Still on Hidden Figures and the moments that had me squirming in my seat, sighing deeply, or straight bawling my eyes out…
Yesterday’s Wooden Door is Today’s Glass Ceiling
A few days ago, a girlfriend of mine called me, completely distraught. She has been working on a difficult work project for months and just as she was finally approaching a note-worthy breakthrough, a senior leader took the project and assigned it to someone else. She felt disregarded, invisible, unimportant. How many of us have felt this way in the workplace at least once? You work hard on something only to have it snatched from you in the moment of glory. Kat must have felt the same heartbreak each time she was asked to work behind the scenes only to have a White, male counterpart take credit. In the final scenes of the movie, she solves a complicated and life-altering problem, and as soon as she communicates the solution, the door is shut in her face. Literally. She is shut out from seeing the fruits of her labor. She is shut out from the glory and recognition.
I saw Hidden Figures on MLK day. I haven’t written in a while but I couldn’t stay away after watching this film. I don’t recall any movie ever touching me quite this way. My only regret was having to watch it in a theater full of old, White folks who annoyed me with every exclamation. Like, honestly, why are you collectively gasping at the sight of the “Colored Only” coffee pot or bathroom? This wasn’t that long ago…you were an adult then.
I felt so much during and after this movie and I couldn’t wait to come home and share. Given how rich this film is, I will share my thoughts over the next couple of parts to do it justice. Btw, Spoiler Alert!
Have you ever had to go from sitting in a nice cushy office with one employer to switching to a cubicle with another?
Let me tell you. It is not easy.
I. miss. my. office.
In my current role, I get to work in an ultra-modern, brightly and naturally lit building with fully equipped gyms, convenient dry cleaning, fully stocked cafeteria, flex hours and…….yup, cubicles. Everyone, from the person in the mail room to director level folks sits in one of these. I am not claiming to be above sitting in a cube. Before my last job, I had always sat in them as well. But trust me, after a 4 year stint, a girl gets accustomed to certain things. Such as having a door and being able to shut it on occasion. Lol.
All of the below happened to me in my first 2 weeks of being in a cube:
If you’ve read my last few posts, you may have noticed that I am a few months in with a new employer. As I’m sure you know, there are definitely challenges and growing pains that come along with any major transition. Mine has not been easy but I’m making it work.
My new role involves being a senior team member with the responsibility of helping to develop an up and coming team. One of the team members is a young woman; smart, personable. She was very welcoming of me to the team and she frequently expressed her gratitude for “having someone she could learn and grow from.” Over the last few months, we have developed an informal, but close mentoring relationship where I not only coach her through specific job tasks, but her career overall. This excites me! I have struggled to find my path in the Corporate world, wondering if there is a way for my double consciousness to intersect seamlessly. I know now that whatever I end up doing will involve coaching and mentoring young Professional women.