You have a hostile coworker undermining you before management at every opportunity. How can you ensure facts will speak up for you instead of your coworker’s toxic fabrications? Never fear! We’ll show you how to navigate around a hostile coworker on this Feedback Friday!
And in case you didn’t already know it, Jordan Harbinger (@JordanHarbinger) and Jason DeFillippo (@jpdef) banter and take your comments and questions for Feedback Friday right here every week! If you want us to answer your question, register your feedback, or tell your story on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at email@example.com. Now let’s dive in!
On This Week’s Feedback Friday, We Discuss:
- A Detroit vagrant in his 40s probably has enough problems to deal with. Can any good come from pressing charges against him because he tried (and failed) to steal your laptop?
- You have a hostile coworker undermining you before management at every opportunity. How can you ensure facts will speak up for you instead of your coworker’s toxic fabrications?
- You hear of coworkers getting a promotion because they’re “smart.” What does it mean to be smart? Is being smart related to IQ? Is it related to emotional intelligence? Is it related to street smarts? Or is it a combination of all of these?
- As a business owner in a new country who’s pioneered your own niche, how do you avoid a race to the bottom in pricing and remain high in quality as competition attempts to elbow into your turf?
- Is it ever good to name drop when networking?
- How can you continue to network and problem solve for your peers, but also start to lay the foundation of credibility with your accomplishments to build future — and likely new leadership positions — at your company?
- You reached out to someone in your chosen field, and you were referred to two others who have agreed to meet with you. How can you use the FEW technique effectively when these meetings happen?
- Is it worth the ROI to obtain expensive credentials (like an MBA) early in your career? Or is charging forward to gain experience more beneficial?
- Life Pro Tip: When you get a scammy/spammy phone call, tell them: “I think you have the wrong number…this is a government office.” Alternatively, you can play this sound into the phone to possibly get removed from the system’s rotation.
- Recommendation of the Week: Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones, Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee (Dave Chappelle Episode)
- A quick shoutout to David Gray Lassiter!
- Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share with us? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!
- Connect with Jordan on Twitter at @JordanHarbinger and Instagram at @jordanharbinger.
- Connect with Jason on Twitter at @jpdef and Instagram at @JPD, and check out his other show: Grumpy Old Geeks.
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider leaving your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
Resources from This Episode:
- Wendy Behary | Disarming the Narcissist, TJHS 246
- Chris Bailey | Hyperfocus Secrets for Better Productivity, TJHS 247
- How to Help People Change for the Right Reasons by Jordan Harbinger
- Mensa International
- Brian Scudamore | How Failure Can Be Your Key to Success, TJHS 175
- Cameron Herold | Making the Most of Your Bipolar Superpowers, TJHS 229
- Six-Minute Networking
- Scott Galloway | Solving the Algebra of Happiness, TJHS 204
- Phone Disconnect Tones and Message
- Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones
- Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee (Dave Chappelle Episode)
Transcript for How to Navigate Around a Hostile Coworker | Feedback Friday (Episode 248)
Jordan Harbinger: [00:00:03] Welcome to Feedback Friday. I'm your host, Jordan Harbinger and I'm here with producer, Jason DeFillippo. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most brilliant and interesting people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you.
[00:00:20] This week we had Wendy Behary talking about narcissists and how to disarm them, whether we know one or perhaps even live with one and Chris Bailey was here talking about hyperfocus and how in order to solve complex problems, sometimes it's best to actually not focus at all. I also write every so often on the blog. The latest post is how to help people change for the right reasons. We all want to change someone in our lives, whether we live or work with them. This article shows us when and how we can accomplish this most daunting of tasks. So, make sure that you've had a look and listen to all of that. The articles are at jordanharbinger.com/articles.
[00:00:56] Our primary mission is to pass along our guests’ insights and experiences and our experiences and insights along to you. In other words, the real purpose of the show is to have conversations directly with you and that's what we're going to do today here on Feedback Friday. You can reach us at Friday@jordanharbinger.com. Well, we've got a bunch of good ones. Let's dive right in this week.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:01:19] Jason, what's the first thing out of the mailbag?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:01:21] Hi guys. Last night I very stupidly forgot to lock my car before going out. I parked in a parking structure with pretty heavy security. When I came back today, I noticed that stuff was thrown around in my car, in my backpack with my work laptop gone. Security came and said they caught the guy in the act and they had my backpack. He got another unlocked car too, but they recovered everything and I got way too lucky. At first, I figured it was some younger person trying to get some extra money, but it turns out it was a vagrant in his 40s who's currently in jail because of other warrants. I'm having big doubts about pressing charges since I can only imagine an extra felony on his record isn't going to help him. On one hand, like I said, it's probably not going to help or deter him, but on the other it feels weird to let someone get away with the crime that I despise and is a big problem in the area. The hassle of pressing charges doesn't matter to me, but whether or not pressing charges is going to help or even worsened things is what I'm confused about. What would you guys do? I'm leaning towards not pressing charges because a vagrant in his 40s in Detroit, probably has enough problems to deal with. Thanks for any help. Signed, not Perry Mason.
[00:02:23] I'd just like to say, first off, what the hell are you doing leaving a laptop in a car in Detroit, actually anywhere for that matter. I mean, never ever leave anything in your car, man, ever.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:02:31] Yeah, good point. I grew up in Detroit or at the outside of Detroit and I worked in Detroit proper for a while and I will say leaving something in your car. Don't even leave like a shirt. Depending on where you are in the city because people might assume there's something under it. It's hiding something. I've had my car broken into so many times in Detroit, even in secured lots. It's just the city's not doing too good when it comes to a lot of folks and a lot of folks are desperate, but you're right, pressing charges could be a waste of time. I actually caught a bike thief in the act in San Francisco. I caught a guy breaking into a building, going into a bike room that was sort of separate from an apartment building, pushing himself under a gate, using tools to smash locks. I called the police. I waited in a place where he couldn't see me. I called the cops. Cops came, caught him with burglary tools in his hand. They had their guns drawn. He slid out, he got arrested, and he still ended up getting off with time served after he skipped bail the first time. I mean, this is a loser. Okay. He still got off because I got his ethnicity wrong and I'm like, well, he was wearing a mask and it was at night and so I said that he was dark complected and they're like, “What'd you say is African American?,” and I was like, “I don’t know, I guess so, maybe.” And it turned out that he was like a dark Hispanic guy and they were like, “Well, you can't positively identify him,” and I was like, “It was the guy that they caught with the burglary tools sliding under a gate with their guns drawn. Even though the cops saw the guy the whole time from start to finish, and so did I, and never took our eyes off them, they were like, “Well, he's already been in jail for a month, not guilty.” So, juries are dumb as hell. And so, yeah, he could get away with this. You could just waste them public resources. It's ridiculous.
[00:04:13] Then again, if this is a vagrant in his 40s with other warrants, I would say he's probably better off in prison. I know that sounds harsh, but look he probably can go to drug rehab. It's harder for him to hurt himself or anyone else in prison. This is a person that cannot take care of themselves. This is why we call inmates, wards of the state. The state is taking care of them. I know that the prison system needs work, but it's easier for people to get off substances in prison because they have food and shelter and they can ask for help if they want it. Sure, they might have access to drugs, but they can get off of them if they want. In fact, a lot of inmates credit prison with help for getting them clean, so it's not an ideal environment for anyone, of course, but it might be easier if the person is trying to get a place where they can sleep for the night, food and shelter, it's cold or hot, and they don't have anything to eat—Prison takes care of those problems. If you don't press any charges and they keep robbing people, you're not really helping him and you're definitely not preventing this sort of crime. This guy cost you thousands of dollars. If it was up to him and he didn't get caught, he would've stolen your laptop, broken things in your car, taking your money, whatever he could get his hands on. This guy might rob 20 cars a day. He might cause thousands of dollars in damage every single day. Do you want to enable that or do you want to help prevent it?
