EDITED BY VICTORIA OKON
The meeting was over. It was finally over, but somehow, my legs refused to move. Right there, I asked myself why I was this disappointed. I had watched enough movies, and read enough books to understand that people do this all the time.
I didn’t imagine that it would happen to me on my first week, at a new job; with a boss I actually reverred.
“Zora!” I looked up. It was him smiling down at me. Did he realise what he just did?
“Are you okay?” What happened to you?” I guessed he couldn’t read my thoughts on my face.
I stood up. “I’m good, just a little overwhelmed,” I said. “We have such a short time to prepare for the press conference on Saturday,” Henry nodded and instructed that I check for an email he just sent. Unlocking my phone, I opened the mail… only to find out that he directed me to collate contact details of the company partners, vendors and clients for an invitation to the conference meeting scheduled for the weekend. I picked my notepad from the table, opened the door, and walked into the main office. Sigh.
I walked into Genesis X, three days ago, to begin as a Strategy Associate. I enjoyed every single minute from participating in team meetings, creating product tactics and ideas from thin air, and hoping to actually execute them myself, it was truly gratifying… up until ten minutes ago.
I met Tito, staring with the usual intent look at her desktop, totally oblivious to the phone ringing beside her. Precise and dedicated, Tito was never the type to be distracted when busy but that shouldn’t stop her from helping me… right?!
“Why do I have to surrender my contacts to you, when the management has an extensive list?” – WRONG!
“You should get them from CRM and work accordingly,” Turning back to her laptop, she sipped her cup of coffee dismissively. Wow.
On my first week?! I had never felt this bullied and cheated. Even though I came up with the idea to host partners to an event to begin the new year, this just didn’t feel like my project. The event was intended to improve client-relationship, which would definitely benefit every department in the company but nothing seemed to be going my way!
With no solution in sight, I dropped heavily on my seat. The further I got confused, the angrier I became. Even after explaining that the instruction came directly from the Team Lead…
Suddenly, giving Tito a piece of my mind was starting to sound like a good idea, and I was also prepared to make an official report to the HR department about her lack of teamwork and disrespect.
“Excuse me,” startled, I turned around to see Nkechi smiling at me. “You can check your inbox for the directory. If you need help getting them to respond to your invitation quickly, let me know,” she said sweetly.
I knew she she was trying to help probably after witnessing the scenario with Tito. I smiled back, sheepishly. She wheeled her chair and sat beside me. “I saw how defeated you looked during the strategy session this morning, especially when Henry told the Director he had been thinking about the conference for three months”.
I shrugged. “Is this normal? Are those the sort of things to expect working here?” Nkechi sighed.
“Listen Zora, we all have different agenda and ways we handle situations. But I need you to understand that it matters a whole lot how you deal with people in a work environment,” She shook her head slowly. ”Right now, Tito is upset because she just lost a prospective client, thus the reaction and as for Henry, well my dear…” she sighed, “it’s best to keep our emotions in check. But as long as you work with him, you need to manage him as not only your colleague but your immediate boss,”.
I smiled weakly when she enunciated the word ‘boss’. “Thanks, Nkechi. I really needed to hear that,” I wasn’t exactly feeling joyful at that moment, but I was glad that someone was trying to make me feel better.
Within four hours, I had contacted about 150 numbers, and 73 of them confirmed that they would attend. As I personally received the partners at the event that morning, I realized that Nkechi was absolutely right. Even with what had happened, I still loved my new job. It was a dream come true for me, and I intended to keep it that way!