Majid Al Suleimany -
WHEN I was 14 years old, I broke my left hand playing football. But you will not believe it now but I was acknowledged as being a good goalkeeper! It was the talk of town — the son of the man Said was a good footballer — he always caught the football from whichever direction they came from and however fast they came! What happened was that one of the football hit the goal post hard — and it was made of heavy pipes. One of the tumbling pipes hit my left hand and it broke into two — just held together by the skin!
One will not believe this. I got a beating from my dad in front of the now angry local doctor who simply could not understand what he was seeing right in front of his eyes — a young boy with a broken hand being beaten up by his father.
But he could not understand my father because he had called us to come back into the house but I had gone on playing past Maghrib (evening) praying time! There was also talk of the place being haunted because you hear your name being called out loud but you could not see the caller!
Anyway, that was my last beating from my late father. As if he had acknowledged his mistake after the local doctor’s reprimand and vowed to himself to never touch this boy again. I never played football after that — in actual fact all sports! However, once I was persuaded to be the football referee — though honestly I did not know much of the football rules. That tells you a lot about people being seen to be in control and in-charge when they simply know nothing about what they are controlling!
There was this big scream from one of the players — Offside! So I blew the whistle. All the 22 people and their supporters surrounded me yelling I did not know what I was doing and that the ball was not offside!
Soon afterwards, I was kicked out because they then realised that I did not know what I was doing! It was a wrong decision by them to put me in this position of authority and control and when I knew nothing about the football rules and what it takes to be a Referee — a position of trust and where people look up at you for guidance and leadership — and you fail them miserably!
It was my duty and responsibility to decline the role, even if it was being forced upon me, because I simply did not know what being a referee meant — and had let down people badly — till they found out all about me in reality and asked me to step down with all my respect and esteem gone.
It took me a long time to realise the realities and truth in life because it is better to decline a position and role I knew nothing about but it was my pride and vanity to continue and assume it — pretending to know things which I did not know anything about!
You will find the same case in life with managers of companies — especially those with little and or marginal education — but they have to demonstrate and show their powers and control by being talented and expert in all the disciplines under them — even if he simply knows nothing about the subjects.
You get such people dictating and instructing the finance manager how to run and do accounts. The Human Resources HR Professional — I mean here the real one expert, consultant and professional — not the ex-PRO promoted to the manager’s position so he can be controlled and dominated on how to run the HR Department. Worse, when he or she interferes in technical and engineering professions or the HSE job aspects — even if he simply does not know anything — but it is his pride and vanity that keeps him going on and on. Never ever will he admit he is ignorant of the subject, especially a few smart alecks from them who know how to use Google Search!
Despite everything happening around us nothing much has changed! All some of these managers know is to show off, insult and ridicule others. Their paramount need always is to control, manipulate, dominate and subdue any voices or attempt to defend oneself or explain ones position!
Two days back I got a very good offer for a consultancy job. It is my habit now to conduct prior research before I take up anything. When I came to realise that he is not much different from the last place I had left, I politely declined.
Frankly, I do need the money for sure and I cannot deny this, but at this age in particular it is the respect and esteem which is more important. Some people handle power and authority badly — and things go into their heads to make them proud, conceited, vain, contemptuous and ridiculing others!
The point is that though I am wearing a dishdasha, I can go to any Western country and despite my age they would welcome me in without any delay because they know what they are getting.
That is why I personally feel that things will never change in the office environment despite all the changes going on around us! People are simply too proud and conceited even to notice that the ground is crumbling down below their own feet!