You might think your personal quirks, beliefs, and superstitions are nobody's business but your own. That may be true, but only if you keep them to yourself. You see, in the real world, important people like executives, board directors, investors, and customers actually care what kind of lunatic is making critical business decisions that may affect their company.
Even though quirks don't make you a bad decision-maker, that won't stop folks from judging your management cred based on your behavior. And yes, that does include anything dopey that may come out of your mouth or appear on your Facebook page.
Speaking of the Internet, courtesy of that wonderful innovation, people are more superstitious today than they were in the dark ages. You see, superstition used to mean you avoided black cats, ladders, and mirrors. Which, by the way, isn't such a bad idea if you happen to be allergic to cats, accident prone, or ugly.
Now, any nutjob can post whatever loony theory he wants and become an instant authority on pretty much anything. Even crazier is that people believe it. And not just any people, managers and executives too. What, you think underachievers have a monopoly on nutty behavior? Trust me; they don't.
But hey, if you think this is all BS, go ahead and try one of these 10 Ways to Destroy Your Management Credibility. Be my guest. Just don't come crawling to me when you get canned.
- Avoid cell phones and microwaves because of your "EMF sensitivity" and fear of brain tumors. (No, electromagnetic radiation doesn't harm humans at those frequencies.)
- At a business lunch, ask the waiter if the food is prepared with anything that may at one time have had a face. (That's vegan code for animals and stuff.)
- Refuse to shake hands or touch doorknobs without using a Handi Wipe. (Doesn't anyone stop to think how they survived before the whole world became germophobic?)
- Explain how your wife advises you on all important corporate decisions. Be sure to mention that you met at a social event for recovering gambling addicts.
- Leave your "all natural" colon cleansing and detoxification products out on your desk. (FYI, there are no Corn Flakes in your colon and no toxins in your body -- unless you swallow Drano.)
- Get plastic surgery and show cleavage because blogger Penelope Trunk says it'll help you get ahead. (It won't.)
- Make sure everyone in your group has access to your Outlook calendar and can see your biweekly shrink appointments. Then be sure to get into a debate over which antidepressant has the fewest sexual dysfunction side effects.
- Mention that amazing homeopathic cure for irritable bowel syndrome you discovered at the natural herbal supplement conference you attended last month.
- At a business dinner, ask the waiter if the food was prepared using any alcohol at all. Then after the meal, exclaim, "Well, I'm off to my AA meeting."
- Hang a picture on your office wall of you shaking hands with Al Gore at a global warming fundraising event.
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