When I Broke into Tears in the Meeting Room!


In one of my previous jobs, I was supporting Enterprise Application for a big enterprise. I was responsible to ensure that all critical issues are resolved in time. I was liaising with Technical teams and their management.

One thing, which I did really well, was proactively managing issues. However, while managing issues, I haven’t considered people. I haven’t realised that my communication is breaking relationships. Technical Teams were increasingly frustrated due to my constant ‘push and pull’ for prioritising and fixing my issues. I put every effort to test the quality of the fixes I receive from Technical teams. Immediately, I report all issues back to Technical teams complaining the quality of fixes. I was working long hours and developed emotional connection with the job.

Soon things blown up! I received a call from my manager. I followed her to the meeting room. She complained how upset Technical Teams are dealing with me. I tried to explain my perspective. How hard I am working! How much effort I put into testing each of the fixes! However, all of this meant nothing to my manager. I was unable to control my emotion. I broke into tears! The whole situation became very ugly. Somehow, I manage to get out of the meeting room.

I consider this incident as very important for my professional life. I have learnt few very important lessons from it. These lessons have served me well to date:

  • Relationships are important than Tasks – If you are breaking relationships by delivering high quality deliverables, then you cannot go too far. If you are developing good relationships with average (or even sub-standard) deliverables, then you will have reasonably secured employment. However, if you develop strong relationships and deliver high quality deliverable then you will excel.
  • Emotional connection to your job often works against you – It is another form of attachment, like all other attachments, it often hurts.
  • Management focus is often different then we generally think– Your management does not care how long you work. Your management cares about harmony within teams with some attention on deliverables
  • Always watch yourself – Keep an eye on yourself. Take a break before burning yourself!
  • Receiving critical feedback can be challenging – It hurts your pride, self-esteem and ego. Have a strategy in place to receive critical feedback.

What is your experience on this topic. Please share your thoughts!

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