Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Deep Thoughts: Those Burning Questions I Ask Myself!

Like most of you, I have thoughts throughout my day relating ot my job. Below are my deep thoughts from today. Most times these burning questions we have will never be answered but at least we think of them and probably laugh about them with the other competent people we work with. Enjoy and send in your burning work questions!

  1. Why is the carpet color in the office purple, did they have a discount on that rug color or is it subliminal torture?
  2. Why is my boss so incredibly negative, he's making big bucks to do nothing, shouldn' t he be incredibly happy?
  3. If Human Resources is supposed to be the "people department" then why is it that the HR people at my company are generally rude, unhelpful and unavailable?
  4. Why doesn't anyone at my company realize that all the problems and errors are due to a lack of training?
  5. If I"m salaried and do not have set hours, why is it a big deal if I leave 15 minutes before 5pm?
  6. What would happen if everyone in the office turned into brown nosers? Would people be confused about what ass to kiss?
  7. Why do people respond to emails about stuff that doesn't matter, yet ignore emails about stuff that is really important?

Sorry it's been a while since a post. It's been a busy couple weeks. In the preceeding post I have updated the All Time List of Business Cliches based on the emails and comments sent it. Please feel free to keep sending in those cliches as you hear them. I'm trying to figure out a way to post some type of list on one of the sidebars.

Friday, July 20, 2007

The All Time List of Business Cliches

As I've written in many different posts, the art of using catchy business cliches and phrases is just out of control. I've had my share of cliche throwing bosses and each one thought they were incredibly witty and effective, when in fact they boring, regular, and incompetent. The other night I was talking to my wife about the latest barrage of cliches from my week and she said "you should make a list, I bet it would be funny". Well, here goes...


  1. We've got to get our basic blocking and tackling down
  2. Pick the low hanging fruit
  3. Let's think out of the box
  4. How can we make this a win-win situation
  5. Eat the elephant one bite at a time
  6. Let's get our arms around it
  7. I'm looking for your to knock the ball outta the park
  8. You have to look at this problem from the 30,000 foot level
  9. Don't throw anyone under the bus
  10. It's the 80/20 rule at work here folks
  11. Let's cross that bridge when we get to it
  12. It's water under the bridge
  13. The ball is in your court
  14. I think we can agree to disagree
  15. He'll due the lion's share of the work
  16. Take it with a grain of salt
  17. A good rule of thumb is...
  18. He is finally in his element
  19. You're comparing apples to oranges
  20. That's as clear as mud
  21. Everthing from soup to nuts
  22. The whole nine yards
  23. It's crunch time!
  24. Don't put your eggs all in one basket
  25. Fail to plan and plan to fail
  26. Get your feet wet
  27. You can expect what you inspect
  28. Go with the flow
  29. Rome wasn't built in a day
  30. Moving forward
  31. Let's not put the cart before the horse
  32. You're barking up the wrong tree
  33. That's just a drop in the bucket
  34. Stop beating around the bush
  35. Can't see the forest for the trees
  36. Caught between a rock and a hard place
  37. Leave your footprint on this project
  38. Let's not beat a dead horse
  39. In a nutshell
  40. Timing is everything
  41. Strike while the iron is hot
  42. Don't burn your bridges
  43. Step up the plate
  44. At the end of the day
  45. Be proactive not reactive
  46. There is no *I* in team
  47. Lead, follow or get out of the way
  48. Let's not rock the boat
  49. Don't lean to one side or we'll tip the canoe
  50. Everybody on board the Job Express
  51. polarized redundancies
  52. Storm the Winter Palace
  53. on your plate
  54. Business Is Going To Be Hard To Get = BIGTBHTG
  55. Take the ball and run with it
  56. its 4th and 10
  57. it's on his/their radar screen
  58. That dog'll hunt
  59. Let's whiteboard this thing
  60. loaded for bear
  61. Let's swing for the fences on this one
  62. How do we monetize this
  63. Let's schedule a knowledge transfer
  64. you load my gun for me and I'll shoot
  65. 110%
  66. let's make sure we're all on the same page here
  67. run this one up the flagpole
  68. Value-Added

Phew. That's all the cliches and phrases I could think of in one sitting. I'd like to add to the list and get your feedback. Either leave a comment or email me at king.oftheturtles@gmail.com with your additions to the list. Let's see how big we can get this thing!