[00:05:26] Sure. In my situation, I might not have won that one with the bike thief, but the guy has a record now. He might also think twice because yeah, he got off on this one, but he spent a few months in jail awaiting trial because after he skipped bail, they didn't give him bail the next time and he was stuck in jail. So, they gave him time served, which is potentially a deterrent and look like I said, this is San Francisco. A lot of people don't get punished because society and oppression and other buzzwords that we treat criminals like babies instead of like criminals, but the way that look at it, and I'm not a law-and-order type of guy here in terms of like harsh justice, but I would say anybody who's making a career out of breaking other people's stuff and stealing it, they've got other problems and you're not helping them by letting them get away with it. They got there in the first place because they're getting away with it. They need consequences and those consequences aren't necessarily going to be punishment. They're going to be the opportunity for him to be in a place where he doesn't have access to drugs 24/7. A lot of people who've been to prison might be chuckling about that, but they have less access to drugs and they have access to substance abuse programs if they need them. I mean, this is a person that is honestly better off incarcerated than they are to their own devices, in my opinion.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:06:41] Throw the book at him.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:06:42] Look, he doesn't have to go to jail for 20 years. He could get 90 days. But that could be what he needs to not do heroin 50 times a day. That could give him the springboard that he needs. Also, frankly, deterrence doesn't work with drug addicts because they're sick. He needs to get that part cured and if there's a way that they can put them into an inpatient rehab facility instead of just prison, that would be ideal because he's probably sick. He's probably not a guy who enjoys robbing people at age 40 in Detroit. I mean, he's a nonviolent criminal here or so we know. This is somebody who I would say should be treated like they are sick. You don't treat someone who's sick by saying, “Well, we might have some treatment for you, but I'm just not going to pay attention to it because I got my laptop back.” And I don't think you're thinking like that; I think you're thinking do him a favor. You're not doing them a favor by letting them get away with it. Think about this. If he was 14 years old and he did this, would you think, “Yeah, he's 14. I'm not going to do anything,“ or would you say, “Ooh, he's 14 it's time for him to learn that you can't break into people's cars.” I think we should treat him like somebody who can't help himself because I don't think he can. All right, next up.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:07:47] Hey J. Crew. Congrats on the healthy baby boy. My husband is an extremely loyal and hardworking person. At his last job, he worked tirelessly to support an entire department under a frazzled and checked out manager. The company laid off almost all of their employees until they were operating with a slim skeleton crew and he still managed to meet the company's goals despite my coaxing to get off the sinking ship, he stayed on until they laid him off as well. Thankfully, he accepted a job offer within a couple months of being unemployed. That was almost a year ago. Fast forward to today. He seems to love the work he does and is very qualified. He's received praise from the owner for tripling production output in putting new systems into place to increase efficiencies since he started the job. The issue is a coworker of his —we'll call him Brad— the two of them used to be very friendly from what I can tell and I've met the guy and even met his family. Recently, all I hear stories about Brad undermining my husband every opportunity he gets, pointing out small mistakes to managers while Brad disposes of his own Telling managers that my husband isn't a team player when the two of them have already agreed on the order of events and what should get priority, complaining to colleagues and managers about the new system behind my husband's back, et cetera. My husband has voiced these concerns to his supervisor and the owner of the company at a recent performance review and they said they would work to correct it. However, now Brad has a chip on his shoulder and is out for blood. He's been with the company longer and his supervisor loves him. Even the supervisor is chimed in with Brad at times. I've tried to tell him that he needs to bring the dynamic to his boss's attention again, but he doesn't want to seem like he's the common denominator. I hate to see him become the victim of a hostile work environment, especially when he, otherwise, loves his job. I jokingly say, “You want me to beat him up?” And that always gets a chuckle, but I'm at the end of my rope here. What to do. Any advice is appreciated. Signed, Stuck Between a Rock and an A-hole.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:37] Nice. First things first, whenever you're getting into a situation like this at work or anywhere else, document everything including getting Brad’s sign offs. He might do something like, “Okay, here's the plan. This is what we're going to do, dah, dah, dah.” Then he writes a nice email to Brad confirming that that's what they just discussed, so that later on when Brad complains, your husband has a written record of it all. And he can say, “Well, if that wasn't the plan, then how come when I sent my confirmation email five minutes after the meeting, you didn't respond with, ‘Hey, that's not what we talked about at all.’ How come you either replied with, okay or you didn't reply at all. You got the email, right? You do check your email.” I would imagine that a work email system can see who opens what, if it came down to it, but it shouldn't matter. Your husband should also start looking for another job as a fallback or safety measure here. This way, if things get bad or worse, he has the keys to the prison, so to speak. He can tell his boss that he's thinking of leaving because of this and then he'll see what his company is made of. By the way, never threatened to leave, unless you can and are ready and willing to do so, because what you might find is if he's like, “Look, I'm thinking about leaving because of this.” They might be like, “Oh good, this is a good opportunity to fire you. We weren't going to do that right away, but now that you're mentioned it, maybe we should do that.” That can push people over the edge. You don't know where you stand. So, unless you can leave, are ready and willing to do so, don't threaten to leave.
[00:11:00] Documenting. Write down important conversations and events that illustrate your arguments. Include the time, the date, the names of other people who are around everything. If he has a meeting with Brad, have them write down the salient points and put in an electronic copy of this, not on his work computer. He should write it down in his phone. You can share it with HR or people at work later. What you don't want is, “Oh, this was all on my work drive and an email and then could I have a copy of that?” “No, you can't because you're being terminated or you're under performance review.” You don't want to not have access to this, especially if it goes to court or you want to show somebody and your boss doesn't want you to. Save all emails where you've contributed original ideas in work. If someone's taking credit, if Brad starts taking credit for your husband's work, make sure your husband prints those emails out. Now, you might not be able to remove things from work. There could be rules against removing things from work, but maybe you can forward something to a personal email, sort of depends on company policy, probably you should check on that, but if you print off that stuff, that way if work accidentally loses those emails or you need to find them later, you've got a nice little file on your desk in a locked drawer that says Brad. Right? And you've got backups of that if needed. Ideally you have an electronic copy of your own, but you've got to check with work. Make sure you don't get fired for forwarding work stuff to yourself about stuff at work. That would be a pretty dumb way to blow through a company policy.
[00:12:19] And before confronting your boss about the issue, talk with other coworkers because –I don't know what the size of the company is or anything— but there might be other people that have issues with Brad that haven't said anything. This will help you determine if he's undermining you or just your husband or if it's a general issue among the other coworkers. I've found with a lot of people that undermine, I've found from asking and going through this a lot and seeing this in my inbox on The Jordan Harbinger Show a lot, that if someone is undermining one person, they're often undermining two, three, four or five people and sometimes people who like to undermine, they will undermine anyone who's not them, which is a tactical mistake. So, ask your coworkers, “Hey, does Brad forget to include you on important emails or does Brad ever say negative things behind your back?” Or, ”Hey, Brad told me something really negative about you the other day. Has he ever said anything about me?” And you can start to compare notes and find, “Oh Brad is a shit talker with literally everyone in the office.” Go figure. Now if two or three of you are going to one or two managers and saying, “Hey this guy, his talking smack about everybody, it makes Brad look bad.” Because why else would you team up with different people from the same or different departments, it just doesn't make sense. Try to keep the problem transparent as well. If you're emailing Brad or if your husband is emailing Brad, cc the boss on email communication. Here's the meeting we just went to. Here's the plan we decided on. cc the boss. You can bcc but cc is better because now he knows he can't do anything. However, if he wants to trap Brad in a lie, you can send a confirmation in bcc the boss and then if Brad goes, “He's doing all these things we didn't agree on.” Your boss can go, “Ah, that's interesting cause I was bcc’d on the email followup and you don't know that but now I know you're lying.”
[00:14:07] Also if Brad keeps forgetting to inform your husband about important meetings or something like this, which is a classic undermine tactic, send an email to everybody in the meeting, include the information and the ideas that you would have provided at that meeting or anything you would've wanted to discuss at that meeting, and ask the whole attendance list to invite you in the future, and cc your boss in the email like, “Hey, it looks like I was somehow overlooked for this morning staff meeting about the new client. Here's what I would have contributed. Here’s some questions I have. Next time would somebody mind double checking that I'm invited to this. I would love to attend next time. That way everyone knows that you weren't invited for some reason and maybe next time someone will remember. That makes it really hard for someone to keep forgetting to invite or to not invite you and then claim that they did and that you didn't show up, which is another classic underminer tactic.
