Rear End Smooching

I worked at JC Penney Warehouse in Manchester, Connecticut back in my pre-mommy years.  I started out as an auditer, which sounds fancy but was basically just counting clothes, ensuring my count matched the count listed on the inventory sheet, and signing off.  Once the audit was complete, the rack of clothes was pushed out onto a conveyor belt where it was sorted, sent over a belt high in the sky to another section and then sent down to be boxed and shipped.  It was boring so I killed time by moving at superhuman speed.  This got me moved to the sorting section, as you needed to work fast in order to run it, otherwise the belt would jam.  I did so well there that my supervisor decided to send me across the way to the section before boxing and shipping; it was a mess over there and needed someone to clean it up and get it running properly.  I did this job so well that I was fired!

In reality, I was let go not because of my job performance, good or bad, but because I refused to play nicely with my supervisor.  Upon being moved into a supervisory position, I discovered that my colleagues liked to engage in gossip, games of “Who can we get in trouble today,” and an unhealthy amount of ass kissing.  I was constantly being asked to do things or expected to say things that went against my moral code, and since I didn’t play their game I was let go.  To me, the amount of brown nosing you’re able to do shouldn’t determine your success in any job.  This doesn’t seem to be something that can be said about most people and it drives me up the wall.

I’ve worked with some serious booty kissers throughout the years; the girl who changed her entire personality when the boss was near, the group who’d tell the boss how muscular he was looking lately, the few who would rat on anyone to make themselves look better, and the ones who attach themselves to the boss like a lost puppy dog.  One of my coworkers was promoted to a supervisory position about three months ago.  As soon as it was announced, this guy crawled up my boss’s butt and made camp.  He’d constantly contradict himself by trying to make himself look agreeable to the Bossman, interrupt others to ensure that everyone knew how right the boss was in everything he said, compliment ideas that didn’t need comment, it was ridiculous and annoying and eventually (to my delight) resulted in the guy getting demoted back to his original position; the job he was promoted to was listed as open and accepting applications.

Ass kissing may get someone to like you, and if you’re insanely lucky it might get you into a stable position.  But for the most part, it’s a pointless exercise that does little more than make you appear to be a weak minded idiot.  An ability to come up with a compliment on the fly is not a substitute for job skills and intelligence.  But more importantly, it’s about the type of person you want to be.  Would you rather be the one who slept/brown-nosed/ass-kissed their way to the top or the person who busted their tail and climbed the ladder unassisted?  Obviously kissing up is much easier than doing the work and going the extra mile, but nothing worth having comes easy and it’s not even a strategy that comes with a working guarantee.  Sure, a small possibility exists that I could have some high ranking job back at the warehouse had I caved and joined the gossips, but I would have lost my pride in the process and that’s something I just won’t do.


About Jamie C. Baker

“Long time no see. I only pray the caliber of your questions has improved.” - Kevin Smith

Posted on July 6, 2011, in Work and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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