Author Topic: My boss called me an anarchist today  (Read 8991 times)

k290

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My boss called me an anarchist today
« on: January 25, 2016, 10:12:38 AM »
So we have one-on-one feedback and review sessions at work today, that are supposed to happen every month. The major topic was career growth.

It went something like this:

Boss: You need some career goals to set up and achieve in the next 6 months. Here are some things you can do...<lists things>

Me: These goals that management are looking for all require additional work that is of no interest to me. I am upskilling myself in what I enjoy all the time, rather than the checkboxes management wants me to achieve for their corporate agenda. (yes I did word it like this).

Boss: That's because you are an anarchist.

LOL
« Last Edit: January 25, 2016, 10:14:11 AM by k290 »

G-dog

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2016, 10:31:00 AM »
Cool.

If you make the case for how the skills of interest to you fit the corporate agenda / improve your work, it's a win-win. It usually isn't too hard to make the case.


NoStacheOhio

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2016, 11:00:11 AM »
IDPs are such a pain. Just try to find something that a. doesn't rely on other people to do something and b. doesn't increase your work load a ton. Shoehorn it into their box and move on with your day.

Northwestie

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2016, 11:15:56 AM »
Oh, that is pretty funny.   You are such a rebel!

trailrated

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2016, 11:44:52 AM »
Sounds like something straight out of a Dilbert cartoon lol, cheers to you!

Tetsuya Hondo

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2016, 12:08:18 PM »
Cool.

If you make the case for how the skills of interest to you fit the corporate agenda / improve your work, it's a win-win. It usually isn't too hard to make the case.

Sage advice from G-dog. Unless you're close to FIRE or you're really, really good at what you do, or your boss is really cool, you'll have to engage in a bit of corporate bullshit. I learned the hard way you can only be so much of a rebel before it backfires.

Consider this a visit from your ghost of future self: just put those things you are upskilling continually on your IDP and drop the commentary.

k290

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #6 on: January 25, 2016, 12:18:14 PM »
Cool.

If you make the case for how the skills of interest to you fit the corporate agenda / improve your work, it's a win-win. It usually isn't too hard to make the case.

Sage advice from G-dog. Unless you're close to FIRE or you're really, really good at what you do, or your boss is really cool, you'll have to engage in a bit of corporate bullshit. I learned the hard way you can only be so much of a rebel before it backfires.

Consider this a visit from your ghost of future self: just put those things you are upskilling continually on your IDP and drop the commentary.

Appreciate that advice. I'll keep that in mind in my next monthly catch-up. Thank you!

StockBeard

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2016, 03:25:07 PM »
I'm finding that I want to be more and more open about what I think of these "performance reviews" as I get closer to FI. But I know part of the victory is to keep my mouth shut until I'm actually ready.

I liked reading the OP, but can't picture myself doing the same if I'm not FI :)

Adventine

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #8 on: January 25, 2016, 04:52:58 PM »
Cool.

If you make the case for how the skills of interest to you fit the corporate agenda / improve your work, it's a win-win. It usually isn't too hard to make the case.

Sage advice from G-dog. Unless you're close to FIRE or you're really, really good at what you do, or your boss is really cool, you'll have to engage in a bit of corporate bullshit. I learned the hard way you can only be so much of a rebel before it backfires.

Consider this a visit from your ghost of future self: just put those things you are upskilling continually on your IDP and drop the commentary.

Appreciate that advice. I'll keep that in mind in my next monthly catch-up. Thank you!

Thirding the advice from G-dog and Tetsuya Hondo. Being snarky with your boss, although satisfying in the short term, can possibly undermine your long term FIRE plans.

Villanelle

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2016, 06:10:13 PM »
Cool.

If you make the case for how the skills of interest to you fit the corporate agenda / improve your work, it's a win-win. It usually isn't too hard to make the case.

Sage advice from G-dog. Unless you're close to FIRE or you're really, really good at what you do, or your boss is really cool, you'll have to engage in a bit of corporate bullshit. I learned the hard way you can only be so much of a rebel before it backfires.

Consider this a visit from your ghost of future self: just put those things you are upskilling continually on your IDP and drop the commentary.

Appreciate that advice. I'll keep that in mind in my next monthly catch-up. Thank you!

Thirding the advice from G-dog and Tetsuya Hondo. Being snarky with your boss, although satisfying in the short term, can possibly undermine your long term FIRE plans.

