Pay Chex

What does your contribution to the office potluck say about you?

Ever see a co-worker load up entirely on desserts? Closet paranoid schizophrenia or anxiety disorders.

Potlucks have been around for thousands of years, and the psychological strata never changes. When they were passing around the sign-up sheet for the Last Supper, who do you think said, "Yeah, put me down for the plates and goblets"? You guessed it -- Judas. It was John and Peter who brought the good stuff, the stuff that got eaten first.

Think carefully when you make your commitment next year. A bag of tortilla chips and a jar of salsa could be your one-way ticket to the mail room with a red flag on your personnel folder. Make an investment in your future and wow them with something fancy. In the corporate world, you always need to watch your back. When you walk into that holiday potluck next year, be the one whose dish elicits oohs and aahs. Let them pounce on it, fighting over who gets the last serving. You will triumph, your reputation will be made, and you could be on your way to that corner office with the window.

John Roark is a freelance writer and marketing manager who recently forfeited his office with a window to an intern whose specialty is nine-layer dip.

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