Thursday, September 23, 2010


I'm going to assume that nearly everyone, at some point or another, has had someone in their life that is a "helper". And I don't mean that in a positive way, either. I'm talking about a "helper" as in the fact that they only seem to help in order to get praise; in order for them to feel important. I more often than not find this in the work place. There always seems to be that one person who is looking for the praise, the attention from helping out as many people as they can. And in case they're not sure if everyone around them knows how "helpful" they're being, they list their endeavors to anyone who will listen.

Supervisors eat this shit up. Everyone else? Rolling their eyes and possibly wiping off the tip of their nose as a sign to the next person rolling their eyes, "Hey, did you hear the brown-noser?"

What's worse is when this "helper" is a person who goes through . . . periods, I guess, where they're not their cheery little helper-person. That every few months, these people decide to have fits where, if no one is noticing how hard they're working, they won't help. Maybe the wonder if no one knows? So they start telling everyone who crosses their path just to make sure everyone knows how helpful they are, therefore they get praised and it raises their spirits so that they're cheerful enough to make others sick.

I was raised with chores to do in order to get any kind of allowance. I was praised for my hard work with a few bucks and a thank you. When I had horses, I spent hours doing chores out in the corral and barn. For myself. When I got into the work world, I did the work because it was there, it needed to be done. More than likely it was assigned to me so I didn't really have much choice in the matter, but still. If I could do more, I did more. If I could help someone else with something, I would. I didn't stand there and demand to the thanked and praised for all my help and hard work. Unlike some other people.

Now don't get me wrong, I like praise. It's nice to be acknowledged for helping your co-workers out, or doing something you weren't asked to do. But it's not why I do it. Sometimes I feel that my boss may not praise all of us at work enough. We all work our collective asses off, and at the next meeting we might be fortunate enough to get a lecture on what else we need to be doing. My boss actually asked me one day (a few months ago) very randomly (like I was on lunch in the break room and she was coming in from sucking on a cancer stick), "Have I complimented you recently?" I was seriously dumbfounded, and probably looked like an idiot with my forkful of food an inch from my mouth with my mouth wide open just staring at her. I kept thinking, is this a trick question? I kind of shrugged and shook my head, thinking if I can't remember it's been too long, and saying "I don't think so, why?" And her replying back to me, "I love the way you do your amended reports. I wish everyone did them the way you do." It was a very random compliment over a very random item. As she walked away, I was happy to have gotten such a random compliment.

But I don't run to my boss (or anyone else for that matter) to list my goings-on at work so that I can continually get praise. If I covered someone's break, I will let them know what I did and there's anything special they need to be on the lookout for. I get a "thanks for covering me" or a "thanks for doing that", and I'm back to my bench. I usually don't give a detailed over-view of what I did, because it was stuff that should be done anyway. I don't deserve a ton of praise for doing my job.

And I also don't jump around all over the building helping everyone, because I'll never get my job done on time. Some helpers are all over the place, and once they realize that their actual assignment might not get done on time, they're suddenly all pissy. Like it's someone else's fault that they just I had to run around helping half a dozen people? No, actually, they didn't. Someone else could have stepped in to do some of that.

There is a reason why businesses hire several people - so the work gets spread out. So, "helpers", spread the love. Leave some out there for the rest of us. Don't do all the work, don't take all the credit, and don't bitch about not getting your own job done. Use your head. It's that lump three feet above your ass. At least . . . it should be above your ass.

1 comment:

  1. I have managed people in my last few jobs and employees that need constant approval and praise have always driven me nuts.

    Man up (figuratively speaking of course) and do what you are supposed to do simply because you are SUPPOSED TO DO IT. Not because you need to be thanked, or hugged or goosed in the elevator.

    Ok, maybe the last thing is just something I need.



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