Why the 'Dumb' People at Work Often Aren't

‘Whatever’

“This is part of a ‘set’ or family that goes with ‘Totally,’ ‘Like’ and ‘Um.’ A family that no one wants to visit,” says Taylor.

Fact #9: Dream drug

There are actually people who like dreaming and dreams so much that they never want to wake up. They want to continue on dreaming even during the day, so they take an illegal and extremely potent hallucinogenic drug called Dimethyltryptamine. It is actually only an isolated and synthetic form of the chemical our brains produce naturally during dreaming.

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8. The delivery trick:

I used to know a guy who, every week, would order his Saturday night curry for delivery while sitting in the pub, and then walk over the road to the curry house and get it AND himself delivered home. One week, we were sitting having a pint and the owner of the curry house walked in, took his order, and had him picked up from the pub — he said it was easier for everyone concerned.”

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Fact #5: Sleep paralysis

Hell is real and it is called sleep paralysis. It’s the stuff of true nightmares. I’ve been a sleep paralysis sufferer as a kid and I can attest to how truly horrible it is.

Two characteristics of sleep paralysis are the inability to move (hence paralysis) and a sense of an extremely evil presence in the room with you. It doesn’t feel like a dream, but 100% real. Studies show that during an attack, sleep paralysis sufferers show an overwhelming amygdala activity. The amygdala is responsible for the “fight or flight” instinct and the emotions of fear, terror and anxiety. Enough said!

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Editorial Rating

7

The rating – what does it mean? At getAbstract, we summarize books* that help people understand the world and make it better. Whatever we select for our library has to excel in one or the other of these two core criteria: Enlightening – You’ll learn things that will inform and improve your decisions. Helpful – You’ll take-away practical advice that will help you get better at what you do. We rate each piece of content on a scale of 1–10 with regard to these two core criteria. Our rating helps you sort the titles on your reading list from solid (5) to brilliant (10). Books we rate below 5 won’t be summarized. Here’s what the ratings mean: 10 – Brilliant. A helpful and/or enlightening book that, in addition to meeting the highest standards in all pertinent aspects, stands out even among the best. Often an instant classic and must-read for everyone. 9 – Superb. A helpful and/or enlightening book that is extremely well rounded, has many strengths and no shortcomings worth mentioning. 8 – Very good. A helpful and/or enlightening book that has a substantial number of outstanding qualities without excelling across the board, e.g. presents the latest findings in a topical field and is written by a renowned expert but lacks a bit in style. 7 – Good. A helpful and/or enlightening book that combines two or more noteworthy strengths, e.g. contains uncommonly novel ideas and presents them in an engaging manner. 6 – Notable. A helpful and/or enlightening book that stands out by at least one aspect, e.g. is particularly well structured. 5 – Solid. A helpful and/or enlightening book, in spite of its obvious shortcomings. For instance, it may offer decent advice in some areas while being repetitive or unremarkable in others. *getAbstract is summarizing much more than books. We look at every kind of content that may matter to our audience: books, but also articles, reports, videos and podcasts. What we say here about books applies to all formats we cover.

Family

And then we have family. We see this same dynamic happening with family. Maybe smart/dumb isn’t quite the right scale to use, but something along the lines of this is prevalent. You have some children in a family who are more family oriented and some who are less family oriented. This orientation is based on a similar group mechanism. We have some children who need family and others who do not. And of course, the ones who need family are usually not as smart.

The family is the group. And the child is the individual. For children who develop slower, or who make poorer decisions, or who do a number of things that limit their growth, the family becomes a solution to their circumstance. When they are struggling to get on their own two feet it is advantageous for them to leverage the resources and support of the family, or group.

“Why develop yourself when you can stick around and have the family look after you?”

And so they do. And sometimes to the point that they never want to leave the family, or to the point that they develop a mutually exploitative relationship with the family. They stay loyal to the family so long as the family provides for them. And in this sense they never really grow up, they never really leave the nest. This is why we see more and more Millennials living at home. Why leave when you don’t have to? Why leave when the group brings you up? Why develop yourself when you can stick around and have the family look after you?

