My experience in obtaining the CA (SA) qualification has taught me one thing about life:
“Nothing worth having really comes easy”
Now, I don’t want to delve into the soppy sad details about my journey to becoming a CA, but I do want to share about one that I am currently experiencing - and have, often times encountered in the corporate space: politics, back-stabbing, sabotage - whatever you want to call it….I am speaking on this, because today is one of I encountered this yet again...
Truth is, when I started this blog – I just thought “I already post so many pictures and share about my life and I love fashion and inspiring people – it will be a piece of cake”. Well I tell ya – nothing could be further from the truth! And yes, I am a CA, boo-hoo, I shouldn’t be pining over my blog like this, I should probably woman-up and adult instead of being touched about an experience of my blog. But allow me to be in my emotions for just a few words please.
Today I find myself upset because in 5 months since I started this blog (mind you, I have had this idea for years now but only acted on it now) every door I knock on mostly ignores me or (WOW) when they do respond – it’s just to reject my proposal! So I decided to approach one other blogger to enquire on a feature she did, that I also am interested in doing, but from a completely different angle to hers. Long story short – she replied (much to my excitement!) but only to be vague and evasive and not share any information at all…Why are so many women like this though?! This incident led me to think back on times I encountered office politics, what I learnt from them and what were successful ways in dealing with them.
Guys – I literally have stories for daysssssssssssssssss!! Like the time when I had just started a new role and my white counterpart told me that I was in my role because of my race (in very pleasing but presumptuous fashion!). Forgetting that I too, had to undergone the very same rigorous interview process with a panel I have never met before just as she did to get the role. Or the time where I had an idea to improve efficiencies on a project and my senior presented the ideas to the partner in our weekly team meeting before I could even get a word in - as if he came up with it all on his own. Not to mention the countless incidents of attempted sabotage and the horror and embarrassment that almost came with it in corporate.
My experiences have led me to come up with a strategy to execute if ever you find yourself in this situation:
Friend or foe – identify. In my experience – the person who acts very “nice” is usually the one filled with so much envy that she is secretly plotting your career demise. I’m not saying be sceptical of everyone, but just trust your gut – if it feels “off” then it most probably is off!
Be strategic in your thinking. Once your gut has identified “something’s off” about this person – don’t divulge much about yourself to them, don’t hang out too much - basically don’t give them any ammo. Also, keep your work at bay. These corporate hoes will use anything against you I tell you!
Always be a queen J Be nice, smile, get along with everybody else – it literally costs you nothing. Build good relationships with those around you because if that person ends up turning on you – well guess who will look like the crazy one…
I once went through an experience where someone would always drop ugly under-handed comments “as a joke” when I least expected it so I never responded for a while…Until I started seeing a pattern. Keep record of the incidents. Pin point exactly what happened when and be alert
If you are a confrontational person (like me) – then be very calm and confront the situation. Don’t yell, throw accusations, throw a scene in front of others etc. Maintain respect. Call them for a coffee, bring your list of “incidents” and tell them what you felt was wrong about it and how you don’t appreciate it. This person will then realise that you will not be bullied. If you’re not confrontational – eh, good luck living with looking over your shoulder LOL
If the back-stabber happens to be your superior who ultimately signs that bonus cheque and has the power to advance (or block) your career and you have tried all of the above (kudos to you for being brave btw!) but still have come to no resolve – woman - RUN!! GET OUT (in my next blog post…)