Did you know that for men there is a positive co-relation between their success and their likability?
And for women- it is negative? Basically means that the more successful you are- the less people like you- Because you are successful!
In class on Monday I had a discussion ( well not discussion) more like an educated argument with one of those people- who feel the need to hear the sound of their own voice.
He asked a question that had been discussed during the first portion of our program- And so I asked him" Did you attend the Induction program, because we had treated this issue in detail there" and everyone started laughing.
It was not funny because I was being serious, we are hear to learn and you think it is okay to serenade everyone with your voice but we all have things to do.
And this guy literally said " It is good to be smart, but it is not good to be too smart"
I just hissed.
After the class- Another of my "African brothers" from Malawi said and I quote " You are going to get slapped for challenging your colleagues in class"
Off course I told him off- and said who ever even thinks- Just thinks of raising his hand to touch me because I spoke to him in class- and not out of turn- will get two slaps just for thinking it.
He was shocked and said I should relax- and he is just looking out for me- I said thank you if you want to look out for me, help me with this my methodology and that's how we started talking about the methodology.
I will not delude myself into thinking that being an African (Nigerian) Woman in a male dominated field in an UK is doing me any favors- BUT I will not give anyone room to add any more barriers to my climb.
I am not afraid to make cheeky comments, or to question the authority of the lecturer or to express a varying view especially as I hail from a developing country where I have experienced all the problems that the IMF and the World bank and all their working papers are trying to solve.
So what I do not understand is WHY another African would say stuff like that to me. Off course I told him maybe in his country the women are meek and subservient but this is not his country- so he should and would get used to it.
I do not delude myself into thinking that people like successful women in the workplace, because they do not- We ( Yes I am part of a successful woman in the work place) talk too much, or we are too forward ( thats the Nigerian favorite) or whatever.
During a networking program we had in my center building, I was got my food and when I was done, this Nigerian guy saw me- with my hands full and said to me " will you serve me?" I said " Nope" and walked away.
Some one said " ahn he was only asking you to serve him", and I said " my hands are full, but lets forget my hands are full, did he not see you to ask?"
this guy replied me- He can not ask me now- And this is what I am talking about, No you can not ask your female professional colleague who has her hands full to serve you food- forget that I am Nigerian, I did not leave Lagos to come and cater to you.
That being said- I am coming to terms with people not liking me ( not because I am a douche- which I am sometimes) But because I am awesome
I am coming to terms with owning my successes- No more exchanges like this "what did you get?" Me: A. Him" Ah you are lucky, who helped you study". Me: Huh?
I'm changing that Huh to- No one, I am hardworking and I deserved that A.
And I am writing this here so that in 5 years or maybe 5 months when I am being cautioned to " tone it down"
This would remind me that no one got to the top by toning it down.
I am certainly not the only one who feels that way.
she feels the same here
Ps: I ran into the " over smart boy " today at the library and said I did not appreciate your comment especially since what I said was not made with the intent to disrespect you. And he said " I felt compelled to say that, because the whole class was laughing and I felt very bad" I told him- It was not my intention to make you feel bad, I was just letting you know that we had discussed it before- AND I KNOW YOU WERE THERE WHEN WE DISCUSSED IT.
While I did apologize for him feeling bad- He did not apologize for what he said about me- And I told him, you do not have to like me, I do not even need you to like me, but the simple fact that I am sitting in that class with him, I have earned and I deserve his respect, you do not speak to people who have proved themselves in that manner. And that going forward I look forward to having more discussions in class with him.
Hopefully more civil and less shade throwing will be involved.
Now I do not want anyone to think " Oh she is angry she does not want anyone to like her- OH I want people to like me, BUT I would rather they disliked me because I was successful, than like me because I am unsuccessful. - Hopefully this sentiment will not change.
Have a good week guys- And women out there remember " the world is yours for the taking- Only if you reach out for it"