“It’s a man’s world” and “women empowerment”; both statements are mantras formed out of the need to carve a niche for each gender. An attempt at ensuring no one dominates the other.
Tade stood in the doorway, undecided on whether to give them his report or send an email. He had been tossed and pushed around so much, he could not take it anymore. Adel and Sam had bullied him long enough… Adel is such an irony. Outside work, she comes across as a softy, a “mummy’s girl” but her colleagues in the steel industry knew she’s made of something more than steel. Her subordinates revere her and are intrigued by her intellect.
Sam is one of Adel’s colleagues, same grade level, similar responsibilities. Sam is a bull, loud, highly intelligent and does not allow anyone to forget all his contributions to the firm’s success. He prides himself in being the ‘cash-cow’. Adel was the introspective disciplinarian, who expected people to know what to do and when to do it; no babies at work. Sam was the brash, drama king who made a show of everything, he loved the attention.
The boardroom went quiet as the CEO announced the members of the new business project team. Adel and Sam were to be co-project Managers. Junior staff quaked in their boots as they announced the name of the ‘unfortunate team members’. Tade heard his name; it felt like a bad dream, like he was trapped in a trance. ‘Why me?’ The 2 elephants will fight, and ‘poor grass Tade’ would suffer for it. He shook his head in dismay.
True to form, Sam convened the first meeting; spoke a lot, made a lot of sense, but didn’t give room for feedback. Adel sat through the meeting but was eerily quiet and the tension was palpable. Anytime a deliverable went well, Sam was the first to publicly take the credit, this attitude irritated Adel and she took it out on the project team; disregarding the milestone and driving them to work harder.
Guess what happens when a deadline is missed? Sam publicly tongue-lashes the team; while Adel held private ‘warning sessions’ to drive home her point. Tade had been on the receiving end of both and was miserable. He loved his job but hated going to work. When with Sam, he felt bullied, and with Adel, he felt his self-esteem drop through the floor.
Standing in the doorway, waiting to be acknowledged, he knew that he needed wisdom to navigate the ‘land-mines’ in his office. His mentor had some good advice. Learn to separate the person from the job; it’s not always personal. Listen to the aspects that help you improve your performance and let go of the rest. Apply emotional intelligence and be sensitive to situations. Don’t go to Sam when he is upset or you would get a shout-down; only speak with Adel about solutions, not excuses.
Always stay positive, nobody can bring you down except you let them – you are in charge of your happiness – so, do not give anyone the permission to ruin your day. Love God, do your part, help others and stay joyful. Follow peace with all men…and women.