When it comes to career happiness and success, it isn’t just about the specific job that you’re doing. Where you’re working is equally important. If you hate the culture of your employer, you’re simply not going to be happy, regardless of how much you love your job. On the flip side, if you mesh well with the culture, you’ll feel more comfortable and secure, and do a better job as a result.
When it comes to workplace cultures, large corporations and small businesses seem to be on the opposite ends of the spectrum. A corporation is always professional, and generally performs “by-the-book”. Corporate culture, on the other hand, in essence, comes down to the way that things are done within the corporation. However, in reality, there’s so much more to it than just that.
Corporate culture includes a shared set of values and beliefs that are embraced by everyone within the company. These values and beliefs are reflected in the company’s human resources, from performance programs to the ways that projects are coordinated. It even goes right down to the way that meetings are conducted.
Having said all of this, working in a corporate environment comes with many pros and cons. They may include the following:
Making a difference
Working in a corporate environment will teach you that making a difference translates into more than just sales. You’ll learn that your job is not just about listening to what the client wants, but instead, to sell them as many products as possible. And, if you fail at that task, you will be required to pester them on a regular basis until they finally sign on the dotted line. A job in the corporate world will teach you to make a difference in unexpected ways.
Work : life balance is doable
It has been argued that if you want to succeed in the corporate world, you’ll have to forget about the life part of the work : life balance. However, if you do this, there’s simply no balance! Your contract may state that your hours are 9-5, but in reality, homework is always required. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll have no life. As long as you’re able to demonstrate your willingness to occasionally give up your life for the greater good of the company, you’re all set. Sending emails from home late at night or on weekends is enough to show your commitment. Between the hours of 10-11pm will show your dedication best, but never forget to copy your boss in on the emails!
This is probably one of the most important aspects of survival in corporate world. If you want to be successful in the corporate hierarchy, you will need to spend a large proportion of your working time completing work created by your boss so that he/she can justify their own existence within the corporation. This work is usually completely irrelevant to the larger good of the company, but it is a perfect way of helping you keep your job, especially if you are able do this work as if it was more important than what you were employed to do. And if you can do it with a smile on your face, then even better!
No room for kindness
There’s no room whatsoever for kindness in the corporate world. If you live by the principle of treating people how you would like to be treated, then you’ll need to leave that principle at home. In a corporate world, you will need to display selfishness, narcissism and a willingness to walk all over whoever you can in your rise up the corporate ladder.
Expected ability to be able to look into the future
A crystal ball will come in very handy, especially if you work in a sales environment. In sales, you’re expected to know exactly what you will be selling weeks in advance, and the ability to look into the future, however, is not something that corporations will teach you. It’s something you’ve got to teach yourself!
Smile or die!
If you want to succeed and survive in the corporate context, you are required to remain positive at all times. In fact, this is by far more important than any skills or intelligence. You may actually be better off if you leave your intelligence at home, because questioning the status quo is a big no-no in the corporate world. You are not employed to think; you are employed to do whatever you get told to do! As frustrating as it will be, keeping a positive attitude with big smiles throughout each day is essential in order to survive in the corporate world.
Your colleagues will constantly be on the lookout for any mistakes that you make. And when they find any, they’ll be quick to point them out and email you as well your boss about the mistake. If it’s a really bad mistake, your boss may even receive a phone call. You’ll constantly need to try and earn brownie points from your peers.
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