Pimpology Law 11 - Avoid Gorillas and Godzillas
I'm somewhat hesitant to write this because I really want people to buy this book. However I figured from all the freaking emails I'm getting asking if I'm serious, I probably ought to make it clear that Yes, I am totally serious about this. One of you seems to think this is my just trying to get a rise out of people, but well, if that's what I was doing i'd choose a different venue.
So now that I've read Pimpin Ken's seminal masterpiece - aka Pimpology - The 48 Laws of the Game , I can say honestly that if you changed the title, this book would look just like any other Business Book I read in grad school although this is a lot more interesting. I was thinking about it in relation to my personal job:
Law 11 - Avoid Gorillas and Godzillas
Although I thought I was hip to most lingo, I was clueless as to what a Gorilla or Godzilla was. He uses personal anecdotes, but essentially they are both basically folks that you work with that don't play by the rules and as such, put the whole game at risk. I once worked at a company that had a really lax policy about arriving and leaving - as long as you did your work, they didn't care. Then, one guy started missing meetings. He was never there yet recorded hours all the time. He'd do all of his work in one burst, but this caused problems because we often to had to wait for his stuff. So managment cracked the whip and we all had to start being there during business hours and all this others stuff that really made it suck. All because of one person. To quote Pimpin Ken "Gorillas and Godzillas are bad for the game. They are bad business and as such, they have to go" (Gotta love his writing style). So.... "this is one instance where the real pimps may work together to take care of the situation."
Law 11 goes hand in hand with Law 23 - A Ho Joines a Stable to Ruin it.
While I can't do it justice, the basic point here is that you need to throughly screen those that come to work for you. I've heard every excuse in the book for poor screening - "Reference checks don't matter, they just use their friends or people that will lie for them", "You can't get people to be honest about them or they risk getting sued", "What they did in the past doesn't mean anything about what they'll do in the future" blah blah blah. And while all that is true to some extent, the price of being wrong when employing someone is typically huge. How many times have you been stuck somewhere where some manipulative ahole causes all sorts of problems? He gets everyone all riled up about everything. He convinces people mgt is screwing them. He fosters this "us against them " attitude. He trashed people who dare disagree with him. Or he doesn't do any work or does crappy work. And you have to deal with this crap for months because "they need a paper trail" and the only way to get that is usually to let him screw up bad and have you clean it up? There's no excuse for not screening. We all have made a poor hiring decision, but you shouldn't have many of these in your career and if you ask enough questions, take some time and watch how they respond, look for consistency and the like.
However, you can tell people this over and over and folks never seem to realize beforehand that they are hiring a problem. I bet if every hiring manager read Pimpin Ken's book - such issues would be a thing of the past. I need to get off my butt and work on another book - "Everything you needed to know about consulting in the words of a Pimp".