Superbowl Sunday is upon us, a mere 4 hours or so away. Seemed like an apropos time for a fun post. Of course, many of you have shared with me that what makes Bizzeebobber.com different is its fun and edgy posts. “Thank you.” Nonetheless, this pays homage to a great game and some reminders on what we all go through via our careers and regular “job stuff”, which can include interviewing, searching for a job, compensation and anything else I can conjure below.
Imagination in overdrive. Huddle.
72, 68, 63, Hut Hut HIKE:
Your diminishing salary + bonus after years in the same company. Pay hike? HA! Compensation is the football. It’s the main object, right? Maybe not as an entrepreneur, but when you are working for the man (yes, this includes woman. Not being fresh…) you want to bring home the bacon. And I don’t mean the ACTUAL football. Afterall, footballs are called “pigskins” (See, an educational post). Pigs, well, there is your bacon.
To be clear, I assumed a $60,000 gross for the count-off above. Thus, your year 1 bonus was 20% (or $12,000: $60,000 + $12,000 = $72,000). 2016 was not bad. You made about 8 grand per your annual bonus. And last year? Last year was $3,000 (An abysmal 5% hike). After taxes it was about $1,500. Consider inflation or cost of living with your new cell phone bill… (as I aggressively punch this into the calculator – calculator on my new phone, of course…) VOILA! You made about $8.
I know. The silver-lining. Better to have made something than nothing at all, but diminishing bonuses year over year (probably promised as something different in your contract or job offer) may be a sign that you can be a higher paid quarterback elsewhere. Or, you are thinking, “When pigs fly?” But try to think positive.
TIP: Being PoIGnant, salary is always better than promised bonuses.
Moving on… Like, Hike the ball already?
When you are at an interview and asked a silly question about your resume. It’s what does or doesn’t come out of your mouth. “So Brian, it says here that you developed a system which saved your company millions of dollars – can you elaborate on that?” Ummm, Uhhhh. [gulp]
The infamous redirect. “Yes, I was instrumental in saving that company millions, but let me share a more RECENT example if you don’t mind?” You got the ball back. You are going to use a recent example that actually happened… Score a touchdown!
Hold onto the ball. Two hands, jauntiness.
TIP: Bullet points aren’t made up, if you believe them. But being able to speak to them is important, too. Review your resume – and be prepared to speak to anything on it – before walking into an interview.
When you have an important presentation that goes well and you KNOW you scored. You’re a big hit! The audience loved you and more importantly, you are probably going to get promoted by your company as a result (Ohhh YASSS! Another great bullet point for my resume).
Here’s what to do: Take the mic or object you might be holding (a la stress reliever) and spike it against the floor. Then, do your touchdown dance. Or what the new kids do: Make fire, open a gift, or perhaps have your colleagues join in and do a 4 man bobsled? Be creative.
TIP: Don’t spike anything at your audience. But feel free to serve spiked drinks to enhance the experience and mood during the presentation.
Touchdown (and extra point):
After the presentation you improve your rock star status by making an extra point (of course). “Ladies and gentleman, I appreciated your time today. If you can kindly fill out this survey on today’s session it would be greatly appreciated.”
TIP: Missed extra point if your audience says the best part of the presentation was the spiked drinks.
Touchdown (Let’s go for 2 points):
Switching gears, this is when an interviewer asks you a question and you want to jam in as much as you can to sound awesome. Not making one point, but TWO. To pull it off really does earn you that extra point. Focus is important, but every once in a while it works in your favor when you go for it.
TIP: Be short and sweet. Concise.
Pick 6 (Interception that gets ran back for a TD!)
Pick 6 bullet points for each job on your resume. Any more than that it can get clunky.
TIP: Don’t do this:
- I am awesome
- I rock!
- I am epic
- I am USUALLY on time to work
- I am NOT a team player
- I got fired from this job for stealing
When you have gone through the screening call and show-up for the onsite interview and it is not at all what you expected. Company is in a bad neighborhood. As you walk through the space, the employees look miserable. The team you have met thus far is not painting a rosy picture. Is this the bait and switch?
When asked if you are interested in taking the position, you kindly turn them down. Said differently, Punt.
TIP: Trust your gut. You will know when it makes sense to punt. Why go for it, when it might be too risky? It’s 4th down pal.
When you are at a company gathering and want to tell the leadership team (or CEO) that they are insensitive and could be doing XYZ better, but your senses get the better of you and wisdom kicks in. Instead, your position matters. Keeping yourself out of harms way matters. You have a family. Safety is keeping your job that you could have lost if you said how you REALLY feel.
TIP: Personally, I like people who speak their mind. But don’t take my advice, if your job matters. Corporate America 101.
