Thursday, November 22, 2007
To Be or Not To Be
I can’t seem to choose between two career options. Is it better to be shut in alone all day in a walled room or to be in the midst of warm, dynamic bodies that all seem perpetually geared towards conflict? The former encapsulates my life now as an online writer. The latter is an approximation of my past work as a human resources officer.
As an online writer I do not get prolonged significant human interaction unless you count swapping occasional emoticons interacting. Other than writing I have little else to do than to breed bad breath bacteria, look for ghostly apparitions on my white wall and count how many scab-infested dogs pass by my window.
As a former HR officer there were just so many humans to handle that I just couldn’t please everybody. That made me an automatic target for intrigue. The prestige, interaction and excitement were all there but so were dagger stabs behind my back and whispered assumptions about the color of my underwear and the nature of my relationship with every single new male employee.
So which is a better option?
I once thought I preferred to work in the field of corporate HR. My peers often warn me though that intrigue and relationship conflicts are almost always present in Filipino-run offices. It’s as if we can’t live without our daily serving of gossip and bashing. You’ve got to constantly learn to play in a bloody rugby match if you hope to survive in a Filipino office.
I remember that my husband once had a Japanese superior who was perplexed over the Filipino office culture. He asked why Filipino employees got mad at him or took things to heart when they got scolded for work-related errors. He also asked why we Filipinos need employee manuals, rules and regulations to elicit exemplary work performance and behavior. In his company in Japan, there are no manuals, no gossip and no intrigue. They just work and get paid for it.
I would have gotten off well with the Japanese but I am not Japanese so I would have to choose between getting hit by rotten tomatoes everyday or gradually rotting myself.