Being a Travel Agent, Expat Life in Dubai

Day 124 of 363 blog post challenge: Bruised egos.

May 15, 2012

Earlier today, I had a fight with one of my managers. It’s not really a new thing for me to be having an argument with my superiors but the fight earlier was so stupid as it started off from something so petty. So petty that I didn’t even thought it would end up that way. For those of you who have been following my blog or knows me very well, you’ll realize that I have this “stand up for what is right” personality. I have much respect to the authorities (superiors) but if I think what you did was wrong, I will say it to you, no matter what position you hold. I believe that if I don’t stand up for what I think is right or what I believe in, then who will?

So anyway, it all started when a project was given to us to do a short presentation of 3 powerpoint slides about a certain destination that we’d probably be more likely to sell to our customers. I know, it sounds like we’re in school but it was requested by the management so we did it. An agent somehow ended up sending 9 slides for her presentation and she got a lot of good praises from the manager who initiated this project – how her presentation was very detailed and how informative it was, which I think was really crazy. Well technically, if this was a competition, that entry should be automatically disqualified because the mechanics/rules of the game was not followed. So I called up some other agents who were asked to do that and asked them how many slides did they do and they all answered back 3. On top of that, they were all very upset as well because the manager was not being fair to us as it was clearly mentioned on her email that she only requires 3 powerpoint slides so we had to fit all of the information she requested in those 3 slides. And because I can’t keep my mouth shut, I replied to her email:

Hi [insert name of manager here],

Good afternoon.

You have requested for us to do a powerpoint presentation with 3 slides and that’s probably why most of us were not able to be more specific or detailed in it.

Thank you,

Next thing I know, she was walking up to my desk asking me to meet her once I’m done dealing with my passenger (with a very grim look on her face). I called her instead on her phone since I couldn’t leave the counter as most of my colleagues were on lunch at the time, she immediately told me: “I didn’t like what you did. That will be the first and last time that you will speak to me like that. You have no right to correct your line manager!!! If you have a problem with me, then tell it to me personally. Don’t send an email copied to everybody!”

At that point, I was dumbfounded as I didn’t think I said anything wrong to her. I tried to reason out but she kept cutting me in the middle of my sentence and is clearly not allowing me to speak. She went on and on and on that at some point, I was no longer listening to her because she was very furious and her words were all jumbled up. I tried to explain to her that I was not correcting her, I was merely pointing out that if it was mentioned to us that we can do more than 3 slides for our presentation then we could have done the same thing. I also tried to tell her that I didn’t mean to offend her, it was not my intention to offend her. I was just merely stating a fact. She was fuming mad and I don’t think she heard any of the things I said as she kept on interrupting me.

Anyhoots, here’s what I really think. First off, she’s not even my line manager and even if she is, she’s not supposed to say that a staff is not supposed to correct her plainly because she’s a manager. What now, a person no longer commits mistakes when they become a manager? Isn’t it that to be a good manager you should be open to constructive criticism? Isn’t it that to be a good manager you should listen to your staff’s concerns and motivate them? Isn’t it that to be a good manager you should support an open communication with your subordinates? And isn’t it that to be a good manager you should possess emotional maturity to cope with frustration, disappointment and stress? Second, I was not even rude in my email, why was she so offended by it? Lastly, she sent her email copied to everyone so I just replied back to her the same way. I was appalled by her reaction so I informed my superiors in our own line of department. Apparently, they already aired out the same concern to her (the 3 slides thing) before I even sent an email and I was assured by one of my superiors that I did not do/say anything wrong so I don’t have to worry about anything. Not that I’m worried but WOW, all that for a simple 3-slide presentation? 🙂

After the big hoohaa over the phone, the manager replied to my email with a totally different tone. She was friendly, praised my presentation and was even joking about it – but of course the email was also copied to everyone. That’s another thing that I hate, two-faced people.

Well, if I suddenly lose my job or my ass got kicked all the way to the Philippines – let it be known that there is a possibility that it’s because of a 3-slide powerpoint presentation. 🙂

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No Comments

  • Reply shie May 16, 2012 at 10:03

    somebody is in dire need of seminar on leadership and management skills..tsk tsk :p

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