[00:14:57] Your husband can also talk to Brad directly. Do so though in a non-confrontational way. Document that talk and then send a follow-up email outlining the discussion to Brad and then either cc or bcc the boss. That's your call. So, “Hey Brad, I know that we've had some disagreements in the past about how to execute things. I thought, we're all on the same page. Here's what I want to do in the future to avoid this, we need to be more transparent. Let's meet every Monday at 6:00 AM,“ whatever the hell you want to do. cc the boss. That way the boss can see that you're trying to solve the problem. And then when Brad whines about how this isn't working, he can go, “Wait, didn't you guys decide to have a meeting?” “Oh yeah. well, he's not doing the meetings.” “Well, that's funny because I keep seeing him inviting you to these meetings in the calendar, so what's going on?” And then the truth will slowly start to come out because a lot of people who undermine, they're not evil geniuses. They're throwing crap at the wall to see what sticks. They've been doing this since high school and they're not always experts at this. If they were really smart, they would be good employees most of the time and they would find out how to outwork you and out-compete you in a fair way. These usually are people that slack at their jobs and they want to make you look worse by design, so that they're the last man standing for a promotion. Rarely is this such a nefarious and in-depth detailed plan, so you can almost always catch them in their BS if your boss is paying attention and if you're documenting everything. If Brad thinks he's getting away with this and he's being stealth, now he's on notice with the emails. Many times, people who undermine their cowards, they're going to pick an easy target. If he's not, and now he's out for blood, as you say, then it's Brad or your husband, right? If it comes down to this, if people at work won't have your husband's back, he should move on. Brad will get fired eventually because he'll keep doing this sort of thing to the next guy and the next guy and the next guy, and eventually bosses are going to be like, “Wait a minute. Oh, I see now you're undermining me. Ooh. I wonder if this is what happened with so-and-so.”
[00:16:49] It sucks to leave your job and I would say try strengthening your relationship with your boss first. The way that you can do this is schedule regular meetings with your bosses to discuss your performance. It'll get you closer to your boss. Yes, you probably have regular performance reviews, but they will see your genuinely caring about your job and that you want the best for the company. It depends on your boss's schedule, but look, if you can meet with your boss twice a month, every other week, that's pretty good. That's probably more than Brad's doing and when Brad meets with them, he's probably whining and complaining and trying to undermine you. If you're meeting with them and you're trying to improve and you're not just complaining about Brad the whole time, it starts to be really obvious that you care about your job and Brad cares about undermining you. There's a huge difference there. If you talk to the boss about this though, make sure you keep the focus on Brad's behavior and not on Brad as a person. Focusing on him as a person will undermine your credibility. “Oh, he is just a jerk and he's rude and dah, dah, dah.” No, we want, “Yeah, Brad agrees to things and then changes his mind and it screws up the plan and I mean I can show you instances where this has happened. Here's the meeting, here's the plan, here's the email. And then I know that he told you that this wasn't the plan, but here's the email right after the meeting.” If you focus on his behavior, it looks like you're looking out for the company, not just looking out for yourself. And if you can meet with your boss and bringing another negatively affected coworker to that meeting. Make sure your boss approves of that by the way. So, they don't think they're just meeting with you and then you bring someone else. If you bring another coworker who also is negatively affected, someone who Brad is also smack talking, then they can vouch for you and it's not your word versus his, but at the end, if your husband's boss won't have his back, it's worth it to go somewhere that doesn't tolerate slash foster a toxic work environment. Make a statement by leaving. Let your boss know why. It doesn't have to be bitter. It can be, “Hey, I've brought these things to your attention. I feel like I'm not being supported here. I'm going to go somewhere because I think that there's a toxic work culture here. I hope you don't find out the hard way. I hope things do work out for you. I'd love to come back in the future, but I can't work with a company that looks at all this toxic work environment and doesn't do anything.” And just keep it really unemotional. Once Brad gets fired because he does this to another person or 10 at work, your husband can come back. He can probably negotiate a better offer anyway if he even feels like coming back because look, yeah, it sucks. He likes his job, but you have to look at management. If they really don't believe him slash don't care that there might be a toxic work culture because “Brad's so fun and he's great at squash,” then get the hell out of there. It's just not worth putting up with that crap. If they don't care about the company, why should he?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:19:23] Who the hell play squash anyway?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:24] A lot of people play squash.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:19:26] Oh my God.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:00:00] Yeah, I know. All right. What's next?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:19:30] Hello to the four J's. I'm a real estate investor who works for a big corporation to pay the bills. I'm in marketing and had been working at the same company for over 11 years now. I haven't advanced my career and it's not from a lack of trying. After a lot of failed attempts, I got complacent and gave up. A decision I regret and one that I'm trying to change. I hear of coworkers getting a promotion because there's quote-unquote smart. What does it mean to be smart? Is being smart related to IQ? Is it related to emotional intelligence or is it having all the above? I have to ask coworkers, bosses, and friends what makes someone smart? Most of the time people don't say anything in response. I get a lot of blank stares. I would really like to know what you think about this. I have a BA from an Ivy league art school. I taught myself different programs over the years, so I could do my job the best way I can on paper though I don't come across as smart. I don't think of myself as dumb but I also don't think of myself as smart either. Maybe because I don't know what it means to be smart. Thank you. Signed, Looking for the Answer.
[00:20:31] Well, I can tell you right now, IQ doesn't matter very much because it's been widely debunked for starters. And look, I test between 138 and 141 depending on the hangover that day. And I also tested in the 99th percentile on my Mensa exam. But most of my friends, even you Jordan, will tell you that most of the time, I'm dumb as opposed. So, IQ, you can take out of the equation.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:20:51] I don't think you're done, but I am surprised to hear that you'd tested in the 99th percentile for a Mensa exam. I look at those Mensa exam questions and I'm like, I don't even know what you're asking me. Fold.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:20:59] Yeah, to me they're just, they're basic. I don't know why. It’s just my brain works the way the Mensa exam works and I can just fly through those things.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:07] That's funny. I remember looking at that I think in college and I was just like, I have no clue what is this like a logic puzzle? I'm done.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:21:14] Yeah. I tested in my junior year in high school, got in the 99th percentile, but we didn't have any money. We were living in a hotel so I couldn't afford the dues and then I tested again in my 20s and I hit 99th again. By that point I'm like, “You know what I like going out and partying and going to punk rock shows. I don't think Mensa is probably my crowd.”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:32] There's probably a ton of people in Mensa that like doing that. By the way, it's probably full of people that are on weird cultures and stuff like that.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:21:40] That's true.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:41] Yeah. Who knows? Well, what could have been, Jason? What could have been?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:21:45] what could've been? Coulda, woulda, shoulda.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:46] So, who knew JPD was a genius. Honestly, here, I'm just reading between the lines though with this question. I'm making assumptions here so I could be way off, but my gut says you're just not well liked in the office. I apologize if this stings a bit, but the image I'm getting from what you're telling me from this question is that you might lack some social intelligence and people are actually just annoyed by this. For example, nobody gets promoted because they're smart. This is a reason people might give when they don't feel like telling you why someone got promoted over you or because they don't really know. They just like the other person better. If they don't feel like giving you a concrete answer or maybe you've heard the answer a hundred times and you refused to accept it. I'm not saying you're doing this, but I think a lot of people go, “Oh, well Jim's really smart.” It's easier than saying, “Well, Jim's intelligent and he handled this project well, and frankly, nobody wants to work with you on this kind of thing because you're really knowing and you talk about how you tested in the 99th percentile in Mensa all the time and that gets old really fast.” Who knows what the reason is? I'm making assumptions here. Again, like I said, they might just like the other person better. That's why most people get promoted. They do their job decently, but they're better liked. They have better people skills. It's also possible that you come across as distracted or you come across as checked out compared to most, possibly because of your side hustle. I mean, if people in the office know that you have the job with them, quote unquote, to pay the bills, they might not like the sound of that too much. It sounds like you think you're too good to be there with everyone else, maybe. Nobody wants to promote somebody who's only there for a paycheck. If you think you are really getting pigeonholed as this, if people know about your side hustle, you might be better off switching jobs if you're feeling stuck, and I know it seems like I'm telling everyone to quit today and that's an unfortunate coincidence, but if you want a clean slate, something new is often the best way to get it. Trying to fix the impression you've made on everybody for the last 11 years is going to be pretty impossible, but if you switch to something new, you go, “Ah, okay, I need to not run around and talking about how I'm a millionaire real estate investor,“ or something like that or tested well on Mensa, or “This is just my side hustle. I'm too good for this marketing job.” Again, I don't know if you're doing any of that, but if you're doing any of what you wrote in this letter around the office or people are reading between the lines and getting that kind of feel. I can see why you're not getting promoted.
