If you’re not already doing all the work or aren’t stressed out to the max, here are 10 tips to increase your load by creating a culture of entitlement among your employees.
I didn’t make them up. I’ve seen organizations using these strategies to keep employees happy.
Bonus tip: Offer guaranteed employment for life as if it’s employees’ right.
Some companies attempt to provide a better work environment by being sensitive to the needs and feelings of their employees. Of course, you pay attention to what your employees want and need. But don’t overdo it.
It’s not always easy. Some people won’t like your rules. But bending or abandoning reasonable rules and expectations in an effort to satisfy the malcontents and whiners doesn’t work. They’ll never be happy or productive. And trying to satisfy them will drive your good performers away.
‘Drama Queens’ and their male counterparts may look like they’re responding quickly – rallying the troops, taking charge and solving problems. But they cause more chaos at work and create more fallout than the problems they’re reacting to. Don’t be fooled by their high energy and don’t promote them. Drama Queens come in many forms. For example:
To learn to recognize and stop them, read more.
Our language has many expressions for the perspective necessary for judicious action: ‘Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill; don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater; don’t try to kill mosquitoes with a bazooka; don’t jump to conclusions; don’t promote a Drama Queen.’
If used well, blame and guilt don’t lead to self-bullying. They’re useful ways of motivating us to do better, even though they can cause a lot of wear and tear on our bodies, minds and hearts.
If we analyze our actions objectively we might take on the blame for some of what we did or failed to do. We can decide how to make amends. We can decide what actions would be better and we can strive to do better next time.
We can also use guilt and feeling ashamed of an action to motivate us to act better next time. That’s a hard way of motivating ourselves but it’s often effective.
Unrelenting and deep shame, on the other hand, leads to destructive self-bullying – negative self-talk, self-doubt and self-harassment, loss of confidence and self-esteem, and increased anxiety and depression.
By shame, I mean the idea that “There’s something wrong with me; I’m bad, evil or defective; I’ll never be free from sin; I’ll never succeed; I’m cursed.”
This kind of deep shame, as opposed to the way I’m using blame, guilt and feeling ashamed, is not focused on an action. This kind of deep shame points us at supposed defects deep within us, at defects that we can’t change, at defects in our identity. There’s no escape from the flaws we imagine are inherent and permanent. The self-laceration of this kind of shame is endless and self-defeating.
Where does this deep shame come from? We’re not born with this kind of shame. We’re born demanding that we be fed, clothed and have our diapers changed. Little babies don’t question whether they deserve to get what they need for survival; they demand it. That demanding approach is necessary for our survival.
Deep shame can only be taught to us through continued and brutal repetition – physical, verbal, emotional. Eventually, most children internalize constant harassment, criticism, put-downs and denigration – assaults on our identity.
Imagine how you’d feel if someone shouted or scolded you, 24/7, “You’re bad. You’re defective. You’re wrong. You shouldn’t have been born. You’ll never do better. I wish you were dead.”
However those harsh and shaming messages were thrown at us, whoever the bullies were, our task as adults is to leave them behind. The two critical steps in leaving home are to leave physically and to leave mentally-emotionally.
The first leaving is obvious to most of us; we get financially independent in order to stay physically independent. We test ourselves against the world, not our parent’s opinions. Can we earn a leaving? Can we meet people and make friends? Can we love and be loved?
The second leaving is mental, emotional and spiritual. We put aside all their beliefs, ideas, attitudes, values, opinions, rules, roles and moods – all the ways they thought mattered in how to face the world, how to earn a living, what equaled a good life, how to be a good person.
We put aside all the false ways they thought about us – whether we were good or bad, strong or weak, stupid or smart, pretty or ugly, hard-working or lazy, the prized child or the scapegoated child, probably going to be successful or guaranteed to fail, blessed to be happy or doomed to be miserable.
We put aside all we were handed when we were children and all we accepted because they were the big, right and righteous people and we were the little and learning people, and because we knew what would happen to us if we disagreed.
To become independent adults we must cast aside all of their opinions and, as independent no-longer children, we must choose and adopt our own beliefs. Some may be the same as theirs; some may be exactly the opposite.
The two important aspects of that mental, emotional and spiritual leaving: One is that our ideas are now adopted by us as adults, with our adult understandings, meanings and limitations. The second is that they are not carved in stone as childhood ideas are. We change them as we get feedback from the world – does this idea actually fit the reality I can now see clearly with adult eyes; does this way of facing the world get me closer to what I want; does it help me be and do good as I now think of that?
In this destroying and creating anew our inner world and our ideas of the ways of the outer world, we can choose whether to keep blame or guilt. But, in order to be free and independent, we must discard deep shame as a way of thinking about ourselves and of facing the world. We can excise the stain we once accepted, we can heal the great empty space we once had, and we can fill us with ourselves at our best. We can develop strength, courage and skill.
