Hello /biz/, I seek advice on business behaviour in the corporate world.
I am very ambitious, assertive, confident, etc long list of power traits (see LIFO red colour) which causes a rift between me and my peers, but those very qualities are the reason I am liked and trusted by the senior management...
so to summarise:
Female, UK, Fortune 500 company, peers (especially male) very hostile to me because I have too much presence and naturally dominate my environment, work hard, am given top projects and the most complex accounts.
However I never go for drinks after work, don't have 1h coffee breaks and usually just sit on my desk working.
Because of the above, I am branded as asocial, not a team-player person, etc even though I am part of many cross-functional projects and am collaborating well with people.
/biz/, I don't want to change and I don't think trying to appease vicious creatures is going to work in the long term.
What should I do so that the above does not ruin my career prematurely?
Actually I come from /fit/, you'd be amazed how discipline to exercise and eat healthy can transform the rest of your life and give you confidence that clearly is beyond your comprehension.
The hostility you just demonstrated is exactly what I am talking about in OP, and it usually comes from men who were raised in muslim families with their values and understanding of women.
So I spose you live in the caliphate.. How is the queen doing anyway?
Anyhow yes people are generally put off by a forceful woman much like they're put off by men wearing MLP merchandise. Stop being a weirdo or perhaps learn to deal with the discomfort you bring upon your colleagues. P.S. even the ones who aren't noticeably inclined are just hiding it from you to be polite.
It won't kill me, but I don't drink, and I want to be home on time to cook dinner, spend some time with my husband, gym, some vydia/4chan and then sleep.
This sort of life seems to be worlds apart from colleagues my age, who usually are still into casual dating, binge drinking & whatever else under 30s get up to in London.
I can't imagine them being interested in my personal life, and vice versa, so no, I don't think there is a reason to spend time together after 5pm
I don't want them to like me, but I am a little concerned if this might have an impact.
I know senior managers are aware that top performers don't have the time nor desire to be part of the office cliques, but it would have been nice to hear from actual professionals who have observed similar behaviours.
Also I am not saying I am "that good" but I do possess qualities that seem to be valued and rare, like enthusiasm and energy, not giving up, ability to spring people to action, ability to present my arguments well, always volunteering for things, etc (as opposed to sluggish drones who can barely function if they don't drink coffee, eat chocolate and complain all day how everything in the company is done wrong).
I can't create my own business because I have not identified what I could do that will be interesting enough and I could be proud to put my name under it (i.e I don't want to be a millionaire who was known as creating the company that was the Apple of the buttplug market).
You are over-analysing this. Absolutely nobody cares if you don't get drinks after work. Senior managers don't care about anything productivity. Your coworkers are more concerned about drowning away the pain of the debt cycle they have chained themselves into. I wouldn't worry too much.
You need to learn how to manage your social sphere.
People never like successful competition, so this isn't all you. It will always be like that, and it will be made very evident earlier in your career - people in, say, their late 20s, tend not to think about how important their current network might be in 20 years, and hence are more overtly hostile. Their loss.
On to your behaviour. Working hard is not an excuse not to foster useful relationships with your peers. The importance of this differs field-to-field, however, demonstrating an awareness of your co-worker's capabilities (and current activities), as well as showing that you don't become a pillar towards which all hostility is directed, is relevant.
This is not about becoming friends with your co-workers, but about managing them. Spend some time getting to know them, demonstrate that you can 'synergise' (i.e. convincingly demonstrate your control over your peers, and effect it to the benefit of the company), and be mindful of your boss' toes all the while.
Lastly, if you are worried about promotions, just remember that you need to get on the good side of management 2-3 echelons higher - your boss doesn't want to be replaced.
It's clear from your prose that you believe you are better than others. You justly draw derision but I wouldn't worry about it if I were also self-absorbed like you. You won't make a good leader, but you will climb high enough to likely give you the satisfaction you need in that position.
So, just ignore the concern.
I do maintain many positive relationships, but for example my idea of a small talk is "how are you", "what's new in your department", "any interesting projects you working on?" and have some that are somewhat closer, like gamers, science fiction fans and the like, where I extend to "how was your weekend" and surface questions about their personal lives.
From now on I will keep in mind that it's up to me to build lasting relationships. I have no problem building the professional relationship, but I almost never extend to personal unless we clicked on a topic. And I can't fake interest, because my autistic face can't hide my true feelings.
