You know those people. Your colleagues, customer, or manager whose behaviors irritate you. You’re not one of those people. Or are you? Do any of these sound like you?
I Love the Sound of My Own Voice. I might not have anything substantive to say—in fact, I usually don’t—but that doesn’t stop me from commenting on EVERYthing. You might remember me from college. I was the one who always had a question when the professor was about to let class out 10 minutes early. I can’t help myself.
Don’t Bring Me Problems. I don’t want to hear about problems. I want to hear solutions! That’s how I manage my awesome team. They figure it all out, without any guidance or advice from me.
There’s No Such Thing As Too Much Information. I won’t be available tomorrow between 11-11:30 AM because my cousin’s brother-in-law is having surgery, and I volunteered to go pick up his wife’s sister’s prescription from the pharmacy. You can reach me via email, my cell phone, IM (which I will get on my phone), or carrier pigeon. Don’t worry—I will let you know how everything worked out as soon as I am done!
I Am Your Only Client, And I Don’t Care How Unreasonable I Am. Why can’t I have it today? I’m the one paying you, you know. This is outrageous. I know I just told you about all of the changes to the project 3 hours ago, but that is plenty of time to get it done. This is the worst service I’ve ever had.
Your Job Is So Easy. Sales? I could do that job in my sleep. I’m nice. I like to take people to lunch. How hard could that be? Marketing…what do they do, anyway? They just send emails and pass leads on to sales. Development? That has to be the biggest time-wasting group in the company. I would whip them into shape, and we would get out multiple releases per day!
Everything Is Urgent, All The Time! The red exclamation mark adorns each email. Multiple reminders about mundane tasks. If you don’t answer me with the hour, you will leave me no choice but to escalate this matter! Why don’t you operate with a sense of urgency???
My Workstation Is A Biohazard. I have a collection of mugs that are growing mold. My keyboard is encrusted with a sticky substance of unknown origin. I have stacks of things I printed out on my dot matrix printer in 1992—these are very important, and I can’t part with them. My Lucite menagerie no longer shines, as it is coated in a thick layer of dust.
The bottom line
Clean up your work area. Manage your own expectations and realize that your priorities may not necessarily be shared by everyone else. Understand that everyone’s role comes with unique challenges of which you might not be aware. Be a respectful client or customer. Be reasonable. Know when and what to share. Know when to shut your mouth and listen. Don’t be one of Those People.