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Is the Professional World Full of $%#?


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#1 paganyid

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 04:44 PM

All that spinning and lying and huffing and puffing. I know it pays for your kids to eat but doesnt it make us all a little bit superficial and insincere? Aren;t we all part of this giant brainwashing project to delude ourselves that they are all honest enterprises?

#2 adiel

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 05:46 PM

All that spinning and lying and huffing and puffing. I know it pays for your kids to eat but doesnt it make us all a little bit superficial and insincere? Aren;t we all part of this giant brainwashing project to delude ourselves that they are all honest enterprises?


It's a drop crazy, but the 'professional' world has more dirt, politics, deceit, lying, than the non-professional world of blue-collar workers who at worst - just use foul language. If you're going to play in that world, you need to beef up your people skills and learn to backstab.
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#3 Sweet

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 06:49 PM

It's a drop crazy, but the 'professional' world has more dirt, politics, deceit, lying, than the non-professional world of blue-collar workers who at worst - just use foul language. If you're going to play in that world, you need to beef up your people skills and learn to backstab.

Nah, it's just a different language. You could say the same thing about any "world".
The world has too many stupid people who are full of confidence, and smart people who are full of self-doubt.

#4 Guest_halevy_*

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Posted 15 August 2012 - 07:18 PM

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#5 paganyid

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 08:26 AM

Are you suggesting your experience is the common one?

#6 Guest_halevy_*

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 09:56 AM

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#7 Shoshi

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 10:42 AM

My experience in the "professional world" is:

(Profane synonym for fecal matter) floats.

#8 33948

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 11:25 AM

Generally speaking working together is how things get done. Being honest, trustworthy, a team player etc. is generally superior to backstabbing, lying, cheating, stealing etc. What happens is when we deal with large, impersonal and transient populations the rewards of altruism diminish and anti-social behavior develops. The simple answer is to develop long term relationships with people who you can trust. Do business with people you grew up with, or from a local church or synagogue etc. and rely on those small scale personal networks. Among greater society be honest yourself, always be of service to other people (be useful) and do this despite the fact that most people around you are generally worthless lying using thieves.

I don't think being a backstabber causes one to rise in rank. It just happens that most people are of low character and by chance many people who rise up also have that character. It has more relation to densely populated areas, transient populations, diversity etc. these things cause a break down of trust, altruism etc.

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 12:58 PM

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#10 paganyid

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 08:47 PM

I can't help but think that there is something disingenuine about business. I guess Im a romantic.

Take the interview. All that huffing and puffing.
To get a job you have to tell them: you can count on me, I will work for you for thirty years, dont worry, I want to end my career with you. Even though its a lie, and they know its a lie, they made the same lie when THEY interviewed ten years ago, youve got to say it or you wont have a job...

#11 33948

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 09:57 AM

Yes I think our culture in general is dishonest. People would rather be lied to than hear the truth. This is not only in business. But not all people are the same, just generally speaking. If you act like yourself and be honest and straightforward and interview at enough places you will probably find someone that appreciates your attitude.

I think the grass always looks greener on the other side. It's always easiest to criticize (or be annoyed with) those people that are closest to us, or with our own backyard for instance. Yet in reality it may not be as bad as it seems.

I have had a good amount of contact with wealthy and successul people (upper middle class, millionaires etc.), along with contact with the middle and also the ghettos. Probably the biggest difference is that most successful people are polite, have people skills and know how to work together as a team. Sure some of them might back stab here and there, but generally they are pleasant to be around and they are *useful* to other people. That is the key. As long as you are useful to others you will usually have a job and other opportunities.

By contrast low class people are usually lying, thieving, very bad neighbors etc. I don't think %$@^ floats. There's plenty of it at the bottom. Probably the one difference is most people at top are assertive, whereas most middle level/average people are docile.

I agree with you though. I never had people skills. I never cared for lying to people, playing games, putting on an act, making small talk etc. Then I go to work at my entry level jobs and do the best job in the entire place, yet I would get treated the worst. They generally don't care how hard you work. Mostly people just want you to kiss up to them, play the game etc.

