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Team Player or Top Performer?

By samson06 ·
Let's say you're in an IT group of a dozen people. About half the people are at a level above you and half are on a level below you in rank. You are one of the smartest and most productive people in the group. Let's also say that you have some skills that NOBODY else in the group has. Should you:

1) Focus on being the most productive employee that you can be. Work your a** off and complete projects ahead of schedule. Be cordial with co-workers but keep your eyes glued to the screen and put the pedal to the metal. Reveal little about your knowledge since you spent many years learning your craft. Withhold information to keep others' from competing with you. Refrain from making friends at work. Take full credit for your work.

OR

2) Teach other people the same skills that you have. Put a higher priority on establishing relationships than accomplishments. Be a people person. Focus on trusting and making friends with the people you work with. Help others develop their skills and realize their potential. Freely share information. Be a team player and allow others to take credit for your work.

Which employee would be more secure in their job and benefit in the long term?

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Neither

by Roger99a In reply to Team Player or Top Perfor ...

Suck up to Management and create paper. Volunteer to lead projects but perform as little actual work as possible. Take all the credit you can for everyone else's work. Always have someone to blame when things go wrong. Never acknowledge when others do good work unless you look good because of it. Make your staff work late at night and then send them home early on Thursday (not Friday) so there's no overtime to justify, unless they are salaried. Those people just have to work.

I'm feeling a little bitter today. Sorry.

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Worked your butt off for nothing again eh

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Neither

Seems to be a fact of life.
Could be worse we forged ahead for 8 months working lots' of extra hours, Made the deadline. Then we got put up for redundacy, surprisingly we got a little bitter about this, even those of us who kept our wonderful jobs.
Never seen som many puzzled frowns on managers faces, since I said 'n' tier applications.

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You forgot

by jdmercha In reply to Neither

Golf with the boss. Other than that you're right on the money.

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I'm not the only one!

by Roger99a In reply to You forgot

I'm feeling much better now.

One more bit: one bad thing you do cancels out 100 good things you did.

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Unless

by Too Old For IT In reply to You forgot

the boss doesn't golf, but hangs out in gay bars.

You can take it from here.

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sad but true

by syberlane In reply to Neither

Unfortunately your post is so factual it?s scary? -at least in the corporate environment. ***Advice ?work to build an almost sacred circle of a few people you can REALLY trust (do your best not to make it appear too obvious or you?ll regret it). Learn from each other, keep each other up to date on pertinent info and if possible hope that at least one of those people are in a different sub department, or department all together as it will help stay in touch with what?s going on ?direction of the department, company, etc.

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And for our winner,

by j.g.camp In reply to Neither

we have an all expense paid trip to Hawaii.

Absolutely this is the way the game is played. Organizations are becoming more and more top heavy, like Dolly Parton top heavy.

There are situations where you will be required to be both top performer and team player. If you accomplish "it", there will be others that will grill you for what you've achieved and will ride coat tails to your face, only to take sole credit for what you suffered for behind your back. Understand there are situations where it doesn't matter whether you are top performer, **** your own horn to receive credit, the person ahead of you on the depth chart often times isn't the better player during the course of the daily grind, but they are there for a reason, they have a credential they were able to get that you may not have, they know someone that won't require them to as brilliant for producing the elegant solution. You'll be on a need to know basis with these folks, yet your work will be an open resource/library. Often times the key is to be brilliant for those that can and will do something for you, but a dullard to those that want to gain what you've accomplished thru your suffrage.

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Wow, what a loaded question

by mjd420nova In reply to Team Player or Top Perfor ...

Keeping secrets to better your own accomplishments is a bit over the top, but could be called job security. Training others has its own merits, but placed in that context, it would only be wise confine these sessions to those above you on the ladder, lest you be replaced by a lower paid person that can do your work. Being a people person often doesn't work too well, as many may feel you are brown nosing. Seems that you'd be damned if you did and damned if you didn't. Both approaches have problems and could lead to unhappiness and insecurity.

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Number 2 and sort of Number 1...Here's why

by tkagin In reply to Team Player or Top Perfor ...

Be a team player. Always offer to show someone how to do something. Here's the catch though. Only help people who help themselves. The other lazy people who you have to show 5 times, will just be a drain on you. Also always remember that you still need to take care of you and your career. It's not a bad thing to be competitive. Trying to outperform your coworkers is good in that makes others try to keep pace. Make yourself look good, take credit and give credit where it's due. Just don't make anyone look bad. They can usually do that on their own.

My experience shows, that most people won't take it upon themselves to spend the mental energy to learn new things. The ones that do though will end up respecting you more, and even sharing stuff they know. Your opinion will be more respected and recognized as well.

As far as number 1...sure be productive, but don't go nuts. You just raise the bar more and more, and you'll probably just burn yourself out. The way I get around this is through automation. Automate as much of your job as possible, but don't make it too visible (i.e. serverside). Write a script, but make sure it's executed by you from your workstation. You don't want to automate yourself out of a job.

Don't hoard information for job security. You won't be respected, and truthfully, if it's public knowledge, anyone with any bit motivation can find it out. If it's internal processes, share it. You don't want to be the sole person behind a process anyway. Hoarding information and getting emotional attached to a technology, server, process, etc, is usually the sign of a rookie, who's not confident in being able to ride on their own merits. Those are usually the first to be kicked out the door. Any time any bit of a technological change occurs in your environment, you would be seen as one dimensional.

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Can go either way.....

by nazario1974 In reply to Number 2 and sort of Numb ...

This is a no win situation. Every human has different perspectives on any action. Corporate America is very shady overall. You have your negatives and your so-call positives (really inner negatives) that will judge, is what they crave. My self in the other had am a team player, don't like to hold anything back, I?ll do and say what ever it takes to make my self and other unit members around me look good.
Guess you can call me Mr. Neutral.

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