One of the most profound statements I have heard regarding employer-employee relationship is the one that says, ‘Just as your employer has the right to decide who to hire, you also have the right to decide who to work for.’ I heard this from Reverend Sam Adeyemi, a teacher and entrepreneur whose practical and simple teachings have helped several people start, grow and watch businesses succeed! Many people hardly ever imagine that they can choose who to work for or who not to work for because they think the most important thing is about making money and being able to pay your bills!
When you work to make money and just be able to pay your bills, you will be able to take all the rubbish going on in the work place and call it endurance. If you have no other option like business you can fall back on or a skill that makes you relevant to other organizations then you will be stuck with an employer and the employer will also take undue advantage of you. You will also get to a level where the employer tells you he or she is keeping you because of pity. The employer claims he or she knows you have nowhere to go to and threatens to fire you every now and then. I think you should first be self-confident, be flexible and develop other skills such that no employer can make you feel like you do not have any other place to go!
There are employers who really need you but they will never admit that they really need you and that something can go wrong if you decide to leave their organization. They will never talk about the good things you do and how you have become relevant to their organization. They only talk about the mistakes you make and always capitalize on that to intimidate you. Sometimes, from experience, it has become clear that some employers only talk about the things that have gone wrong rather than the things you are doing so well so that you will not have the guts to ask for a raise.
So many employees that continued to stay in places where employers are abusing them and taking undue advantage of them but they have forgotten or don’t even know that you have the right to decide who you work for and who you do not work for! In all of these, remember I said you have to be flexible and must have skills that make you relevant to other businesses! You should not also say that you are being intimidated when you are not doing anything within the organization! If you have no meaningful contribution to the organization it is best you leave and go to an organization where you can be properly engaged and you will do something that helps you learn and improve. Don’t wait for someone to tell you that you are redundant in the organization or you are not a key player. It may not be any fault of yours that you are not really doing anything within the organization. Sometimes it could be that job roles are not properly defined or interpreted or that there is no job description at all!
I have already talked about having a contract but I must say again that you need to be wary of employers who employer without a job description. The implication of that could that you are expected to draw up your own job description or you are expected to do ‘anything’ you are told to do.
Never forget that the employee-employer relationship is a contract between two people where both parties have obligations. It is never a slave kind of relationship and you should not let it become one! You can choose who you work for just as the employer can decide on who to hire rather than just staying in an organization, take all the insults, be pushed here and there and still be fired! Some people also go through this because their confidence level is low. Raise your level of confidence without necessarily getting into a confrontation! Don’t always see yourself as the one at the receiving end and make it look like your boss is doing you a favour! You are rendering a service and he is only paying for your service!
Surviving the corporate politics requires some skills and one of them is to always remember that your boss has a right to decide who to hire and you have a right to decide who to work for! Fola Daniel Adelesi
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