It all depends on your personality and finding a place that fits you. I just assume I could earn more money eventually by working for myself rather than dealing with irrational people that are going to promote me or demote me based on whether I kiss up to them or talk about the weather.

The entire subject relates to the book I previously recommended called "power: why some people have it and others don't". In this book they actually recommend to specialize your skill (be the best engineer rather than a mediocre manager or jack of all trades as suggested). It also shows statistically that performance has little correlation to promotion in the corporate world etc.

#12 Guest_halevy_*

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 12:30 PM

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#13 33948

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 01:55 PM

Interesting. Can you elaborate a bit on that last section... very profound. So it's basically like a type of karma that you are speaking of.

Actually my own experience seems to show that conformity is rewarded. If you are the same as everybody else and "fit in" then despite inferior performance etc. you will be promoted based on social ties, likeability etc. I mean if you work for someone else that person typically does not promote people who are best for his pocket book, but he rather promotes people based on likeability or other arbitrary factors. In most cases such people have high incomes and really their emotional and psychological needs are more important than an extra 5% profit. In the long run the behavior may be irrational anyway.

For example, a successful businessman may go to a bar and say "I made record profits, everybody drinks free on me!" and squandor money away in other ways. Yet when it comes to fixing a leaking roof, giving someone a raise etc. he will neglect these things, even though they return a greater profit long term. He does that simply because it isn't fun or emotionally gratifying. Most people are not logical. The best way to fit in with them is to act the same as them, dumb yourself down and play the game. If you act smart they generally get jealose and hate you and want to see you fail. If you work hard, sometimes the same thing can happen. Again, this is explained in the book I mentioned (backed by studies) don't outshine the master. The only thing is the standards are so low in many environments that you have to behave like a total imbecile in order not to outshine anybody. It's rather counterproductive.

By contrast it's more useful to start your own business and simply remove yourself from the corrupt and incompetent community rather than try to act like an animal in order to be accepted among the animal hoard. It's sort of like fleeing soddam and gemorah.

If it were me I would want to hire people who produce results and make me money, whether I like them personally or not. I could care less if they put on a clown suit and dance. But my experiences are generally with low level jobs and people who are not highly successful. Usually the management are rather incompetent. But maybe it's just that I have come from hard circumstances or some inherent natural difference in me that I desire results rather than doing things haphazardly.

What I was thinking of doing is just to get a college degree, procure a middle class job (that allows me disposable income) and then to invest this income through day trading of stocks, real estate investments etc. It's rather easy to make a lot of money doing this. Again most people are just not intellectual or reflective. They are emotional. So even very simple ways of making money elude them.

Most sales jobs deal with the general population. Such people are irrational (see Edward Bernay's work). So a person would need to be an entertainer... like a clown. To start talking rationally would lose the sale.

Being an engineer is of course a college educated job on a higher level than what I typically deal with (no skill jobs). But even among the educated, wealthy etc. there is a strong thread of irrationality and need for emotional gratification.

But I am interested about what the Torah says about the guy who makes stupid decisions and can be successful.

I think most success in the United States is similar to this story. There is such a lack of competence by and large. Maybe a few elite areas are the exception, but really most successful people are just people who found oil in their backyard or by chance started a business that did well despite dumb decisions. I believe if people were more competent we would probably be living in a near utopia. Rather instead we are sitting on piles of wealth, endless opportunities etc. and have 15% poverty rates, high crime, decaying cities etc.

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 02:34 PM

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#15 ijs

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 03:43 PM

My experience parallels 33948's to an astounding degree. For myself, I borrowed a lot of money for law school, and due to various factors have thus far been unable to get a job (3 years after passing the bar exam). I've been a sole proprietor since then, but am not good at marketing and so have not done very well. 33948's idea of investing disposable income (which is no longer possible for me without a HUGE income) is not a bad idea, though I would recommend learning to day trade options instead of stocks, especially if you're good at spreadsheets (they take less money per investment and are of more predictable volatility than penny stocks). Certainly law school is thus far not a good investment, as the market cannot support the lawyers that do exist presently.

