Getting the first job after graduation is something that most people can never forget. It comes at the forefront of memories when we get older and progress in our careers. My first job was at a training company in Sept 2006. The first four months were unforgettable. My excitement was up to the roof, and my energy was palpable. I was profoundly motivated and dedicated to getting up every single day to go to work and learn new things, but all of that disappeared quickly.
The company was going through some financial difficulties, the board met at that time and discussed the proposal for budget cuts to save money for the business. They opted for layoffs where the management decided to throw people out of the company to balance the books.
On that day, I was having a normal conversation with my manager, Safwan Sibai and with two other colleagues. An hour later, I was on my way to leave, but Mr. Sibai asked me to stay for a while. I looked at him, and I said: Is there a problem? Without saying anything to me, He gave me a letter. I took and read it, but the subject line of the letter captured my eyes, it was my termination notice. I finished reading the letter wondering why it happened like this despite my dedication and hard work. I took the letter and decided to leave, I opened the door, but he said: Do not be in a rush; I have something to tell you: To which I replied: “Why? I lost my job, and nobody cares”.
Mr. Sibai paused for a moment and gave me another letter titled “resignation, “and to my surprise, it was his resignation letter. While reading the resignation letter, I suffered the third shock which was an apology letter to Mr. Sibai about the decision to terminate my employment contract. As it turned out, Mr. Sibai rejected the termination decision and resigned as he could not accept it nor enforce it. His resignation came as a shock to the senior management, and as a result, they reconsidered their position, thus canceled the termination. I asked myself why someone in his position would resign and lose his job for one of his staff members.
Mr. Sibai made the point clear the next day by telling me that leadership is not a position, but it is an action. “To lead is to go first and face the danger for the people in your custody, not to sacrifice them for the perks of the position you hold.” Mr. Sibai did not only save my job that day but taught me a valuable lesson about leadership which is more of a responsibility, than a position