By Dorie Morgan@brazencareerist.com
One of the men in my office is a real asshole. He seems to think he’s an authority on everything, even though he complains constantly that he doesn’t know how things work. I’m fairly certain he’s not doing any of the work he’s being paid to complete himself (I keep catching other people’s interns completing his work), but he will always tell you why you are doing your job incorrectly. He’s demeaning to women and treads very closely to the sexual harassment line. Wait a minute, he’s demeaning to everyone. I just have no respect for him.
At first, I tried to chalk it up to the fact that he’s a baby boomer and I’m a millennial and we just don’t see eye to eye and it must be a communication problem and so on. But then I hit me: He really is just an asshole.
And the rest of the Boomers in the office think he’s an asshole too. And since I really respect and trust those coworkers, I’m okay with writing the guy off all together.
The worst part of it: he doesn’t seem to know that he’s an asshole. Like many other aspects of his work life, he just has no clue. But he can’t be the only one in that boat.
In case you were curious if your co-workers think you’re an asshole, here are a few clues.
You enter conversations that don’t pertain to you. If I’m discussing a situation in a department meeting, and you walk by the room and enter uninvited to tell me your opinion, there’s something wrong. People will ask for your opinion if they think you have some insights or ideas that could help the situation. And if no one asks, you can find a better venue to share your ideas than bursting into a meeting.
You frequently find yourself eating alone. If you are taking lunch at noon and no one else is in the break room with you, there is a problem. Especially if noon used to be the peak lunch hour. Let’s face it: your lunch break is valuable time because it is your time. And when your coworkers start showing that you aren’t wanted during their time, its time to make a change in your behavior.
You tell your coworkers all about you – but you rarely ask your coworkers about them. I work at a small company with a family atmosphere. As a result, I hear a lot about my coworkers personal lives, which is great. It helps me to work more efficiently with my coworkers because I have a greater understanding of where people are coming from. For example, the girl next to me ran a 5k last night and she didn’t do as well as she would have liked. But after telling me about the 5k experience, she asked me about how my night class went last night. Relationships are give and take – no one wants to just hear about how great you are, they want you to ask as well. People will start to avoid you if they think you are only interested in yourself.
You bully the interns. Interns are not here to be treated like a second class citizen. Interns are here to learn, to gain work experience and hopefully, make some money. And really, when you treat my intern with a lack of respect, I lose even more respect for you. Why? I don’t want to be around you if you make yourself feel good by treating others poorly and certainly do not want my team to be around you either. And let’s not even get into the fact that I would not want you anywhere near my clients.
Is there anyway to bounce back from this behavior? I’m still not sure. Part of me thinks it just isn’t possible.