I’m Working With Stupid!


The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.

-Albert Einstein-

I have to tell you, I am very apprehensive about the title and content of this post.  It could be my most controversial post to date, and I have 184 posts published.  But here goes nothing!

I remember that back in the 80’s people were wearing a tee-shirt that had a cartoon hand pointing left or right with a slogan below that read; “I’m With Stupid.”  I think that stores sold those tee-shirts in the millions.  They must have been a gold mine.

Have you ever had the feeling that you’re working with stupid?  Today we often see tee-shirts and bumper stickers that read; “You can’t fix stupid.”  The popularity of such items tells me that we must all feel that way at some point in our day or week.  As we make our way through each workday, surely we get frustrated with our co-workers and exclaim, “I work with stupid!”

You know, stupid doesn’t understand why you work like you do, what your department’s priorities are, doesn’t seem to care about your goals and ideas.  Stupid leaves the work you feel is important undone or not done in the timeframe you feel it should be done in.  Stupid spends his/her time in endeavors you’re certain are not a priority for the company or the department.  Stupid could be a better boss or leader, a better co-worker, a better customer, or vendor.

It’s frustrating I know.  I’ve been there, frustrated right along with you wondering how on earth stupid still has a job.  I ask myself, “does management not see what I see?”  Stupid is, well…stupid is just plain stupid.

Would you agree that we all see the world in different ways?  We see the world through the eyes of our own experience, and we act accordingly.  In a word, we’re all unique.

If you look around your place of employment, who would you consider to be the stupid one?  I’ll bet that everyone in your office can point to anyone and exclaim, “that’s the stupid one!”  The funny thing is that everyone may not even look to the same person!

But why is he/she the stupid one?  Because they see the world through their own experience and act accordingly?  Could it be that to someone, we’re the stupid ones?

We all act according to our worldview, our set of values, and our goals.  We seldom take into consideration the worldview, values, and goals of our co-workers, customers, or vendors.  Based on these simple facts we could all, at some point in the day, be the stupid one.

Our goal should be to consider others, their world view, and their goals and act accordingly.  To act in a manner of service to our co-workers, customers, and vendors. This is not easy I’m sure, but the concept is simple, no?

Next time you’re sitting smug and self-assured that you’re the best employee/co-worker in the place, look around and see who’s cartoon finger is pointing at you and act accordingly.

Tino Hernandez

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