Managers have been the worst invention of human kind. With their condescension, time and again they have proved that they are the modern British Raj. They crawl in company departments with self praising testimonies, forced clout and pesky humor. They come from behind and peep over the shoulders into the laptops, specifically focusing on bottom row of the screen to scan through the open windows, making Alt+Tab an archaic trick . Their magic watch keeps a note of the time an employee spends gazing in their smartphones during a meeting. And all this combined comes up as a note in appraisal sessions, under the garb of constructive honest feedback. However, corporate history took a surprising turn when an employee returned the favor to his manager.
The incident took place in an MNC, which recently underwent a transformation journey in manpower management by encouraging two way dialogues between the manager and their subordinates. Given that the initiative was supposed to have a melodious dialogue between the two, the HR called it ‘Raga’ (meaning melody). The seasoned employees of the company however, could probe beneath the surface of this particular name, associating it with Rahul Gandhi, said the name clearly means that it is not to be taken seriously.
One naive employee- Rahul (name changed), however fell into the trap, innocently thinking that it is a right moment to give an honest feedback to his manager on latter’s annoying habits. But little did he know the rules of corporate game. At the end of his face to face appraisal, when the manager did a lip service of asking for feedback, Rahul leashed open his heart and listed down all the practices of the department he was uncomfortable with. During this, he saw his manager typing on laptop and assumed he was taking notes. It was only after Rahul went back to his seat that he was shocked to find a mail saying he is demoted for not understanding the culture of company.
In an interview to Faking News Rahul said, “The appraisal started like usual, with the manager saying his cliched But-dialogue: ‘You did a good job Rahul, BUT….’ followed by his usual act of raising the stakes of embarrassing me by letting me know the deadlines i missed, the number of times i came late to office, my lack of perfection in work, and how even a security guard can make better presentations than me. But this was usual and happens in every appraisal. I saw no reason to be demoted. Infact I was so at the bottom of pyramid in our org structure that to demote me they created a new position for me – Assistant to Assistant Junior Analyst. The demoting mail also read that my manager wanted me to attend a soft-skills training by the name of What Never to Say to a Manager”, said Rahul bursting into singing a classic Indian song “Aisa zakham diya hai, jo na fir bharega….HR haseen chehre se, ab ye dil darega”.
Rahul became a victim of taking HR initiatives too seriously. He has had his share of lessons. It is sad to see how some naive employees open up their cards of agony to their managers, when they should be holding those cards close to their chest and burn them in smoke, or drown them in booze, or bury them in grass.