Friday, July 13, 2007

When Brown Nosers Attack

I've been covering the topic of changing jobs in the past few The grass IS greener posts. I will continue that series, however I'm changing gears for at least this post.

In an early post titles Turtling Through Workplace Personalities I detailed out a number of fun people many of you may work with. In my opinion the most dubious of all Workplace Personalities is "The Brown Noser". I have come across many Brown Nosers over the course of my career. The typical Brown Noser is harmless in many ways and most people realize he or she is a complete idiot and somewhat harmless.

However recently a new breed of Brown Noser has emerged at my company. His name is Phil and he is a hybrid of Brown Noser, Back Stabber and Con Artist. Phil started at my company about 5 months ago and initially came across as a straight-forward, honest guy (The Con Artist Part). Then I watched as he slowly began a record streak of ass kissing (The Brown Noser Part). And now he has established himself as a back stabber, ratting on anyone he can to the big shot he brown noses with (the Back Stabber Part). Because of his rare blend of talents he actually is now being seen as a key member of management by our clueless big shots, even though everyone in middle management despises him and realizes what a worthless tird he is. To make matters worse he has this Fargo-esque accent that is completely irritating and he throws in a few "ya's" and "u betcha's" during meetings.

Now I have never come across this leathal blend of talents, but this new breed of Brown Noser can be handled by a group of team oriented Turtles. My fellow Work Turtles and I resort to a counter ass kissing measure in which we actually brown nose the brown noser. During meetings I will start by feverishly agreeing or complimenting Phil for his "great ideas" or "innovative approach". Then the other Turtles will chime in with like praise. Now we all know this guy is a complete joke, but that's the bueaty of this approach. You and your fellow Turtle co-workers know your compliments are shallow, but Phil doesn't. His ego blows up as he is overcome by the constant praise of the group.

Now I know some will say that giving him praise is helping him get promoted, but let's face it, he's going to get promoted anyhow due to his ass kissing and back stabbing anyhow. At least our approach allows us to avoid getting back stabbed by Phil while in turn giving us the enjoyment of watching him bask in fake praise. It's how Turtles stay safe when confronted with a hybrid brown noser!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

The Grass Is Greener: Understanding What You Value

As part of my job search one of the first thing I realized was that my current company wasn't the right fit for me. I had known this for some time, but became a bit complacent and accepting on my situation. It wasn't until I took inventory of what I valued that I realized how badly I didn't fit with my current company. I found this article on Monster.com titled Work Values Checklist by Pat Boer. As Pat writes in this article

"Whether we realize it or not, often our career choice is based on values rather than the work. "

Pat's comment makes a lot of sense, but like me, I bet many folks out there haven't taken inventory of their values and matched them up with the company/position when you are job searching. In Pat's article there's a checklist that I would encourage any Turtles to complete. Basically you are rating your:

  • Instrinsic Values (intagibles, rewards, satisfiers)
  • Extinsic Values (tangibles, benefits, physical settings), and
  • Lifestyle Values (personal values about how you want to live your life).
From conducting this inventory of values you will have a clear picture on what you really value. As Pat writes "Knowing what's important will help you prepare for your next interview or help you find increased satisfaction with the job you have.". Amen!!

Next I'll provide some tips for the actual interview, including some things I've done in the past that have led to success.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Turtles Welcome

As I've posted in the past, on the righ sidebar I have a guest map and message forum. Please feel free to sign the guest map or comment on the forum. A big welcome to some recent guest map turtles:

Graham from Australia
Tiki from L.A. California
The Physical Worker from Canada
Steve from South Carolina
Robert Cenek of the http://www.cenekreport.com/
XtMapper from Canada

Also a big welcome for Judith Munson of http://www.insidetheworkplace.com/ for her forum comment.

Again, feel free to sign the guestmap, enter a forum message or comment on any of my posts. Your comments and feedback are greatly appreciated.

Turtle King

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