And it’s a touchy relationship because of course the family loves their children and wants to help them as much as possible. But at what point is it helping the child and at what point is it hurting the child?

Meanwhile, you have the other children who are more capable and more disciplined who are able to support themselves outside of the family. To them the family is a group that may bring them down in certain areas. After all, if we are supposed to learn from our families and surpass them, what does this surpassing look like? How does a group respond to an individual that has learned what they need to know and has now gone beyond? What does the master do when the student now surpasses them? Well, some will embrace it and nurture it, most will fight it. Most groups do not like it when an individual breaks free and shines the light back on them in their wake.

And so we have a rather peculiar relationship when the child improves themselves and goes beyond the group. When you are close to the group it’s okay. But when you make the group look useless and unnecessary then it becomes a problem. A mark of intelligence is independence and groups don’t want this. They want dependence and complacency.

About The Author

El Paso, Texas I am an entrepreneur at heart. Throughout my whole life I have enjoyed building real businesses by solving real problems. Business is life itself. My goal with businesses is to help move the human … More

10. The ice cream truck request:

“On Fourth of July, I was in Brooklyn in a neighborhood not too far from my own. Was having a hell of a time catching a cab when suddenly an ice cream truck pulled up. My apartment was right next to an ice cream truck depot, and I knew any truck in the area was parking there, so I asked for a ride. They obliged. Free ride home and an ice cream cone. Big win. Awkward ride.”

BrockAtWork

4. You have no idea what you want and you expect simply working hard will be rewarded

This is the worst case of all. If you have no clue what you want and you haven’t taken the time to figure that out, then it’s not your managers job to solve the problem for you. It’s not HR’s job and it’s not the training department’s responsibility to develop your career.

You need to take the time and put the emotional and mental labor into figuring out what you want to do. This means taking the time to assess what are your strengths, what are your interests and what are the skills you have.

What are the skills you’re missing and what are your options? You need to take the time to really dig into this. This isn’t something that’s easy to do and most people go through life accepting what’s available to them instead of being deliberate to decide what they want.

Then find people that have what you want and reverse engineer how they made it happen.

You can’t wait and rely on others to spoon feed you and wrap up a pretty little career path in a perfect package for you.

The days of formal career paths are over. We are in a much more complicated and competitive environment and you’re going to need to learn how to take things into your own hands.

Recommendation

You would be hard-pressed to find a more honest book about business and the often short sighted, un-productive, arbitrary, and just plain stupid decisions made by “dumb” managers and leaders. William and Kathleen Lundin articulately challenge the absurdities of corporate culture and the workplace. In this landmark book, they define “dumb” quite broadly: it applies to the stupid, the egomaniacal, the dictatorial, the scheming, the manipulative, and even the abusive. First-person accounts from leaders and employees illustrate the authors’ journey through the epidemic dumbness of corporate structure, decision-making, and practice. The authors thoroughly and truthfully present these problems, analyze their impact, and offer remedies. However, their conclusions often clearly indicate that if you are mired in a consistently, terminally dumb workplace, leaving is usually your best option. Don’t let the juvenile look of the volume throw you. getAbstract.com recommends this book to everyone with a job: it’s that good, like a sharp-witted social commentary delivered by keen observers.

‘Literally’

“This makes you wonder how much productivity time in corporate America could be gained if this useless word could be ‘literally’ banished,” she says.

2. You wait until the performance review to have a conversation about what you want in your career

If you’re waiting until the formal performance review to have a conversation about where your career is going or asking for a promotion, then it’s already too late. At that point, all of the budgets and discussions behind closed doors have already happened.

In reality, your managers likely already made the decision about what they are going to pay you and so it’s just not the right time. You definitely want to get ahead of it and have a more proactive conversation in advance of reviews.

That way your manager knows months in advance what you’re looking for and by the time your review comes along you both are already on the same page.

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