite: No one likes a jerk.  Plus you never know when you will need to cross that bridge again or where that recruiter or hiring manager will work next.  Yes, we remember these things and those people.
  • Be Patient: Like most people, recruiters and hiring managers have more hours of work to do than a day will allow.
  • Be Persistent: Don’t just call / email once, but also don’t be a stalker.
  • Be Thankful: Always thank anyone for feedback and even when they tell you no.  At least you know where you stand with them.

Now get out there and get some feedback!

An inability to tolerate feedback is an inability to allow yourself personal growth.

Maybe you are asking the wrong question

A lot of people ask “Where can I find a (insert position) job.  It hit me the other day while listening to Question of the Day.  Maybe the job search is so tough for some people because they are asking the wrong question.

You may have the correct answer, but you asked the wrong question

This happens all the time in business and life.  Look at the gay marriage debate…  rather than asking should it or should it not be legal very few people are asking what I think is the real question “Why is the government in the business of deciding who you can marry?”  or better than that (this one I have not heard anyone talk about) “Why is the government allowed to discriminate on the basis of marital status?”  OK, I am off the libertarian soapbox 🙂

Many people in their job search are asking all the wrong questions.  You need to first realize that this is a sales process.  You are the product.  Your knowledge, skills, abilities (KSAs) and your background are all the attributes of that product.  Your first question is…

What are you selling in your job search?

Take a look at your KSAs and your experience.  Notice I did not just limit it to “work” experience.  Maybe you have done things as a volunteer that could transfer over to your work.  It is helpful if you have the job descriptions and reviews from your past positions.  Many times you don’t realize how great you are.  It is also helpful to look at the job posting for jobs you have had in the past.

Pull out the key words and phrases.  You can use them in your resume and to help in searching for positions.  Keywords are used by applicant tracking systems and recruiters when screening or searching for resumes.  You also want to be sure you use them on your LinkedIn profile.

Who is buying your product?

After you know about your product (you) it is time to identify your target market.  Who are the companies, industries or professions that need your KSAs?  One trick is to look and see who has previously held the same positions you have and find out what they are doing now.  They are also great people to network with and it can give you an idea of where to look for your next job.

Good questions outrank easy answers.
Paul Samuelson

Military Veterans and people with Disabilities can have job search advantages

If you have served in the Military or if you are an Individual With a Disability (IWD) you may have an advantage, that others do not have, in your job search.  But you must know where to look.

Affirmative Action Plans

Generally speaking, Government Contractors with 50 or more employees and over $10,000 in contracts (amounts vary based on minority group) are required to have, implement and audit annually some type of Affirmative Action Plan.  The Affirmative Action Plan may have goals for one or more of the following groups:

  • Military Veterans
  • Individuals With Disabilities
  • Women
  • Racial Groups

Many people think that an Affirmative Action Plan only concerns hiring but it’s effects are long lasting for an employee of a Government Contractor.  They must monitor:

  • Hiring
  • Promotions
  • Transfers
  • Terminations
  • Compensation

I am not going to discuss whether or not companies should have AAPs.  The fact of the matter is that if you want to do business with the Federal Government, you will likely need one.  As I tell the kids in baseball “If the Ump calls it a strike, it is a strike.”

Most AAPs measure their effectiveness against the MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Analysis.)  In other words, they are measured against the surrounding population of qualified individuals.  Not so with two groups: Military Veterans and Individuals With Disabilities.  Want to see what an AAP looks like?  Here is an example.

Individuals With Disabilities or IWDs

Did you know that most Government Contractors have a goal of hiring IWDs?  Yep, they have a goal that 7% of each Job Group be IWDs.  That may not sound like a lot it, but it means that Government Contractors are taking actions to seek out and hire IWDs.  In your job search you need to spend more of your time where you are more likely to be hired.  The fact is that if you are an IWD you are more likely to be hired by a Government Contractor.  There is even an Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP).  If you are an Individual With a Disability you should take advantage of these resources.

Military Veterans

Just Googling “hiring Military Veterans” pulls over 18 million webpages.  The AAP goal for hiring Military Veterans is pegged to the National percentage of veterans in the workforce, currently 8%.  Just like IWDs, Military Veterans have a lot of resources available.

Looking for a job can feel like a battle sometime, you against “The Man.”  I have heard people say “I want to do it on my own, I don’t want help.”  Excuse me, but that is STUPID!  What if a fire was headed towards your house?  You stand there watching creep closer and closer.  It is getting hotter and hotter.  Just then a firetruck pulls up.  You tell them to beat it, you got this.  Next you find fire extinguishers, you decide that would be “cheating.”  Finally you remember you have a shovel that you could use to dig a fire line with and save your house.  Just then you remember that would not be fair because your neighbor does not have a shovel.  So you just throw dirt on the fire.  Nice job knucklehead.  That is what many people do in their job search.  They do not use all of the resources they have available to them.

