I've been fortunate to have had some incredible mentors in my life, and with them the ability to sit in on and be surrounded by people that far exceed my current skill level. I seek these situations out because I know that the most effective way to grow is to play with and against people that are more skilled than you.
I hate to be slavish to rules. When I interview, there's this spidey sense that goes off when things don't seem right. I get lots of attempts at "bait and switch" where subvendors will submit a candidate who will phone screen (under the name of another person), then they'll send that "B-player" in for the assignment. So, you listen. But that's a separate issue.