Since the time I graduated university, I kept observing and comparing successful people with the rest, in order to figure out what are the important qualities for one to have authentic success (For now, I will refer only to career related success).
Beside hard working and dedication, which are intuitive, I always suspected there should be other set of requirements as well, that leads someone to affirm and to be a step in front of the others. I mean, the success is such a versatile and subjective notion, that you can’t easily tell whether you are in this category or not. Besides, the social networks are a big trap that makes everyone seem successful somehow, since this is the only version of life they made public.
However, I focused for a long time on succeeding in my career and I have to confess that I faced serious drawbacks along the time. And these drawbacks didn’t come from me being lazy, or being less involved or less competent than others. Or at least, not entirely from these causes. It also came from some people, who artificially made me having a hard time.
How do you create a hard time for someone?
There are a few simple steps, in fact is pretty easy:
- Make sure the person you target is unexperienced and they don’t know (yet) what exactly means to be successful or competent;
- Make that person feel bad for not having enough qualities and dedication for a certain job;
- Shift the focus from the zone “qualities vs. job requirements” to less relevant things, such as certain flaws you “discovered” in them, which you make sure they are aware and ashamed of;
- Practice mental humiliation when the case. Assure them with every occasion that they don’t deserve any merit or recognition, their work value tends to zero and they even should be grateful for you tolerating them.
It is hard, very hard to make the difference. Especially when you don’t have so much work and people experience, it is not always intuitive to differentiate the normal to the abusive work behavior. But if you meet this kind of people you realize that, even though they try to portrait themselves as successful leaders, with authority and plenty of responsibilities, they are only office bullies.
It is the same phenomenon we see at kids of all ages. It is the feeling of “not good enough” that these people – mature and fully aware of life, not children anymore – try to induce in their “victims”.
Workplace bullies are “fake” successful people. They don’t have great career achievements and are not entitled in any way to such behavior. They don’t exert authority, only plain frustration.
How do I know that?
And how can you tell is not in fact my fault? Maybe I am a lazy ass with no gratitude and I trash people with good intentions?
Because, I also met authentic successful people. And getting to know them was a great honor and helped me to make the difference between the fake ones and the real ones. The real success has a completely different face, that you can easily remark when you see it. The conclusions I reached to were clear as daylight, noticing that:
- They never make others feel stupid, even when faced with mistakes. Perhaps you will wait for their judgement, feeling that you deserve it, but never get it;
- They are focused on their own improvement and don’t have time and desire to make others feel bad. That’s why you see them all the time winning prizes, reaching top positions, being appreciated and popular everywhere they go;
- When you do something good, they recognize it with no eye blink. Even the smallest thing, that you wouldn’t consider a progress;
- They don’t blame people, not even those who are blamable. Instead, they always offer their help and support to get things done;
- When they work in a team, they don’t assume the entire victory, even though they often have the most relevant input.
- And finally, working with them makes you see that you have a lot more to improve at yourself. But it is your own conscience speaking this time. And you simply feel that you want to evolve, by turning them into role models. At least, that’s what I felt.
At this moment, I am grateful for having met such awesome people, even collaborate and work with them lately. As for the fake ones… I know I should be equally grateful, as they made easier for me to distinguish the true value, in a sea of mediocrity. But I am not…
And I will never be. Not even a bit.