I have the relationship…

27 March 2020.

“You have the relationships…”

When I first heard this statement, I didn’t know was I supposed to take that as a compliment or not.

I am pretty sure that I am the odd one out in the department, one who is most rebellious, one who does not suck up to the management, and one who is a solo player, lack of teamwork.

But when things went into a mess, and I am needed to help in managing the situation, I was told: “you have the relationships with the commercial team…”

I think that was the most unexpected reason I have ever heard.

I know that this is a realistic and cruel world. Everyone is with everyone because we have common interest. Benefits are what most people are looking for, be it monetary, power, status or even feelings.

We come together as colleagues, teammates, friends and lovers because we gain something out of it — benefits, recognition, pleasure, a place to let go, a harbour to take shelter and many other reasons.

But when the thing that we are looking for is no longer needed, we turn and walk away.

I am one of them, that is a fact.

And yet, I do not wish to be treated like a fool such that when I am needed temporarily, I am remembered. And when things go well, I am forgotten.

Yet, I am being treated that way too, and that is also a fact.

Much as I wish, I try not to depend on others for this simple reason. No one is an island, I agree. But if I can reduce my chance of “making use” of others, I will do it. And thus, I am anti-social.

Don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you — Confucius said that. I try my best to bear that in mind, though I know I have failed in this aspect.

Things are really in a big mess in our department right now, and I witnessed the truest ugliness of one who needs to survive. It’s never about the team when push come to the shaft, it’s all about me, me and me. The COVID-19 situation doesn’t help at all, as people are still fighting to survive in an organisation while others are fighting for their lives.

“Francis, you will cover your manager during his absence from now onwards. You have the experiences and relationships.”

Who were the ones who said junior managers like us do not have the capability to act on behalf?

I shrugged and indirectly rejected. I really do not need any glory as that is not what I am looking for. And that is why I have told my ex manager not to nominate me as his delegate during his absence in the past years.

I bear no grudge, but at the same time, I don’t wish to be exploited.

I am more than worthy, and my worth does not depend on how they look at me.

I know that when peace time comes, and when everything is in place, I will be back to the branded anti-social person who is very silo.

And so, I choose to just believe that I am who I am.


Francis Lim

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