The Three Kinds of People at Work. Which one are you?

175: The Three Kinds of People at Work. Which one are you? [Podcast]

by | May 12, 2020 | 2 comments

There are only three kinds of people at work. I am not talking about the normal grouping of the three kinds of people you might have heard of before:

  1. Those that make things happen.
  2. Those that watch what happens.
  3. Those who wonder what happened.

(By the way, I might add a fourth – those who have no idea anything happened. But that is not my point today.)

But, I have noticed that we can divide three kinds of people in another way  – how they think, and what they have been taught to do.

These three kinds of people are:

  1. Victims
  3. Leaders

I have found, and you have likely noticed yourself, that these three groups dominate the economy, politics, and certainly the workplace. Let’s focus now at work.

So today, we are continuing our discussion of the Company of One concept (from episode 174), but taking a moment to deal with MINDSET – something so critical to becoming a profitable Company of One.

What are you? A victim? A follower? Or a leader?

The Three Kinds of People at Work


Always applying for government help, suing people, squeezing others. They think they deserve what they demand. They are entitled.


They are owed something. Maybe because of race, religion, sex, disability, or so many more reasons. Basically, they believe they deserve things. May be free food and home, or that their college degree entitles them to more money.


They can never win. Not saying they will not get some wins, but by definition, nobody can ever do enough for them. Governments, companies, employers, etc. will always let them down. They deserve more and demand it, but the demand will never be fully satisfied.


They follow the formula. Rule followers -> Do what the school and university say. Cube job and retire. Hard workers. They are fooled into thinking the formula works. Basically, the average middle class. Security matters. Want to know they are taken care of – but they do not realize it is false security. You can find these in every place, and often they can be counted on to deliver.


  • They believe the old axioms – hard work leads to success. But since they miss other parts of the formula, they believe hard work alone does the trick.
  • They think their work speaks for itself, and they should not bother showing anyone what they did or how.
  • They are often suspicious of others – holding tight to their methods and skills since this is what they think offers job security.
  • Work hard, do the right thing, and you will be rewarded. Usually, this model translates to get a good education (meaning formal k-12, then college) getting a great job and working long hours.


In their gut, they know it does not work. They may have believed it at one point, but at some time in their life, they look around and realize something is wrong. The best person does not get the promotion. The hardest worker can become punished. The person who is “dumber” and does not appear to work that hard receives the rewards.


Taking control, making it happen, not waiting for permission. Freedom is of high value. Freedom to serve others and do what they want. Leaders tend to lead no matter what. Even when they are not in charge, if they see a problem, they solve it. They will even take the lead when there is a leadership void at levels above them. 


  • Anything is possible.
  • They believe they can.
  • They believe that there will always be resistance, and that is to be expected – maybe even enjoyed.
  • The game is fun.
  • Money is often not the goal, but just a measure of success in the game.


The system thinker and the victims are a frustration to leaders. Both groups slow things down and inhibit progress. Even then, the leader often tries to bring the others along – and sometimes finds more frustration because he or she realizes you cannot help some people.

Which of the Three Kinds of People are You?

You can tell a lot about which you are by the way you think- the beliefs you have. Look over the beliefs and the frustrations. Where do you land most of the time?

If you find you are spending too much of your time as a victim or a follower, then getting clear about how you are a Company of One and how you are in fact in control will help you see things more clearly and move the level of a leader.

If you prefer to stay a victim to a follower – God bless you – but you will likely not find this podcast of help.

Click here to listen now.

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Dale Callahan

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  1. Andre Swain

    Awesome article. Thank you for sharing

  2. Dale Callahan

    Thanks Andre. Good to hear from you!

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