The Challenge of Being Kind in a Corporate World

I have been told several times in my life that I am too nice. In the past, I would be admonished by a friend or a boyfriend if I let someone in front of me in a line or give an able-bodied person my seat on a bus. I would just laugh it off because, in my mind, there was no problem… until recently. I guess it’s the challenge of being kind in a corporate world

Now, for some reason, I am being treated like it’s some kind of horrible character flaw. Well, there are women that quit the corporate world.

“Oh, You are being way passive-aggressive.”

“You are too nice, you need to be more forceful.”

“They are going to walk all over you if you keep being so nice.”

These are quotes from my work colleagues. Honestly, what is so wrong with being a nice person? Saying hello and smiling at a complete stranger? Letting someone merge into the lane in front of you? Or even worse, being nice to a person who only the day before, made your day at work a living hell?

We’re getting toward the end of the year and one of the hardest things I’ve learned over the past year is that I had to accept that in no way do I have control over so many elements in my life, and especially people!

It seems to me that accepting this is some sort of ongoing process. Just as many times as I think I’ve seen the light (so to speak…), as many times I’ve ended up sort of talking myself to make me believe that this one time, maybe I could control some outcomes… Maybe it’s just myself, getting out of control again.

I will admit, I could be more aggressive and forceful, but I feel like there is a fine line between that and being rude. I think there are more effective ways to get your point across such as having a lot of patience, active listening, emphasizing, having intelligent discussions, and keeping things simple.

Isn’t the first rule of customer service to keep the customer happy anyway? Maybe it’s getting time to consider a radical career change. Maybe I should get back to mapping my career path. Sometimes you need to… Got it?

Sigh, I don’t know… I just think that my style and personality are not meant for the corporate world. And the older that I get, the more I see it. I was meant to do something more creative and helpful to people and somehow, I fell down the rabbit hole of what I “should” be doing versus what I “could” be doing.

So here is my challenge, while I am trying to figure out what I “could” be doing, I have to stay in the corporate world and completely go against my nature. There are, indeed, women that quit the corporate environment, just look at this video:

It’s f***ing painful, let me tell you. Then again. Every time I think of working out, working on my body and mind, I get a lot happier again.

But I refuse to let it change me. I do try to learn from my colleagues’ criticisms and I am trying to discover the best way to incorporate these learnings into my life that is helpful and not harmful. What have I come up with so far? Nothing… Honestly, I haven’t quite figured that out just yet, but you will be first to know.

Is there anyone else out there that is going through this? Have you found a way to make it work? I would really love to know.

But on the other hand, I got it! I think I’ve finally figured it out. I feel like I finally see why the hell I am so friggin’ burnt out of my fantastic job!!

When I first got into the recruiting business, my job’s mission was pretty small. Just make all the candidates grateful and happy by landing them their fantastic dream job. Actually, this was so absolutely simple yet so beautiful. In those early days, I found myself in the company of a fine work partner and at home, the two of us really were a dream come true.

But then, one day, all we did wasn’t just enough any longer. I wanted better. I wanted bigger. I wanted more professional satisfaction and more excitement. So here I was… moving on into the world of corporate business. And that’s exactly where and when things really got a hell of a lot more complicated.

Well, I’m still making candidates happy. I’m still helping them land a really cool and good position at a great and really cool company. But then… In the world of corporate business, things are so friggin’ complicated. It just doesn’t add up. In this world, I also have to do with and please the manager, the manager’s manager, my manager, the hiring manager, the HR manager, the HR manager’s manager… Got it?

Think that gets me really happy? Well, the holidays will give me plenty of time for contemplation, orientation, reflection. considering, reconsidering, and more thinking. Wish you all luck, happy holidays, and a healthy and productive New Year, and don’t let my sometimes negative thoughts get under your skin. It’ll be better!