December 01, 2006

Ever wondered how incompetent [academic] managers got so far?

10 Steps to kissing your way to the top

1. Never talk bad about the current boss to anyone! This includes fellow coworkers who may start the conversation. You never know who's listening and you never know who will say something.

2. Never, ever confide personal details about yourself to anyone at work. Even the most trusted coworker will turn around and blab his mouth all over the place. People usually take "Don't tell anybody, but..." as "Don't tell anybody, but if you do, make sure they don't tell anybody." Within twenty minutes, rumors usually get around to the secretary who's sleeping with the boss. After that, you're off the promotion list.

Remember, just because you're not under arrest, doesn't mean that everything you say won't be twisted around and used against you. The only question that remains is when and by whom.

3. Never, ever make friends at work! Once you've kissed your way to the top, you may end up having to fire some of these people. It's a lot less painless if you've kept your distance.

4. If your immediate boss is retiring or quitting and you have your eye on his position, find out who's going to be making the replacement decision. Very rarely will it be your boss. If your boss is popular with upper management, have him [her] put in a good word for you and proceed with the second half of the next step.

6. If upper management is happy your boss is leaving, talk to your boss' boss and kiss his [her] ass. A lot of times you don't have to wait for your boss to quit. If you can nonchalantly get in good with the higher ups, you may end up taking your boss' job anyway. Don't offer suggestions on how to better run the place, those are too easily shot down. Tell him that your mother's maiden name is the same as his last name and that you're probably related. This technique is especially powerful if he [she] has some off the wall ethnic name! Find out which church he goes to or what organizations he belongs to and "just by coincidence" run into him [her] at one of these places. "Wow, we think so much alike!" or "we have so much in common" is a good ice breaker.

7. As soon as the decision making person trusts you, you can eliminate any competition by saying things like, "You know, I think so-and-so would be a good manager, but...and I really don't think I should bring it up...but, I've heard him [her] say that if he [she] was promoted, he's going to start his [her] own business and take our client base with him [her]. But please, keep this between me and you." Believe me, as long as you can say it with a straight face, so-and-so will be cleaning the corporate toilets the following Monday!

Once you've gotten your boss' position, start kissing higher level asses by repeating the steps starting with number 5, in addition to using the advanced ass kissing techniques that follow.

8. Hire yourself a whipping boy [or girl]; someone who's young, impressionable and expendable. Tell him crap like, "You can go far in this company. Just follow my lead." His [her] main function will be to spy on your subordinates, eliminate anyone trying to kiss his [her] way into your position in addition to taking the blame for all of your mistakes.

9. Make yourself look important. Leave instructions before going home to "page me if there's any problems." Have your whipping boy start some type of bogus crisis that only you can fix. After coming back to work, have your whipping boy [girl] call corporate and inform them that you've come back and are handling the problem. If you know a few customers personally, have them write a letter of praise to the company President [Dean, Vice-Chancellor, Principal etc] telling him [her] how you saved the day.

10. Make yourself look good on paper, too. Ask for an increased budget, then lay some dead weight off, order cheaper supplies and replace menial jobs with state-sponsored mentally retarded workers. Then, next quarter brag about how much you came in under budget and how much money you saved the company! Also mention that given the opportunity you could do the same for the whole company! Can't you just see the CEOs'
[Dean, Vice-Chancellor, Principal etc] mouths just watering?

From: Kiss Ass, A Worker's Guide

[Top right poster from:]


Anonymous said...

the 'making yourself appear important' strategy has been played to great effect in my institution - it's breathtaking to watch - and so dysfuctional.... Liz

Pierre-Joseph Proudhon said...

You can email me at: and I can give you my phone number. I would like to hear more about your institution and how I can help expose what is happening there without compromising you. The offer is open...

Anonymous said...

ever wondered how someone who covered up misconduct got an OBE this year!