Yes.  If I was your boss and needed to let someone go, guess who would be at the top of the list.  If I needed to promote someone or distribute a limited amount of salary increase money, guess who would be on the bottom.  Just as going to work is something many do because they have to in order to reach FI, so too is toeing the line a bit.  Sometimes that can mean just spinning what you are doing so it fits into their vision.  Other times, it means finding the smallest, easiest, least objectionable-to-you change and making it, so it appears you are playing along.  Saying, basically, that you don't care what the boss wants and are looking for the path that is easiest for you announces to him that you are, first and foremost, looking out for number one.  And of course you are!  Even the people who nod vigorously and get their TPS reports in early are doing that.  But they are allowing for the appearance that they are "team players", which you aren't.

bobechs

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #10 on: January 25, 2016, 06:17:10 PM »
If you are going to be a star, and in my book you already are, you're going to need some theme music:

http://duke-of-uke.com/muzak/Track02_Anarchy_in_the_UK.mp3

tipster350

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2016, 08:24:53 PM »
You are not there as a favor to the company. Your employer pays you to care about what is important to the employer. It is possible to try and steer your projects and development activities to what is interesting without being obnoxious or appearing self-serving. You can think what you want but it is important to have discretion in what you say. I'm sure it felt good in the moment, but employment is a long game, even for the early retiree. 99.9% of us have to play the game to some extent to stay employed and have a reasonable career. I'm guessing you're in the 99.9%.

Yaeger

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #12 on: January 25, 2016, 08:41:02 PM »
So we have one-on-one feedback and review sessions at work today, that are supposed to happen every month. The major topic was career growth.

It went something like this:

Boss: You need some career goals to set up and achieve in the next 6 months. Here are some things you can do...<lists things>

Me: These goals that management are looking for all require additional work that is of no interest to me. I am upskilling myself in what I enjoy all the time, rather than the checkboxes management wants me to achieve for their corporate agenda. (yes I did word it like this).

Boss: That's because you are an anarchist.

This is how I read that conversation:

Boss: We're thinking about promoting you. You're in a group of people we're looking at. If you want to break out, I'd recommend you doing these things <list>

Me: I'm only here for me.

Boss: <cringe> Wow. Okay. Thanks.

aschmidt2930

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #13 on: January 25, 2016, 08:42:06 PM »
If you only want to focus on the things that interest you, start your own company.  Hopefully you said that half jokingly, otherwise that's a poor move.  I try to suggest projects/ideas that interest me (and also benefit the company), which generally results in working on the things I want to. 

Schaefer Light

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #14 on: January 26, 2016, 08:58:11 AM »
These things can be just as much of a pain in the ass for managers as they are for the people who report to them.

bobechs

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #15 on: January 26, 2016, 09:38:07 AM »
These things can be just as much of a pain in the ass for managers as they are for the people who report to them.

More than agreed, which is why I think that most of the advice here that not to pretend to be an enthusiastic gobbler of whatever corporate drivel is being passed around is certain career death is, shall we say, somewhat overblown.

As a frequent underling and sometimes boss I have never expected or valued or even trusted anyone who did nothing but toe every line, even imaginary ones, and never offered any dissent.

But I don't doubt the lackeyism advocated by the majority here has served the advocates well in their own jobs, because I suspect more bosses are just like them than not.

So- point conceded,... but really?

Villanelle

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #16 on: January 26, 2016, 12:39:37 PM »
Except for all that gray area in between complete "lackeyism" and basically announcing you don't give a shit and are in it completely for yourself and don't care at all what the company values.  But okay. 

MrFrugalChicago

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #17 on: January 26, 2016, 12:45:25 PM »
Hope you are on your way out within the next 6 months?  Your promotion and raises being banned make this a costly convo..

Tetsuya Hondo

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #18 on: January 26, 2016, 01:06:29 PM »
These things can be just as much of a pain in the ass for managers as they are for the people who report to them.

Correction, these things are more of a pain in the ass for managers than they are for the people that report to them. And the pain is multiplied by each subordinate. And more pain is sprinkled on top for every subordinate that tries to buck a process that you as one manager among tens of thousands are powerless to change because the overlords at MegaCorp International just want you to get the fucking appraisals in on time so we can focus on the things that we're actually supposed to be doing for a living.

That's why it's so refreshing when someone can find a way to do their own thing and still check the necessary boxes instead of insisting on running headfirst into a brick wall. That's not being a lackey, that's just being smart.

NESailor

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #19 on: January 26, 2016, 01:48:11 PM »
These things can be just as much of a pain in the ass for managers as they are for the people who report to them.

Correction, these things are more of a pain in the ass for managers than they are for the people that report to them. And the pain is multiplied by each subordinate. And more pain is sprinkled on top for every subordinate that tries to buck a process that you as one manager among tens of thousands are powerless to change because the overlords at MegaCorp International just want you to get the fucking appraisals in on time so we can focus on the things that we're actually supposed to be doing for a living.

