Friday, December 3, 2010

Enemies at work have me thinking about what lies over the next hill

So, I had coffee this morning with a couple of guys in my company MIS/IT group. They told me point-blank that I have made some powerful enemies inside the company. The fingered two particularly ambitious individuals who like to grab projects that yield face time with two of the big-wigs in our company. I was warned by a mutual friend that I would *_not_* be in the survivor's circle at this moment were it not for other friends looking out for me.

There were some surprises in the story they told, but I was not surprised by the main jist of the story. I have been well aware of the actions of these two malefactors since the early days when I first joined this particular firm. I never play politics. I am not into revenge strikes. I never seek face time. I do not take extraordinary measures to climb the corporate ladder. I never talk about my coworkers except in a friendly joking manner. People always know I am joking. I make sure of that.

I'm a good Virgo. I like to keep to myself, and handle my work quietly and in peace. As such, I have never taken counter measures against these two agents. I probably never will. Still, I find it surprising they believe acquiring my projects would yield them face-time with the bosses, helping their ambitions. Certainly, I have never gotten face time out of it. On the other hand, I have never tried to gain face time, or even wanted to try.

In most cases, these kinds of malefactors come to bad ends. Unwarranted aggression is usually frowned upon in the business world. Turf grabbers usually spook their co-workers. This starts rumblings. Usually, the guys at the very top are not stupid. On the contrary, they are quite intelligent. It doesn't take them long to figure out what is really happening under the hood. Malefactors are usually encouraged to move on.

That doesn't seem to be happening here. After three years, you have to wonder how the two malefactors persist in their ways, and persist in this company at the same time. I have to say, I am pretty dog-gone tired by now. Three years is enough. It's a dreadful thing to have an enemy; especially an unwarranted enemy. It makes it hard to come to work motivated. I am still not sure of what I ever did to wind up on their mutual hit-list. Most folks around the office consider me a pretty easy-going, likable guy. Perhaps that makes me appear to be a lolly-pop; an easy sucker for the take-down? What do you think?

I'm not a greedy, clingy, terrified little dude who hangs on for dear life. If an environment becomes poisoned by take-down artists, I usually accept this as a moment to move on and see what is over the horizon, on the other side of the mountain. Why fight? .NET Developer jobs are not usually scarce. A new job can be had, and often at a pay raise. The only difficulty is that I don't know if that can happen in this economic environment.

All of this makes me wonder what lies over that next hill. I don't intent to defend myself in this situation. Whenever I have been let go in the past, usually as a contractor, it has opened up a much more glorious field of opportunity in the future. Change is a scary thing, especially in this environment, but change is usually a positive thing. With a couple of spectacular exceptions, I have usually found that the grass is greener on the other side of that next hill. Certainly, entering a new company--a pure technology company--which is free of any political enemies would be a wonderful thing for me. Still, who knows if this opportunity lies out there for me now...

About a month or so ago, when these two were celebrating birthdays, I took a look at their charts and their synastry levels with me. What I found was quite shocking in some ways, and not surprising in others. First, there was a high sexual attraction between them and me (257 and 148 respectively). I found that shocking, especially since the 257 is a male Libra. I discovered this by clicking the wrong option (force of habit). The 148 is a female Scorpio. On other hand, I also found aggression scores of 387 and 450 respectively, with the female Scorpio showing higher aggression. That did not surprise me. I did not need the computer to tell me that there was considerable aggression in this case. That is all I sense when they are around: aggression.

Over these past three (3) years, I have noted the two of them (possibly) initiating rapprochements with me on one or two occasions. I never took the bait. There was a lot of suspicion. Once an unwarranted enemy, always under suspicion. No one ever gets off the suspect list. Once a suspect, always a suspect. Perhaps that is my big failing in this case. By never allowing anyone off the suspect list, I probably promote the continuation of these things. Should I have take the bait? Would taking the bait have lead to much greater problems? I just don't know.

Complicating the matter further is the fact that my brother scores a 488 in sexual attraction vs. the Scorpio. She is his 7th hottest potential match up in his life, and he is her 5th hottest possible match up in her lifetime. It is a totally typical Scorpio-Pisces hookup. They score incredibly high against each other. There is very little aggression between Ben and this Scorpio. Moreover, my brother is coming to LA-LA land for the holidays. His rock-n-roll band is on hiatus during the month of December.

Do you see the bind that I am in? I would like to introduce the two of them, as it could be a good thing for both of them. I always like to do nice things for people, and keep my ego out of the equation. Still, I am a little bit bitter about this latest incident. I am feeling a little disinclined to be nice right now.

A war-strategist would see this as an opportunity to flip the Scorpio to my side of the fence. The problem is that I have serious compunctions against using sexual politics in the office, and my brother as an instrument of that policy. Further, do I want to flip the Scorpio to my side of the fence? Does this sound appealing to you? Do I want a 450 aggression score on my side of the fence? You know I am not a Scorpio kind-of-a-guy.

On the other hand, I seem to recall the great Theravadan Buddhist Monk Thick Nah Tan, giving a discourse on the enlightened ways of Bodhisattva. I like that guy a lot. He described how enlightened beings would turn the other cheek, as Jesus would say, in the face of aggression. "In return for each act of violence", he said, "an enlighten one would offer the offender a flower." It's tough to maintain aggression in face of that kind of kindness. An engineer would describe this approach as implementing a mechanical circuit breaker.

So, do I attempt to throw a mechanical circuit breaker in there?

I don't know... I am going to have to give it some thought, and see how the river flows. Maybe I will introduced the two of them, and then see what color the grass is on the other side of the next hill. Maybe that is the best plan of action for renewal. Right now I am thinking about turning the page, and seeing what happens in the next chapter.