Learn to take (and give) shit
Someone recently asked me for some non-generic career advice. My advice was to learn take and give shit. Beyond the fundamentals, nothings served me better than some friendly shit-giving.
Frankly, this skill goes beyond work (it’s a life skill). I consider good friends to be people that I can make fun of and who can make fun of me without feelings getting hurt and offense being taken.
When I think of this skill, I immediately think of a scene from Gran Torino
At one point after I had been working for my current employer for a while, my boss’s boss came by to ask me to go to something with him. We’d had a little bit of a back and forth before then. On the way, he told me I was too young to be going to this particular meeting. I said something like I’m getting older faster than you’re getting thinner. He told me I was an asshole and then he brought me everywhere he went.
Obviously, given modern taboos, this sort of relationship is only possible between people of the same sex, race, sexual orientation, etc. No one ever seems to discuss the fact that the threat of lawsuits means you can’t really ever get too close with some of your co-workers.