Re promotions - no problem there, I already report to VPs on several key projects, and we are getting along very well, because the only things we discuss is work and ideas, which suits me perfectly.
Thanks. I am curious though - why is it a problem that I find work and business enthralling, and the mundane events of life boring... I know I am the different one, but why is it such a problem? Surely normies should be kind enough to accept people whose brains are wired differently?
>I don't want to change
I learned everything I needed to know about your corporate prospects right here.
Enjoy middle-management. The ceiling's not made of glass; it's made up of your own inadequacies.
I just saw that book recommended twice, here and on /fit/. Will check out some reviews and order it. Thank you
There was a thread here not long ago about these types of books, the prevailing /biz/ opinion was that the book is no longer relevant, as it was written from the point of view of a baby boomer and relationships just don't work like that anymore.
On the topic of building personal relationships - I briefly reflected on it while walking home last week and it occurred to me that I instantly feel closer to someone if we have been together through some difficulties (even if nothing personal was spoken). I just don't feel connected to people who ask me how my weekend was and then proceed to tell me how much they drank on Saturday evening (or something equally mundane).
>I just don't feel connected to people who ask me how my weekend was and then proceed to tell me how much they drank on Saturday evening (or something equally mundane).
So, you've already decided what they're doing is mundane (and thereby you're not actually listening to them). When you interact with another person, you're interacting with another being who is different than you. It seems that difference you just can't accept; it's too mundane. You can't relate to them in their having-a-good-time because it's not video games or the other things you listed that you do. You lack a capacity for sympathy.
I'm pretty sure this is aspergers. That, or late-blooming teenage angst.
Are you a foreigner? Or just a bit autistic? Drinks after work can be quite important in some uk workplaces. Ive had oppurtunites come my way through work drinking buddies. And remember people will leave the company. I have a network throughout my industry now all from people i started on a grad scheme with and use to spend each friday in the pub with. Your old colleague could be your next client etc. Or could refer you for a higher paying job in their new company etc.
You may not find it fun. But think of it as an investment in your professional network.
Noted. I am usually able to remain present and listen, and ask small follow up questions, but can never think of how I can contribute to the conversation. Also, I am capable of sympathy for major events, but I do brush off many things people despair about as "overreacting".
I don't drink and I can't make pub small talk... I am literally the /fit/ meme in the corner "I wish I was home doing squats" but literally "I wish I was home and NOT HERE".
If this is aspergers, must be a really mild case.
I try my best to be humble and not condescend to people when they ask for help. It never hurts to flatter a bit when someone helps you.
Also you can be easy-going in your interactions and still be assertive about your work. I don't really like socializing, but try to be somewhat involved in the goings on of people. Go out for a beer with them once every month or two.
Trust me I am a head-down, get the project done kind of worker, and I get promoted quickly. People notice that and it can lead to jealousy and resentment if you don't take a little time to just be polite. You can still stay aloof without being totally isolated
Sounds very familiar. I do tend to ask for help and also offer help without a problem, but as soon as something shifts from professional to personal my brain switches off.
I will make it a point to linger in the break out area a little longer when getting a drink and engage in some conversations.
Listen OP, you already know how this works. Men acting in the way you describe will bring a rift between them and a lot of their peers, Women acting in this way is even worse in most regards. People are going to think your a bitch, they are going to think your asocial, they will think you are not a team player.
All in all, don't lower yourself to appease the plebs. I don't put to much trust in things like the LIFO.jpg but if you are anything like how you described yourself than you will always have a place in some sort of demanding career.
I'm extremely likable at my job, I take clients out to long dinners, I know everyones name and I smile and learn about their kids. At the same time I might be one of the stupidest people at my job and one of the least practical/take charge people you have ever met. I'm not going to change myself to further my career, I'm going to become the best at what makes me great and you should do the same.
Do you think Hillary Clinton or Carly Fiorina or Meg Whitman worry that a bunch of whiny fucks think they are bitches? No. They aren't going to try to appease other people they are going to rise above it.
Pump the breaks, take a breather.. your not going to ruin your career unless you actually are a psychotic bitch. If you are just an opportunistic career woman that is kind of cold than there is plenty of room in the corporate environment for that, good or even mediocre management will see your results even if the lowly masses hate you.
This guy gets it.
>Imagine you are a roman empire
Yeah, no. But true, even Cæsar spent more time on foot leading his men than from the saddle.
How long have you worked in this field and at this company in particular?
