Thursday, October 16, 2008

How to Make Your Boss Happy on Boss's Day

A guest entry from my boss:

Today is boss's day. How do you make the boss happy? Take her out to lunch? Give him a card? Those things are nice, but the best way to please the boss is to not be a PITA. It's really not hard--show up on time, do good work, and stay on top of your projects. Nothing makes me happier than someone who takes initiative and gets things done.

My 85-year-old father, an electrician for 35 years, talks about being complimented by his boss for good work. Dad eschewed the praise by saying, "You're paying me to do a job."

In these days of layoffs, salary freezes, and, yes, PITA bosses, it's hard to expect employees to show complete love and loyalty toward their employer. But if you're getting paid to do a job, do it. And save the pitas for that boss's day lunch.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Another Bread Analogy in Honor of Rosh Hashanah

Author Laurence Shatkin totally digs the PITA type metaphors in our book. Today he's sharing an e-mail meme that relates different types of bread to different types of sins to be atoned for:

On Rosh Hashanah, there is a ceremony called tashlich. Jews traditionally go to the ocean or a stream or river to pray and throw bread crumbs into the water. Symbolically, the fish devour their sins. A few years back some wag came up with suggestions for breads most appropriate for specific sins and misbehaviors. Although most Jews with e-mail have seen this list at least once, it may be new to a lot of your readers. Anyway, here's the list:

  • For ordinary sins: White bread
  • For complex sins: Multigrain
  • For twisted sins: Pretzels
  • For sins of indecision: Waffles
  • For sins committed in haste: Matzah
  • For sins of chutzpah: Fresh bread
  • For substance abuse: Stoned wheat
  • For use of heavy drugs: Poppy seed
  • For committing auto theft: Caraway
  • For tasteless sins: Rice cakes
  • For ill-temperedness: Sourdough
  • For silliness and eccentricity: Nut bread
  • For not giving full value: Shortbread
  • For excessive irony: Rye bread
  • For particularly dark sins: Pumpernickel
  • For dressing immodestly: Tarts
  • For causing injury to others: Tortes
  • For being holier than thou: Bagels
  • For dropping in without notice: Popovers
  • For overeating: Stuffing
  • For raising your voice too often: Challah
  • For pride and egotism: Puff pastry
  • For sycophancy: Brownies
  • For laziness: Any long loaf
  • For trashing the environment: Dumplings
  • For telling bad jokes/puns: Corn bread

Friday, September 12, 2008

PITA Boss Story: You Make the Call

Bill writes in to tell us a story of a PITA boss:

I once was required to report to a supervisor who was known throughout the company as a vicious incompetent who would sell her own mother in the street if it meant her next promotion. This person had so little grasp of workplace ethics that she called me [offensive epithet] behind my back, and was so poorly educated that when I asked her if a new company policy was a fait accompli, she flew into a rage and angrily demanded that I not speak French to her.

You make the call: What kind of PITA was this boss? How would you have dealt with her? If you said "Talk to HR," that's good. But that's what Bill did and nothing happened. He ended up having to leave the company to get away from her.

Friday, September 5, 2008

BusinessWeek on Dealing with Toxic Bosses

We found during last week's radio tour that a lot of people are especially interested in learning how to cope with toxic bosses. Bob acknowledged that having a PITA boss is particularly challenging because of the power diferential between you and him (or her). He suggested pursuing PITA interventions from the book with extra tact and respectfulness.

Meanwhile, an anonymous contributor to BusinessWeek has some great suggestions for managing a particular Crusty/Rigid Combo PITA. Read all about it here.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Penn State Live Article

Penn State University's alumni news source, Penn State Live, profiles The PITA Principle this week (read the article here).

Friday, August 29, 2008

Bob and Dulin Meet Joey Reynolds Tonight

Late-night radio talk-show host Joey Reynolds has summoned the PITA guys to New York to join his Royal Order of the Night People tonight. You can tune in to hear the interview between 10:45 and 11:45pm ET on WOR-AM 710 in New York, and syndicated across the nation. If you're like me and just don't stay up that late, you can find podcasts of past shows here.
Joey's motto (and the title of his memoir) is "Let a smile be your umbrella--but don't get a mouthful of rain." He's a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and even has his own cheesecake.
Join Joey, Bob, and Dulin tonight as they explore what makes a person a pain in the ass and how to deal with him (or her).

Monday, August 25, 2008

Radio Support Has Been Overwhelming

Well, Pita man and I have currently done 3 radio shows with the major radio tour occuring later this week on Thursday and Friday. We continue to be fascinated with how well we are being received and how much our hosts just love the topic. Its seems that practically everyone can get in touch with the hassles of working with a PITA. It was very liberating for Cynthia from Starstyle to say "pain in the ass" over the radio. We are glad we could help her over that hurdle. :-) She was a great sport! Most importantly, the radio programs are generating some incredible discussions about ways to effectively intervene with our most problematic employees, supervisors, coworkers and even clients. We are very excited to be reaching audiences all over the nation this week as we discuss the nuances of this very important topic.