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The No Asshole Rule

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Elle Stephanie

on 8 October 2013

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Transcript of The No Asshole Rule

No Asshole

"Who hired this jerk?"
is a common question in the work environment today. Although did you know that formal policy prohibitions and informal or unwritten codes of civilized interactions serves a
no-asshole rule.
The only
is that organizations
these bullies and at times even
abusive behaviors.
Are We Dealing With an Asshole?
Two Questions to Ask :
1. Does the target of the abuse feel oppressed, humiliated, de-energized, or belittled by the person?
2. Is the venom directed at people who are less powerful rather than those who hold a greater status and Hierarchical power?

Determining the Difference
• We’ve all been there (Social Faux Pas)
-High-stressed situations, blindsided, emotionally drained

• Certified Assholes are those who demonstrate ongoing and persistent patterns of behavior that are overt and hurtful

How to Survive Nasty People
The Rule as a Way of Life
The following rules will not immediately transform assholes into nice people but are steps towards improvement and can help victims cope with them.
1) A few jerks can overwhelm the good of a large number of civilized people
2) Rules are a start, but successes are built on day-to-day actions
3) The rule lives or dies by dealing with problems immediately and directly
4) A few bad people, if managed properly, can be helpful in demonstrating how NOT to behave
5) Enforcing the ‘no asshole’ rule is not management’s job; everyone should step up to the plate and support the goal of eliminating unacceptable behaviour
6) Embarrassment can be a powerful learning tool, so jerks must be put on the spot
7) Remember, there are times when WE are assholes too.
Research reveals that workplace bullying/incivility and psychological abuse is far to common of an occurrence. That is why, we must strive to create a civilized, jerk-free workplace because it is impossible to be completely rid of assholes.

Affirmative responses to both of these questions
means that we are in fact dealing with an Asshole

It Can Damage the
Increased turnover
Lowered commitment
Distracted employees
Implementing and Keeping Alive the Rule
There are 5 points to keep in mind when
implementing The Rule:
1. Make it public by putting it in the employee handbook, signs in the hallway, and internet
2. Integrate the rule into hiring. Be sure to acquire references to avoid hiring people too similar to the hiring party.
3. Apply the rule to customers and clients.
4. Status and rank shouldn’t matter. Managers and owners must also abide by the rule if it is going to be effective
5. Enforce the rule and walk the talk.
Ways to do this are:
a. Write it down and use it.
b. Recognize that ‘assholes’ are incompetent and just get rid of them.
c. Be aware that power breed nastiness
d. Manage moments.
e. Legitimize constructive confrontation.
Every Workplace Needs the Rule
All organizations need a no- asshole rule, sometimes simply referred to as the rule, to lessen the harm caused by mean-spirited and abusive people.
Victims of this form of abusive treatment suffer from different forms of damage; psychological, physiological, and damage to their work.
Abusive supervisors can cause employees to be less committed, suffer burnout, and in some instances, quit.
1. Hope for the best, but expect the worst
2. Develop indifference and emotional detachment
3. Look for small wins; you’re not going to change the world
4. Limit your contact and risk
5. Develop a support network
Anyone can catch the disease, don’t let your inner jerk surface!
Do Assholes have any Virtues?
To the annoyance of many of us, assholes are often very successful in intimidating fellow peers and instilling fear into others
Even the good guys may find it convenient to be an asshole sometimes because it’s the easy way out
Despite the occasional successes and selective usefulness of these strategies, most defenses of being an asshole are misguided
Assholes assume that their success is a result of their abusive behaviour, when in fact, the result is just as likely to be the same regardless of how they treat others.
Most assholes suffer from delusions of effectiveness
Asshole Tactics and Traits

• Personal Insults
• Public Shaming
• Humiliation
• Two-faced attacks
• Threats
• Intimidation
• Rude Interruptions
• Sarcastic Teasing
Full transcript