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“Take This Job and Shove It”


Author:   Glenn Shepard
Date:   May 6, 2014
Category:   Careers




Tupelo, MS May 13
Laurel, MS May 14
Rockford, IL May 20
Bloomington, IL May 21
Jacksonville, IL May 22
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Dear Glenn,


What IS considered insubordinate behavior? If an employee tells her supervisor that she will only respond to that supervisor if it is a question or directive directly related to work (in front of another employee), I think it's acceptable that the employee doesn't want a "personal" friendship or relationship (however, I don't think it should have been said in the presence of others).

      If she then proceeds to behave in a rude manner to the supervisor, is that insubordinate behavior?


- Pam in Springfield, IL


Dear Pam,


You're right on track. When, where, and how you say things actually conveys more than what is said.

    An actor in Hollywood who says to a TV producer, "I'm here to shoot a pilot" will get a very different response if he says the same thing to a TSA agent at the airport.

     Your employee's behavior is a textbook example of passive aggressive behavior. Explain to her that there's a right and wrong way, time, and place to say things; that she's smart enough to know the difference; and that there'll be consequences for continuing to do something she knows to be wrong.

    Thanks for your question.


- Glenn in Nashville, TN

Click here to submit a question. If yours is selected, you'll win your choice of the "I'm the Boss, Not the Babysitter" or "Work Is Not for Sissies"  coffee mug.

When I spoke to group of Cincinnati high school students about why they should give a two week notice when leaving a job, a 17-year-old said, “That’s so old school. My generation doesn’t have to do that”.


An 18-year-old said, “I don’t give a girl a two week notice when I dump her. Why should I do it for my boss?”


The fact that they even have to ask illustrates how naďve they are. That's understandable with kids who’ve never been in the workforce.


What’s amazing is when grown adults are no more mature.


Lots of people who hate their jobs secretly fantasize about living the classic country music song “Take this job and shove it”.


Here’s an excerpt:



"One of these days I'm gonna blow my top, and that sucker, he's gonna pay.

I can't wait to see their faces when I get the nerve to say,

Take this job and shove it.

I ain't working here no more."



While most people don’t go that far, many burn bridges behind them by badmouthing the company to coworkers before leaving, going off on the company on Facebook, or not giving a two week notice.


Successful people understand that how they leave a job - even one they hate - will affect them in the future just as much as how they performed at the job.


Even if you plan to stay at your next job until you retire, the company may decide differently for you. Or the economy may take a downturn and force layoffs.


If you want to take a clue from a song, a far better one would be Brooks and Dunn’s “That Ain’t No Way to Go”. Here’s an excerpt:



"Lipstick letters across the mirror this morning, Said ‘Goodbye Baby’.

You left with no warning.

That ain’t no way to go,

Girl it just ain't right.

Don't you think I deserve to hear you say goodbye?"



Giving a two-week notice is called a “professional courtesy”. If you don't offer this professional courtesy, by definition you're neither professional nor courteous.


Even if you hate your boss, your job, and your company, you owe your employer the professional courtesy of a two week notice when you leave.


And even if you don't believe you do, you owe it to yourself not to sabotage your future ability to get a job by burning bridges behind you.


It shouldn't come as a surprise that potential employers will check your references. (When I said this to the18-year-old, he responded, "Dude, I never thought about that".)



To Your Success,



Glenn Shepard




P.S. This applies even when you're 63 and make $20,000,000 a year. Jay Leno could have been bitter about being pushed out of The Tonight Show, but refused to badmouth NBC. When asked why, he responded, “What good would that do me? Look at how that worked out for Conan O'Brien".




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