Boss Humiliates Poor Employee, Deeply Regrets It Hours Later – Story of the Day
An arrogant project manager humiliates an immigrant who is applying for a high-level job and ends up regretting his attitude.
Gordon Halston was surprised when his secretary ushered in the next candidate for the position of product developer. He looked down at the resumé. Ivaan Ryan, with two degrees from Oxford, and a Master's from Harvard...
But the man who stood in front of him didn't look like a Ryan. He didn't look Irish at all! The man standing in front of Gordon was dark-complexioned, an immigrant he was sure. Gordon wasn't about to have one of THOSE on his team!
Gordon pretended to read the resumé as the man stood in front of his desk. "Excuse me, SIr," the man said, "Do you mind if I sit down?"
Gordon waved his hand. "Of course, Mr...Ehr...Ryan?"
"Yes, Sir, Ivaan Ryan." the man confirmed.
"Where are you from, Mr. Ryan?" Gordon asked.
"I'm from India, Sir, New Delhi, but I studied for my degrees in England, and I did my Masters here, in the United States," Ivaan explained.
"Well, Mr. Ryan, I'm afraid the position you applied for has been filled..."
"But...Your secretary told me..." Ivaan protested.
"My secretary doesn't make my decisions for me. Mr. Ryan. However, you are in luck. We do have another opening on the permanent staff."
Ivaan leaned forward eagerly. "Sir, I am a great admirer of your company and its founder, Mr. Olden. I'd be proud to work for him in any capacity!"
Gordon leaned back with a mocking smile. "Good! We need a new janitor!"
"A janitor?" asked Ivaan agast, "But my qualifications..."
"Take it or leave it, Mr. Ryan," said Gordon. So Ivaan took it.
That evening he told his wife Mina about his day. "I took the job, Mina, we need the money, and I can't afford to wait any longer..."
"Ivaan, I know that whatever you do you will do well, and prove your worth," Mina said.
Ivaan's chance came two weeks after he started working as a janitor. Gordon called him into his office during a meeting to clean up the coffee he'd spilt, and Ivaan heard his brief for his product developers.
"Mr. Olden wants something revolutionary, something that will turn the market around. We are depending on something new, and exciting to keep us ahead of the competition..."
That afternoon, Ivaan approached Gordon and asked him if he would permit him to present a project idea. Gordon looked at him. "My dear Ryan, I like your commitment. You have two days."
Ivaan was overjoyed, but he didn't hear Gordon mutter under his breath "Sucker!" Over the next two days, Ivaan worked on his project, put together a report that explained the concept, the possible costs of development, and a profit projection.
He handed in the project to Gordon early on the morning of the big meeting. Gordon accepted it with a smile, but as soon as Ivaan walked out, he ripped it in half and put it in his trash bin.
An hour later, Ivaan was back, this time he was there to clean the office and empty the trash. He was devastated to see his project report ripped in half and in the trash.
Then he saw the thick file with the other projects on top of Gordon's desk and he had an idea. He quickly taped his ripped project together and placed it in the project file.
Even though Ivaan was forced to work as a janitor, he never gave up on his dream.
That afternoon, a nervous Gordon placed the project file in front of Mr. Olden. "I think you'll be impressed, Sir," he said.
Mr. Olden opened the file, read through the first proposal, and set it aside. He shook his head. "Not what I was hoping for, Halston. I want innovation!"
Frowning, Mr. Olden flipped to the next project. To Gordon's horror, he saw that it was Ivaan's taped together and slipped in with the others. Mr. Olden was leaning forward, tapping his fingers on the table as he read the proposal.
He looked up. "Who is responsible for this, Halston?"
"Mr. Olden," Gordon cried, "That is not the work of one of my developers. It was the janitor, he must have slipped that in..."
"The janitor?" asked Mr. Olden, "The janitor did this?"
"Well, he's got a degree, and he thinks that makes him a developer, but I put him in his place!" Gordon said.
"Well you get him in here, Halston, right now!"
Gordon rushed into the lobby and grabbed Ivaan by the arm. "Now you've done it! Mr. Olden wants to see you. You're fired, Ryan, do you hear?"
He dragged Ivaan into the conference room to stand in front of Mr. Olden who was still reading the report. He looked up at Ivaan and asked: "You did this? On your own?"
"Yes, Sir," Ivaan whispered.
"Speak up!" said Mr. Olden, "This is your idea, your development?"
"Yes, SIr, " said Ivaan in a louder voice.
"Well... It's brilliant! Brilliant! It's what I need. How quickly can you come up with a prototype?"
Gordon couldn't believe his ears. "Mr. Olden, I'm the manager of this project..."
Mr. Olden stood up. "No, Halston, you WERE the manager of this project." he turned to Ivaan, "What's your name son?"
"My name is Ivaan Ryan, Sir, I'm from India..."
Mr. Olden waved his hand. "I don't care where you're from," he tapped the project on the table, "This tells me where you're going, to the top! As for you, Halston, you're fired."
Gordon Halston was out of a job, and Ivaan was promoted to project manager. His idea was a great success, and so was the next and the next...And it all began when he accepted a position as a janitor.
What can we learn from this story?
1. Don't discriminate against someone because of their race or ethnicity. His prejudice led Gordon to overlook Ivaan's worth and cost him his job.
2. Don't ever give up, believe in yourself. Even though Ivaan was forced to work as a janitor, he never gave up on his dream, and the chance he took paid off.
Share this story with your friends. It might inspire people to share their own stories or to help someone else.
Any resemblance in this story to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a bride who humiliated a girl with a speech impediment and regretted it bitterly.