Everybody strives to become “someone”. It is enough for many people that they are considered “someone” by their families, partners, and children. For others, it is not enough, and to feel good, they want to be “someone” to the world as well. Many can reach this position, so plenty of people are satisfied with their notoriety. In business, however, increasing numbers of managers have this need to be “someone” in a certain business group, often in certain people’s eyes.
The tragedy of life
There are two questions: why and when businesspeople reach the point that they care about almost nothing else except whether they are acknowledged. A lot of businesspeople are hampered by this compulsion for recognition. They already start thinking about becoming someone at the beginning of their careers, so they want to catch everybody’s attention and earn professional recognition. They often build empires, own successful businesses, or belong to the group of people targeted by headhunters; however, they are discontent. Attention-seeking is constantly present in their careers, and as they become older, it becomes increasingly ridiculous. Of course, attention-seeking managers are not aware of it, so it keeps destroying their chances, image, and they become desperate sooner or later. I guess you know the saying that if we want something too badly, we will never get it. Actually, that is not true in every case. The process does not work like this in the case of businesspeople either. In general, they are deliberate people who reach their goals. I mean, their realistic goals. They fail when they set unrealistic goals because they are doomed from the start. Such failure characterises proactive people. They are usually communicative, dynamic, and creative; however, it is not enough for them. They believe that if they are capable of anything, can influence others, and talk people’s heads off, then they can also be outstanding professionals. They are the ones who disregard their skills and destine themselves to eternal failure. They want to be the “vanguard” of a certain profession so much that they lose their self-assessment skill. What is more, they reach their initial success by influencing others, and while acting like great professionals, they do not even realise that they are the ones being influenced. When they are not that interesting anymore, they are set aside. At that point, they are neither creative, nor do they have good communication skills. They are just employees who have lost their edge.
The neighbour’s garden
We often hear it from managers, and it is a generational trend, that nothing is more important than being someone. It is interesting, because people belonging to the Diplomat Generation – born between 1973 and 1984 – think about leaving their footprint behind in the world after building up their careers. They get down to business by risking their earned incomes, and they can only play vulnerable roles. Why is it so? Because they always want to come up with an outstanding professional solution, as they are completely aware that they are incapable of it. A real professional is always needed for it, but of course, they think that the professional is easily influenced, so they will be associated with the professional’s success. It is often true; however, they forget that professionals are professionals because they have the professional knowledge, so the “mutually built” global invention will remain in their hands. Even if they do not want to shout it from the rooftops, the vulnerability will be there. The other generation with a mania for “ being someone” is the Ambitionist Generation – born between 1985 and 1996 – who cannot even wait to build something like the older generations did. They already want to be someone at the beginning of their careers. It seals their fate in business. They want businesspeople to think about them as “real partners” so much that they do not even realise that they keep decreasing their potential partners’ level until they get the desired acknowledgement. It is a trait with which it is hard to live, as it constantly starves the person possessing it, and it poses a permanent threat to a career built up through hard work. However, we are human because we can control our instincts. To do so, we need to employ our intelligence and humility.