The One Thing They Didn't Teach You In School: Why You Need To Be A Kiss Ass

by Jen Ross

Kissing ass is one of the most important things college grads and job seekers need to learn. Fortunately for the majority of our population, you do not need a degree from an Ivy to learn this skill.

Nearly every one of us has the capacity to be a kiss ass and a schmooze, of course except for that small percentage that just can’t give up their stick-it-to-the-man mentality. For starters, if you are a hard ass and you just can’t get over yourself for more than two seconds, then you will struggle in the real world.

Reality check! People like to feel good about themselves! If you put someone else before yourself for just a little bit of time, that person will take care of you. In life, it doesn’t matter if your want to be a teacher in Thailand or an intern at a hedge funds agency, it’s not about what you know, it’s who you know, so pucker up.

If you’re sick of hearing this saying, then it’s time to get over it and face the music. It’s the truth. Thankfully, I have learned to take the “who you know” aspect to the next level. Although you are probably well over school by now, please allow me to teach you a little lesson.

How often do you meet someone that you just don’t like? The two of you just don’t click. In other words, he or she is probably a complete jerk. I know, I’ve been there too.

How many times have you met someone who embodies this jerkish figure who also just happens to have a lot of pull over your future? If you haven’t, then you will, so listen up. People are jerks and they always will be.

There will always be someone above you who will be the reason that you do or do not get the job/promotion/boyfriend etc. Whether it’s your boyfriend’s mother or a networking opportunity, put on your game face and kiss ass like you’ve never kissed one before.

Here’s a trick to getting on someone’s good side: always ask about his or her family. Do your research and know what’s going on. Don’t act like you haven’t already Facebook stalked their entire family tree.

Keep it simple with something like, “Hey Mark, how’s Becky doing? I see she’s working really hard on her music.” Cue the fireworks because you are in. There is nothing someone cares more about than his or her flesh and blood.

If you let them know that you have taken the time to not only ask about them, but to check up on their family…can you say brownie points?

Stay up to date on what is going on in your schmoozie’s life. If he or she has been working hard at the gym, let them know that you see results. If he or she has just published a new article, read it and then make some positive comments.

Maybe he or she is planning a big trip overseas. You should offer to lend them your travel books or recommend your favorite lunch spot. It is up to you to engage with them. They won’t want to know about your life until you let them know that you are interested in theirs.

Kissing ass is basically the same thing as being someone’s b*tch. Offer to get your boss a coffee on your way out the door or go out of your way to pick up their favorite pastry from the shop down the street.

This will let him or her know that while you have taken the time to invest in his/her interests that you are also just a friendly and nice person who enjoys doing nice things for people. Whether you are this person or not, fake it till you freaking make it.

A good schmooze will take you a long way. For us young wonders, we need the older, more experienced gods of the workforce to lend us a helping hand every now and then.

Okay, most of the time we need help. But the good thing is that people are willing to give assistance. We’re awesome, young, hip and fun! People like to have people like us around. However, you need to let people know what you want and when.

If you just sit around and expect good things to come then chances are they won’t. You need to work for what you want and demand it. However, try doing it while treating your superior to lunch. Schmoozing and kissing ass is kind of like dating.

You see, the first few dates may be a little awkward but once you get creative, everyone leaves happy. So treat your future job, internship or promotion like a first date. Butter them up and tell them what you want. Because let’s face it, no one ever said that if you schmooze you’ll lose.

Top Photo Credit: College via Shutterstock