UK: BACKBITE - DISCOVERING THE WOMAN IN YOU - MANAGEMENT METHODS. - OK, you're successful - your wallet vouches for that - but is your life lacking a certain spark? Sexual stereotypes are the basis of a stimulating management method, David Morton-style.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

OK, you're successful - your wallet vouches for that - but is your life lacking a certain spark? Sexual stereotypes are the basis of a stimulating management method, David Morton-style.

Editor's note. Please read this note carefully. Readers should seek independent legal, financial and medical advice and discuss their circumstances with a member of their family, a fully-trained counsellor or a bar-tender before attempting any of the exercises described below.

The editor does not vouch for the worth, benefits or efficacy of any of the management solutions in this article and cannot accept responsibility for any injury to limb or income caused by following any advice that may appear to have been given.

Any similarity between descriptions in this article and actual people or real life is entirely coincidental. Smoking can damage your health and lead to complications in restaurants - especially in the US. You have been warned. You only have yourself to blame. Go for it.

To gain maximum benefit from this month's Backbite you should first find a restful place in your work environment. Remember to loosen any tight clothing before commencing the exercise and if you suffer from any discomfort, shortness of breath or narrowness of mind stop thinking immediately and seek professional help.

Our first exercise is designed to take you back in time. First, try to remember what you bought with your first pocket-money. Sweets or a comic? A Dinky car or Sindy doll accessories? What shop would it have been in? Did you get change? Were you able to reach the counter? OK now fast-forward with the old personal-life video and freeze-frame on your first romantic kiss. Where was it? How was it? Did you brush your teeth beforehand?

So far so good. Now for the tricky bit. Close your eyes again and try to visualise your first CV. If everything initially seems blank do not panic - just try to think how you first filled in that vast empty white sheet of A4. Double spacing for the A levels, lists of sports teams and debating societies, a couple of bogus holiday jobs all padded out in a desperate promise that here was someone with real get-up-and-go.

Now open your eyes and take a peek at your current CV. Tons of absolutely relevant, hard-edged experience, of course, but you notice how it seems to be lacking something. What happened to the promise, the limitless potential, the get-up-and-go? Somewhere over the years they all seem to have got up and gone.

In truth have you become a bored boss who has only succeeded in swopping experience for indifference? There you are with a salary that could strip a corner shop of Smarties, a kissing technique that Antony and Cleopatra would die for and an unrivalled knowledge of buffer stock delivery in a just-in-time environment - and suddenly it's just not exciting any more.

Which brings us to the second exercise. Close your eyes one final time and try to visualise what happened when you were last lost on a driving trip or visiting a foreign city? What did you do to find your way?

Did you frown and stare fixedly at a map? Did you try holding the map upside down to align it with the direction you thought you were moving? Did you frequently repeat the mantra 'well if that was that road then we should be about here but we haven't passed the Post Office that's marked there, have we?' Or did you wind down the windscreen, producing a charming helpless smile and throw yourself on information provided by the friendly natives - all of whom proved to be lost tourists themselves apart from an apparently deranged local.

The first of these responses is known as male self-sufficiency syndrome, or MS3 for short, and, as you might expect, it is usually displayed by men who believe they can read maps on the strength of a Geography O level. The second response know as HLM, or Helpless Little Me, is more frequently displayed by women who found men very helpful to them when they were teenagers and are determined to keep the tradition going.

Now there is a great danger that over the years you have restricted your management style to just one of these techniques, and have become exclusively MS3 or entirely HLM. No wonder, therefore, that the excitement has gone our of your life.

To put the promise and potential back into your existence requires nothing more than a simple sex change from MS3 to HLM or vice versa as appropriate.

Which brings us to the final exercises, the first of which is for MS3s changing to HLMs. Try looking adoringly upward with just a little hint of vulnerability and say, 'Could you help fix this for me?' And when you say 'you' say it as if you're talking to the strongest, cleverest person in the world; when you say 'fix' say it as if you're not quite certain what the process involves but it sounds jolly complex; and when you say the word 'me' make it sound like a ridiculous joke.

In contrast, for HLMs wishing to become MS3s, you must frown and, without actually saying out loud 'I don't need help from anybody - I'm quite capable of working it out with the application of a bit of logic', you must sigh in silent exasperation.

Well, I think that should be enough for one session. Now go ahead and surprise your colleagues with the new you - and who knows, you might just surprise yourself, too.

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