[00:24:05] Otherwise, perhaps ask some folks in the office that you trust for their honest opinion. If they're avoidant or they just say, “Well it's cause he's so and so is smart.” Then ask them if they think you are not smart or not qualified and why. I mean we're pretty limited on info here and we can't really get any more detailed info for you and I'm not trying to call you names. Don't take that away from this. I don't know anything about you but when I hear that other people are getting promoted over you and everyone stares at you blankly, when you ask why and it seems like the reason is smart and you don't know the definition of smart, I'm getting a weird sort of vibe that maybe you just lack of social understanding and can't read between the lines. My gut says based only on this letter that you're not well liked in the office. I can only really speculate as to why that might be. So, if you have other insight on that, then I would explore that and not worry about the definition of the word smart among people around you. Clearly, you're an intelligent person. I mean you listened to this show. So that's Mensa material right there. If I've ever seen it. All right.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:25:09] It is. And I think you nailed it on the head. I just think he's probably 11 years being there and checked out just doing it for the paycheck and other people, they're hustling and they care about the company and really want to make a difference. I think that's really what it is. It has nothing to do with intelligence, maybe social intelligence, but not book smart intelligence.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:29] Yeah. Because nobody goes, “Oh, well, that guy's smart. We're going to promote him.” I mean it's just kind of like, “Ugh, you're really asking this question. Oh well he's smart.” “Am I not smart?” “No, you're smart too. I got to go.” I mean that's, they just don't want to, they don't want to have the conversation with you is what it sounds like.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:25:44] Yup.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:45] Smart is the throw away. Leave me alone. I'm-going-to-Chipotle answer
Jason DeFillippo: [00:25:49] With everybody else in the office but you.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:51] Right? yeah, exactly. Yes. Going to Chipotle with everybody else in there. So when they go, “Oh, well, of course he got promoted. Everyone likes him.” They don't want to say that because then you'll go, “What? People don't like me?” And then they're like, “Ah, I got to pee. Bye”. They know that that's going to result in a conversation that they don't want to have. So they're just going to avoid you.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:26:12] This is feedback Friday. We'll be right back after this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:15] This episode is sponsored in part by HostGator.
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Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:34] This episode is also sponsored by Rocket Mortgage.
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[00:28:44] Thanks for listening and supporting the show. To learn more about our sponsors and get links to all the great discounts you just heard, visit jordanharbinger.com/deals. And if you'd be so kind, please drop us a nice rating and review in iTunes or your podcast player of choice. It really helps us out and helps build the show family. If you want some tips on how to do that, head on over to jordanharbinger.com/subscribe. Now let's hear some more of your questions here on Feedback Friday.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:12] Next up. This one's pretty interesting, Jason.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:29:14] Dear J, J, J, and little J. I'm a 30-year-old Italian expat living in New Zealand after repeating several years of high school due to lack of attendance and wasting two years in college on a course I wasn't interested in, I started working at entry-level jobs in hospitality to save up for what I thought was my only calling in life, traveling. I ended up traveling all over Europe and finally ended up in Australia of all places for a year. I struggled to find even the most basic job despite my experience in hospitality, in the fact that I speak four languages. I've always been told how I lacked drive and determination in my school career and at home and retrospectively that was definitely true. I finally found work as a farm worker and that I assure you was no walk in the park. It taught me valuable lessons about hard work and gave me a boost in self-esteem. After having to leave the country due to my visa expiring, I moved to neighboring New Zealand. Here, I started meeting people that were genuinely believing in me as I had inadvertently built an interesting stack of skills and I felt I found my home. This was also where I met my now girlfriend of three years and no doubt the love of my life. This also was when I discovered your podcast and I used to listen for hours on end at work as a construction laborer. I gained some very valuable knowledge in this sector as well as gardening and cleaning. And in 2018, I found that it was time to try and start my own little business. I did keep my day job as you pointed out and I built my own wheelie bin cleaning setup from scratch in my backyard –that's a dumpster for you Americans. After about a month of cleaning people's bins after work, I got so much work that I had to dial down my hours at my day job to keep up with demand. After a year in business now, I find that there's almost no competition in my city. Demand is going through the roof and I get an overwhelming amount of positive feedback from clients I earned three times as much as I used to and life is great. I'm reaching full capacity soon and spring is just around the corner. What's your take on my situation as a startup owner without previous business experience? New Zealand is where the new American dream is at. Starting a business is easy and competition in many areas is limited. Other people will likely see the profitability of my niche and I want to avoid a race to the bottom price wise with multiple potential competitors. Should I try to win over all the big commercial contracts as soon as possible to establish my position in the city and do some guerrilla marketing along the lines of Brian Scudamore? Shall I get employees in risk to fail due to hiring the wrong people, or should I consider franchising my brand as customers trust me and my expertise so far has proven to be valuable and will help me train and motivate new franchisees to attain freedom and success as I've done. Yours sincerely, Living It Up Down Under
Jordan Harbinger: [00:31:57] To answer this question, I actually wanted to bring in my friend Cameron Herold. He was on the show earlier this year talking about bipolar and how it can be a superpower, but he was also the COO of 1-800-GOT-JUNK, and this question is right in his wheelhouse. So, I'm going to help him help you.
Cameron Herold: [00:32:14] Wow. Okay, so first off, I'm kind of vibrating in my seat. I was excited when you started reading this guy's question and we're just talking about his traveling and some of his learning. I started listening to his words. He's a really great writer. He's just really articulate.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:32:28] It struck me now, he just said he's Italian and he speaks four languages. If this is his English, I'm a little jealous.
Cameron Herold: [00:32:35] Like, yeah, can you work for me and write for me?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:32:37] Seriously.
Cameron Herold: [00:32:38] I'm really impressed with his writing and his ability to market himself and communicate his skills. I didn't know he had started a business, but what I was going to say is for him to start getting into the entrepreneurial community with some written posts and written blogs and written articles that he can share so that people can see kind of what he's learned and almost to debrief with himself over his last couple of years because he's got some huge skills, but then he pointed out he's already done that. It'll never be the race to the bottom if you don't allow it to be, keep your prices high. Choose to be that kind of FedEx or the Starbucks of whatever space that you're in. When we built 1-800-GOT-JUNK, we want it to be the FedEx of junk removal. We talked about being the Starbucks of junk removal. One of the first things I did coming into that company was raised our prices 35 percent to 40 percent, so that we would be way higher than everyone else in the industry, but we could actually deliver better service, better marketing, better branding, better customer experience, and better employee experience because we could afford to. There were 17,000 independent junk businesses when we really launched 1-800-GOT-JUNK. So, we didn't even create an industry. Don't worry about competition or race to the bottom. In every single industry, someone is choosing to be the premium price. Even if you think about Starbucks of coffee today, there's hipster coffee shops three blocks away from every Starbucks that are charging 30 percent more than Starbucks are for a latte. Starbucks used to be the premium and they're no longer. They’re at that middle to maybe 70th percent of the bell curve.
[00:34:03] If you think about the space that you're in, it's just time to start hiring. Really turn this into a business with lots of employees so that you've got before you franchise. I would try to get this to a business that's at least doing a half a million to $1 million a year in revenue. I'm not sure what your revenue mark is, but to truly be a successful franchisor, you need to make sure your franchisees make a lot of money. That’s what I'd done with a few different businesses was as long as my franchisees made a lot –by a lot of money, they have to make at least a quarter million dollars a year in profit off running a franchise— so that they can truly replace a great career job and not so that they're kind of buying themselves a $40,000 job like a Subway franchise. With Subway franchisees, they've got three of their relatives working there because it's the only way they can pay the bills. That's not a successful franchise type model. It's why a company like Quiznos went out of business. They were good at selling franchises but they weren't good at everybody making money off of it. I would make sure that your current business is big enough, profitable enough.
