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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Advice on Starting a New Job

When one of my nephews recently completed college and found a terrific new job, I sent him an abbreviated version of what follows.  This is in line with other posts on this blog in the past, such as “How To Impress People In a Conversation” (see Related Posts below).  When I took my own first major job my father gave me three pieces of advice that I thought I'd pass on with the hope that it will help anyone trying to put a steady foot on the path to success. Here they are:
1. Be worth more than your paycheck. If your performance is clearly of a caliber that you're being underpaid for the great effort you're putting out, you're much more likely to be noticed and promoted. An employee who is clearly valuable is likely to be offered a better job if he/she is currently not being paid enough.  If other potential employers are sniffing around you, make that known to your bosses too, which can lead to a promotion and/or raise (unless you don't want to stay where you are, at which point, you accept the new position and, like Bugs Bunny with Elmer Fudd, you kiss the old boss on the forehead and zip out the door).
2. Blow your own trumpet. If you’re doing great things, make sure your bosses know about it and realize how very valuable your contribution is to the company. Unless you emphasize your worth it may get taken for granted. My father was a career Air Force officer for much of his life, and he was very, very good at taking over command of a major mess and straightening it out in short order.  His boss would be very impressed, but often transferred himself.  The new boss would come in, see how smoothly things were working, and assume that Bob Whaley had it easy and didn’t deserve much commendation.  Meantime higher up in the Air Force others would remember how good Whaley was, and he’d be transferred to straighten out yet another mess.  W.S. Gilbert once commented:
You must stir it, and stump it
And blow your own trumpet,
Or, trust me, you haven’t a chance!
3. Don't get your dick caught in the cash register. This colorful advice speaks for itself, but sex with fellow employees almost never ends well, and frequently means one of you must leave.  Sex is a great complicator of all endeavors, and its seductive charms can strike without warning.  One minute you’re contemplating making an important client phone call and the next your eyes go wide and your jaw drops open as the most beautiful man/woman you’ve ever seen steps into view.  If he/she finds you equally attractive, you two can slam together like magnets.  As exciting as these moments are they’re a disaster if they occur in the workplace.  They most definitely will cause trouble.  When the fling is over you must still interact with your former paramour, and that can be as minor a matter as a mere annoyance or as big a one as a lawsuit.
But it’s almost useless to give this advice to anyone because in the heat of the encounter, when your heart is pumping adrenaline into your system and the pheromones are colliding all over the room, it’s almost impossible to stop a train that’s quickly already at top speed.  Here’s another Whaley saying: when the cock goes up, the brains go down.  Perhaps it helps to just memorize the rule above about the cash register and make it one you never violate.
There is a famous joke that goes like this: a man comes home from his job at the pickle factory and tells his wife that he has this strange desire to stick his dick in the pickle slicer.  His wife is horrified, but he reassures her that he has the urge well under control.  However, a week later he comes home and sadly informs her that he succumbed, and in fact did stick the named appendage in the pickle slicer.  She is horrified, and asks him, “My goodness!  What happened?”  He replies, “I got fired.”  “But what about the pickle slicer?”  “Oh,” he tells her, “she got fired too.
My point in telling this joke is that workplace dalliances not only can lose you your job, but, of course, your happy family life.
In any event, congratulations on your new job!  Now do it well.
Related Posts:
“The Thunderbolt,” September 3, 2010
“How To Impress People in a Conversation,” October 1, 2010
“Men, Women, and Pornography,” December 10, 2010
Fear of Public Speaking and How To Overcome It,” January 4, 2011
“Life’s Little (But Important) Rules,” April 23, 2011
“The Thrill of a Touch,” August 13, 2012
“A Guide to the Best of My Blog,” April 29, 2013

1 comment:

  1. I googled the phrase 'dick caught in the cash register' as it seems to be a buzz-phrase among my peers, but in my circumstance it's for those whom extreme-wealth and dating coincide.