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You Have Questions? We Have Answers.

Jun 26, 2007


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Today we roll out the newest in our series of Ask Bings. The previous group is still available on the lower righthand corner of the home page for those who are nursing the same problems they were a few weeks ago. I sympathize, by the way. My problems don't seem to go away, either.

Shooting me questions this time was a guy who works for what he calls an "ultra-wimp," who not surprisingly is to be found in academia. My dad worked in that dry and flinty bureaucratic soil, and I can tell you that brand of limp manipulator can be particularly thorny and vicious. Another question comes from a fellow who wants to leave one bulls**t job for another, more prestigious one. Again, a reasonable request, and achievable if one deploys the right strategy. A third inquiry finds a young woman who is dealing with that most ubiquitous of crazy bosses, a mean little bully who exploits her work and denies her the respect she deserves. They just don't seem to go away, these guys, do they? Until, you know, they do. That's the good news.

There are some other cries for help, including one person who is wrestling with that most hairy of issues for any working person: how to get a raise. We could spend a long time on that one, and maybe I will one day. There are many schools of thought on the subject, most of which go at it rationally. Since like many core business issues it is not, in my opinion, a totally rational one, I tend to veer to another approach, some of which is touched on in today's Q&A.

A note to all of you who take the time and trouble to write in to this portion of the Bing website: I read every one of your letters and always marvel at how essentially the same major torments and uncertainties play themselves out in an infinite variety of ways. Each job has its very specific cultural milieu, its own cast of leading and supporting characters, its own pains and gains. Each boss is both the same as every boss and completely different than any others. Thank God. As long as the world stays the way it is, I will never go out of business.

So keep writing. I'll keep thinking about the things that bother you. It's certainly better than obsessing about my own situation all the time.

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