[00:35:04] Start hiring people to do the work for you, so that you can continue to build out the brands. I do like the idea of tying up the contracts, tying up the business relationships. Then ask yourself really where you want to take this over time like what is your goal for this three years, 10 years out? Is it to build something to sell? Is it to build something to operate? Because franchising is a very expensive kind of a model. It's a tough model to actually make money in and there's a high, what I call pain in the ass factor, a high PITA factor. So, just make sure that you consider what you're building and why you're it and how long you're going to be building it for. There's a lot of legal, there's a lot of restrictions and you could build a $100 million system-wide business, but because your top-line revenue is only your royalty, you're really only have $10 million business. So, you don't have as big of an exit opportunity. I look at doing a hybrid model instead of franchising. If you're going to expand and you want multiple locations, multiple cities, see if you can do some joint ventures where you bring on some people's money, that they have the financial stake, but you take all the operational side of the business and you go with a general partner, limited-partner type model, where maybe they help you open two cities. They own 50 percent of those two cities. They have no operational say in the business, you get a 100 percent operational say. They have the financial risk and then you build the business more in that kind of a hybrid model than a pure franchise model. So, I would start with where are you going, what are you trying to build long term, and then reverse engineer that. Don't just go from, “Hey, I have a cool concept to, I should franchise.” Starbucks never franchised, right? Starbucks is a corporate model, and the Cobs Bread which is a successful business out of Australia did a joint venture, a limited partner type model to expand. There's all kinds of ways to grow to multiple locations without being a franchise or even when we did Boyd Autobody and Gerber Collision. We acquired all these businesses and then took the company public, so I would just think of different ways to have multiple cities and multiple locations up and running because franchising can be a fast way to grow but at a high pain in the ass factor as well.
Jordan Harbinger: [ 00:37:10] Special thanks to Cam Herold for dropping by and helping us answer that question. You can hear the episode I did with Cameron Herald a few weeks ago here on The Jordan Harbinger Show. We'll link to that in the show notes as well and we'll link to the episode with Brian Scudamore who was the CEO and cofounder of 1-800-GOT-JUNK if you're interested in listening to that as well. Okay, next up.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:31] Jordan, is it ever good to name-drop when networking. Signed, Don't Want to be a Douche.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:36] I've gotten this question a lot recently because of the Six-Minute Networking class and I think it's a really, really good question. A lot of people name-drop. Let me ask you this, when someone name-drops, are you impressed? Most people aren't. In fact, I was at a Tony Robbins event.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:54] Name-drop.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:55] That was not the name-drop, and onstage he's like, “Yeah, I was hanging out with Dan Quayle and we were flying on George Bush’s jet, and we were dah, dah, dah, dah with Marc Benioff from Salesforce. And I was just like, “Oh, okay. We get it.” And people in the crowd were mesmerized in part because Tony's larger than life and he's on stage. And a guy next to me goes, “Wow, normally this would be name-dropping, but Tony i so bad ass.” And I was like, “Oh look, isn't that funny? You literally see and recognize this. Your brain recognizes this as name-dropping, but you're giving him a pass because of his status.” Unless you have massive amounts of social status, like you're on stage in front of 11,000 people, you probably are coming across ridiculous when you name-drop. So, here's the rule for name-dropping. You only drop a name if you can back it up and you are willing to do so to add value. Otherwise, it is douchey. So, what I mean by that is if Jason goes, “Man, you know I really need to talk to somebody who started a tequila brand because my uncle is selling his tequila factory in Mexico.” And I go, “Oh, you know what? I know the guys who do Casamigos Tequila, George Clooney and his homeboy,” I don’t know, this is obviously BS, right?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:39:07] I hope so.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:39:09] Well, yeah, you're like, “When are we going down to hang with George?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:39:11] Exactly. Where's my free tequila and I want to hang out with George.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:39:14] Well, where's your uncle's tequila factory? Mm-mmm. So, then it makes sense because I go, “Why don't I hook your uncle up with his people?” Does that make sense? Or, “Oh, you're doing something with such and such charity. I happen to know that Michael Phelps is really into those charities. Let me see if he'll be interested in what you're doing or if his organization would be interested in teaming up with your organization.” See that it's a value-add. That is a good kind of name-drop because you're making an introduction. But if I just walk in and someone goes, “Man, you know, I'm doing this thing.” And I go, “Well, I know Michael Phelps.” You go, “Well that's great.” “Will he team up?” “No, I'm just saying I know Michael Phelps.” I'm pretty impressive, right? I mean what are you doing with that name-drop? You have to be able to back it up. Name-dropping most of the time it's only for you. You want to gain points, but it backfires. You look ridiculous. You can name-drop if you're willing to make that introduction or connection for the other person. So, it's a value-add for the other person. Only name-drop if it's an offer and not a brag. If somebody goes, “Hey Jordan, I really want to learn how to do X, Y, Z.” And I say, “You know, I happen to know the best in the business. You want to learn how to speak from the stage, I can hook you up with Tony Robbins’ teacher because I've known Tony for a long time,” which is also BS. Then it's great. “Well, yeah, I would love that.” But if I just say, ”Yeah, I know Tony Robbins, he's really good at speaking.” “Oh, cool. Can you introduce me to a speaking coach?” “No.” What are you doing there? There's really no other reason and that's how most name-dropping it comes across. It's just absolutely ridiculous. So, unless you're using it to illustrate how you can help someone else, don't do it. You look like an idiot.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:40:48] Here's a scenario that I want to get your feedback on. Say you're talking to somebody about a skill that they want to learn or a scenario where you have some intimate knowledge about how they can do it better. And your friend, who is the famous person that you are hanging out with talking about this very same thing. Can you then say like, “Hey, I was hanging out with Tim Ferriss last week and we were talking about this thing and this is what Tim does,” and then pass along the advice. That way there's no introduction involved, but you're using that name as a kind of like social proof to say, look, this is actually really good advice. This person does it. You should maybe think about doing it this way. You're still not doing an introduction, but it's a name-drop just to build in just some gravitas to the advice that you're to give.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:41:33] That's a really, really good question. You're right. Yes. It gives credibility to the advice because if I'd said something like, “Well, you know, I don't want to ever simplify anything and I don't want to outsource anything because it doesn't work and outsourcing is BS and it's a bunch of trendy stuff that nobody who's successful does.” And you might go, “Actually, you know, I was talking with Tim Ferriss the other day and one of the things he does is he simplifies as much as possible and he outsources everything.” And I might go, “Oh, well, okay, he really knows what he's doing. I should probably listen to this.” But if you just said, “I have a very successful friend and he outsources everything.” I might go, “I don't care what your friend does, who's your friend? Some guy owns a dry cleaner. Screw you Jason DeFillippo. Go back to your Mensa hangouts. I don't really care.” But if you know that's going to be persuasive, then it's a persuasion technique and it's designed to get me to listen to good advice. But you're not doing it to make yourself look good, you're doing it to give me advice that you know is effective for a problem that I'm having. So, it still follows the value-add rule, which is the core rule. It doesn't have to be an intro. That's just the more obvious value-add. But you're right, the value-add rule there is good too. It might also be something like, “Oh, well, I happened to know one of the best people who is great at selling used cars.” And I might go, “Oh, well, I know a lot of people that are good at it.” And you might go, “No, I know the guy. Let's call him for advice.” And then I go, “Okay, I'm listening to you now.” That is a value-add. Anytime, it's a value-add for the other person because usually name-dropping this isn't even being calculated. They're just going, “I bet all these people in this room will be really impressed and approved of me and like me, if I tell them that I know, David Copperfield. Took me a long time to think of a celebrity. What the hell! It's designed to be approval-seeking behavior. When it's approval-seeking behavior, you're not impressing anyone, you're actually just torpedoing your own social status. So, unless it's a value-add, don't do it. And even then, I would say be careful if it's sort of ambiguous. You don't want to say, “Oh, you're talking about speech coaching. Well, I know Tony Robbins, so let me know if anybody wants intros to his speaking coach.” It's like, “Dude, nobody was asking for speaking coaches. We were just talking about people we knew who are good speakers. You don't have to brag about how you know Tony Robbins.” That kind of thing. You have to be careful. It has to be useful and not availed reason to name-drop also,
Jason DeFillippo: [00:43:55] I wish you would have given me this advice when I first moved to Hollywood because I was terrible with name-dropping and I think a lot of people are, when they start to meet famous people or just somebody outside of their circle. I realize how dumb I looked when I would name-drop and I would do it all the time and finally somebody pulled me aside and said, “Dude, shut up. Don't do that anymore.” And I'm like, “Why?” “Everybody here thinks you're an asshole now?” “Ugh, okay.” You have to have it beaten over the head. So, I applaud this person for actually asking the question because a lot of people just instinctively do it because they're so excited to know somebody famous. Now it's just like, “Oh, I can talk about this person and I'll use it everywhere I can.” So, just take it out of your vernacular, and I think it's very telling that you couldn't come up with a celebrity for a couple of seconds there because you are so attuned to not name-drop.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:44:41] Yeah, I mean that's a good point. I guess I was pushing those people out of my mind at the time for that reason. Another thing that you shouldn't do. This isn't a name-drop, but this is one of those clever Hollywood ways of doing it. And I hear this in New York, I hear this in LA, I hear this in any sort of big city. People will pretend in a way that they're on a first-name basis with somebody, and I'm trying to think of this real-life example that happened. This was a long time ago. A friend of mine, let's call her Erica because that's her name. She was talking about how she used to be a server at a bar and Cuba Gooding Jr. would come in all the time and she'd go, “Yeah.” And then I said, “Oh Cuba, you're so funny.” And I'm like, “Ah, you're not on a first-name basis with Cuba Gooding Jr. He probably has no idea who you are. Real talk. If he's not at that restaurant, he's not like, what's up Erica?” Be real. So, doing that whole thing is like informal thing where you're like, “Oh yeah, I hang out with Wil Nye the science guy, but I call him Bill.” I mean, come on. It's just ridiculous. Everyone knows your fronting. You look and sound ridiculous. Don't do it. “It's just, it is tempting now. You know, and I'm just glad that my good friend, Dwayne Johnson, snapped me out of that habit. You know, what I mean guys?”