Then we can look back at the bullies in our family and decide whether to be with them at all or when and how to be with them. If they continue to bully us, if their bullying continues to trigger our self-bullying patterns we are better served by disconnecting, by making distance – electronically and physically.
If they treat us as newly made adults they’ve just met and want to be friends with, instead of forcing us back into their old images, instead of continuing to try to beat us into the shape they want we will probably want to be with them sometimes.
My recommendations: Don’t stay where you’re continually blamed, guilted or shamed. Be where you’re respected, appreciated, honored. Also, don’t accept the one of you that continually blames, guilts or shames you. Train and discipline yourself so that you have better internal self-talk. Live with the good inner coach you create, not with the internal bully who sounds like your parents, still ripping you down.
State laws and school policies are necessary, but they’re not enough to stop school bullies. The third necessary ingredient is the responsible people who are paid to make schools safe. If teachers, psychologists and counselors, assistant principals, principals, district administrators and school board members don’t create effective school programs and don’t enforce the laws and policies, perpetrators will be freed and their targets will be victimized.
According to the ABC News and investigative reporter Theresa Marchetta, Caitlin Smith was sexually assaulted in the final days of a summer program for incoming freshman at Englewood High School in a Denver, Colorado suburb. The evidence seemed clear-cut and, indeed, a court recently found the boy guilty of unlawful sexual contact with no consent.
The school had suspended him for the last three days of the summer program but what happened when school started in the fall?
The story is titled, “District Policies Fail Teen Victim: Guilty Attacker Remains in School.”
In order for Caitlin to be allowed to enter school, the vice principal had the Smiths sign a “No-Contact Notice” which reads, "You have been involved in an incident that may be criminal in nature," and suspects can not "harass, threaten, annoy, disturb, follow or have verbal/physical contact with any victim or witness in this incident.”
The perpetrator was immediately allowed back in school with Caitlin in the fall. He did not sign a No-Contact Notice and was still allowed back in school. This is despite a statement by Englewood Superintendent Sean McDaniel that, "I think that [the No-Contact Notice] would be a piece on the perpetrators side not on the victim’s side."
On Caitlin’s first day back in school, she was taken right back to the scene of the attack. "They guaranteed they wouldn’t take me down that hallway. I was freaking out, crying, upset. I didn’t want to go through, was closing my eyes,” she said. School authorities asked Caitlin’s mother to keep her daughter out of school. She reports that, "They're asking me to hold my daughter out of school and giving an education to a child [the bully] who shouldn't even be there."
To deal with such incidents, the Englewood School District has policies “which clearly states, multiple times, what happened to Caitlin was a ‘level one’ offense, ‘those which will result automatically in a request for expulsion to the superintendent.’”
When Marchetta asked Superintendent McDaniel, “Should a student be expelled or consider being expelled for having unwanted sexual contact with a student?" he replied, "Absolutely, no question. Sexual contact? I would expect an administrator to suspend with a recommendation for expulsion. Then, that would land in my office.” But he then admitted that the perpetrator was allowed to remain in school without even signing the No-Contact Notice and that now, over six months after the incident, he didn’t know what the principal was doing about the situation.
When Superintendent McDaniel was asked, “theoretically speaking, if it would ever be acceptable for a student accused of committing such an offense to remain in the population during the proceedings, he answered, ‘That’s a great question. No,’ [he added], ‘In that scenario to just to turn the kid loose back in to the student population with no requirements, parameters? No, I can not foresee a situation like that.’" But he then admitted that the perpetrator was allowed to remain in school without even signing the No-Contact Notice.
Parents and students need to know what to do after such an incident:
Don’t hide; make a fuss. Immediately go to the appropriate school authorities and the police. That’s like we encourage victims to report rape immediately.
Find and rally other students and parentswho have been harassed, bullied or abused – emotionally, sexually or physically. If any other kids excuse the perpetrator’s behavior and tell you that you’re being too harsh or if any other kids hassle, threaten or bully you, report them. Record evidence; that’s what cell phones are for. Travel with your friends.
If the authorities won’t act, immediately get a lawyer skilled in both the pertinent laws and in how to bring media pressure to bear. Plan an overall strategy and tactics.
Get an expert coach or therapist to keep your spirits up and to rally your strength and determination.
Don’t accept bullying; don’t take the blame. In most cases the girl is not a “slut” or “whore” that others will call you. It’s usually not your fault. You should know that if the school authorities won’t act, they’re the problem, not you. You don’t have to be perfect according to their standards in order for them to actively help you. Don’t indulge in self-bullying. Negative self-talk, blame, shame and guilt never help. They only increase anxiety, stress and depression, and destroy confidence and self-esteem. Don’t believe negative predictions; your life isn’t ruined and in 10 years you won’t want to be friends with your high school classmates – certainly not the hyenas who pile on.
