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Employers are considering the "Grump Factor"

By Lauri Brown

You are sitting at your desk, reading your email and open the latest missive from your boss. Once again the bonehead has come up with a new direction for your company. You clear your throat and ask the person next to you “Have you seen what the idiot has sent us now?.” In the cafeteria you sit with your co-workers grossing about how stupid this company is. But this doesn’t just happen today. Everyday you find yourself at odds with the management. And while you have always been a “good soldier” and done exactly what was asked of you, you can’t help but let your feelings be known.

Or perhaps you are the more silent type. Sighing, rolling your eyes, and simply showing through your body language that you are greatly put upon.

You might think that if you are really good at your job, and you do everything that has been asked of you that you will remain, in the eyes of your employer, a valuable member of the team.

However, in these times of cutbacks, more and more employers are considering the “grump factor.” Simply put, the grump factor is a measure of how difficult it is to deal with an employee. How grumpy you are.

Recently a Fortune 500 company had to make a 20% cut in their workforce. The management chose the people that were going to be laid off. Every single employee was a hard worker, in fact some off them were the best at what they did. Each employee tried to figure out why THEY were chosen? What was the reason that the more incompetent employees were left standing while they were let go? Was it that they earned more money? Was it a personal vendetta against them? Was it sexism or ageism? Each employee failed to look at where the blame lay. Which was at their own feet. In a discussion with the management they stated that they used the “grump factor.” Employees that had a bad attitude were considered expendable.

Obviously when it comes time to downsize many factors are considered. But more and more employers want to work with people who are easy to deal with.(use mr rogers here) Employees who love what they do, and show others that they love it. I am not talking about a saccharin sweet phony attitude, I mean a sincere joy.

When Barbara Walters is asked by young people “What do I have to do to get ahead?”

She tells them “Don’t complain, don’t whine. Just make yourself so good that they cannot let you go. And don’t be afraid to get the coffee if they ask you to get the coffee.”

Not sure if you’re being perceived as a grump, take this simple test.

Do you find yourself very easily identifying problems with your company and/or co workers?

Do you share that information with others? (including family, friends , co-workers)

Do you discount possible solutions as unworkable?

Is your criticism a validation of your over all perspective?

Do you often hear others with similar complaints?

Do you lend a willing ear to their complaints?

Do you sigh, roll your eyes or otherwise display your negative feelings using body language or tone of voice?

Are your creating less because of your displeasure?

Are you late to work or meetings?

Do you resent helping others finish their work?

Are you waiting for a change to happen?

Has anyone pointed out your negative behavior?

Do you have “good reasons” to be unhappy at work?

This is a family. You spend more time here than you do at home. Low maintenance easy

1. I like to have people who are low maintenance easy to get along with each other

2. All residents have gone through med school

3. all have high test scores

4. all have good letters from their hospitals

How to overcome being a grump

Begin with a simple act of gratitude. No matter what your religious or secular background you need to find a daily way to express your gratitude for what you have. Start a “gratitude journal”

About The Author
Laurie Brown is an international speaker, trainer and consultant who works to help people improve their sales, service and presentation skills. She is the author of The Teleprompter Manual, for Executives, Politicians, Broadcasters and Speakers. Laurie can be contacted at 1-877.999.3433, or at lauriebrown@thedifference.net