That's why it's so refreshing when someone can find a way to do their own thing and still check the necessary boxes instead of insisting on running headfirst into a brick wall. That's not being a lackey, that's just being smart.

Right on.  I have a few folks under me and the year end review process (and mid-year catch-up) is such a pain in the a$$.  Not because we don't discuss performance on a regular basis.  But because the forms created and continually revised by corporate HR are built around the premise that everyone is climbing the corporate ladder and somehow assumes that we're all developing in order to take the next step.  Well, the people who report to me are perfectly happy to be doing the same stuff, day in, day out.  And that's exactly what I want them doing.  What do I do with the rest of the 5 page interactive PDF and all the goal boxes and percentages and +/- ratings and all that other HR garbage?

Just like everyone else said.  Recognize it for what it is...a corporate game...and play to win (increase speed to FIRE, less hassle...whatever)

aschmidt2930

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #20 on: January 26, 2016, 06:02:29 PM »
Except for all that gray area in between complete "lackeyism" and basically announcing you don't give a shit and are in it completely for yourself and don't care at all what the company values.  But okay.

+1.

From the information given, I wouldn't call the comment by the OP "toeing the line."  Nobody here is advocating being a corporate poodle, but it is important to at least pretend to give a little bit of a damn about the goals of the company signing your paycheck.

zephyr911

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2016, 06:18:10 PM »
IDPs are such a pain. Just try to find something that a. doesn't rely on other people to do something and b. doesn't increase your work load a ton. Shoehorn it into their box and move on with your day.
Yeesh. That reminds me, mine is three or four months overdue. I should probably get on that if I want these cushy developmentals approved....

**edit**but TBH I've been having a hard time fabricating a future me that needs any of them, since every time I picture him, he's a little too busy kayaking and homebrewing to be a subject matter expert in #currentjob#.
Except for all that gray area in between complete "lackeyism" and basically announcing you don't give a shit and are in it completely for yourself and don't care at all what the company values.  But okay.

+1.

From the information given, I wouldn't call the comment by the OP "toeing the line."  Nobody here is advocating being a corporate poodle, but it is important to at least pretend to give a little bit of a damn about the goals of the company signing your paycheck.
For real. No need to telegraph it... unless you're close enough to FIRE that even keeping the peace means nothing, you can meet 'em halfway and still keep your dignity.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2016, 06:20:20 PM by zephyr911 »

ender

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #22 on: January 27, 2016, 06:20:50 AM »
I don't know why you wouldn't take advantage of this chance to learn things you want to learn on the companies time. Sure it's BS-y but it still presents a wonderful opportunity.

Learning another language, opportunities to travel, new skills to switch to a different higher paying job do great at your current job, etc.


Cougar

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #23 on: January 27, 2016, 12:53:06 PM »


 If I were in your shoes, I'd pick a few off the list that you think you can mark off without much effort or time but say they should be year goals because the daily business always has setbacks.

 then keep pursuing your individual goals and keep mgt happy at the same time.

 in my experience as long as you're nice, imitate being a team player and don't cause trouble; you can pretty much work at you pace and on what you want to.

acroy

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #24 on: January 27, 2016, 01:25:53 PM »
Haha!!
I am in fact a 'pragmatic anarchist'
Best kind of government is none at all. All it can do is make rules, restricting freedom.
But... some gvt is necessary because 100% of  people can't be counted on to behave properly 100% of the time.


I digress.... Best of luck with the (ahem) career.

LouLou

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Re: My boss called me an anarchist today
« Reply #25 on: January 27, 2016, 04:40:38 PM »
I don't know why you wouldn't take advantage of this chance to learn things you want to learn on the companies time. Sure it's BS-y but it still presents a wonderful opportunity.

Learning another language, opportunities to travel, new skills to switch to a different higher paying job do great at your current job, etc.

This is a good point, and makes work so much more fun.  Unless your employer/job is just awful (and some are!), there are probably things that will benefit both you and the company.

And not just on the company's time, but the dime.  For me, my favorite Antimustachian activity is excessively going to restaurants.  I cut way back on my own restaurant spending, but I'm ramped up attending work events with food. We have an extra seat at that charity gala the firm sponsors? I'll go! The firm will pay for me to go to that seminar that always has great food? I'm there! We are entertaining clients for hours after the seminar at the restaurant over drinks and even more food? I will close the place down!  Now, people mention in my reviews that I interact well with clients, and I know way more people at the firm.  And there is one particular client who loves me because I eat well and drink bourbon, which ultimately helps my firm keep business.  Bonus points all around!