Friday, August 16, 2013

Is Your Current Job Demeaning Your Intellect and Self-respect? Yes? Then You Got to Go

All working professionals should ask this question to themselves as part of the quarterly self-review of their career. Asking this question confirms that one indeed is on the right track and with the right organization.

The sharpness of competencies and experience that one has picked on the way while moving along one’s career can get blunted if one works with the wrong organization for more than the tolerable span of time. Interestingly, an organization which is wrong for someone can be the right for someone else. In addition, an organization which is right when one joins it might become wrong at a later point in time. The quarterly self-review is a good method to determine this.

The association of a professional with an organization depends on the career aspirations and objectives of the professional vis-à-vis the organization’s ability to help that professional achieve those. Certain organizations especially with a father figure leading a founding team of loyalists and lifers may be exception to this rule. In such organizations the loyalists and lifers work like a slave to the father figure and the father figure is a like a corporate king.

The loyalists and lifers will not move out even if the job they do is demeaning to their intellect and self-respect due to following reasons:
  • They will not get another job outside as they won’t be able to demonstrate that they can survive elsewhere. Even if they manage to move on they will come back in no time when they realize loyalists and lifers can’t survive in a true professional set-up.
  • They would form a closely associated coterie which has mutual admiration for each other due to the loyalty for the father figure but their performance and competencies might be extremely low. However, for some reason they will naively assume all the loyalists and lifers together have great brain power.
  • They will have created a comfort zone and become frogs in a well and hence lost the ability to accept new and differing ideas. The father figure would leave the pack of loyalists and lifers by showing reluctance to even hear about new ideas. As per them, things can be done only their way.
Professionals who are unfortunate to be a part of such organization would realize to their dissatisfaction that such organizations are non-professional at the core, believe in loyalty over performance, promote coterie culture, not allow new ideas to come in and artificially sustain the hegemony of the father figure and the old boys club.
True professionals in such organizations, which definition strictly excludes the father figure and the pack of loyalists and lifers, would often encounter humiliating, frustrating and unfair situations which are demeaning to their intellect and self-respect. Such professionals got to go and quickly at that.

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