A piece of advise that I always give to first week fresh graduates is: “Its not always about you.”
What the hell does it mean? read on..
Fresh graduates, from the day you were born until your graduation day, the major theme of your life is “Me!” ; every decision you make mostly will be about you yourself, or about your family or neighborhood. Even if you claimed that you do something big for the world by doing CSR or making newest technology for people in the world, you always start to begin everything with you at the centre of your life (I am not talking about religion here, please don’t go to the discussion about God at the centre of your life..)
One thing that you need to realize when you want to join professional world is : You sell Yourself to the company! — its not slavery or you sell your freedom or something. But you do sell your potential to company, you do pick the company who can help you grow and learn about bigger world, you do sell your skills to help the company grow as well.
So the first day when you decide to join a professional , please consciously remind yourself: BE PROFESSIONAL!!
What does it mean to be professional? it means.. Don’t take everything personally. Its not always about you.
I give you one example…
On your very first few weeks.. Normally you will be assigned to meet some people, some more senior people- whom you don’t know. You need to meet them, either to get on board or get some datas, or following up several things.
When you come to them, there are so many scenarios that can happen, including this:
You try to catch them up somewhere between their meetings, you come to their desk, and when you try to speak to them, they seems very busy and you wait beside their desk while you gather all of your gut to speak to them : “Excuse Ma’am/Sir, my name is ……..; I am new intern and I need your time to…..” there is a chance that they are staring at you and directly ask : “Ya?” with the rolling eyes and say “Can’t speak now” with ignorance and staring back their desktop/laptop.
And there is bigger chance to feel ruined at that time. You often feel unappreciated or you feel small and nothing compare to their job or you try to think what you did wrong until they treated you that way.
Don’t take it personally, at that point of time.. its the right time to think: “its not about me; they are facing tough days or they are finishing urgent items.”
You will face this kind of events more and more often. Sometime you feel the proposal you made is not appreciated, or no one really hear you, or you are treated unfair. Well, it is an organization, don’t expect it to be as warm as your family, don’t expect it give you a free lunch everyday your whole life.
I am not trying to say that all companies are cold or cruel, it is just the way it is. It will make any decisions that it thinks best for the business in longer terms; just like us. So don’t take it personally, don’t infiltrate everything to your heart or life. Its not about you, its professional world.