The Misanthropic Dev: A Tonic for Toxic Positivity

If you believe hard work will get you rewarded and things will just sort of work out, James Hollingshead β€” The Misanthropic Developer β€” begs to differ. You need to make yourself visible, and this is not about being humble:

“It’s not bragging to make sure that people know what you’re accomplishing. It’s actually just another form of marketing and advocacy.”

“I joke that I’m a misanthrope, but the truth is that I hate seeing people being abused and work to prevent that from happening.”

β€”The Misanthropic Developer

James offers suggestions on how to be “visible” both inside and outside your company. Be social, update your blog, but especially if you're a manager put a spotlight on your people and their accomplishments:

Leading a team that does good work makes you look AMAZING to most reasonable management chains. It shows that you can effectively lead, delegate, and inspire. That sort of performance can lead to promotions.

In another insightful post, James explains the value of having a “Designated Jerk” on your team. If you need an antidote to toxic positivity, this is a good place to find a few.

Have you found greater benefits or costs in being assertive in your workplace?

It would be risky for a non-senior or underrepresented person to play the “jerk,” but it might be an awesome form of allyship for those people. And they're the ones who may need to be more visible to advance their careers, but there are risks in that too. How have you navigated these issues? Tell us in the comments β€” or blog with us! πŸ€™

Cool find, David! The Misanthropic Dev is new to me. Definitely suits my personality and tendencies much of the time. There is some valuable insight and some good reminders a lot of us need to hear in James' blog. I love how he describes himself most of all.

β€” Dan Knauss

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