When all you know is lack

When all you know is lack, you only have one weapon in your arsenal – hard work

And it’s unfortunately not enough. When you have been raised in an environment where all you know is lack. The only thing that is in your control is hardwork, not networks, not strategy but plain hard work.

When you have the humiliation of being a charity case, wearing people’s hand me downs, you make certain vows.

  1. You will help others who have gone through what you did. Most of the kinds of organizations that people who come from lack go for are charity organizations, with no concepts of funding except to ask for help. The thought of asking your beneficiaries for money seems wrong but churches and big businesses do it all the time.
  2. You learn that you never get the best but take what you can get. So you never negotiate your salary, you are willing to take anything that you are given because you are so used to the ‘beggars are not choosers mentality’ that you don’t realize that you are no longer a beggar. That you bring something to the table now and should be rewarded accordingly.
  3. All you know is an environment of scarcity and lack. That becomes your worldview. When naming your salary or prices for your services, you ask from a point of view of scarcity. You always undercharge.
  4. Any help you are offered feels like going back to the days of being a charity case. So you don’t ask for help. You don’t ask when you don’t know. You don’t delegate when you have subordinates. You don’t speak up when your plate is too full. You are suspicious of people who want to help you. Generous helpful people might wrongfully experience you as arrogant.
  5. You are always working hard. You leave last in the office. Yet you don’t get promoted because you are not strategic about what you work on
    and you are not leveraging the power of networks and relationships to help you move forward. People experience you as not being a team player.

Different results require a different strategy.

Published by Busisiwe Hlatswayo

MBA (Henley), Career Coach and Founder Black Women in the workplace www.blackwomenintheworkplace.com

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