The Dark Side Of Corporate Success

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Before I begin my story, let me ask you this question…
Which one do you want to be?
Fake & make tons of money?
Real & make no money?

Think about it deeply.
I am pretty sure almost all of you will say “Real & make no money” because after all, you are a good human being, with good values and good upbringing.


But then why does office politics take place?
Why do we have so many people with shady sides to their personality they never reveal?
In fact, why is it that we suddenly get one-by-one people we once looked up to, fall from grace?

There is where, let me introduce you to a character whose name I changed as Peter.

When I saw Peter on stage for the 1st time, I was totally mesmerized by his presence. Here was a XYZ Certified Coach with multiple qualifications & certifications, who had travelled around the world, who charged people a 5 figure sum of money for his time & who would go to these multinational companies and give incredible talks about character, competence & commitment.

Almost immediately after the session was over, I approached him — literally pleaded with him to be by mentor where I would do all his work, do whatever I could just to learn from him.

He must have been amused at how I literally fell at his feet or or he must have been impressed with my eagerness to learn — whatever the case he gave me the chance of a lifetime.

For the next many months, I worked for him doing all his work without asking for a single penny. It could be as simple as purchasing something from the supermarket, a delivery to even helping him organize his event and there were even days I slept in the conference hall of the hotel where we would be organizing the event — I was more than happy to do it all for him. It was all a learning experience for me. And because of these constant and repeated acts of sacrifice and hard work, we started to get closer and closer. Soon I became his trusted confidante. And it was then he allowed me into his inner circle so that I could learn more.

However, it was only then I discovered something that would change my relationship with him forever.

After getting close to him I found out in his case, there was something called ‘the coach’ versus ‘the reality’.

THE COACH was what he showed on stage. That personality was a flawless, impeccable & perfect role model. He never judged anyone. He never hated anyone. He was prim, proper and perfect with his language, mannerism and interaction. And his integrity & character were spot on. In fact, he always used this line with his clients “What you see is what you get.” It was an individual who respected women, looked at everyone — man & women regardless of their ethnicity, background & religion with the highest regard.

However reality was totally something else….

THE REALITY or in reality — he was not actually as flawless, impeccable and perfect as he portrayed to be. After the event where he portrayed himself as this incredible ‘Tony Robbins’ kind of a Coach — Once the bright spot lights were no longer there, he was a completely negative, neurotic & notorious . His real world was filled with alcohol, Prostitutes, Drugs, negativity & racism.

I witnessed this day and night until it became apparent to me, this is what he really was. And when I got habituated to this new discovery, given that I was close to him — I asked him point blank why did he do this? Why did he portray a good and clean image on the outside but on the inside he was totally different?

He replied “Smarty pants, how the fuck do you earn money? This dumb world only wants a nicey nice, goody-goody-two-shoes suited guy. You want me to show them my real side and ruin my life and career? So then Mr. Genius, tell me how I would earn money? Tell me — would you employ the services of a guy who smokes, drinks alcohol, smokes weed & goes to prostitutes?”

And then he asked me a statement I would never forget:
Which one do you want to be?
Fake & make tons of money?
Real & make no money?

I kept silent.

I thought about it and realized what he said was true. But was this the kind of a life I truly wanted — A life where you are being fake with someone else, someone else is acting what they are not with you and the people who look up to are also faking their love, devotion, their friendship, loyalty and relationship with you. What kind of life would that be?

For some reason, this kind of a fake world view, with me being fake and having everyone act fake with me was not something I wanted. And that is where I one day parted ways with him. And that was the reason, I also stopped being in the corporate world. This thing called “Office Politics” wasn’t for me. It just wasn’t my cup of tea. And from then on, I started on this crusade of being “me” as I was. I started doing things which weren’t normal, acceptable and permitted in the real world. But I stayed true to myself.

At first it was really hard.
Seriously hard.
Everyone I knew ostracized me for my views (Atheism), my lifestyle (was a playboy those days), my in your face approach (If I didn’t like you, I would let you know that) and my personality (I didn’t want to portray myself as perfect).

In fact one of the biggest decisions I took was to always dress up simple whenever I do any coaching session — jeans, t-shirt and slippers.

It took me a long time, seriously a long time to reach where I am today and I had no idea if I would ever make it to the top. But slowly and surely, I made it.

Today, this is what I tell people where it comes to Personal Branding — make a choice to either:

A) Be fake and remain fake for the rest of your life by putting on this fake image. You will enjoy immense success, money and fame because you will fit in anywhere and with anyone. You may even end up as the poster child for goodness. However, the only drawback here is, the day you get caught or exposed, your reputation and career will be over with.

B) Be real and keep it real. You will be crucified in the beginning. People will forever talk crap about you. However, there will be nothing to re-discover or dig out about you. And this is the ‘what-you-see-is-what-you-get’ life. You will get only clients who truly resonate with you.

I choose the latter. It wasn’t a difficult choice for me.

You see, I would rather be a $100 brand but an original one at that. Than to be a fake luxury brand being positioned at $69,000 but whose actual value is only $100.

The former is called Authenticity. The latter is called being a Conman. And though it looks like a straight forward choice — in today’s politically money infested corporate world the majority of the people around us opt for the latter only because that is the only way they know how to survive and play the game.

We live in a world where you have to FAKE your emotions to your clients, you have to FAKE your tolerance to your boss’s stupidity, you have to FAKE your loyalty to people in power even if you do not agree with it, you have to FAKE your way to a promotion & salary increase. Because if you do not do it — someone else will.

And don’t turn around and tell me you haven’t witnessed this or been a part of this game. Because if so, then you are as rare as the 40-year old virgin who never touched a woman in his life.

So as I end, my question to you — Which one do you want to be?
Fake & make tons of money?
Real & make no money?

Choose wisely.
Because your choice will determine your integrity, your character & your life forever.

Loy Machedo

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ABOUT ME: Google My Name | SERVICES: ThinkPersonalBranding.Com | EMAIL: | WHATSAPP: +66–92–541–4784

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