Asking For a Friend | Chapter 34
Advice from Babe to Babe
This week the BWH team took on new roles as Advice Gurus, and chimed in to help you with all those awkward work ordeals: when your coworkers are rude AF, what to do when your interviewer asks about your side hustle, and what to look for in a potential boss. Read up– and don’t forget to ask your questions at the bottom of the page!
It depends how much you value the relationship. If this is something you’ll lose sleep over, I would reach out (maybe for coffee or lunch so the conversation doesn’t occur in the office) and ask her about her behavior and express how it’s making you feel so you can both have a better understanding and, hopefully, end on good terms. If you don’t think the relationship will last, I say kill her with kindness and move on. A true friend (and a good coworker) has your best interest at heart and should be your cheerleader. If not, ditch them. It doesn’t make you a bad person, it just means you choose to give your energy to the things that serve you, not bring you down.
Take the high road, kill ‘em with kindness and, well, you know the drill. This person is not behaving maturely, and if you don’t reciprocate it, they’re bound to realize their mistakes.
Try your damndest not to take it personally—and definitely don’t let it affect your presence or the quality of your work at the office. More often than not, this type of behavior is a reflection or projection of the stuff they’re dealing with internally. Be kind and cordial, but keep your head down, do good work and let it run its course. If it doesn’t—that sucks, but it’s ultimately not something you can control.
Really ask yourself: How is it going to improve your transition if you talk to her? (Answer: it probably won’t.) Your current boss (and her recommendation) is what’s most important. You’re at work to work, not to make friends, and one person being resentful, jealous or just plain rude does not a “bad note” make.
I always wait to feel it out, because each industry and company culture is different. It also depends on whether or not you’re planning to leave your current job prospect to pursue the side hustle full-time or if it’s a supplemental bonus that you plan to keep that way. More often than not, I would say yes. I think being honest upfront is beneficial, because it puts you and your employer on the same page and alleviates any unnecessary stress that comes with wondering, “Will they find out and be angry with me?” Also, I think it can differentiate you as well as showcase your ability to work hard and manage multiple projects at once. And who knows, maybe your coworkers would be interested in your side hustle and become your supporters/clients!
I don’t believe you need to mention it right away, unless you know it will interfere with the time you could dedicate to this potential new job. It’s important to prioritize what will help you reach your professional goals and make sure to carve out time for that. Ultimately, if a job is the right fit for you, you’ll have time for your side hustle also. You shouldn’t have to give away specific details about your side hustle either, so make sure to reveal what you wish to on your own time. Above all, remember to balance your roles so your responsibilities at your day job are not affected by your side hustle, because that could lead to larger problems.
I say, include your side hustle on your resume (because it deserves to be shown off!), and be prepared to answer questions about it. Your employers will want to know that you have the time and energy to give 100 percent to your prospective role, and they’ll wonder how a side hustle will come into play. Consider all of the questions they might ask about the time, work, etc., that your side hustle demands of you. A side hustle can be a phenomenal asset, helping us make more money, develop our skill sets and network in our communities. Emphasize those pros and be ready to answer an interviewer’s biggest side-hustle question: Does this side hustle mean eventually you want to run your own business and is your main goal to leave the company? (I have sweaty palms just from writing this—good luck!).
If your side hustle is relevant and one where you’re learning skills that will enrich your performance at your full-time job, consider it. If there’s any possibility your interviewer could perceive that your side hustle will be a distraction to your job—well, if you have to ask, you probably already know the answer.
I think it’s important to first realize that a job does need some boundaries, and your boss doesn’t have to be your best friend. If you put too much focus on the personal relationship, it might get in the way of your work. Great work relationships also take time to build, so remember going in that your first impressions might be blind. Be aware of the potential positive or negative qualities that might reveal themselves over time.
That being said—I believe the most important quality to look for in a boss is someone to learn from. They should be able to critique you and push you to put your best work forward, but you should also feel comfortable asking questions. Ultimately, make sure your new boss will be someone that holds you accountable, and you’ll be off to a great start.
The people you work with, especially your boss, play an immense role in your workplace happiness. It’s so important to remember that during interviews. You’re vetting them just as much as they are you. For me, a good boss or mentor is: knowledgeable (and willing to share this knowledge), empathetic, collaborative, patient, supportive and reliable. Oftentimes, your gut instinct will tell you whether or not a person aligns with your values, but asking questions is always a good thing:
How would you describe your leadership style? How has it contributed to the success of your team?
What aspect of your company culture do you value most? How collaborative is your team—and the rest of the company—on a day-to-day basis?
What is your approach to creating and fostering relationships within your business?
How do you remain motivated and enthusiastic in your work when faced with naysayers or negativity?
What’s been your biggest career milestone to date (and why)?
Maybe consider, instead, what type of person you do not want to work for. It’s true what they say, that people don’t leave a job, they leave a manager. Over time (and with experience) you learn to spot the signs of a bad boss. Let those red flags be a warning that drives you out of the interview and in a totally different direction.
Until Next Week,
—THE BWH ADVICE GURUS
Asking for a Friend is Babes Who Hustle's weekly advice column that asks and answers the work-related questions on all of our minds. Looking for advice and guidance? Hit us with all of your questions below and stay tuned for next Wednesday's edition!