Almost everyone has these experiences, especially the new ones. My advice to those in my organization is to be a good technician—be better than average at the technical aspects of the job—but stealth-mode your ambition and just work to be excellent in your technical domain.
Then, when you have built enough career capital you will start to see opportunities and probably have to engage in office politics to a degree to get what you really want: promotion(s).
Keeping that in mind, this is what Daniel Goleman says in Emotional Intelligence, "One surprise was that people who were too eager to take part were a drag on the group, lowering its overall performance; these eager beavers were too controlling or domineering. Such people seemed to lack a basic element of social intelligence, the ability to recognize what is apt and what inappropriate in give-and-take."
You should gain the respect of your peers even if they don't like you. This may take a while to develop considering the nature of people.
Also, don't sweat this.
>I'm not going to change myself to further my career, I'm going to become the best at what makes me great and you should do the same.
That is what I am thinking, and what the performance coaches at work advise. According to them, you cannot effectively change personality even if you tried.
About 4 years, have been promoted twice whilst the rest of the group was passed over 2 times and the hiring manager brought in external candidates instead.
I am aware that in certain group dynamics where I am surrounded by soft nellies I have to keep my mouth shut and follow the group consensus, even I see how something would not work.
I do have their professional respect, my competence is never questioned, because all I do is work anyway and the results are visible, get a lot of praise of senior managers too.
There are a lot of NEETs responding; I can only assume on account of you having a vagina and being from /fit/.
In this case you might not be able to have your cake and eat it. It just comes down to this:
>More successful than peers.
>Popular with peers.
What I genuinely don't understand from your post, is your refusal to deal with the local culture.
I worked in London for about 5 years. The drinking culture is very important. No I'm not saying to go get shitfaced with a bunch of colleagues you'd find borish or to go every week. But every now and then - once a month/quarter, go for 1/2 drinks down the pub/bar (doesn't even have to be alcoholic). Your outright refusal to participate in the social rituals of the office/city culture has left you being labelled as asocial and not a team player.
You know what you're doing wrong. You're not playing the game.
Yep. It's a no brainer for me, but also I want to reduce to a minimum accidentally bruising peers' egos.
Today I paid attention to the environment and actually identified no more than 2-3 people who genuinely hate me and can't look me in the eye; the rest are orbiters who are friendly to me if the said 2-3 people are not present.
I've resolved to continue being courteous and open to the haters, and won't go out of my way to avoid them. They can do whatever they want.
You are right. I will tag along to some pub lunches and maybe occasion drinks (leaving parties etc)
OP, the only person you need to have a good relationship with are the ones that will lead you to getting a promotion. If you kiss ass, you'll eventually be the boss of your current peers and not have to care about what they think, even if you didn't work as hard or harder than them.
You need to start getting that coffee and talking about your boss's autistic child, because your colleagues are doing that and the reverse of the above goes the same. You will do all the hard work, and suddenly you are too good to be promoted. You will get the privilege of staying in the same place and training people to eventually step on you until you find someplace else.
Nah, I don't need to do any such thing (kissing ass, cozying up to seniors). If I want something, say an upcoming big project, I just walk up to the person in charge and say "I want X account, I have already read all contractual documents, I plan to do X and Y and achieve Z by -insert date-.
I have been doing that for years and it has served me well, because if I commit to something, it will get done.
Plus my line manager is a crazy spaniard who loves me - I have helped him look competent on many occasions and I always have his back. No need to make small talk, our business talks are invigorating.
TLDR; I had some issues aswell however my boss is extremely controling and micromanaging, and i am very indipendent. I managed to work around this, and we have a good relationship now. however some of my subordinates are like the people you are dealing with. In some ways you have to say "fuck them let them stay mediocre" however you still need to work with them and you catch more fly's with honey than you do with vinegar. Try and understand their personalities. try looking up the big 5 personality traits and Analise what they are like and what will make them happy.
Both titles and money, I ask for a salary increase every year, and if I don't get it I would likely look for another job. I am not greedy ofc, If last year I got something like 20%, the next would be much smaller.
Yep, I am responsive and smile, because walking around with a chip on my shoulder just isn't me. I had a manager like you describe in my previous job, I could not manage her up and had to leave, the clash of personalities was just too great.
This. Your thread has dragged on long enough OP. You've gotten your advice.
We've been exceedingly kind for a 4chan subreddit. Either fuck off and let this die or post the goods. No one gives that much of a shit about your blog drama