The day I ended up in a hospital many years ago, I thought it was my time to die. When I woke up after my surgery, I was grateful to medical staffs for their efforts and care, but at the same time, I wished I did not have to live my life at that point. The reason for that was because I was in a depressing situation in many aspects. I was laid off during the time of housing bubble collapse which triggered an economic recession. I was betrayed by a few who I thought were my friends, and I had a sizeable debt without money and a job.
During this period of confusion and uncertainty, my white brother from another mother suggested me to read a book by Jim Collins titled Good to Great. He told me that I was in a predicament of Stockdale Paradox which was a story about a POW. Fortunately, I understood the message he was trying to convey. I took that lesson seriously and I started to chip away my obstacles at that time one after another. It was not an easy process. Slowly but surely, I was able to get out of my debt and put myself in a much better living situation physically, mentally, and financially. Then I started to wonder what I could have done differently to avoid terrible situations I had just gone through. I thought working for a known Fortune 500 corporation was the answer to my question.
Eventually, I was hired by a reputable Fortune 500 company. Naively, I thought my quality of hard work and work ethic will solve everything when it came to promotions and etc. While my compensation was better than other competing companies, but after 6 years of service, I decided to resign and look for other opportunities about a year before the Covid-19 pandemic. The job security and benefits were solid for the most part, but I did not know and expect that some incompetent two-faced morally rotten actors/actresses would use job security, promotions and benefits as a bargaining chip to abuse and exploit the system and employees for their personal gains. I have never seen so much corruption and so many violations. I am not a perfect text book role model or a saint sent from heaven by all means, but it was too stressful and toxic to keep going and be around connivers regardless of money and job security. As a matter of fact, I remembered the last day I walked out of that company for good. It was one of my happiest moments in my life. I have never smiled so much knowing that I never have to interact and work with them ever again.
I have worked in all stages of companies from start-up and medium sized national companies to a big multi-national corporation. Each company setting brought different set of challenges and moving parts, but one thing remained the same: the nature of self-preservation. It is a basic human instinct that enables morally corrupted or greedy incompetent individuals to justify their misdeeds and existences. In past few years, I was able to have conversations with many individuals from all walks of life and various professions. From the VP of a known medical company to a corporate office manager of a known international franchise, I was blessed to have conversations with so many intelligent individuals with extensive experiences and wisdoms and reaffirmed my decision to resign.
There is nothing wrong with working for big corporations. There is always something to learn whether business related or not. However, if I knew what was going to happen during those 6 years, I would not have even bother to apply and join. As I got older, I realized the time is much more valuable than money. I can lose money and make it back or more, but I cannot go back in time and take a different route. Though my income for the time being has decreased since my last resignation, I still believed it was the right decision for my well-being in the long run.
Following story, The Fiend, The Rapist & The Gold Digger, is a cautionary tale inspired by a true story in a Fortune 500 corporation. While not everyone will experience the exact same type of environment and characters in it, but you will most likely encounter similar situations with identical human behaviors. This first story will give you some insights and lessons that can assist you with career choices and life decisions. Only if the school taught and warned me about the things I have learned the hard way in this jungle habitat……
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This is dedicated to everyone who was down from day one.
This story was written with heavy influences by my brethren, RJ (R.I.P.), and many nights in Pacific Ocean; feeling trembles and listening to fighter jets landing and taking off.