If you are not aware of all the resources you have that is one thing, but if you know about them and don’t use them then there is no whining.

If you’re offended easily, you’re a bad resource allocator. It’s a waste of energy and attention, which is a greater sin than wasting time.
FB post via Tim Ferriss

Who is in control of your job search?

Do you have an external or internal locus of control?  No, I am not talking about some spirituality, mantra chanting, nonsense (my word for incense) burning, yoga bending ritual… I am asking…

Who Controls You?

Not that long ago one of my 9-year olds (we have three of them), once again, taught me an important lesson.  I asked (told) him to do something.  To which he said “You’re not the boss of me.”  He did not say this in anger or as an affront to my position as parent, but rather a statement of fact.  I said “Oh, really?”  He said “Yes sir, I am responsible for me.”  This is not all that unusual in my house.  We have many conversations that others find unusual for parents and 9-year olds to have.  The other day on the way to school we discussed the differences between punishment and consequences for 20 minutes.  But I digress…

Back to you… are you in control of your job search or are you a ship without a rudder being tossed about the sea?  You can either LET things happen TO you or you can MAKE things happen FOR you.  The red pill or the blue pill?  The choice is yours.

How to have an Internal Locus of Control

Freakonomics Radio recently released a podcast on How to Be More Productive.   In it Charles Duhigg, the Author of Smarter Faster Better:  The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business talks about how important it is that you have an internal locus of control.  Duhigg also explains how to use that to influence others and yourself.

Do you believe that you have gotten to where you are through YOUR hard work and determination or has it been by chance?  You must make yourself realize that you control your choices, which control outcomes.  Yes, unplanned things happen… cancer, death, heart break, job loss, etc…  But you and you alone control how you react to those things.  To say that I do not believe in predestination is an understatement.  I believe in free will and you need to exercise yours.

I Do What I Want

You need to realize that you do what you want.  As Denzel Washington said in The Book of Eli “there is always a choice.”  You do not HAVE to go to work.  You do not HAVE to take your kids to soccer.  The list goes on…  You GET to!  Saying to yourself and others that you GET to do things changes the locus of control.  I have a good friend who always says the same thing when he gets a weekend to himself.  I ask “what are you going to do this weekend?”  To which he replies “whatever the hell I want to” with a smile on his face.

So, what do you GET to do today?  Both in your life and in your job search?  Are you going to reach out those people who work at the company where you want to work or are you going to wait for the universe to come to you?

The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president. You realize that you control your own destiny.
Albert Ellis

Why you should apply online

I just read a article by J.T. O’Donnell from February titled The (Depressing) Truth About Applying To Jobs Online.”  J.T.’s post give a lot of great tips but there seems to be quite a bit of absolutism in advice these days.

Do this, Don’t do that

The truth is that most job search has merit but to shut-off any one area of your job search is to turn your back on those openings.  Let me stop and admit that I have skin in the game.  Not only do I hire people from the job postings but that is also how I came to work at Mspark.  It may be true that1% or less of online applicants end up getting the job but to that 1%, that is a big deal.

Let’s look at the dating analogy… How many times do online dating sites fail vs. succeed?  They fail a lot!  So should you stop using them?  Or how about first dates all together?  Most first dates fail if your goal is to find a life-long mate.  So, maybe you should stop going on first dates?  Sound ludicrous?  So does telling someone not to fill out an online application.

For some, online applications are a must

Did you know that if an employer is a government contractor you MUST be considered an “applicant” before that employer can consider you for a position?  That means to be considered for a position at most government contractors you must fill out an online application.  Don’t think this rule is a big deal?  Just ask someone in HR who has gone through an OFCCP audit… it’s a big deal with HUGE costs to the company if they don’t follow the rules.  Don’t think you want to work at a government contractor?  Think again, the government contractor list is HUGE and yes, Google is a government contractor.

One strategy is not enough

If you only use one channel in your job search you are severely limiting your options.  Let’s say you follow the advise of looking at companies you that sell products or services you respect and admire.  Granted, J.T.’s article does not say “only” look at those companies but I worry that many people would read it that way and could be ignoring a great number of employers.

