Your Worth—My Days in the Stock Market in NYC
December 23, 2012
Your Worth—My Days of Working in the Stock Market in NYC
Aha… I bet none of you knew that I spent a year of my life working for Deutsche Bank in the stock market division. What a rat race full of hectic, caustic energy the stock market is. Two people in my work group had heart attacks the year I worked there. The small branch of the bank I worked for was called Country Baskets, which were mutual funds based on the stock markets of different countries.
During the time I worked there, Yahoo was a start up company. Every one of my associates told me to buy into it for $1 a share. I didn’t. Of course, Yahoo went on to go from $1 to $200 in months. There were plenty of other stocks they gave me advice on that I never took. All I knew then was that I saw complete and utter stress in every face that I worked for. I didn’t want to risk investing my money or energy in stress. When I look back, I could kick myself for the Yahoo thing, though.
The most memorable time at Deutsche Bank was when I worked for a seemingly very angry man who was the Senior Partner of our division. No one liked him and no one wanted to work for him. I was assigned to him, of course. During my time with my boss, he was abrupt and terse. I would do my work, do it correctly, and go home with a clean conscious.
One day, however, a temp came behind me and worked on a document for my boss and totally screwed it up. The temp never signed into the document, leaving my name as the sole editor. Well, I came into the office the next day, and I had have never had a person talk to me like my boss spoke to me. He told me I was incompetent, stupid, an imbecile, never would be hired again; and that I would stay until the entire document was finished correctly. There was smoke coming from the top of his head and spittle coming from his mouth.
I let him prattle on for about five minutes and didn’t say a word, mostly because I was trying to figure out what the hell he was talking about. Then I held up my hand to silence him. I turned to the computer and found some strong evidence that the work was not mine.
Then I said this, “You will never, ever talk to me like that again. I am a human being who has worked hard for you and deserves accommodations for just putting up with you daily. You are lucky to have anyone like me for you.”
He turned and walked out of the room with his head between his legs and didn’t say a word to me the rest of the day. I thought I’d be fired. But I just didn’t care. I would never let anyone talk to me like that no matter how important the job. Narcissism belongs one place: by itself locked in a padded room.
The next morning, since I didn’t receive a phone call from HR, I went into work. Sitting on my desk was a dozen roses, a box of donuts and a large cup of some kind of gourmet coffee.
Now I know that it took everything in my bosses’ mind and body to apologize, but he simply needed to for me to work for him. I appreciated that someone of that stature would go to such lengths to say he was sorry. We never said another word about it and to this day we still are friends. He actually turned out to be a great guy once the stress was gone.
The moral of the story: Stress can do a lot of things to people—good people. Stress can make people over eat and get fat. Stress can raise your blood pressure. Stress can bring out deep-seated anger. Stress can pull you into depression. Obviously, none of these things are good.
If you are in a stressful work situation, like the stock market, know that your time there is limited. No one can withstand the pressures of that kind of stress for a long period of time without falling into one of the above problems. Besides that, the longer you stay in a bad situation, the less likely you are to come out with any modicum of self-esteem left.
This is why I keep saying that it is so important for you to know what your life is about and what your purpose is. With this in mind, even in stressful situations, you can relinquish the hardship and know that God is the master and finisher of what you do. You can make choices and decisions based upon fact or upon intuition. But in the end what is, simply is.
No amount of stress will take away the present situation. Make laws against stress and anxiety. Create strong boundaries in your life that insist upon people respecting you and your time. This kind of thinking is not mean or narcissistic. This kind of thinking—in a world where people simply take advantage of the hardest workers—is the only way to survive.
Your worth may be dependent upon your degrees and your years of experience. But nothing is worth more than your self-esteem. Don’t let someone pay you to take away WHO YOU ARE. A job should be an extension of who you are. Even if it isn’t the perfect job, you can make it right by bringing the good attitude to the job and insisting on respect as you do your best work daily. You’ll always feel great about yourself and about your work.
This makes YOU worth more than any amount of money.