Don’t know the acronym?  I’m betting you’ve used the phrase at some point in your life during a vent.  I don’t think I’ve used it when talking to the person I want to say it to, but generally when describing the conversation later or simply rehashing it in my own mind.  For example – Co-worker is assigned to take notes at a meeting.   Teleworks for two days after meeting to type up the notes with fewer distractions.  Still no notes the following week.  When asked about it, coworker tells you they couldn’t decide whether to include something or not.  Mental response – “RUFKM!”

My point is we all have those things that others do that annoy us and we all do things that annoy others.  But there are things we can do to make sure that our co-workers aren’t saying RUFKM about us.

1.  Deliver on promises.  The biggest and often hardest part of this one for people is not making promises that are beyond their power to keep.  As a supervisor, don’t promise things, especially raises or promotions, if someone else makes the final decision.  You can promise to fight for someone/something but be aware of your span of control.  As an employee, you can understand your workload and abilities/limitations and negotiate deadlines accordingly.

2.  Communicate.  Bad news doesn’t get better with time.  If you have to break a promise, let folks know sooner rather than later and explain why.  If something comes up that affects your ability to deliver, tell people.  There’s another acceptable solution out there that you might not have thought of yet.

3.  Bring solutions, not just problems.  If a problem arises, don’t just complain about it.  Raise the issue to the the appropriate people (and through the appropriate people depending on the politics in your office).  But bring solutions with the problem.  Here’s the issue, here’s some ways we might resolve it and of these ways, here’s what I recommend and why.  There might be reasons for doing things a certain way that you’re unaware of – history, politics, etc.  There might be other options available that you are unaware of, but bringing solutions to the table with the problem shows your commitment to making the organization a better or more efficient place.

4.  Apologize when you’ve been an idiot.  Sometimes recognizing that we pushed someone else’s buttons and letting them know we realized it later is the best we can do.

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Rachel Niebeling

I love this Pattie! We all do things that ar annoying to others… It’s good to have a reminder that we need to check ourselves with some good old self reflection!