10 May 2010

The Corporate Ladder - Is it Worth the Climb?

I have been working for nearly 2 decades now. I am beginning to feel the wear and tear of working donkey years in the corporate scene. These past few days have been enlightening and thought-provoking for me as I begin to unravel the realities of my career advancement. Why did I say that? Well, no matter what I do now, I can never seem to please the authorities around me. And why did I say that again? Just hear me out...

I just had an unpleasant performance review recently. I honestly thought that I had improved well in the gray areas highlighted to me by my supervisor during the last performance review. I was confident that this review would merit me a better rating. Imagine my shock when I saw my review. It was completely the opposite of my expectation. Talk about having false hopes! I will no longer go through the nitty-gritty details of the review but to cut the chase, it was not what I wanted to see if I plan to apply for a promotion or career advancement. Simply put, my chances for growth has been stumped.

So, let me get back to my question at hand, is it really worthy to climb the corporate ladder? I know many of you will surely say yes if you are driven by ambition, money, power and motivated by your bosses or for any other personal reasons. However, this is my conclusion on my view as a career woman-mom-wife who has been tied in a bondage for the last 18 years of her life in the cut-throat world we call the Office. NO. Let me say that again, NO, it is not worth the climb for me.

I just realized how blessed I am for having a stress-free life after office hours, a family and a house I can come home to, a daughter who keeps me up on my toes and a husband who still has the time to hear my woes and glee. NO, it is not worth climbing when my drive for success compromises the quality time I spend with my family. NO, it is not worth the climb when my relationship with the people who TRULY matters is affected by the demands of the work force. NO, it is not worth every money I will get if I come home to a daughter who I don't have time to nurture and guide, a husband I will be too tired to take care of, a house I can never clean because of weariness, friends I cannot see and call, activities I have to cancel and life I have to turn my back to. NO, if it means I will spend lesser quality time with the people I love and more time in a place where every dealing is superficial. NO. It is not worth it at all. So, I rescind my dream of any promotion, career growth or a shot at a managerial post because what matters to me is the quality of life I will live when I leave the corporate world. Surely, no amount of money nor company accolades can top that.

I do know that I have far exceeded my Lord's expectation by giving the very best in what I do with the sincerity of my heart. I may not get the promotion I deserve here but in HIS eyes, I am a winner.


  1. Well said Ria! We all have it in us to figure out what our hearts truly desire. You've finally come to a point in your life where you faced the inevitable questions of "Is this really worth it? What really matters to me the most?". The bottom line is no matter how others view and decide on their personal lives is totally up to them, but I know we all have to choose between the two ~ family or career? I'm so so Proud of you Ria!

  2. Several years ago before I was married and had kids, I was the kind of woman who would want to climb up the corporate ladder because, my parents would always say that one has to be a manager or be left by our batchmates who are really doing well. Although the climb I made was difficult, climb it did, I felt empty because i was not really into it. until i met my husband and had kids, things started to change. work was no longer my oxygen, it was no longer an ultimate do or die priority. Because I had my family to take care of, and that is when I discovered how much being a mother fulfilled me. And that's when I decided to take a back seat. My mom would often coax me into applying for another managerial position but i always say No, which my mom could not understand because my siblings are already on top of their careers. My husband encourages me but i have explained to him my side and he understands, which is good. You know you made the right decision when you wake up in the morning and you are driven to cook breakfast for your family not waking up with a headache because you know you are headed for a job that no longer gives you satisfaction. Pray sister! You know the answer lies in that heart of yours...Be happy!

    1. Thanks sis. I'm still here in the corporate world. Still figuring out what to do next....

  3. Hi Ria,

    I have been haunted by this thought for so long now.. In fact, for more than a year now.

    Honestly, I cannot digest the dirty office politics and the greediness of corporate people (slaves)..

    I mean, there should be something more worthy in life than fighting for a certain job title which oftentimes caused stress, relationships and health..

    I can go on and on.. but you are definitely right. It is a BIG no.

    And personally, life is too short to pursue on something that doesn't bring happiness to you and to your loveones...



    1. How are you now Miles? It's been a while...

  4. Very well said Sis! The things that really matters in life are the people that makes us happy and the people who truly embraces us for who we are.

    Let the slave drivers own the corporate world. Just come home feeling the warm hugs and kisses of the people who matters to you :)

    1. I agree sis Rovie. Reading this old post of mine still makes me tear up. To think of the chances I have had to the times when office politics play dirty stuff and yet, I am at peace to know that when I come home at the end of the day, there's my family who showers me with the most important thing in the world for me - love. :)


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