I'll be interested, halevy, to see your summary. My most basic understanding is that one's financial success or failure is entirely at Hashem's will, so our job is to put forth the effort and He will determine the results. That creates, however, a huge spiritual conflict for me, as I may soon (couple months) be out of business involuntarily while still without a job, trying to figure out how I'm supposed to live, so you can imagine this is not at all theoretical for me.
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#16 Shoshi

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 09:53 AM

In America, mediocrity is rewarded. The most successful people professionally/financially are not the most intelligent IMHO

#17 33948

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 11:18 AM

You can't find some lame gig as a public defender or something to hold you over? Have you considered moving? It's generally a bad idea to try and find a job in the same town as the school you went to (supply and demand- wages are also lower). Instead if you were able to put in applications statewide, nationwide etc. and possibly be picked up in an area that is far from a school it might be better. Though maybe if you live in an area like New York the city is so large maybe it wouldn't matter.

I don't really day trade, but rather trade daily with cheap online sites. Although scottrade rips people off.

The entire key is to simply find a volatile and predictable single stock and then keep selling high and buying low. I guess it doesn't matter what you trade- stock, commodity etc. but I also find one with a good dividend.

What kind of loans did you take out? I guess it went beyond the regular government subsidized and unsubsidized loans? If you take regular government loans there are programs to help paying them back and it would just make sense to find any kind of work.

You could always open a scottrade account, I'll tell you how they rip people off, gather the evidence then you could file a lawsuit against them.

You can keep in touch with me and whenever I run into an opportunity to sue someone maybe I could go pro bono and have you do the legal work for me or something. In my experience the majority of companies rip people off. Much like scottrade 95% of people don't even realize they are being screwed. Yet I tend to run into fraud all the time. Usually they prey on poor people. I can also find it with major banks as well. I could probably keep you in a steady stream of lawsuits if you wanted. And to be honest I really hate most of these companies anyway because it is wrong what they do.

I have heard a lot of bad stories about people going to law school then when they get out they don't make enough money, work is hard to find etc. I guess there are too many people going into the field anymore. The work/effort to become a lawyer isn't in proportion to the reward. Everybody talks about becoming a doctor or lawyer but that was the reality in 1970, not today. It's like my low class moronic family that always taught me to work hard and get ahead. That was possible 30 or 40 years ago but today mainly a person needs an education or his own business to make any money. $30 an hour factory jobs don't exist anymore (at least not enough of them).

I just read in a magazine yesterday that there is projected to be something like a 60% surplus in unskilled workers and a 60% shortage in skilled workers. Unfortunately America's colleges and universities actually don't train people for many of the in demand skills needed. (so even if you get a degree its in some field like lawyer that has a surplus of people)

It probably makes more sense to work backwards. Look for high paying jobs that are in demand and then work backwards to see how it is possible to qualify for those jobs. I did this and actually found most jobs like this rely on getting an IT degree initially (sometimes as little as an associate degree) and then building up work experience and working your way up that way. I mean there are 100k + a year jobs they can't find people to fill that can be reached this way (most in the government sector). The key is that the openings rely on work experience you don't make this right out of college.

On the other subject, one of the most inspirational aspects of Judaism (from my limited understanding) is the idea that we should do the work regardless if it is completed or not. It seems most people I meet always scream "why try we will just fail anyway". It's completely illogical. All you can do is try your best and this will always lead to the best outcome whether it is failure or not. But the majority of people seem to get stuck in defeatism and want to give up.

I would say determination is probably more valuable than intelligence

#18 Guest_halevy_*

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Posted 18 August 2012 - 09:05 PM

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#19 Pinchas

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 03:05 AM

In America, mediocrity is rewarded. The most successful people professionally/financially are not the most intelligent IMHO


Well duh! Hasn't anybody read "The Dilbert Principle?"

There's got to be an online copy somewhere...

ETA: Found the original WSJ article that the book was based on:
http://users.rcn.com...bert-princ.html

Pinchas is right - micha

 

For the record, IRL he is a really nice guy! - HappyDuck, Z"L


#20 Guest_halevy_*

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 06:41 AM

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