Aggression is so commonplace in our daily business lives. Just when you think all is clear and you’re ready to expand and bloom and grow your business, something happens. Or a potential business partner wants someone who isn’t afraid to do business. What this person really wanted was a business partner who was willing to go after every cent they could get out of a person or project. This way of doing business is from a place of lack, scarcity, and fear. Fear of what? The only person who can really answer that question is the person who uses the phrase “it’s just business” in that way.
Even in this climate of labour market shortages that exist in many sectors in Canada, some people are looking for employment from this place of aggressive tactics and misrepresent themselves to land jobs. Consider the case of one of my clients. She was trying to build a team to grow her business and create a happy space to work and thrive. She is a generous person, knows her business and was looking for an employee who would be aligned on her mission to help grow the business. She was falsely accused of not being fair and deliberately tricked by people she interviewed.
One interviewee represented herself with one name and when the offer of employment was written up using that name, she requested that the name be changed to reflect a different person. My client hired her anyway. This employee quickly lost interest in the work and stopped taking on any hours; after a few months, my client was back looking to hire someone new. I have to wonder if the employee had also been lying to herself about what she really needed.
Another person she interviewed had a friend call impersonating an official from the Canada Labour Board. They accused her of using discriminatory hiring practices: she had conducted several working interviews with potential employees. This is a common hiring practice in the food industry. The potential employee spends a few hours in your business. He/she does a couple of simple tasks. Both potential employee and employer get to see if they would like to work together and if they are a good fit with each other. My client assumed she was offering a good opportunity to get to know each other. In this case, it was clear the potential employee had misrepresented her training as she didn’t complete simple tasks. When asked why she didn’t do a task as requested, she lashed out demonstrating she was not responsible for her own actions. Making a mistake is not a problem, not accepting responsibility for your own actions is a problem—at work and in life.
My client has built a thriving team. She is offering a place to grow and expand as employees and in business. In fact, members of her team come from the underrepresented populations in Canada, such as new immigrants, people with disabilities, and Indigenous peoples.
Aggressive tactics to get a job do not serve anyone. Imagine a world where employees are honest with themselves first about who they are and what work they can and desire to do. This self-awareness means that they know who they are, and they move toward the work they are uniquely suited to do.
Until then, what do you do as a business owner if you are falsely accused? The first thing is to sit down and take notes about what exactly happened. Date and sign it. Always ask yourself what part is my responsibility? Turn this into a moment when you know deeply what is right and wrong. You are in your power centre, not a reactive centre. Now is the time to talk with supportive professionals like lawyers and accountants. Perhaps you turn this into a moment of honest accountability and raise the vibration of what is right and good.
This is how we do it, starting with our everyday business practices. Don’t let it become an aggressive legal battle or throw cash at it to make the issue go away. Let’s find a way to support each other. Who knows how these new connections expand and grow your business?
That is going beyond the old story.