Social Meetings at Work

I hate social meetings at work. I hate these meetings because they are supposed to be semi-hemi-voluntary, but in truth they are almost always mandatory.

I hate meetings because they are the management’s favourite soft command and control tool. In fact, meetings are the management’s idea of having fun at the expense of staff’s mental sanity.

These social gatherings where people – in direct competition to one another – are supposed to play nice with one another, are an export brought to you by and from the corporate world.

These social get-togethers are akin to herding a starved trio of wildlife beasts into a cage: a tiger, a bear, and a lion. Normally, these wild animals would shred each other to bits, but in this case you get to change the rules of engagement.

You make the animals obey this seminal rule of in-cage protocol: no biting while the overseer is watching. But all bets are off when he/she turns their back to the demonic cage.

And of course, the moment they do that, mayhem ensues. And in truth, this is exactly what happens in real life with people. As soon as the boss diverts their attention elsewhere, the people in the social gathering ‘cage’ start vying for the pole position. They try to find out as much as possible about the competition. And of course, they use what is said to their own advantage.

Appearances can be deceiving. In fact, they often are. Your colleagues are not your friends. What they are, however, is your direct competition. Think about that next time you blabber your big fat mouth about anything and everything. Note how little smart people tell you about themselves. Information is ammunition. The moment you play nice, they shoot you. You play stupidly too long, you end up shot up. Even the worst shot will get you if you give them enough ammo.

That being said, I have decided to find a way to excuse myself from such devious means of subversive manipulation. This stuff looks and feels as if it was copied and pasted from the KGB field manual of operations.

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