As you can see, state laws and school policies are necessary to give principals and administrators the leverage to act safely without fear of law suits by bullying parents of school bullies. But the responsible authorities must be willing to act courageously, energetically, skillfully and effectively. When they don’t, laws and policies become scraps of paper, blowing in the wind of their excuses.
Since the principal and district administrator didn’t protect a target of such bullying and abuse, I predict that there have already been other incidents at Englewood High School and there will be in the future. Bullies are predators. They look for easy prey and they push the boundaries. Once one hyena gets away with boundary pushing – darting in, ripping off some flesh and darting back safely – the rest of the pack will pile on.
In addition to the perpetrator and his family, the principal and district administrator have a lot to answer for. I hope a public outcry focuses on them.
Mostpeople are afraid of the economic forecast. Some have lost jobs; more will. Some have lost retirement funds; more will. Some have lost hope; more will. Fear and stress stimulate mostpeople to huddle around the campfire, worrying, whining and complaining about their uncertain future. They convince themselves that they’re too weak and helpless to succeed. They’re victims together.
A long, cold recession or depression is the consensus prediction. But that’s not the prediction for my life and it doesn’t have to be for yours either. And that’s not because I have guaranteed money flowing in or I’m sure my business will be immune to the next little ice age. There’s a different reason.
We each have self bullies.
The little, self-bullying voices:
Know our every fear and weakness, our every mistake and sin.
Demean and ridicule us, discourage and depress us.
Predict failure, as if they want to make us lose hope and give up.
Don’t like us even though they pretend to be trying to help us.
That are so persuasive.
We know where we heard those voices that told us they knew better – our parents, relatives, siblings, teachers, ministers, schoolmates, peers. We know how we made their voices into our self-bullying voices.
I refuse to listen to self bullying. I refuse to be a victim of my times and circumstances. You also can rise above mostpeople.
Don’t be a victim of your past. History is not destiny. Command yourself. Ignore self-bullies. Our self-bullying voices do not know what’s best for us, do not know the future and can’t accurately predict that we’ll fail.
Of course, the economy is lousy and times will be hard. Most of us won’t be able to maintain our previous standard of living. Mostpeople are angry because they thought they were guaranteed increasing wealth and security if they did things right.
We haven’t been trained to survive a depression. So what? We can survive and even thrive.
Think about what our ancestors survived. There has always been rotten weather like recessions and depressions, poverty and war. They’re part of the natural weather cycles – hurricanes, tornadoes, snow and ice storms, avalanches, droughts or floods, earthquakes and tsunamis. There have also been plagues, famine, pestilence and war.
If we let recession-induced fear and self bullying sap our strength and will, we won’t have the right stuff, we won’t act skillfully and the economic tide will pull us under. We have within us the inheritance of an unbroken line of people who thrived. We have within us the seeds of strength, courage and joy.
These economic ice ages have happened in America before. For example, economic crashes occurred in about 1787, 1819, 1837, 1857, 1873, 1897, 1907 and the great depression from 1929-1941. The rest of the world had similar experiences.
What can we do when we get down on ourselves? We need WILL and SKILL.
In order to succeed, we must choose to ignore self bullying, choose to command ourselves, choose to create the futures we want, no matter what the circumstances. As individuals, we must have the WILL to persevere, with grit, determination and resilience.
Call that hyper-critical, fear-mongering side of us a “self-bully” so we’ll react with passion and power against it. So we’ll rally ourselves against its words. We wouldn’t lie down in front of those old bullies and we wouldn’t let ourselves be abused by bullies now.
We need SKILL to ignore our self-bullying voices – turn off the discouraging TV; stop listening to people moaning, whining and complaining; stop listening to victim stories. Walk away politely from mostpeople who wallow in the dumps of fear and panic. If you’ve kept your job, don’t wallow in survivor’s guilt. Get off the emotional roller coaster.
Find friends who don’t waste their time worrying about the economy, but instead handle things in as little time and with as little wasted energy as possible. Find friends with inner lights that give them joy even when they don’t have all the comforts and toys they once did. Become such a friend.
When the self bullying voices start again, tell them we’ve heard all that before and if they want to help us, they can use a different voice and become encouraging coaches that strengthen our spirits. Fill the IMAX screen of our minds with the future we hope we’ll have and the friends we want in our lives. Throw ourselves into activities like physical exercise. Don’t feed our addictions; eat well. Feed our spirits with movies, music and books that lift up our spirits and renew our energy.
We need SKILL to make plans to keep our jobs or find others, to spend less while still treating our spirits better. We need skill to get over our feelings, plans and expectations. Loss of riches, comforts and dreams is not really the end of the world. Get going again.
While the growing recession is the world in which I function, it’s not the world in which I live. I invite you wonderful people to enter the world that is waiting for you, if you but have the courage to take the first steps.
"What lies behind us and lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us." Ralph Waldo Emerson