Would you want to continue to work for ZoneBuddy Incorporated?January 15, 2013
[This has been in my drafts since i first started this blog after i walked away from my broken friendzone and attempted FWB tried to shove me back in the box. I'm clearing out my drafts. Flows in with the current NiceGuys theme. Just another part of my GrowingUpBeta series.]
This is directed towards the females. (Pass this ethical thought exercise on to any women you know as well)
20 yrs ago
You see an ad for a job position at ZoneBuddy Inc. that you really like. YOU apply for a job. You go to the interview, meet the employer and at the end of the day he tells you that you are not good enough for the VP role, but you can have the desk job in customer service.
You take it because you really like the CEO, you would love to be part of this company and make it succeed, you’re fresh out of school and haven’t been able to find any jobs offers, no employers have been showing interest, and you have no job at the moment because you have no skill set or real practical job experience. So for the next 2 decades you work hard during those years, trying to prove your worth. You work longer hours, make sacrifices, increase your workload, pull double duty, learn, grow and educate yourself on every aspect of your job and what makes it tick, how to perform it efficiently and expertly, knowing all the ins and outs, hoping your employer will take you for the VP position once you demonstrate marked proficiency with the role.
And over the course of time, your pay does not increase. You are still making minimum wage. The employer is happy! You are being super productive, and getting a lot of things done. Your employer tells you that you are appreciated and such an awesome worker, and laments that he would like to find someone just like you for the higher paying VP role and that he just can’t find anyone to take that position. You stand there perplexed at the statement.
Over the course of those years, you see your employer throwing large sacks of cash at the homeless woman across the street from your office. You ask your boss whether he was drunk or feeling overly charitable to be throwing away such large amounts of money on the homeless bag lady. Maybe she had done something really special for the company? Saved him from getting run over by a bus or something? He laughs and say ‘No, i just did it for fun, she doesn’t really mean anything to the company.’
You go back to your cubicle and look at your measly pay stub.
You hear your boss complain bitterly over the fact that he has been trying to entice the sweet looking cashier in the convenience store next door, who does not have the same job experience as you.. to come work for him, yet she does not want a full time job at the company nor do any of the related work, but she does like the gifts he leaves her. You hear him crying that he offered her a 500k starting package and the company Porsche and she still doesn’t want to work for him. Perhaps you start to question why he is just giving away money to people who have no intention of working for his company. After all, your employer is constantly telling you that the company is short on cash and really can’t justify giving you a raise. But he tells you don’t worry, the economy is getting better, he’s sure another company will come along that can hire you and pay you more because you’re such a good employee.
Then one day your employer happily announces that he has filled the role of VP. That sexy stewardess with the tall slender legs and perfect hourglass figure who dotes on him while he travels on business trips, looks even more stunning now in a power cardigan, skirt and stilletos sitting in the VP’s office. You wonder what qualifications this former airline service gal could have that you obviously don’t have to warrant her being given the VP role without any due diligence or vetting in the hiring process. You feel disappointed that you didn’t get the position BUT at least now that there is a VP, most of the hard work and solo effort you’ve been performing can at least now be offloaded to the gal who’s position is to officially carry out those tasks and functions. At least now you can go back to your minimum wage post and do only the minimum wage tasks your minimum wage job pays you to do.
But then you notice it. Your workload hasn’t decreased. You are still being payed shit and fuck’all. And your employer is still coming to you expecting you to do many of the things you assumed came with the role of VP. As the days pile on, you see the VP, smug in her office, smoking a cigar and twirling in her chair, surfing Cosmo online and watching funny cat video’s on Youtube. You see your employer telling the VP constantly what she should be doing.. and she just smiles and laughs in his face. You feel such an urge to go barge into the office and tell the new woman veep off, to rescue your employer from this obvious bad choice he made in hiring her. It’s not your place to question who he hires or how he conducts his business. On your 10 minute lunch break your employer comes to you and tells you in confidentiality that he doesn’t understand why the VP won’t perform her role and function within the company. After all, you do the job so well, and for so much less!
You listen, and in your head it hurts so bad but you endure it because deep down inside, you’ve conditioned yourself to feel so loyal towards the company you want it to do well, even if you yourself aren’t the gal in the command chair by his side. You politely encourage him that perhaps he should look to re-examine why he hired her, but that it’s not your place to tell him what to do. Then he gets up, thanks you for listening and walks off.
The next morning at the coffee station your boss walks by you, he’s absolutely glowing and smiling from ear to ear. You overhear him telling his management staff how much he enjoyed giving the VP a massive raise and an Aston Martin company car as a bonus because he thinks this VP will be the one! She actually filled out an excel spreadsheet for the first time! The company’s fortunes will be turning around! She’s worth every fucking penny!
