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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Finding opportunities in mistreatment

Finding opportunities in mistreatment

Words by Francis Kahihu: Kahihucareers@gmail.com

You must have heard from friends about their experiences at work in the hands of bosses who apparently misuse them by forcing them to do more than they are expected to do. Or you must be currently working under a supervisor who coerces you to work more than what is in your job description. These are all familiar stories from the theatre called the workplace. There is talk of bosses who have decided they will have to progress in their pursuits regardless of what it takes. In most cases, they lump up most of their tasks on their juniors, forcing them to work extra hours so as to meet targets that are being adjusted ever so often.

In most of these cases, the employees are rarely recognized as having put in extra effort for the achievement of their milestones. Getting a formal appreciation at the performance appraisal is a remote expectation. There is indeed a lot of misuse of staff by their superiors and this has made many to develop thick skin. The relationship between the boss and the junior gets characterized by mistrust and degenerates into a competition for space and favor. The bosses make it clear that the future of the junior is dependent on their favorable evaluation while the juniors feel so helpless since they would not imagine losing the job which could be their only source of livelihood.

I once listened to Myles Munroe, one of my favorite motivational speakers, talk about opportunities. He argues that every mountain of messes is an environment full of opportunities. In his talk, he encourages people who are seeking for jobs not to go out there seeking for rosy engagements but to look around them for the problems that people face. Munroe says that every problem is an opportunity for business and rightly so, consider the millions that people are minting from dirty estates, dirty cars and strewn plastic paper bags. In short, what Munroe attempts to help us appreciate is that opportunities do not always present themselves in velvet attires.

Back to the workplace and the fact that your boss considers you a doormat or the bin that takes in every tasks he does not desire to do should not always bring you down. As much as the boss has a negative attitude in their delegation, you should learn to employ the power of reverse attitude and consider the ‘mess’ as an opportunity for growth and learning. It has been said that bosses excel in delegating less attractive ventures. Some would delegate engagements to speak to delegates at a local city hotel but would never allow you to make presentations to delegates in the up market hotels.

Regardless of the motive, it pays dividends to decide that it is your time to learn. What someone may be presenting as an opportunity to humiliate you could easily be turned into an opportunity to raise your profile. The reason we are unable to capitalize on the opportunities that life presents arises from the fact that we get so sucked into the attitude war. We sulk at the thoughts that someone considered us so insignificant that they delegated menial tasks to us and refuse to enjoy whatever falls on our plate.

In the midst of some unfavorable experiences could be jewels of career enhancing opportunities that only the keen get hold of. You get what you are looking for. If you are keen to get relevant work experience, you would look for it in every available environment. You would not let a certain individual’s gesturing distract you from laying your hand on the nuggets you so badly need. Always remember that your boss may already have gotten to their peak and your resolve to terminate your progress momentum because of their character or attitude is a perfect illustration of how many have shot themselves in the foot.

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