The goal of the CBS show Survivor is to Outwit, Outplay, Outlast. With physical, psychological, and political gamesmanship it can make for entertaining television. However, we’ve seen cases where people apply this mindset to their workplace. This introduces us to another of our installment on sicknesses; the survivor mindset.*
The survivor mindset turns wit and political savvy from helping navigate your environment into an obsession with challenging your coworkers. It is ego masquerading as bettering yourself.
Survivors are committed to winning ‘the game’ through side competitions, tricks or tasks to collect ‘immunity’, and outwitting every other person in the office. Survivor syndrome degrades organizational and personal morale through breeding mistrust. The survivor mindset directs energy to:
- Endurance competitions like who gets the last/longest word at a meeting
- Shows of strength like where one sees who can push responsibility the furthest from themselves
- Immunity trials where extraneous tasks and personal favors are used to win over leadership and excuse future poor performance
Be careful that your ambition doesn’t become the kind that drives you to the survivor sickness. Not only does it degrade morale, it robs you. It robs you of the opportunity to relate with your coworkers as colleagues and friends.