07 April 2013 | Working for Others

Now, just why has it taken me over 25 years in the workforce to realize that working for other people absolutely sucks?

I suppose everyone feels that way at one point, and the reality is, that we all work for someone else, even if we're self-employed. In that case, you wind up working for your clients whose business you need and you do your best to cultivate that good relationship because that leads to other business and a cash flow. There's no way you're getting out of this life without needing to network and to schmooze, despite all that stuff you learned about earning things on your own merit. Yeah, that's pretty much not really true.

Working for others stinks. And here's a good lesson for anyone just starting out in the workforce: expect nothing. Merit alone doesn't, well, merit much of anything because someone behind you is guaranteed to breeze past you. Whoever is incompetent will always succeed and get higher up on the ladder because, 11th commandment time, thou shalt reward incompetence. And when these people get into positions of power, influence and authority, your life will become a living hell. They will double-down on rules and procedures and you need to obey all of them.

It's a rare thing when you can work the way you want to, and even, someone will come along to tell you how you're doing everythig wrong. And that person will be up in the hierarchy, and all you can do is pretty much submi. You know, in this way, we have generations of people learning to become submissive and resentful: you want to keep your job, you will shut up. And if you are expecting Truth to rescue you in an interpersonal conflict, oh man, are you dumb. No one will ever know how hard you work, but they will tell you when you mess up and remind you of it again and again. Plus, they'll tell all your friends so that you get a bad reputation as someone who is "difficult to work with." And these things are like first impressions: you never really can shake them off despite all of your protestations. Working for others mean you are inherently in a position of abuse and you should follow what I said above: expect nothing.

Welcome to the working world, kids. You're going to be there for the rest of your lives.