You need to be more of a jerk at work.
Think for a moment about the person in the job that you really want. Maybe it’s a job in middle management, or hell, maybe the CEO of your company. Whomever it is, think about their personality. Are they the type that keeps their head down and keeps their mouth shut? Probably not. Are they kind of a jerk? I would bet my entire wine cellar that they are.
[If I’m wrong, I owe you an invisible bottle of wine. I mean, who the hell can keep a wine cellar anyway? Not I].
Think of a few of the jerkiest jerks of our current time.
These guys are successful because they are jerks. They don’t care what the world thinks and they make that quite clear, every day.
You need some of what they’re having.
Here are four signs you need to be more of a jerk at work.
1. You’re Getting Chewed Up (AND Spit Out)
You’re getting used and abused. You’re always putting in 100%, but it never seems to help. You can do no right in your boss’, clients’ or even coworkers’ eyes.
Person up and work on your inner game. Know that when you work hard, it is good enough. It is ALWAYS good enough. And when the boss, clients or coworkers do the usual complain game, pay them no mind. If you find that difficult, than you need to have a conversation with the complainers about what they think should be done differently. But make sure you come with the jerk mindset – be unemotional, factual and focused.
2. You’re Not Taken Seriously
Are your ideas shut down before the words leave your mouth? Or maybe you have some valid concerns that are glossed over?
When this happens, instead of shrugging and giving up, you need to have the jerk approach. You need to be persistent and make follow-up your key objective. You basically need to aim to annoy people to the point that they can no longer ignore you. Who’s being taken seriously now? YOU.
3. You’re Hearing THIS: “Give It To [Insert Your Name Here]. [Insert Your Pronoun Here] Will Do It”
Somewhere along the way in your efforts to please others, you became the garbage dump for shitty work. That data entry crap? Oh yeah, you’ll do it. Planning your company’s holiday party? Yup, you’re the guy/gal. Enough of this shit.
Doing the shit work doesn’t necessarily equate to career growth. So why do it? Be targeted and focused with the extra work you accept. Also, ASK to work on projects that WILL further your career.
4. You’re Pulling MUCH More Than Your Own Weight
There’s no I in TEAM and the same goes for situation where you’re doing all the damn work.
You need to talk to the teammates that need to step up their game. Going with the jerk approach, you’re going to be all business. Tell them what’s been happening and ask if they can remedy the situation (ahem, do some damn work). Also, bring your boss up to speed on the problem, but tell them that you’re addressing it. This is good fair warning for them in case they have to step in (which hopefully won’t have to happen).
You’re a nice person. I get it. You don’t really want to rock the boat, but if you have to, you only want to make small waves. Well guess what? Sometimes you have to capsize that boat to get ahead.
Go. Be a jerk. And let me know how it goes.