Tag Archives: Miss Jean Brodie

Are you a team player? I hope not!!

I’ve just been turned down from a rather dubious sounding blogsite for saying I wouldn’t be a team player.

Too right. Team leader, not player!

The comment was made regarding Facebook which you know by now I take issue with – and Twitter. I am however a MySpace girl… and of course I use the internet for other things, such as this blog. (See https://elspethr.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/erosions/; https://elspethr.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/why-i-left-twitter)

Doesn’t “team player” reek of social control, of lack of individual and independence? Miss Jean Brodie was against team spirit, though ironically what she cooked up was a posse that looked to her but not to each other.

It is not that working together is bad, although I prefer small groups in almost all interactions. But I respect that some people enjoy groups. It is not about… I was about to use “co-operation” but that word has bad connotations too. Co-operation as in the Cooperative movement of an organisation owned by a workforce and its customers without hierarchy. Cooperation can have the friendly tone of working with someone, a thank you for reasonableness and having stretched yourself a bit to help. But cooperation has a corporate legal, military feel: your cooperation is expected. If you do not there will be unpleasant consequences. It speaks of large machines crushing the small cogs that won’t comply and who have little thought for the cogs.

That’s why if I see a job description with “Team player” I know to stop the application. It’s not because I don’t like working with others or am incapable of the the consideration and communication needed – quite the reverse. But in using the phrase, it speaks to me about the company’s ethos and sends out a warning alarm.

Although perhaps it will be no great surprise to learn I am mostly self employed.

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