Friday, June 4, 2010

The Final Rule of Awesomeness

Slow down you're making us look bad, you are just not ready for that opportunity, you don't understand our business well enough, she's out of your league...all words muttered by those who have tried, failed and are too cowardly to get back in the saddle.

The 11th (and final) Rule of Awesomeness is: Some People are Assholes, Ignore Them!

In every organization there are the 'up and comers', the well cast, and those who's time has come and gone. Far too many organizations still honor a cast system based on seniority. As a result of this, the 'up and comers' are often instructed to go to the 'has beens' for advice. This is a way for Senior Managers to make the 'has beens' feel wanted. It is also an opportunity for the 'has beens' to curtail the motivation of the 'up and comers' through terrible advice.

The aforementioned cast system does not speak to age or generation: I was a well tenured, over confident 30 year old full of bad advice at one point in my life. Like me at that time, There are professionals every where that are not socially equipped to navigate corporate bureaucracy (for better or worse). So....those who have been around more than 5 years without organizational advancement are thrown from the company jet in a parachute with holes in it. Heading nowhere but down, very slowly, grabbing anyone else they can on their way to crash landing.

These people are called assholes.....ignore them!
  • Do you ever start up a random conversation with a person who feels compelled to defend their every sentence before you even respond?
  • Do you see that guy in the coffee shop that always belittles the staff?
  • Do you over hear folks complaining about the world around them after a few drinks?

All these actions are a cry for help, a wish to be wanted, a need to be needed.

If you are miscast in a role, it's not your fault...stop trying to be someone you are not, have some dignity, and take control of your professional destiny. Don't bow down to those who stick a finger in your face and fuel the fear and intimidation of poor leadership.

If you are in over your have to put the work in and learn the system or decide whether you are trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

We cannot allow ourselves to be distracted by the inequity of others.

  • Take all advice with humility and grace
  • Empower before you insult
  • Ignore those who continue to show you no respect
  • ..and if all else fails...stick up for yourself (but make sure you have the scoreboard and history to back up your argument)

The best thing you can do is to let them have their anger, avoid empowering them and over time they will come around. Everyone has good in them, some just lost it along the way. If you are really brave you can help them redirect their energy to get it back!

Don't Forget to Remember!


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