Cartoon: jerk takes credit for a colleague's idea

How to Be a Jerk at Work in Nine Steps

By Jeffrey Baumgartner

If you suspect that jerks tend to do better in business, you are right. If you happen to be a jerk, this is great news. Keep it up. If you suffer this misfortune of having been raised a polite, respectful and caring human being, you need either to accept that you are a loser or you need to learn to be a jerk. If you prefer the former option, I suggest you leave us now, loser.

If you are ready to become a jerk, at least during working hours, read on.

1. Be Overconfident

The thing with jerks is that they are way more confident in themselves than they should be. If your shoulders slump, de-slump them. Square them off. Hold your head high and look down your nose on others. Snort when people say things they believe to be meaningful. Walk with a swagger. Practice these superior behaviours until they come naturally to you.

When asked a question, answer with confidence even if you have not got a clue. Tests have actually shown that being the first to answer a question confers expertise and leadership upon you, even if you are wrong. If you are the first in a group to answer a question, you impress people. So, do not worry about right or wrong. Just answer promptly and confidently.

2. Own Any Room You Occupy

Have you ever noticed how overconfident jerks have a way of walking into any room as if they own it? You need to do this too. Before you walk into a space, tell yourself that it is your space. It is your room. You own it and you can do whatever the fuck you please with it. If anyone else does not like it, such as the real owner of the room, he is a loser and he is taking up space in your room. Be sure to treat him like a loser and then watch him act like a little puppy trying to get praise from its master. Amusing, isn't it?!

3. Be the Most Important Person in Any Situation

You must believe yourself to be the most important person in the room, team, group or organisation. You must believe this and act this way. Do not ask if anyone minds if you take the last cup of coffee. Only losers do that. You are more important than others in the office. The last cup of coffee belongs to you. Take it. 

4. Interrupt and take Credit

A common complaint among women office workers is that when they speak out in meetings, they are often interrupted by their male colleagues who simply repeat the woman's suggestion and then take credit for the idea. Those guys are real jerks. You want to be like that.

When you are in a meeting and a colleague (of any sex)  proposes an idea, jump in as soon as you know what she is talking about and complete her suggestion. Bring up the suggestion again, later in the meeting, but refer to it as "my idea". If the person who proposed the idea complains, laugh dismissively as if she is a cute child wanting attention.

5. Never, Ever Apologise

Jerks never, ever apologise. That would be admitting a mistake. It would be conceding that someone else is right and you are wrong. It would be acknowledgement that another person or people are significant. You are never wrong and others are insignificant compared to you. So, no matter what you do, never apologise. It will only make you feel human.

6. Never Acknowledge Incompetence on Your Part

Have you ever noticed how stupid people fail to acknowledge or even realise how stupid they are? This is called the Dunning Kreuger Effect. Basically, it states that idiots do not know enough about a subject to realise they are incompetent and so they overrate their competence.

Competent people, on the other hand, know the subject of their competence much more deeply and, as a result, they also realise there is still much that they do not know. As a result, highly competent people often believe they are less competent than they really are. The thing is, they are probably not jerks.

Incompetent people, who believe they know all about a subject because they read a barely literate blog post on the topic, are often jerks. So, if you want to be a jerk, you must never acknowledge your incompetence. Instead, act confidently competent at everything, especially regarding subjects you know nothing about.

7. Deflect Blame

If you make a mistake, blame someone else. Anyone else. If someone accuses you of making a mistake, chastise them severely and point out that they are really to blame. If you miss a deadline, blame someone else who's involved in the project. If results are second rate, it is not your fault. It is someone else's. Anyone else's. Blame women, children, minorities, the cat. It does not matter, just blame others for your mistakes. Always

8. It's All About You

Real jerks in business tend to be narcissists or psychopaths (or both) who are utterly focused on themselves and do not give a flying fuck about anyone else. More than anything else, you need to be like that. You need to be completely focused on your needs and live as if everyone else should also focus on your needs.

9. If in Doubt, Ask What Would Trump Do?

Fortunately, the president of the United States (at the time of writing) is a perfect example of a narcissistic jerk. He is self focused, deflects blame, refuses to acknowledge incompetence, never apologises, interrupts, takes credit and so on. He is everything on this list and more. So, as an aspiring jerk, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you do not know what you should to to demonstrate your jerkiness, simply ask yourself; "What would President Trump do?" and do it − unless of course it involves nuclear warheads. Please stay away from nuclear warheads.

What do you think?


Only a Jerk Would Include Self Promotion in an Article Like This

If you and your team are a nice group of people, you might benefit from a "How to Be a Jerk" workshop. It is a delightful and fun half day, interactive workshop in which you not only learn how to be a jerk, but you actually behave like a jerk in role-plays and other exercises. The workshop is way more fun than it should be, and may even help in terms of team building, recognising jerks and dealing with them appropriately. But the real value is in learning how to be a jerk!

Interested? Get in touch!


Share Facebook Twitter Google LinkedIn Pintarest StumbleUpon Email     Follow me Follow AweSomeYou.Be on Facebook Follow me on Twitter