It Wasn’t A Sequel To Begin With
November 29, 2012 – 18:32 | No Comment

My 3rd novel wasn’t meant to be a sequel to the 2nd novel in the first place. Then something happened. Characters began to beg to be included in the story. Thus, a sequel was born.

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Home » Freelance & Business, Working World

Hierarchy at Work

Submitted by on August 26, 2009 – 06:556 Comments

In the olden days, people would always hear their bosses say, “I am the boss. You listen to what I say and do what I ask you to without questioning.” Many believed this approach to working relationships would eventually change with the upcoming technology and times. People would learn how to respect each other’s job scopes and everyone will have a role to play without really needing someone to call the shot. It’s the teamwork era. Yet it’s also the individualistic era. And as I continue my career adventure in today’s world, the approach remains the same; the boss will always be the boss, no matter how strong a friendship is formed between both parties.

There was a Managing Director who once told his staffs that everyone in the company is on the same level. There are only different roles to play that differentiate them from one another. No one is above anyone and no one is below anyone. Everyone has equal say of the workflow in the company. He claimed that his company’s operation is transparent and honest. His staffs called him ‘stupid’ because they ended up going in circles. No one was calling the shots and every project was always on-going; never-ending. People were getting tired; exhausted and despair that nothing was being achieved at work.

In a large corporation, a Head of Department was implementing the same transparent approach to his entire team. He kept saying, “In my department, there is no hierarchy. Everyone is equally important and has a role to play. No one is more important than the other.” This is not his major mistake as a leader; it’s when he said, “Hierarchy is just an indication of pretence to external parties, internally every one of you is on the same level” that all hell broke loose. Team members were very transparent with one another but when things begin to lose control, one of them will eventually bring out the hierarchy card. Ultimately, the one at the highest of the hierarchy chart gets to call the shot and everyone else slowly loses their faith in their leader.

Hierarchy at work is something that could never be avoided. No matter how big or small a corporation could be, hierarchy sets everything in place for the entire team to function as a whole. Yes, it may bring upon office politics and power wars, but along with it a system which will help everyone to be organised as a working unit. In order for hierarchy to work, team members will have to learn how to respect one another beyond their friendship when it comes to working together as a team. Don’t give in your professionalism just to make a friend-colleague happy. Step into your hierarchy and act according to the role entrusted to you. Friendship brings empathy, but hierarchy permits people to do what is right.

In a working environment, no matter how close you are to your teammates, you are always first colleagues then friends; never otherwise. And if your friend-colleague could not accept you for that, then the friendship shared between the both of you was not genuine to begin with. Perhaps it’s time for you to re-consider the hierarchy of your friendship with your fellow colleagues.

Originally written by Gina Yap Lai Yoong © 2008

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