Jason DeFillippo: [00:45:57] Oh, I know. Will Smith, he called you up in the middle of the night and said, ”Jordan, man, you got to quit dropping. The Rocks name.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:46:03] I know, I know. It was just, I'm like, “Oh, Fresh Prince, please.”
Jason DeFillippo: [00:46:07] “Yo, FP. What's up?”
Jordan Harbinger: [00:49:09] Yeah, pretty much Don't do that stuff either. We're onto you. You don't have a nickname for somebody. I know you read it in People Magazine, don't do it, It's corny. Next up.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:46:19] Dear Jay-4. I'm working as a first-time physician at a very large academic hospital. Through your negotiating series and years of listening to your show, I was able to gain a clinical and innovative consulting position that's supposed to bridge the gap between the digital health innovators and the clinicians. It's a first of its kind position, given this innovation department is one of the first in the nation. So, right now, it's up to me to build my own structure within the university. I've built a bunch of contacts within both facets of my job and have started working on connecting resources, the push forward old and new projects university wide. My passion network and critical thinking abilities have been well received by contacts. My goal is to build up to a more leadership role where I can help push projects and ideas forward. I worry though that I find myself educating or connecting resources for free without receiving any credit to the hospital and innovation administration. How can I continue to network and problem solve for my peers, but also start to lay the foundation of credibility with my accomplishments to build future and likely new leadership positions at my hospital? This is especially important given the fact that I'm in uncharted territory without any clear mentorship. Thank you. Signed, Credit Where Credit is Due.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:47:32] Yes, this is tricky. Would be nice if we could just lean on our work and that alone was good enough. But alas, we need to make sure that people see our value. So, I've got some stealth tricky ways that aren't under handed at all, frankly, to get credit for work. If people aren't giving it to you or if it would be very uncouth to ask for it, which it usually is. So, what you can do is cc bosses and higher-ups on introductions and threads where you're contributing. Don't do too much of this, right? So, if you are emailing somebody and they're like, “Hey, can you make those intros to those people?” Or “Hey, Jordan, great work on the Madigan account.” Don't cc seven of your bosses and their bosses or bcc all those people and be like, “Thanks it's been a real pleasure adding a tremendous amount of value to the company,” because everyone's like, got it. You might be able to do that once if you take it well that you'd might be able to cc your immediate boss and go, “This is great. I'm really excited about this project. Thanks so much. I know that Bob, my supervisor will be really keen to hear about this as well. I've cc'd him here, but don't do that 10 times a week because then you're just flooding your boss's inbox and they're like, this guy is super irritating. Why am I cc'd in all of his emails? It's such a waste of my time.” You can also follow up with the boss or the boss's boss and make sure they get value from what you're doing, but there's a right way to do this. Following up with your boss works by saying, “Hey, just wanted to say, we close this Madigan account thing. I worked with all these other people from this other department. It was really, really useful for me to learn. I hope this was useful for the company. Let me know if you have any feedback about this, and the boss might just be like, “Great job. That's my feedback.” That's what you want. You want them to sort of hammer that nail down just a little bit. What you don't want to do is try to get a meeting or send a bunch of emails to your boss's boss and be like, “Just so you know, I'm the kid that closed that Madigan account, right? Just want to make sure that I'm getting my limelight.” You don't want to do that. Your boss is going to be annoyed by that. Your job is to make your boss looked good and yes, you want some of that credit, especially if you think your boss isn't giving it to you, so here's a way that you can do that and you don't want to overuse this one either.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:49:41] What you can do. Let's say you work at a hospital. Do you know where your boss's offices are? You also probably know where your boss’s boss’s offices are. You could accidentally run into that person at the gym, at the elevator bank, near the, wherever their office, they work. You could just be walking by their office one day, especially if their door is open. Greet them and say, “Hey, how's that Madigan account going? I know that we set that up and it had a lot of moving parts. I hope that's really valuable. I know we worked a lot for a couple of weeks on that. How's that going? Do you need any other help with it? Can I be valuable in any way?” And that person might go, “Oh, you worked on that? Well, no, that worked out really well. What's your name? Oh, nice to meet you.” That's how you get credit for it. You don't demand it. You don't shove it in people's faces. You don't make 7,000 copies and send it through the interoffice mail. You don't bcc the whole staff on your congratulatory email. You make it nice and stealth, but not underhanded. Right. You're just being low key about it, just enough so that people notice you, not a bunch so that you're the center of attention. That's the rule. And let people know you're the one set it up and you've got it in motion without you looking like you're whining because you didn't get credit for something or you want more limelight. It's very tactful and you should keep it that way as much as possible. Don't show up three times a week and be like, “Hey, just wanted to check in on that Madigan account.” Like let it go, man. You got plenty more work ahead of you. Your boss is going to look good. As a result, you're going to get more responsibility. This is the long game. You're not going to have one big project and then get selected to win an Oscar in digital healthcare or whatever. I'm not saying you're doing that, but I do get you want a credit. I'm just saying you don't want to suffer in silence. You can get credit where credit is due, but you don't want to make this all about you and a mission to increase your profile every single day. You got to make sure you're working for the company, not for yourself exclusively.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:51:36] We'll be right back with more Feedback Friday right after this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:51:39] This episode is sponsored in part by Zoom.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:51:42] When you use Zoom, every day is a little better. Zoom video conferencing lets you connect face-to-face with anyone across town or around the world with flawless video, clear audio, and instant sharing of files, video, anything, and you can connect through any device, desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone, or conference room system. Zoom video conferencing, Zoom rooms, Zoom video webinars, and Zoom phone, but state of the art tech at your fingertips and lets you do business at the speed of zoom. Look, if you're not using Zoom video communications, the only question I have is why not? I'll make it super easy for you. Visit zoom online and set up a free account today. Try the most affordable and most reliable video communication solution on the market. Meet happy with Zoom.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:52:26] This episode is also sponsored by Calm, something I rarely am in fact. Are you struggling to sleep these days? Well, yes, I am actually because I have a one-month-old. But if you're struggling to sleep, and it's not because you have a baby crying in your ear, well you're not alone. One in three us adults doesn't get enough sleep. And if you're not sleeping enough, it can affect your cognitive functions during the day like learning, problem solving, decision making, and not wanting to kill everyone that's around you. That's why we're partnering with Calm. The number one app for sleep. Sleep deficiency does some serious damage and not just to your brain, but your body as well. The sleepless are prone to more accidents, weight gain, depression. We talked about this when we talked with Dr. Matthew Walker about how teenagers are more likely to get into a crash from lack of sleep than anything else. With calm, you got a whole library of programs designed to help you get the sleep your brain and body needs like soundscapes, over a hundred sleep stories narrated by soothing voices like Jerome Flynn from Game of Thrones, Stephen Fry. So, you want to seize the day, sleep the night with the help of Calm and I know we got a deal from them. Jay.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:53:28] Right now. Our listeners get 25 percent off a calm premium subscription at calm.com/jordan. That's C-A-L-M calm.com/jordan for 25 percent off your premium subscription. Forty million people have downloaded the Calm. Find out why at calm.com/jordan.
