OUTLOOK — By Majed Al Sulaimany —
Ø Don't ever take away someone's hope — it maybe all they have to hold on to! — In sayings: Orchids and Thoughts for This Moment.
Ø If you cannot help someone — do not make any false promises — nor try to destroy his hopes! — Anon
There is nothing so mean and dastardly as trying to destroy someone's life, hopes, dreams and aspirations by imposing your own standards and values on them, even if they are peculiar and lack the coherence, ethics, principles and professionalism, let alone in humanity and human values!
A long time ago when my late father was still alive he cautioned us about asking important and famous people for any help or assistance. Even if they can, just by lifting a phone, solve all your problems — like a magic wand! If you need help, the old man added, go pray to your Lord but do not forget to tie your camel while you do so. That is, trying your level best to help yourself first as best as you can, because God always helps those who help themselves!
Also, the Lord likes it when you ask him. With human beings the more you ask the more you lose your respect, value and reputation. You end up being avoided and considered as trouble and an embarrassment, especially to those who have just had come into riches and who have climbed up the social ladder!
Some years ago a young local girl had applied for a job as an executive secretary. What mystified me was that the girl had just graduated in Engineering from our own University. Secondly, she did not have any secretarial experiences. So I was very much interested to know why she was applying for this job now and had called her for an interview. Then she told me her sad state of life: her father was blind and her mother disabled, she was the eldest and the only hope left for her family.
She was not getting any engineering or technical jobs as she was not experienced. Nobody was giving her a break because she was a woman and secondly as she came from the Interior she would have to go back home during the weekends. What really perturbed me was that she was sadly lamenting that nobody from our own was coming forward to help her when she needed the help most!
So as the East Africans say — I carved (cut) my face! That is I went to my American CEO and I told him about the sad case. Initially, he was casual but when he realised that I was dead serious he relented and the girl got a sort of best-fit technical job that we could offer at that time! The question is, with due apologies, how many people will do this?
Once my then British CEO had called to see if I could help a gardener within the rules and regulations of the company. The gardener, who was watering this big tree near a reserved management parking, greeting the CEO as he parked his car and asked him in his broken English: “This tree now big — I still small!” Making gestures and signals he indicated that had planted the tree which had grown this big after many years but his salary had not changed much! This made the CEO feel very self-conscious and guilty and he asked me if there was any way we could help him?
It surprised me a lot as to why the CEO had come to me instead of going to my senior bosses? I guess he knew what he was doing! Soon after the man was promoted after I showed the CEO how it could be done without breaking any rules and regulations but bending it a little bit! The day the man was promoted he cried uncontrollably. That was his only job promotion in over 12 years! A year or so later the poor man died!
When my consultancy was dying, like a man sick with cancer, I went around to all the VIPs I knew but each one turned his backs at me. One of them told me point blank that he is not in my line of business and another that I write a full and detailed report for him on my status quo and then he will look at it! In actual fact, whenever he saw me at social functions he pretended not to see me and whenever I had called him he never answered. Once I used another number he did not know but he again
curtly said I am still looking at it and hung up! That is why it is called curving up your face!
Sometimes in life we are lost as to why things take a very bad turn in our lives and we suffer bad things and lose that is which is most near and dear to us. What we forget is the bad things that we do to others! Or as the saying goes: that what goes around comes around! It may take time and years and then one day you get hit — by your own actions or inactions! Everybody is responsible for what one does or does not do in one's life!
People will only remember you fondly by what you have done and especially your contributions towards assistance and help to others. Because if you are not kind to your fellow human being in need how can you expect the good Lord to be kind, merciful and compassionate to you in your grave and the Day of Reckoning? We need to look into this very deeply and in self-consciousness reflect and review and act upon one's life dealings, pursuits and focuses.
May the Lord protect and preserve us all — Amin.