Friday I was in a mandatory corporate class. After sign-in we were free to choose our seats and I naturally chose to sit next to people in my comfort zone. Late comers (and man, did that chuff the instructors-who BTW called themselves facilitators) were of course stuck taking the only chairs they could find.
My organization is a bit troubled as of course are most organizations today-mine is not unique in it's problems. So I believe it fair to say no-one sitting in my little corner of the kingdom were pleased to see one of the HR guys slide into the spare chair and try to look as though he'd been there all along.
I am a certified member of the Nerd Herd. Need a red, blue, and/or black pen, or fluorescent highlighter-while standing on the smoking area? So not a problem if Fox's Mom is near by as Fox's Mom ALWAYS has one hanging from the badge chain.
That said, my Nerd Herd quietly-very quietly, keeps the company running and we have moles in every work area so as to facilitate the flow of intel that permits us to end-run our 'co-workers' and 'bosses' idiot/willfully ignorant/'not my table mentality'/"I'm just here for the paycheque" efforts to close down our campus. Most of the time we are frankly supremely successful although lately our patience and willingness have been sorely tried!
The HR guy we got stuck with is more of an idiot than we'd realized, and I think we were finally broken by his arrogant display of impunity.
Nerd Herders are by nature actually quite tolerant, patient, caring, and of course, the team player extra-mile types, but sitting through the morning with this pin-head may have spelled the end for most of us.
I think the final straw broke when he called me a know-it-all. Three of the four team members (we'd been assigned as teams based on seating clumps) visibly shut down at that point, and the flow never resumed.
The HR guy called me a know-it-all. I spent the rest of that day, and most of yesterday thinking about that.
In the process, I came to several valid insights, perhaps I owe the jerk a thank-you note.
The first insight is that I can still take 'developmental feedback' as an opportunity to examine my behaviour and motives-I pondered, "Am I a know-it-all"?
Do I know a few things, having been around for at least the 51 years in this lifetime? Well, YEAH! Duh.
Does my behaviour indicate that I believe myself to know everything?
Only to someone with an extremely challenged sense of self-worth.
Insight #2: I work with one hell of a lot of people carrying around the terrible burden of low self-esteem who are incapable of working past that to learn from the people around them thus becoming contributive assets instead of obstructive asses.
Insight #3: I am still possessed of a high self-esteem AND the interest of meeting/exceeding team goals demonstrated by my willingness to share my knowledge and avail myself of the gift of others similar willingness to share.
Insight #4: I may be wasting my time in this organization.