Put together a marketing plan

By now you are asking, “What channels should I be using in my job search?”  Great question!  Here are some suggestions but the % you spend on each one is up to you and your job search criteria:

  • Online Job Boards – The numbers that show your odds of getting a job just by applying online are similar to the lottery are skewed by TONS of non-qualified applicants who clog up ATSs daily.  Keep in mind that some jobs are only posted for 24 – 72 hours.
  • Company websites – Some companies only post on their website.
  • LinkedIn – Job postings and networking all in one.
  • Twitter – Great networking tool and good for company research.
  • Social Media – FaceBook, Instagram, etc…  Recruiters are moving to social media.
  • Networking – It is often times true… who you know is more important than what you know.
  • Direct contact with employers – Reach out to the employer directly.  Many times if you call the main-line for a company and ask for HR you can talk to someone.
  • Employee referrals – If you know someone that works at the company where you want to work, be sure to let them know.  Ask if you can put them down as the referral source when you apply for a position.  Many companies pay $500 – $1000 to their employees for referring someone who is hired
  • Career Fairs – Similar to job boards the percentages may tell you the odds are slim but you rarely get the chance to talk one on one with someone from the company.
  • Agencies – While agencies do have competing loyalties, they still provide a useful service to employers and candidates.
  • Associations – Look for industry or profession specific associations.  They may have job boards.  They are also a great way to network and get information.
  • Alumni groups – Is there a local alumni chapter from your University?  Be sure to reach back out to your school.  They may have resources you can use.  Even some major employers have alumni groups.
  • Externships – Try job shadowing.  This is usually easier for students or recent grads.
  • Volunteer – If you are not currently working then volunteering is a great way to network.
  • Market yourself – Go on the offensive.  Some people have posted ads for themselves on FB and other online places.  Start tweeting or blogging about your industry or profession.  There have even been stories about people handing out resumes at subway stops.  Get creative and get out there!

In short, don’t restrict your job search.  Think of it this way… you are the product.  You need to identify your top customers and marketing channels.  Then spend your resources (time) effectively.

Don’t spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door.
Coco Chanel

Don’t Believe Everything You Think

I heard this from Tim Ferriss’ podcast episode on The Man Who Studied 1,000 Deaths to Learn How to Live with BJ Miller.  This is so true in life and your job search…

You are your own worst enemy

We see it everywhere in quotes.  The power of belief or disbelief is staggering.  I even see it in 9-year old baseball.  If a kid walks up to the plate WANTING to hit the ball and BELIEVING they’ll hit it they are much more likely to get a hit.  The reverse is also true.  If they don’t want to be there and don’t think they will hit it they usually won’t.

In Malcom Gladwell’s book Outliers he says the same thing is true.  The people who are successful, in large part, are successful because they believe they will be successful.  You can take the same thing to your job search.  You need to visualize what it will be like when you get a referral, the recruiter calls, you go on the interview, etc…  Call it karma, positive thinking or the power of God within each of us, it works.  But, just as with God’s timing, it is often times not on our time schedule.

Sekou Andrews puts it into perspective in Tim Ferriss’s podcast where he gives everyone in the audience a huge takeaway.  Sekou has everyone repeat after him… “at least I’m not trying to build a successful life from poetry.”  He goes on to say “I got no sympathy for y’all”  “I built my business off a dead art form you hated in high school.”

Today, take the time to write down all the things that are holding you back.  Say them out loud to someone else and get them out in the light where you can see them for what they are… they are agreements that you have made with the enemy that you are not enough.  Here is a tip… you are MORE than enough.

Take me off your Rolodex and put me in your calendar
Sekou Andrews

You need to have a sense of entitlement to do well in your job search

I am reading Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.  In the book he looks at what makes great people (outliers) great.  I HIGHLY recommend this book.  One of the things that he talks about that makes a dramatic difference in people’s lives is whether or not they have a sense of entitlement.

 the condition of having a right to have, do, or get something

This is NOT the definition that most of us use.  Most of us use it when people get special privileges or when we describe financial help from the government.  Gladwell says that people without entitlement will not stand up for themselves, people with it will.

This is VERY important in the interview process.  I fear that companies often times hire good interviewers, but not necessarily good candidates.  This is an important distinction for every applicant to understand.  Think of it in the dating analogy…  How many times have you been on a date that went great but you later found out the person is a horrible match for you.  Or sometimes the reverse happens, you think the person is a self-absorbed half-wit but you later find out that they just have a wicked sense of humor.  The interview process is no different.  Unfortunately most people do not believe that to be true.

Many people believe that you can interview people in such a way that it determines who will be successful and who will not.  Don’t get me wrong, interviews do help in increasing the odds that there will be a good match.  Interviews can assist in determining who CAN be a good match but not necessarily who WILL be a good match.

Let’s look at how this affects you, the candidate.

Entitled people ask questions

Many times the person that does well in the interview is the person who asks questions.  If the company asks you a scenario or hypothetical question you NEED to ask questions.

  • Interviewer: What would you do if a customer refuses to pay?
  • Candidate: Before I answer I would like to know some of our (assume you already work there) policies and procedures around non-payment.
  • Candidate: What is the normal process for billing and where in that process did the customer refuse to pay?
  • Candidate: Have we already delivered the product / service?
  • etc…

If you do not have a sense of entitlement you will not ask those questions.  It really helps if are the type of person who does not have a problem asking questions.  Keep in mind, you need to ask enough but not too many.