[00:53:45] Thank you for supporting the show. Your support of our advertisers keeps us on the air. To learn more and get links to all the great discounts you just heard, visit jordanharbinger.com/deals. Now back to the show for the conclusion of Feedback Friday.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:02] Okay, moving right along.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:54:03] Hi Team Harbinger. I reached out to someone who's in the field I want to be in and she referred me to two other people that agreed to meet with me. I researched what they do a little bit, but I don't feel confident. I want to know more about what they do, but I also don't want to waste their time since this will be our first-time meeting. I wanted to use your FEW technique but was wondering if there's anything else I should do. Thanks, Need Some Recon
Jordan Harbinger: [00:54:27] For those of you that haven't tuned in for the past couple of weeks of Feedback Friday, FEW is in our Six-Minute Networking course. It's a rapport curve. It's a conversation outline or map that shows you how to create deeper rapport with people and keep conversations going in a way that's interesting if you're not in the Six-Minute Networking course. By the way, the FEW technique I did as a bonus video, so if you've already gone through the course or you want to use it right away, just go to jordanharbinger.com/course. You don't have to go through the whole course again to get it. It's in the bonus section. The whole FEW rapport curve is outlined there and we talked about it in the previous weeks of Feedback Friday as well.
So, what I would do if I were in your situation is use LinkedIn and see if you know any of their colleagues that you could ask about them as well. If you don't, that's one thing, that's fine, but you can glean a lot of info from people's colleagues. You can glean a lot of info from LinkedIn and social media. When you meet them one of the first things I would say is, “Hey, I did my best to find out more about what you do. I looked at LinkedIn, I looked at the company website, and your profile there, but frankly I didn't find much about what it looks like you're currently working on.” And then you can start the conversation that way. It doesn't have to be the first thing you say, but it can be one of the first things before you start asking questions. This way, if you ask something, they think is kind of a silly question like, “Oh man, you don't even know that I work in accounts receivable and then I'm on the collections team, what's going on there?” You might know that but not know what they do. Then by saying this, they know you tried to find the right answer first and that you're not just lazy. That is going to go a long way. What you don't want is for them to go, “Let me get this straight. I took time out of my day to meet you for coffee and you don't know that I work at LinkedIn and not Facebook. What am I doing here? You don't know. I moved from Tesla back to Ford. Hello? There's this thing on. I already know I'm wasting my time. I'm going to shut my brain off and just look for an excuse to get out.” You do not want that to happen. One note though, if they're a public figure of any kind, or –I hate this word—influencer. The measuring stick is different. When somebody emails me and I get this every week or every day emails me or something in my LinkedIn inbox, people go, “What made you want to start the show?” or, “Oh, what do you do?” I just go, all right, you've done zero research. I'm going to have to put a bunch of energy into this interaction. There's probably nothing in it for me. I often just ignore those. If I'm in person and I'm with a bunch of friends at a bar and somebody doesn't know me and they say, “What do you do?” I'm not going to be like, “How dare you? Google me.” I'm not going to do that.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:56:55] Don't you know who I am so?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:56:57] Don’t you know who I am? Yeah, I’m not good to do that, but if somebody sends me a message on LinkedIn or Instagram and this is where I typically get these, “Oh, what do you do?” I'm like, “You literally could click on my profile and find that out. Why would I answer this? I'm just going to end up wasting a bunch of time talking about, you can't even click on my effing profile and read it, but you're just going to ask me.” That is a sort of loser mentality. That's like a lazy-entitled mentality. Granted, if somebody just making conversation with you in real life, it's a different story, but if somebody wants information from you and they won't even look at your social media profiles, which is like table stakes for engaging in a conversation online, then I will genuinely and generally ignore everything they have to say after that, and so you want to avoid falling into that trap.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:57:45] You turned into a professional blocker because you just hit block over and over again.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:57:49] Yup. I don't block people but I do have, luckily, Instagram has two inboxes now. I don't know if everybody has this, but there's General and Priority. It’s so helpful. I can basically push people I don't know or that I don't really like engaging with too general and they just sit there until I'm bored one day laying on my couch watching Netflix and I pick up my phone and I can go through there and just sort of archive stuff or answer stuff with like a cut and paste. I'm thinking about making a shortcut on my phone that just answers that this isn't really a valued for too many people here. If you’re getting a lot of inquiries that are useless, I would say make a keyboard shortcut. Use text expander or the shortcuts on your phone and it says something like, “Hey, thanks for the question. If you're interested in getting to know more about my business, click here. Here's my website, here's my profile on the company website. Best of luck. Bye.” I should just do something like that. A lazy question can yield to the lazy answer and I don't feel bad about that at all.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:58:40] Exactly.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:58:41] All right, last but not least.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:58:43] Hi Jordan, Jen, and Jason. I'm a healthcare practitioner with five years of work experience and I'm currently part of a big project on electronic medical record implementation in Canada. I truly enjoy the business process and administration side of my job and would like to further advance my career. Healthcare practitioners typically have professional designations in addition to their degrees like occupational therapist, medical doctor, registered nurse, social worker, et cetera, and most professionals in administration have a master's degree as well, like an MSC, MHA, and a lot of other three-letter acronyms. I would like to know your opinion on Scott Galloway's. Advice on obtaining credentials early in your career, maximize on your economic growth. Knowing that an MBA is a big investment or debt, which is approximately $50,000 to $60,000 Canadian solely on tuition. Is it worth the ROI or do you think we're progressing so quickly that conventional education is becoming outdated as more and more people are able to learn free online and obtain necessary skills from experience without a formal education? I know you are formally trained as a lawyer who is a very successful podcast host with no formal broadcasting or media background. Keep up the great work. Signed, Do I Really Need the Letters?
Jordan Harbinger: [00:59:56] Ugh, yeah, I feel your pain here. In many situations I'd say you probably don't need the letters. Hell, I know of engineers. I think one wrote recently, last week maybe, Jason, who didn't even get an engineering degree, but her work stood out and she's doing amazing. That said, law business, and obviously medicine are fields where you often need the letters and I would actually ask higher ups in your organization that aren't in your direct chain of command. So, don't ask your boss or your boss's boss, but somebody just outside. The reason for this is their answers aren't going to be tainted by them possibly being threatened by you advancing because what you don't want is to ask your boss and you find out later that your boss said “You don't need to go to business school,” knowing full well that you do because they don't want you to go to business school because they're not willing to go to business school. They want to keep you beneath them and not get you promoted over them. You want somebody who doesn't have any conflict of interest in giving you good advice. You really don't want somebody to give you life-altering advice based on their own insecurities or what they want for themselves. That's real bad. Also, I would do informal informational interviews of people whose jobs you want in five years. You can do these on the phone, meetings if you can get them. Hell, stop by their office. It should be pretty easy because you're already in the company. You can walk by someone's office and say, “Hey, you don't really know me. I'm several ranks below you on the ladder, but if I wanted to work with you or in the role that you've got now after you move up, let's say in five years, what path would you prescribe for me? Do I need an MBA to get there? You could have this conversation in the elevator. “Hi. I know that your head of HR and I'm just working in this other department, but I'd like to transfer over there. What do I need to be in your shoes in five years?” Most people aren't going to be threatened by that because they're not going to be in that role in five years given any luck. That's why you say also, “What if I wanted to work with you?” Because then it doesn't say, “What if I want your job?” They're like, “Oh my god.” Right? “What if I want to work with you or in the role you've got now after you move up?” That's key. It says I'm not looking for your job while you want it. I'm looking for your job after you don't need it. What do I need to get there? I would gladly tell somebody what they needed to do. Let's say at a law firm, you need a law degree, then you need to do this, this, this and this. It's non-threatening. You want to make it non-threatening and make sure they don't have a conflict of interest. That's again, why you don't ask your own boss.
[01:02:21] The question is also more what the institution requires. Yes, we're moving fast as a society. Yes, formal education is starting to be exposed as overvalued in many ways. Semis scams that are often is, especially with these for-profit colleges and all this other BS, but that doesn't mean that a large company like a hospital or medical system is going to change their rules that fast. Also, often degrees are a proxy for how hard you're willing to work and if you have the smarts to handle the job, they don't care if you do what the degree requires. They just care that you're willing to work your butt off and can get the work done. So, you might be able to prove this in the office, but the institution might say requirements for this position are at minimum this, this, this and this. You don't want to be in a situation where it's nearly impossible for you to get promoted because the company policy is that you have an MBA, so now you're stuck and then you've got to do a job for another three or four years that you're overqualified for a while you get letters. Get the letters before you need the letters. Otherwise you're going to be stuck in a role because you're going to hit a ceiling. So, yes, the degree is expensive, but often organizations will pay for it. So, ask the same people you're meeting with or ask HR or whoever might handle this. Does the company, does the hospital have a tuition reimbursement system that you can take advantage of? You never know. It could end up being a quote unquote free from your employer, which is great. Employers would love to pay for it because it means they can retain you longer. It's also a little bit of job security. Kind of sucks to get rid of somebody if you have to pay their tuition. So, you might be last in any layoff lines if they know that you've got to stick around because they paid for her tuition. It can be a little job security there. That said, it's going to be a tough after work program and a tough few years to do an executive MBA like that, but it might be worth it economically at the end of the day. You have to gain this out long game. Will the company pay for it? If so, that's a different calculation.
