Surviving a hostile work environment – Office Samurais and the Art of War
I’m not going to start this post with some bullshit from the Art of War. Great, we know that military tactics aren’t appropriate in the work place nor does the leader you could become. There are plenty of leaders who have not read that book.
Anyways, there are many ninjas in the office. These are the fuckers who do shit and deny it. Who the hell stole my external hard drive power adapter? A fucking ninja! Who power cycled the server and didn’t tell anyone? A ninja. The only way to handle ninjas is to deploy the Office Samurai.
Office Samurais are a respected class. These individuals have some form of honor and integrity. In feudal Japan, Samurais were respected and did the dirty work of their masters. In the office, Samurais are usually heavy hitters and reliable people. When the office ninjas start pulling their shit, you need to bring in the heavy duty, samurais. They’re approach to problem solving is outlined below:
Direct Attack: These samurais will shake the crowd for the culprit and quickly swash the problem. If a ninja continues to complain that they’re unfairly targeted, the samurai will request that his master no longer give the ninja a task or charge code. This direct line of attack can be challenged by the Emperor or Human Resource Department Leader. Emperors are here to protect the empire or corporate posture. Their behavior is pretty much defined and predictable. Ninjas understand this behavior. Direct attacks are saved when the negative feedback from the emperors are minimal.
Greasing the Turd: Greasing the Turd is a tactic employed by any office warrior. The art of overloading your target or distracting them is the goal. Visualize a wet turd hitting the mouth of your opponent. The more you grease the turd, the more it smears the target. This can be accomplished several ways. One is to send an unexpecting co-worker towards the problem. When there is a roadblock and someone will not move from their position, strength in numbers is helpful. You hype up your cause and send the co-worker towards the individual. This influence will either irritate or win. Whatever the goal is, it takes energy for the receiving individual to deflect the incoming co-worker. This is quiet annoying, especially if you get trolled by several at the same time. This will lead the individual to frustration and react. Another way is also sending an unqualified person to resolve an issue. This can frustrate the receiving individual and make them rage quit the project or task. It’s almost like throwing ninja stars. Sending email request to have the target look up information that really isn’t required is another tactic. The objective is to overload and get an expected result.
Closing the Fortress Gates: When ninjas keep touching your shit, you close the fortress gates. You limit access to the room, computer, or project. This is to make the program safer. This will excite the ninjas and make them retaliate. You’ll want to ensure that you’re fast when pulling up the gate. Stealth is important. When a ninja knows that you’re cutting off their access to the fortress, they might open another way or use existing staff inside to access what they need. Be smart.