Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Panda Bear and the Corporate Politics Games

The Panda Bear has not read the book nor seen the movie The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  However, the Panda Bear has been hearing alot about The Hunger Games because of the movie that is due to come out in the US on March 23.

Also,  recently, The Panda Bear has heard people complaining about office politics.   The Panda firmly believes that to be a modern manager in these difficult times one has to have a mean streak and be willing to step on people to get things done and to advance one's self.   The Panda Bear hears about offices where there are going to be layoffs in offices where no one knows who is going to let go and who will stay.   It sounds like a reality show where some people are going to are going to be sent off an island but no one knows who it will be and everybody is trying to safeguard their own position.   The Panda Beat herself has experience something TV reality show like when she and a coworker were told to get their projects out ASAP but they need to use the same piece of office equipment.   This is an example of an office situation where office workers are pitted against each other an the nice one will finish last.

Therefore, the Panda Bear is daydreaming about writing a novel call the Corporate Politics Games.   In this novel my heroine whom I will call Jane has risen to the mid-level of a corporation by being savvy, smart and hard working.   She applies and gets into a program where the worker who survive the training program will be a candidate for top management in the company including CEO.   If they fail, they loose their jobs in the corporation.

Jane thinks this is a legitimate training program.   However, she soon finds out that to go past a certain level in the corporation one has to learn to play dirty politics.   While this does not involve killing people, it involves cheating people and making them miserable.  It involves breaking the law and not getting caught.   As bosses they learn how to make their workers extremely unhappy but still want to stay and function in their jobs.   They have to learn to steal other people's ideas and convince other people it was their own idea.   These trainees have to learn to do fuzzy math and hide things from the auditors.   These trainees learn how to make others take the heat for their mistakes/misdeeds.   Jane has to learn such skills and getting people to help and then dropping them in a hurtful manner when she gets to a certain level while making sure that these people don't turn on her.   In addition, she has to make sure make sure no one stabs her in the back.   It is a step or be stepped on kind of world.The philosophy behind the program is that one does everything one can to succeed but don't get caught.

Jane does have a conscience but she also is ambitious and enjoys the rewards of her "success".   Also as she gets further in the "training" program she finds it harder to drop out.    She fears that if she drops out her misdeeds will get exposed, she will have lots of enemies without the power of the corporation protecting her.   In addition, she keeps telling herself she is not doing anything that bad-she is not killing people just cheating them.   Furthermore, some of the other trainees are truly heartless and Jane feels that she with some conscience is better than someone totally unprincipled.   Also she is the only woman in the program so she feels it is a victory for women's rights if she succeeds.

The novel has an open ending.   In the end the competition is for the top position is between Jane and Andrew.  Jane is becoming more and more miserable and unable to live with herself.   However, if she drops out, Andrew will get the  top position who is totally ruthless.   Jane herself is also quite ambitious and does not find it easy to walk away from fame and fortune.

Corporate Office Politics is the Panda Bear's first novel in a blog post.   These are novels that the Panda Bear does not have time to write and the novels that the blog reader does not have time to read.

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