[01:04:18] If you have to pay for it? Well, okay, let's say it costs you 30 grand. How many years in a higher paid position do you need to work before that breaks even for you? Four, five, six years. How long are you going to work there? 30 or 40 years. Do the math. You've really got to game it out and do the math and find out what's available to you. And best of luck out there.
[01:04:37] Life Pro Tip of the Week. When you get a scammy or spam phone call, you can tell them,” Oh, I think you have the wrong number. This is a government office.” I heard this trick recently, Jason, and they will often hang up immediately, especially if it's an illegal phone call, like you know you're on the do-not-call list. You know, it's one of those, “Oh, this is the IRS.” I used to get dozens of calls a day. I still get a handful, but a lot of people that I know have also been using this tactic and the calls, they say they've dropped down to one to two a week. You know, they hear the words government office and they hang up. I'm already on the do-not-call list. All of you are probably on the do-not-call list, but it doesn't do anything. Somebody who's going to break the law and tell you that the IRS, they don't care if you're on the do-not-call list. Give me a break.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:05:17] Yeah, it's useless.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:05:18] Yeah, it's useless. I wish you all the best of luck in the battle against scammers and Jason, you've got a technical trick that seems to be pretty genius.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:05:25] Yeah. Remember when you call somebody, you hear that doo, doo, doo. This line has been disconnected. Please call again or call somebody else. That three-tone doo, doo, doo is a trigger for a lot of these robocallers. It's an automated system. They're listening for you. If it hears that, it automatically takes your number out of the pool because they don't want to be spending their time on a dead number. So, if you have a voicemail, you just start it with those three sounds, the ding, ding, ding, and then just go into your regular voicemail. Say, “Hey, this is Jason. Thanks for calling. You know, call me back later or text me because I hate answering the phone.” So, if you put that tri-sound into it, which I am assuming will be in the show, right here, then you can actually start to programmatically remove yourself from these lists. And it has worked for me.
Jordan Harbinger: [ 01:06:15] So do you do the doo, doo, doo and then you play that for a bit and then after that you go, “Don't leave me a voicemail. I never checked this. It's still Jason, send me a text” for humans.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:06:25] Yeah, that's pretty much it.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:26] Because you don't want people that you know who think they're leaving you a message to go, “Oh, your number changed.” It's like, “No, no, no, no. That's for computers.”
Jason DeFillippo: [01:06:33] Yeah. It's so fast that nobody's really going to hear it. They process it for a second, but when your voice comes on, it just, you know, says, “Hey, leave me a message or text me.”
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:42] Cool. I like that trick.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:06:44] Yup. It works.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:06:45] Recommendation of the Week, Dave Chappelle: Sticks and Stones. I normally don't recommend comedy. It's very subjective. I don't like slapstick or absurd comedy at all, but I think Dave Chappelle is a legit comic genius. He's not for everyone as a, no comedian never is, but it takes on gun culture, the opioid crisis, the title wave of celebrities’ scandals, and he's also got his share of stuff. I mean, he fled right when the Chappelle’s show was at its peak 10 years ago. He just vanished.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:07:13] Yeah. He took off to Africa and said, “I'm out! Peace.”
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:16] Yeah, and this comedy is awesome. At the end, Jason, I don't know if you watched the…He's got like extras or something and he talked about why he left, but he goes, I'm going to talk about why I left, but I can't do it directly. And he tells a story about Iceberg Slim, The Pimp, when you read between the lines, you're like, “Oh really?”
Jason DeFillippo: [01:07:35] Interesting.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:36] I might be mistaken, it might be his previous special, but there's a bonus where he's just chilling in front of an audience of legit like 40 people at a comedy club.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:07:43] Oh yeah, that was his previous specialty. I remember that.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:07:46] So, he's got an epilogue, if you will. And he's like, “All right, I'm going to tell you what happened, but I can't say it directly.” And he tells a story about Iceberg Slim, The Pimp, and how in the book Pimp, which he was reading, it hit him hard. And that's what caused him to quit. And he talks about how Iceberg controls the girls that work with him, the prostitutes that work with him. And it's very enlightening and it gives you insights to Hollywood and you go, “Oh, is that what happened?” Dude, you got to re-watch? It's so interesting. Obviously, it's psychology. That's what Pimp’s use. They use very manipulative, dark psychology.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:08:22] I do remember that because I actually went out and bought the book. It's in my Kindle and I never went back and read it. So now I've got to go back and read that book. Thanks for the homework, Jordan.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:31] Mm-hmm. You're welcome. So that's on Netflix, Sticks and Stones. I think it's hilarious. If you hate it, don't blame me.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:08:37] Yeah, there's a lot of controversy about this one, but my roommate and I absolutely loved every second of it. This is one of the best hours in comedy ever. And also since you're a Chappelle fan, Jordan, I put this in here for you. I'm not a huge fan of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, but there is a Dave Chappelle episode and it is great. It's only like 15, 20 minutes. I highly recommend checking it out.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:08:57] Why don't you like Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:08:59] I'm not a Jerry Seinfeld fan.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:09:00] Hmm. That'll do it.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:09:02] Yup. Easy enough. Yep.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:09:04] Hope you all enjoyed that. I want to thank everyone that wrote in this week going to have some live events probably next year doing corporate training now, which is really fun. Got some awesome Silicon Valley clients. I'll link to the show notes for this episode. Can be found at jordanharbinger.com.
[01:09:20] Quick shout out to David Gray Lasseter. He did the Six-Minute Networking exercises. Transition from academia to the corporate world. Had a lot of idea about what Six-Minute Networking was. I don't need this. I'm good at networking. I don't really want to do this. I don't want to have to worry about this. He learned the hard way that “Hey, look having negative judgements about people who network and things like that. That's not serving me. That's not helping me. That's an excuse process.” So, thanks so much, David. Big shout out to you for being flexible enough, did change your mind about something and learn a useful set of lessons in the process and I wonder how many people haven't done or checked out Six-Minute Networking because they think they don't need it. People who network are, they're lazy, they're brown nosing or I'm already good at this. If that's you, dig into Six-Minute Networking jordanharbinger.com/course. It's free and most of the people I know that are really good at networking, they dive in and they're like, I love this, and people I know that are not good at it but think they are, they're like, “Oh, I don't need this. I'm really good at this. By the way, do you know anybody who can help me get out of this rut that I'm in.” And I'm like, “How the irony here.”
[01:20:22] Go back and check out the guests, Wendy Behary and Chris Bailey if you haven't yet. I'm on Instagram and Twitter at JordanHarbinger. It's a great way to engage with the show. Videos of our interviews are at jordanharbinger.com/youtube. And Jason, you've got your own show.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:10:37] You can check out my tech podcast, Grumpy Old Geeks at gog.show. And if you're a podcaster, check out The Club, it's a place for podcasters just to chill out and discuss business and craft without Mark Zuckerberg looking over your shoulder. That's at club.podcastschool.co. It's free and open to everyone.
Jordan Harbinger: [01:10:54] This show is created in association with PodcastOne and this episode was produced by Jen Harbinger, edited by Jase Sanderson, and show notes for the episode are by Robert Fogarty. Music by Evan Viola. Keeps sending in those questions to email@example.com. Our advice and opinions and those of our guests are their own. And yes, I'm a lawyer but I'm not your lawyer. So do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. And remember we rise by lifting others, so share the show with those you love and even those you don't. We've got a lot more in the pipeline and very excited to bring it to you. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
Jason DeFillippo: [01:11:33] Be sure to check out the new LaunchpadDM Podcast. Podcasting made simple. Every week, the host answers your question and gives out tips to make your podcasts live simple without the headaches and needing fancy equipment, get your podcasts out there and sound great without breaking the bank. The show is available now on launchpaddm.com. Step one if you have a podcast or want to create one, don't forget to check out the new free hosting platform with support from PodcastOne. Tune in to podcasting made simple or sign up with your own podcast now at launchpaddm.com.
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