And you’re wondering how you’re going to pay the rent, and the hydro company just turned off the power.
5 yrs ago
Enough is enough. You start looking through employment adverts in the paper. You find a good looking job position, pay is decent, you jump at the chance! You walk into your bosses office and tell him you’ve found new employment and are serving him notice. He seems very happy for you that you’ve found the job you always wanted and is sure you will be appreciated and compensated appropriately there, tho you detect a hint of sadness that he hate’s to see you go. Free labor is hard to find no doubt.
A few weeks go by and you’re happy with your new income and a boss that doesn’t ride you like mad or make unrealistic demands of your time. You’re new boss appreciates you and is supportive of your contributions. Sure it’s not the high glamorous profile job like ZoneBuddy Inc. but you’ve come to enjoy your time quite well at SecureGateLock Ltd. That company took you in, and for everything it asked of you that you did well, it returned in good pay, escalating bonuses and great vacation time. You were happy, your boss was happy, it was a perfect symbiotic relationship and the company as a whole prospered.
Then you got a call out of the blue. Then another. And another.
Your old employer calls you quite often, wondering how you’re doing, wonders if you can come stop by the old office to catch up on old times. Maybe have a coffee. Then after some personal chit chat your old boss innocently asks if you’d like to help out and do some minor stuff. Just small stuff, nothing major. Consider it moonlighting a job on the side for some extra income. Hey you don’t mind making a bit more spending money right? So your old boss agrees to give you minimum work and pay the minimum wage. You’re cool with that, your other job is paying handsomely and made you VP so you don’t care. You take everything you’ve learned and educated yourself with, and pour maximum effort into your primary job.
But then you notice it.
Your old employer starts to sneak in bits of extra work, harder work, asking you to stay a bit longer. You know you’re not going to get paid for this so why would you? You start to feel resentful, remembering this isn’t your job, you don’t owe him anything so you pull back and stop showing up for work to prove a point. Your old employer now gets very upset… you USED to work overtime all the time. You politely remind him your primary focus is your current job and that you have no obligation to do anything beyond the minimum you’re being paid to do. Minimum pay, minimum work. Get your VP to do it, it’s her job.
2 yrs ago
You left your great new job because it ended up being more trouble than it was worth. SecureGateLock Ltd. The company cooked the books and was a poor company prospect. It was riding in too much corporate debt incurred before you came into the company, and it allowed one too many previous, shady investors to make deposits into it’s holding only to pull out or disappear. Once you helped the company get out of debt and set it’s path straight into fiscal profitability, your boss decided to break the company up, take half the revenue and run. You’re devastated that it didn’t work out but you learned a lot during your time there and you learned to really look into a company’s past, scrutinize it’s financials and track down previous investors before you decide to work for any company again.
Then one day you come across your first employer while having coffee on a patio.
You sit down with him and tell him everything that went down. He’s very sympathetic to your plight. You’re out of work and you know you need some money just to get by, but you’re not looking for the high end VP position, you just want to relax and take it easy for a bit until you figure out what you want to do with your life. Your old employer is delighted to offer you your old minimum wage job back. He has a new VP that appears to be doing her workload so it’s all good, you’ll only be doing what you’re paid to do. This will work.
You learned a lot working at your previous company, but you really examine where you could have done better, how you could have took control to reign in your bosses wild spending, being more proactive and show more initiative to lead projects. You introspect and take the time to address the issues you felt were lacking. You want to make sure that in this downtime, you make yourself better in every way so that when you do look a full time power position again, not only will you be perfect for it, but that the jobs, the employers must qualify to you, and you will have companies fight to retain your services. So you decide to upgrade your work skills. You go on the internet and read business professionals on all the things you did wrong at your last job that made it so unworkable at the very end. You learn from your mistakes, own up to your deficiencies and work to correct them to make you an even better employee, one that will be sought after more than ever. You have the potential now to become the ultimate productive VP to make any company worth it’s salt become a successful company.
In the meantime, your employers current VP starts to slip up. Now she’s doing too much work, doing too much overtime, yet your employer is unsatisfied with her productivity. The VP senses she is on the chopping block and goes into all out begging mode to convince her employer to let her keep her job, that he needs her! During this time your boss now starts spending more time around you, and bumping up the workload on you and asking you for more hours. At first you balk, but then you decide to pick and choose which extra tasks you feel comfortable doing without being overly burdened, tasks you can do as an afterthought that take no effort. So you begrudgingly accept. But surprisingly, you also notice that for the first time ever, your paycheck amount has changed. Not by much, but the numbers don’t lie. You got an increase.
