Friday, August 01, 2008

A Corporate Plantation Update...

So it looks like the love life is going in my favor. But of course life isn’t a bed of roses and other arenas will have its challenges. So let’s talk about work, haha. Well the past few weeks have been challenging emotionally. I will first start off by saying I will not have a personal relationship with any future bosses. Bad Idea.I wrote about this “relationship” in prior posts and because I am the type to try things at least once; I now know why this is not a good idea. Where do I begin with this story?

The problem with work is I am hitting the glass ceiling on mental stimulation. My job isn’t satisfying my mental state. As an assistant property manager (which is technically a step down from my previous job) I feel more like a property administrator, which has a job description that is pretty much explained in its title. I am doing more admin work and less strategic or analytical work. Both of my managers are not use to having an assistant who is competent, so that means they don’t know how to delegate tasks to me. This is also their first time managing an office staff, which means we’re more focused on building a sorority than a productive work team.

Here’s the problem with befriending your bosses. Every professional line gets crossed very easily. If you hang out often with your bosses during after hours you begin to see their true colors and take mental notes of their behavior outside the workplace. Let’s start with boss #1; her problem is when she gets drunk she requires babysitting. She’s the type that kisses on everybody in the club and just embarrasses the hell out of anyone with a fraction of dignity. I have not whiteness this for myself; fortunately on the last two occasions of this type of partying I had prior commitments. However, as always things come back to work and even she told me about her nights out. Now to add more colorful information: she’s 30, married with 2 young boys. So my question is how am I supposed to perceive you as my boss? I understand what you do in your personal life is your business. But it becomes company’s business when you do this with coworkers.

Boss #2 (the one I’ve befriended), she’s cool as a person. But her management skills are garbage. Her partying habits are not as extreme but she pushes the envelope when we’re out. There’s nothing wrong with being a party girl. But is it just me or do the rules change when you have kids, and a woman knocking on 40? Again, I am not judging. I am simply giving my reasons for why mixing work with pleasure may not be a good idea. This is also my boss who told me in a conversation that her management style doesn’t include molding people and she would rather hire slackers in lower level positions. Might I also add that she’s working on her MBA with a concentration in Human Resource (nice).

Getting back to my feelings of being under utilize. So what does a smart, ambitious, and highly skilled worker do when they want to learn more and demonstrate their skills, but their immediate bosses are not the roles models I can learn anything from? On a professional level they can’t offer me too much. In my opinion and also what is constantly instilled in me through my program; a leader’s job is to motivate, inspire, and groom future leaders. It’s a manager’s responsibility to take their staff (particularly your assistant) under their wing and provide as much knowledge and tools possible for them to one day advance and also take care of things in your absence. I wouldn’t say they are threatened by me. I just believe they have no idea how to work with a person like me. It’s easy to lead slackers and incompetent people; it requires no core management skills.

The other day I had a conversation with the VP of our company and expressed my interests in wanting to explore other departments within our organization. In all honestly I am over property management, and have been for some time especially since I am not even being mentally stimulated now. I told him about my interests in the leasing/brokerage and acquisitions side of commercial real estate. I also mentioned how I wanted to implement some of the things I am learning in my grad program to my company, which he warmly invited me to do. I am glad I had this conversation with him for a number of reasons. For starters, he thought I was an introvert (go figure). Looking back by pure coincidence it seems whenever he passes by I am in my office quiet and working. I’ve never taken the time to have a conversation with him because he’s the VP and he always looks busy, lol. But during our talk he mentioned how now he can see I am a personable and lively person (how funny). Now, our President knows I am very outgoing and knows I am bright as well. I had a conversation with him a few months back to let him know I am no dummy and very much motivated and always striving for more.

The bottom line now is I am going to have to figure out a way to not let my personal feelings about my bosses affect or block my opportunities to excel within this company. I’ve made it clear I don’t want their jobs (which I don’t); I so want bigger and better. So now that I’ve made it know that leasing/acquisitions is where I want to be I am now doing my homework so when I approach him again I can provide some assistance based off the research I conducted, which shows not only initiative but proof that I am serious…


DiamondsR4eva said...

I learned the hard way at my last work study job that crossing professional lines with the higher ups leads to nothing but trouble in the long run. I hope your job can become mentally stimulating/satisfying for you soon, that sounds like it kinda sucks :-(

Natures Gentle Touch said...

I just stumbled on your blog and I find it very interesting. You need to remember you bosses are human.

When you are smarter than your boss or think you are remember they are your boss and moving up is about them moving up in all respects. You need to make them succeed at what they do by making suggestions and letting them take ownership till they are hooked on you. Bonding with them is not a bad idea but you may also want to move them into new areas of entertainment that leaves them satisfied and dignified. Its tough but can be done unless you are ready to move on.

Your smartness should be used as a tool by your boss for her benefit so she can continue to promote you without you doing more than just being smart.

You obviously love your job so enjoy it.

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