Lesser Remembered Supervisors
This hub is a brief one which I intend updating from time to time because aren't there quite a few "Lesser Remembered Supervisors" at some point in our work-lives when we just wanted to let go of the job if it meant freedom from a higher-up that kept picking on their subordinates.
Anyway, I must say that from my experience, our frustrations end after we have moved on. But to get closure I always move on in good spirits with an intention to remain loyal to our previous associates for we must understand that a human being can never survive with a scowl, or ulterior motives against ones counter-parts, or unrealistic insecurities for their whole life. I believe one day they themselves walk into their pit. I have seen this happening in several instances in my profession when most of them were responsible for their own career demise.
However, I am proud to say that I am in touch with all my previous employers (who were never my direct supervisors who were the ones one may want to forget) till today with all of whom I have parted ways as a full-timer only in good rapport and still work with most as consultant. In fact in the spirit of professionalism, nobody is your enemy at work, even the person who had tried to stab you from behind. I would say rather than get in the way of a bad guy move out of the way and try some Tai Chi ;o) This could be the only way to deal with tough people who does not want to have normal work days. There will be a day you will not feel so bitter of being treated so badly, that you would be able to face the very person who gave you a hard time because of our maturity. This happened to me without much fuss when an ex-supervisor emailed me a very chirpy "Hey How are you?" Clearly the person was trying to reach out to say " I am sorry". Even if not, it is healthy for ourselves to let go of our bitterness and relax and not allow the past or some person long gone and miles away somewhere get the better of you.
However, I know that all of you would agree when I say that you have seen a scapegoat in every work tenure of yours much like those I have listed below who seemed as if they were appointed especially to make your work-life more stressful. Please do come back and check this space as the list is likely to increase as I add many more. This is mainly to educate as to how to deal with tricky situations at the work place.
As for myself it was a very spicy experience because it only called for conducting my everyday with more creativity. I actually pre-planned every single day to use different methods to stay patient whenever encountered by these situations and look at what good could I take away from it so I don't lose out my better part. My wise brother always reminded me that there is a solution for any problem.
Do you remember those days when you have had to toil under a cruel supervisor who picks on you for nothing? It is still a mystery to me why they do that. Why would they want to be hated and cursed? There is so much that comes back with a smile and a few good words than a scowl and some unwarranted rude remarks.
A top brass tactic?
Over the years I grew to realize that some (so-called) great businessmen adopt the notorious method of leadership like the great colonialists of the past century. The method of "divide and rule". Perhaps they searched far and wide for that manager who adopts this. So much so as to place ads to imply "Wanted Office B*#ch". (Sorry for the french) who's job is to split their subordinates and turn them against each other so they would be so divided in opinions that as a group there is no possibility to question the leader. So to say "The Devil Wears Prada" kind of bossy character?
I had the blessing of going through a couple of years under such a leadership. It was a lesson which business school did not teach me. This train of thought brought me up to sketch the above sketch.
Ugh! An ugly life lesson indeed, nevertheless! I have never bad-mouthed these people because my constant conclusion was that there was more to that kind of dysfunctional behavior than the person they are abusing. But yet it's very important we always address the situation as assertively as possible, never aggressive, for it is not worth for these situations to control us any other time. So perhaps I am seeking some closure by writing this article while educating newbies to be aware that these things are bound to happen to them too as part and parcel of working with individuals coming from diverse backgrounds. There is absolutely no escape but to confront it.
A Branch Manager who turned into a rice vendor
There was once a branch manager (a self-proclaimed one?!). My ex-colleagues would agree. Who was so nasty that he used the whole branch to his advantage. He claimed he went to only third grade and was so proud that in spite of that he made it real big. This I guess got into his head so much that he actually used third grade tactics which of course he did not get that. He would not share his knowledge by implying that "Well I made it through the grind with great difficulty and I don't wish for my subordinates to get it all so easy". So that was his reason to get to his staff. He did it so well that the CEO did not realize that he had swindled millions until he actually left the building for good, one day with those boxes of currencies.
Today he is ripped off all his stolen luxury and now sits impovershed amidst sacks of rice in a grocery store. His bags of jewels have turned awry. Thanks to his then best buddies who never bought into his stolen millions to do business.
I can't comprehend the fact how once a top film editor in a large growing country could have walked into his own demise.
The CEO thought that was his cool tactic to just sit on the problem by ignoring the aggravations of the employees below his hierarchy. Keeping him at the highest ranks even though several clients turned away.
Today he too is not doing well either because he's probably pricked by his own conscience of allowing hundreds of talents suffer because of his neglect.
Demoted after a decade
Yet another supervisor! Felt very threatened when his subordinates worked so hard and stayed after work to complete their deadlines. The more they did that the more he came back with unimaginable ways to get at his team.
This mishandling of him went on for years and years while the department saw valuable talents drop off and leave the department one by one much to the pleasure of the supervisor but causing a lot of losses for the employer.
By the time the employer made a stance it had lost all of its best staff and today the supervisor still works with his title stripped off finally after almost a decade. But the irrecoverable damage has already been made. Little may he realise that the employer has kept him still in the rolls because he has a family to fend for.
Very mysterious in today's times for an employer to be so considerate but it is true. I really hope the beneficiary of this favor realizes it.
Remains at large :o)
Yet another example of an individual who very seamlessly makes nothing but trouble for his team and his employer.
He appeared to work as an all-rounder giving his 2 cents in every issue in the office. He behaves like a Jack of all trades....truely I saw he was a master of none but was out to jeopardise everything very silently but obviously.
He would delete useful project files, would make a hardware disfunctional with his hardware skills, download copyright material, spy on fellow colleagues, spy for unwarranted business information, spend office cash inappropriately, trying obviously to jeopardise business relations and still manages to be kept in the rolls. Such a great mystery but is a true story.
As a conclusion I must re-iterate that from my experience, I have only grown to have more friends in colleagues and have realized that everything and everyone would reach a point of compromise for their own survival. I am sure the rice seller today is counting on selling one more sack to make his day for that tiny pleasure of survival for that day.
The magic is to shake hands and leave any abusive individual in peace and leave them to deal with their own problem by making them see how positively it was reciprocated and hoping that they would someday turn a new leaf as again if not they will be breaking down the systemic needs of the survival of a species who needs to thrive together.