9 months ago
So you start putting in a little more effort and utilizing everything you learned from the business pros about how to be a great employee, you begin to ramp up your productivity ever so slightly. And with each ramping you DEFINITELY notice that each and every paycheck is getting bigger and bigger. You are seeing your actions directly relating a cause/effect to your pay grade.
You realize the current VP is doomed and on her way out. Nothing is going to change this fact now. She’s actually a good worker but she’s obviously not in the good books with the CEO anymore. You wish her no ill will, but you’ve also come to a point in your life now where you say to yourself god damn it.. i’m perfect for this fucking job. It’s now or never.
So as soon as the VP gets pink-slipped you march into your employers office and say what’s been known for some time. 20 years in fact. You want that position. You have all the qualifications and skills for the role as you have demonstrated over time. You have nothing more to prove. Either give me the job or it’s time to get a LinkdIn account and start having other companies fight to qualify for your ability to help improve their companies. You want this job and the pay and bonus’s that come with!
So you march into your employers office and say “I WANT THAT JOB“.
Your employer gives you a quizzical look and says “But i’ve never imagined you as someone in the VP role, i only ever saw you as a customer service rep.” Without saying a word, you turn around and walk out of the office, out of the building and head home. You don’t need this shit. Fuck it, you’re done.
2 days later after much stewing, your employer calls you, quite drunk and invites you over to his place. He’s saying he’s reconsidered your promotion request. He tells you he’s noticed much of your efforts. He’s not sure he wants to give you the VP position or whether he wants to ever have a VP again… but he is willing to pay you the VP salary regardless. You would remain as a customer service rep with benefits. You have no qualms. Getting paid huge money while performing minimum wage tasks. Finally all is right with the world.
Or is it?
After a short while, you see that he’s clawing your pay back, but is expecting more work from you. Eventually you tire of the game and call him out on it. At first your employer claims you were mistaken in believing there was an offer on the table. Then he backtracks and says he can understand why you might feel that way and that it wasn’t his intention to make that kind of deal with you. He just kicked out his VP and was under a lot of stress, the company was vulnerable. But now weeks removed from that event your employer has reconsidered and cannot go through with it. He has no intention of promoting you to VP or keeping you on VP salary. But your employer has become so accustomed to you putting in so much work and effort that he no longer has any concept of the divide between work vs. pay. Your employer feels so entitled to it simply as fact because that’s the way it always was. Of course that was at a time when you didn’t have the skill-set education, drive and determination to work for a company that could appreciate you and rewards you handsomely for it.
So once more, and for the final time, ***YOU*** are standing in the doorway of the office building and have to decide whether to continue working here and give all of the best qualities you have to offer as an employee to help fulfill the interests of the company at large while demanding you sublimate your own interests of moving up in the company, being financially rewarded for your efforts or having any sane reason for wanting to work even harder to make the company a success.
So ladies. Would you still work for the CEO of ZoneBuddy Inc?
[UPDATED with a Legend:]
[you = me]
[CEO/boss = my LJBF/almost FWB]
[the 'company' = an relationship as a sexual couple]
[bag lady = one night stand]
[female cashier = fwb]
[leggy stewardess = hunky alpha boyfriend]
[paycheck = reciprocal reparation of male needs for fulfilling female needs as prescribed by the imperative]
I’m sure everyone by now understands what this parable is. As part of my Growing Up Beta series, what i actually did above is chronicle the torture and agony i endured as a NiceGuy™ being too weak and feeble to get out of ‘the zone’. One need only change up the genders in this story to be able to apply it to me. I was the employee, my friend was the CEO. SecureGateLock was my marriage.
Now i can certainly understand why my ex-friend-with-would-be-benefits would be upset that i no longer wished to be her platonic emotional tampon considering the rock, the shoulder, the one who was always there for her suddenly pulled up roots and left, but that is irrelevant as it is not for me to fall on my sword and continue to help keeping her life running smoothly and happily while refusing to reciprocate and provide for me what i needed most. Economically speaking.. financial recompense. IE. Sexual intimacy and feminine nurturing.
She was at the height of her sexual power and certainly knew how to keep me floating around her orbit again and again until i finally called her on it. I had no power at the beginning, and was easy to keep under her heel by doling out just enough wiles and sob stories to keep me hooked. As my power grew, i was granted the ability to break the friendzone.
Thanks to the internet, the sphere, inner game.. i finally grew a pair, laughed in the face of a massive guilt trip, one last attempt to shame me back into the friend box and walked away breathing the free air.
Better late than never.