We got a little political last week and though I’m tempted to go on a rant about the new MEK delisting and how corrupt government is… I’ll refrain myself.
Let’s be honest, MEK doesn’t deserve any face time on this blog.
But maybe the threat of corruption does especially when it sinks in to your professional life. I’ve been out of college for two years now – one year spent as a starved intern pining for free tacos every Thursday – and now one year spent in the professional world of employment.
Employment and internships are two very different worlds.
Aside from having to say “yes” to everything (short of bending over) as an intern, you’re only real competition are your fellow interns. Don’t get me wrong- interns play rough – you’re all fighting for the same thing = one shot, one job.
You’re not necessarily exposed to the underlying gossip and back-end office drama that suddenly becomes available to you as soon as you sign an employment contract.
As an employee of a company or an organization, competition isn’t just your average intern / “I had this idea first” drama – people play dirty. Fresh meat comes in and all of a sudden, your equals at work are threatened… they’re not just fighting to show you up, they’re fighting to prove something. They’re fighting to prove that you are somehow lesser than you represented yourself in your interview.
Be real, we all exaggerate a little in our interviews. Like my Farsi is really THAT good that I can translate a news article in English. Half the time I don’t even know WTF they say on BBC Persian (jk… kinda).
My first major reality check at work:
Get everything in writing and don’t confide in people until you are 110% sure they got your back.
As a professional, you can’t always verbalize your disgust for someone’s inadequacy (especially if they’re your superior). Therefore, I’ve become a pro at the “slack jaw” look.
My second go-to look?
Poker face is super important because the following is going to happen in the office:
a). People love to vent. You want to be known for being reliable/keeping secrets. You don’t want to be the colleague who’s going to tell everyone’s business to the rest of the office. Those people never make it far in the system. Up and out yo. Reputation is everything – even if you don’t work for a Persian #realitycheck
b). You are going to hear some batshit crazy rumors. It’s inevitable. You’re spending half your day with these people, if you think that people don’t get off topic, then you need to seriously check yourself.
Rumors go from your average shit-talking (which we all know a bit too much about) to the crazy shit one of the higher-ups did or why someone got fired, etc.
Unfortunately, I’ve noticed that corruption especially among the older crowd is a bit prevalent.
To imply that people in their 20′s aren’t corrupt is a bit ridiculous.
But when you’re in your 20′s, corruption takes place in the form of shit-talking and trying to show your peers up. Corruption in your 40′s and up is more serious – people are more likely to make decisions that are legally questionable.
I remember when I was a kid – there was a Persian family in our hometown who had somehow alienated themselves from the entire Iranian community. As a child, I didn’t really understand nor did I really care because they didn’t have any kids that were my age to play with.
But as an adult, I remember overhearing about how the man of the family had coerced others into lending him money with the promise of investing it into something bigger and better… and then never returning the money.
Corruption: doing something that is potentially illegal without thinking twice about who you are hurting or the consequences.
In the workplace:
We see people who agree to backdoor dealings just to make their company (or themselves) more money.
Too often it seems like power = loss of morality.
Do you really think these people ever thought that they would get arrested for fraud or coercion when they were 18? You’re supposed to get more mature with age… not lose your sense of ethics.
One of my biggest fears is losing my sense of morality – to do something stupid to get ahead. And I don’t believe that I personally am prone to this because I already engage in some not-so-kosher behavior (like rubbing Fessenjoon on my lover’s body… JUST KIDDING).
I fear that increase in power can influence your behavior despite what your beliefs are.
I might judge Rupert Murdoch for being a questionable and unethical human being, and I might applaud the person who decided to pie him in the face – but I don’t believe that Rupert Murdoch was always like corrupt.
It’s hard for me to grasp that someone I might look up to (NOT Rupert) has always been unethical and I’ve just been too naive to detect it.
There’s only so much “corruption” I can handle– the shit talking and backstabbing is about all I can take. Talk down at me, lie about me, try to hate on me– I’m down with it because at the end of the day, your lies only stay secret for so long.
And haters only exist to motivate you.
But steal? Fraud? Give me a fucking break.
So which is it? Do we become corrupt with power or is corruption a result of your upbringing?
Sorry joonies, no conclusion here. You tell me. I’m good off experiencing this for myself, thanks.
TWEET AT ME IF YOU’RE SCARED: @FARRAH_JOON