Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
WORK-LIFE BALANCE / JUL. 12, 2015
version 5, draft 5

Just Act Smarter, You'll Be Fine

act smart
House Bunny

I’m sure you’ve heard the age old adage “fake it till you make it”. Can you truly fake your way to the top though, and how would you go about it? Do you use big words you don’t know what they mean? Do you incorrectly quote literature of (assumedly) dead Englishmen? Well, let’s dive in and see what it takes to fake being – what’s the word? When you know a lot of stuff? You know, when you’re all educated?

See Also: How to Navigate the Corporate Cubicle Farm

The benefits (and dangers) of faking it

When three quarters of the dating population says that they’d take brains over beauty, feigning being smart might even help you make more (admittedly) dumb clones of yourself. Let me explain because I noticed every time you put a thumb to your chin and shake your head in agreement, it means you’re confused. I’ll do it slowly, too: IT… WILL… HELP… YOU… HAVE… SEX. Oh, good grief. Sex is when you put your peepee in someone’s who-ha… yes, I know you like that, “much a lot”.

Furthermore, acting smart while not being smart at all is also known as cockiness or confidence, and guess how being confident affects people you’re interacting with? OK, that was rhetorical – stop guessing. Confidence makes other people perceive you as more capable and more knowledgeable, even though you might not know jack shit about what you’re talking about.

Actually, smart people do the opposite

Generally, intelligent people will “dumb it down,” not so that they can be understood but as a strategy. If you act knowledgeable and highly capable in your field, you constitute a threat to the people above you. People above you generally have more power than you (one of the most obvious benefits of being above someone in a hierarchy) and they will try to inhibit your progress in the fear that you will take their position. You also get it from the people below you or even from your peers because most people go after the top dog, either to prove their worth or to achieve a higher status. So, you’re getting it from above and below… DUDE! Stop laughing, there wasn’t anything even remotely sexual about that previous sentence – do you even know how anatomy works? Above and below doesn’t work… Actually, you know what? I can kind of see it a little…

Back to faking

So to fake effectively, you definitely have to be confident. Secondly, you have to be loud and boisterous, because how else would you camouflage your intellectual deficiencies than by being as loud as possible? Make sure that you overinflate your credentials or mention them as often as possible to reinforce and lend unjustified credibility to any of your arguments. Allow me to illustrate with an example: say you worked as a cashier for the summer during high school. Those mere three months of working as a cashier can become “experience in the service industry,” thus making you an expert in the field if presented with enough gravitas.

People follow confidence

Even if the confidence is uncalled for, being overly confident can influence people that are unsure of themselves (because that’s what smart people actually do). This will set up the groundwork to prove yourself as a leader if you’re able to sell yourself hard enough. That’s basically what a salesman does: he inflates the value of his product to convince the consumer of his product’s essential value. You are basically a used car salesman of yourself. You even have the cheap suit and greasy hairdo to prove it.

Your credentials and beyond

The aforementioned influence will ultimately allow you to get positions and jobs way beyond what your credentials would normally allow. Being a supervisor to a team of thirty very capable, talented people when you can barely manage your own workload? No problem – just make the smartest one of the crowd your assistant. If they try to supersede you, just knock ‘em down a few notches, maybe even make them doubt their capabilities a bit, and you should be golden! Just do everything you do with confidence, even if it’s stupid.

Scream your way to a win

A surefire way to seem smart is to win all arguments. When you can’t intellectually conquer the person on the other side of an argument, just raise your voice and become more argumentative. Then escalate to being combative. Use threats of personal injury liberally. With hard work, everyone will eventually stop talking to you completely because you’re “that” guy/girl. Come on, as if you don’t have that one person at work that no one bothers interacting with because he/she is so argumentative and pigheaded it isn’t worth their breath. If you’re not being argued with, you’re not losing any arguments.

Agro smart people

Agro is the abbreviated form of “aggressive.” An agro smart person is someone who spins an insult with a compliment. This is also known as passive aggressive behavior. Choose any one of these gems and you should come out smelling like roses, even though you’ve just slung two tons of shade. Here are some staples of agro smart people:

You are sooo smart considering [choose one of the following options]: your educational level, your upbringing/the place you grew up, the school you went to, or how poor you were.

Pariah or genius

So, eventually through throwing people under the bus, being cocky, combative and aggressive, your co-workers will barely give you the time of day, which is genius. The less people you have to deal with, the better. You’ll have less drama, fewer arguments, and less people talking about you behind your back. Actually, being a complete unapologetic prick will most probably have everyone talking behind your back but, honestly, you couldn’t give a bigger shit.

See Also: 6 Creative Sick Day Excuses

Do you know of any other strategies you can use to fake being smart? Of course you don’t, you’re only faking it. Let’s see if any smart people read this… Smart people? Let me know how you would fake being smart if you weren’t smart… which you are, because you’re going to leave a comment.

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