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Chronicles of a Graduate: That Mini Cooper

By Patty Marra, Series Guest Blogger

Working somewhere for an extended period of time, you get to know the faces of your coworkers. Extraordinarily enough, I also recognize the cars along my commute.  For example, I can tell I’m running late when I see the car with a painted on spider web.  We all shuffle down the road, peeling off on various side streets to our destinations.

There is one car, however, that I see almost every day.  This is one I don’t look forward to, because we go through the same routine every time.  The bright blue mini cooper comes racing up from behind everyone else, weaving in and out of traffic to get ahead.  Then, he gets over into the right lane the block before it merges so that he can race in front of everyone and speed ahead.  Every time I see him, he cuts me off so he can get to work a little bit faster.

Promotable Actions?

There are people like that in the workplace.  Everywhere they go, they try to cut corners and dodge around people to move up the ladder more quickly.  They show no particular care for who they cut off along the way, or what traffic looks like behind them as they speed ahead.  As long as they are moving, they don’t particularly care where everyone else is.  These people can be extremely frustrating to work with for me, because my investment is in getting the work done, and getting it done correctly.  These people see priority one as getting the work done in such a way that it draws positive attention to themselves.  But, the story of the blue mini cooper isn’t over.

It turns out that the owner of the blue mini cooper works at my company—in the same building as me.  I know this because, although he dodges between cars and races ahead, he never arrives more than one minute ahead of me.  Maybe that minute makes a difference to him or his boss, but I certainly don’t see the value of plowing carelessly ahead for a 60 second difference.  We both end up at the same destination. Sure, maybe at first the careless, “plow-ahead” attention grabber seems like the golden child.  In the end, the person who can generate those ideas, in addition to providing consistent, valuable work can make it to the same place with greater endurance and potential.

About the Author

Patty MarraPatty Marra is a freshly graduated alumna of Marquette University, who is working on answering the question, “…what next?”  She is navigating the ever-evolving hiring maze of today’s business environment, and sharing the pieces of knowledge she learns along the way.  She loves social media, but appreciates a good face-to-face conversation.  Long-term, she is looking to establish a career in marketing project management, and help everyone she can along the way.  You can get in touch with her by email, or you can find more of her thoughts via her blogTwitter, and LinkedIn.

Does this sound familiar? Are you in the same situation?  Have you been here before -- what's your advice for Patty? Please comment below. 

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