You might think this is what your company pays you when you work extra hours, but that is too obvious. It’s how your body feels approaching retirement or over time (in a duration sense). Overtime = Tired. Or maybe we just call it 60+. or 70+? What is it these days anyway?
TIP: Invest in a 401K, 403B, or retirement planning. We will all get to the retirement age – whatever it is – if we are lucky. If not… well, this advice won’t matter anyway.
Well, there really aren’t yellow goal posts in an office. There’s not much we can KICK through the uprights, but walking through the skinny mazes of “cube-ville” can take some precision… especially after Superbowl Sunday. Dilly Dilly indeed. 3 points if you:
- Make it to your cube on time
- Don’t collide into the side barrier of anyone else’s cube before you get there…
- You don’t fall asleep on your laptop before half-time (or Lunch in business lingo)
Field goals are harder than you thought, right?
TIP: Go for the touchdown.
Since college is over, there is no more rushing for a Fraternity or Sorority. Rushing in the business world is being accepted and able to join the company softball team. Or, you try your hand at some other club, group or volunteer initiative.
Nowadays companies are very hep into cultural / social acceptance. It’s used as a meal ticket to attract future employees: LBGTQ, Veteran, Women supporting women groups, and more. Community is indeed a powerful aspect to consider as a job-dweller.
TIP: Find companies that have these communities and values. It’s enrichment. But make sure you don’t have to go through some archaic hazing ritual that will not make for a great resume bullet. Streaking isn’t admired on a corporate campus – even if you are attractive.
(uh-fence). Yeah, the other pronunciation – not offense as in “the team with the ball trying to score”. Offense is akin to a written warning. Your job performance has a notch against it. Worse, you committed sexual harassment or some other offense. Basically, in the business world offense is a bad thing.
TIP: No offense, but you should know better. Keep your hands to yourself. PERIOD.
What everyone should do to prepare for their annual review. Have an official statement prepared; a rebuttal; and please, talk about the bonus structure.
Where a suit and tie (or formal wear) and defend yourself. Don’t accept the ole’ “3 does not mean average… 3 means you are doing a very good job.”
FYI – 3 is average.
TIP: Fight for yourself. But first, make sure you have the goods. If you are a “4” let it be known.
What game goes without penalties? None really. So, here are some you should be aware of for your “job stuff” or career.
When you eye the person who walks into the department meeting “without a notebook (umm, the paper kind) or laptop”… Hey, they aren’t prepared to take notes. In this game, holding is a GOOD thing. If you walk in a room and don’t abide by the unwritten business rules shame on you. ALWAYS be holding. Pencil, pen, laptop, notebook (the composition books look very serious).
Sorry, bottles of water don’t count.
TIP: Don’t bring your laptop into the meeting only to play solitaire instead of taking notes. The person to your left will rat on you especially if they are the one who came to the meeting without anything except a water bottle.
When you are in the process of defecting or leaving your job to work at another company, and get caught by your current employer.
TIP: Never tell your current employer you are going on an interview. Stay tuned for a blog post coming in February that will give you some better excuses. Geez, make up something. “Sorry, I won’t be at work today because the Eagles lost the Superbowl and I am sad”.
When you accept a job to work elsewhere and then the current company gives you a pay increase so you DON’T leave. For the company that thought you were starting two weeks from now, it’s a false start.
False starts happen often, but always be weary of taking the cash your current company offered to make you stay. [Ahhh, so they could have been giving me a better bonus all these years]. Now they know you are looking or are unhappy. Still risky.
I think it’s okay to be a boomerang employee and return back to work for the same employer, but NOT in this scenario. Wait a few years.
TIP: Make out you are leaving for a better offer even if you are not. Bonus baby!
Okay, so you know those times when you are actively looking but nothing seems to go right when you setup an interview? Your boss sets a meeting up for the same day or something outside of work jeopardizes the chances of getting the job. It’s interference. Not always meant to be, but…
TIP: I got nuthin’.
1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Downs:
Think of these like rounds for an interview process.
Stay away from positions that require like 8 rounds. Punt already.
TIP: 3rd downs are most important. Make sure you crush it on 3rd down… Know what I mean?
The attitude (or ‘tude) you take when you have been working with the company (night, weekends) for many years and still getting very little recognition. It’s a realization. Then, after the epiphany, you start working for the company “Half-time”, the other half you are doing a job search. You had enough.
TIP: Seriously, don’t hold an interview at your desk. “Cube-ville” is very curious. They hear everything. You are like the neighbor who has a big secret, but is it really a secret now?
Your raise after you were promised 4-5% to take the position. Not 25%. .25%. This is real folks.
TIP: Ask for a PTO day (Personal Time Off) and never go back. Not worth it.
The “Do your job” mantra:
Bill Belichik said it best, “Do your job”. So why are you still reading this? Seriously, especially at work. And you wonder why you aren’t getting good bonuses. Have we taught you nothing?