From author of Works Well With Others: An Outsider’s Guide to Shaking Hands, Shutting Up, Handling Jerks, and Other Crucial Skills in Business That No One Ever Teaches You
If you want to really evaluate how you feel about someone, give them the “Two Beers and a Puppy” test.
Both the office and, more broadly, life entail lots of interactions with people you’re not quite sure about. Maybe they’re fun in some settings but not in others; maybe they have moments of brilliant talent mixed with astounding incompetence. When you encounter people like this, McCammon recommends a simple test in which you ask yourself two questions: “Would I have two beers with this person?” and “Would I allow this person to look after my puppy over a weekend?”
“Some people are yes and yes, and those are the best people in your life,” McCammon said. “Hopefully you were raised by people like that. Hopefully those are your friends. And then there’s the no and no people — those are the assholes.” Yes-beer, no-puppy people “are to be cautiously trusted,” he writes in the book, while no-beer, yes-puppy people “are no fun but they make the world a better place — for puppies, especially.” Whatever the results of a given iteration of the “Two beers and a puppy game,” said McCammon, “it’s always revealing” to ask these questions. (post)