I've recently returned to Conglomo America after 13 yrs; a few in a different industry and 10 self employed (web development). I'm used to working at my own pace which was probably 12-16 hr days 4-6 days a week (I enjoyed it).
I had forgotten how much I can't stand the basic corporate atmosphere... the backbiting, he-said/she-said, idiot managers/officers, "that manager sucks", "this guy is a moron", "that chick is hot" bla bla bla. I even took a position that is well beneath my knowledge simply in the hopes that i wouldn't have to deal with the foibles of other managers/leads. (It's a bonus that I don't have a laptop and phone where I'm at someone's 24h beck and call.) I don't mind people, but I don't like dealing with peoples irrelevant crap (see the "get to the point" post for a perfect example).
In other words, I'm kind of an asshole. But I don't want to be an asshole. Because as much as I dislike the atmosphere in general, the atmosphere has people in it. I don't want to lump the people, the individuals into the bucket of "you just work here" because then I'll probably just be an asshole. And that will make the work that much harder to get done if my coworkers just don't want to be around me.
Back before I changed industries (used to just be in IT) I used to play the game every day. But not only have I forgotten how to do it, the atmosphere seems to have changed in ways that I can't quite wrap my head around.
So I need some help with:
How do I work with the people but then get the heck away when they start into the cliquey talky crap? I've been busted a couple times rolling my eyes and walking away, but that's asshole.
How the hell do I make it thru the day without staring at the clock and talking myself thru it "cmon man you can make it... there's a bottle with your name on it when you get home." I'm seriously out of the habit of punching a clock.
As a pretty direct person in general, how do I not come off as just a gruff asshole?
BTW, I'm not concerned about people liking me, I just don't want to be an asshole. If I were an Android App, I'd not be concerned about getting 5 star reviews, I just don't want 1s. Working here is tuff enuf as it is, I don't want peoples opinions of me making it even harder.
(FYI, I had a small handful of regular clients and they all dried up almost all at once all for different reasons. And then my savings ran out before I could catch up.)