Entitled people believe what they say

One thing that will sink an interview very quickly is a being flip-flopper.  No, I don’t want someone so committed to a belief that they will pursue even in the face of evidence to the contrary.  I mean the people that change their answer because they think you have a different opinion.  In a HRGrapevine article  Uber’s CEO, Travis Kalanick, it seems he wants people WITH different points of view.  The article talks about how Kalanick talked to a candidate (they call it a “30 hour interview”) off and on for weeks about a variety of topics.  My thought is that if the candidate had changed his answer when pressed, it would have been a MUCH shorter process with a very different outcome.

You need to be OK with having a different opinion and be able to back it up.  You need to defend your viewpoint and argue without being argumentative.  Many people cross the line and let their emotions rule them when confronted.  But entitled people don’t get emotional.

Entitled people are persistent

How many times have you been told “apply online” only to wait and wait and wait with no response?  If you are entitled you won’t just sit there, you reach out to people.  I see it all the time… the entitled candidate follows up with me.  They stop by my office.  They reach out to me via social media.  In short, they have the winning attitude of “if this company does not hire me, it is their loss but I want to show them how great I am.”  Again, this is confidence without arrogance.  It is persistence without nagging.  It is a fine line that is walked and it is not a straight line.  This takes what Gladwell calls “Practical Intelligence.”  What is Practical Intelligence?  Gladwell defines it as ““knowing what to say to whom, knowing when to say it, and knowing how to say it for maximum effect.”

We all need to be a little bit better at being an advocate for ourselves, that is what Malcom is saying.  If you don’t believe in yourself, why should others?

Believing in yourself if the first secret to success.
Disti Amalia Pusparanti

Top 10 list on how to be a bad co-worker

There are a lot top 10 lists out there so I thought I would add one to the multitude:

Top 10 list on how to be a bad co-worker

You know, those people that want to do their jobs poorly.  Please note the pervasive sarcasm in this post.  Yes, that person that wakes up every morning looking forward to doing a bad job at work.  You probably have or have had a coworker or two who you think wakes up and asks themselves “how can I make my coworkers and boss miserable today?”  You might even think that HR and hiring managers like this type of person because they keep hiring more of them.  Or maybe, you are tired of having people want to work with you.  It gets old winning awards and knowing that you are doing a good job… it’s time for a change!  You want to join the ranks of the ne’er-do-wells.  This post is for you.

1. Show up late… to everything.  This shows EVERYONE that you value your time more than theirs.  Way to go.  There might not be an “I” in team but there is a “ME.”

2. Gossip… A LOT!  You know people LOVE bad news, so why not spread some.  Or even better yet, create your own.  You saw your boss go into a meeting with the CEO… that MUST mean layoffs are around the corner, you better start telling people.

3. Don’t clean your dishes in the break room.   Don’t they have cleaning people for that?  I mean seriously.  If you cleaned up after yourself you would be taking work away from someone else.

4. Take personal calls at work and speak LOUDLY.  Everyone else is so focused on work they won’t even notice when you talk about how your family puts the fun in dysfunctional.

5. Don’t do what you tell people you will do.  The Bible even tells us that if you put your faith in anyone but God you will be disappointed.  So why not allow them to learn that lesson through you?

6. Deadlines are for suckers.  You can’t rush creativity and most deadlines are artificial anyway.  If they were real there would be consequences for missing them.

7. Don’t eat breakfast until you get to work.  Your employer knows you don’t work well when you are hungry so it is a good idea to clock in at work before you start making your breakfast.

8. What dress code?  Even if you know the dress code, they don’t really expect people to adhere to it.  Your coworkers understand and maybe even enjoy seeing your underwear, bra, belly or any other item or part of your body some people consider “personal.”

9. Wear a lot of perfume or cologne.  Better yet, wear a lot of Patchouli Oil.  Everyone enjoys the same scents you do and if not… well, they just need to get over it.

10. Do what you want, when you want, where you want.  You have your rights, don’t let people take them from you.

11. Don’t follow directions.  If someone asks you to do a top 10 list do 11 or 12 if you want.  They will appreciate that you think “outside the box.”  All those haters need a “paradigm shift” to see things the right way… your way.

12. Personal hygiene.   Bathing is optional and bad for the natural oils you produce.  Just use more patchouli oil.  Fingernails and toenails?  If you decide to clip them why do it in the privacy of your own home?  Clip them at work in the break room or in your cube.

Feel free to add the ways YOU can be a bad employee in the comments.  These people need all the help they can get.

The employee who steadily smiles and peak performs while having to work with a difficult and sometimes toxic coworker, proves that he/she is in control of their happiness and peace of mind.
Ty Howard