The Backroad: what is your tribe?

Edidiong Idang walking through the backroad

The Backroad: what is your tribe?

It was one of those meetings where you would ordinarily manoeuvre between two offices in close proximity. My organization was scheduled to meet with the heads of these organizations at specific times. These organizations are of paramilitary formation meaning that being on time is actually being late.

The location of these institutions through close proximity demands that one accesses the other from a two-lane highway. The implication is that one would need to drive over ten kilometres, and turn under the flyover bridge, before accessing the other building. The roads usually have massive traffic which means that one may have to spend extra minutes navigating the number of cars and human activities on the road.

Our meeting in the first office went well, but as always the case with top executives, we spent some more time doing follow-ups on agreed outcomes. Soon, we realized that the time for the next meeting was fast approaching and we had to swerve off to the next. From our calculation, we will need about 45 minutes to do so whereas, the meeting was set to commence in 15mins. We were already running late.

Just when our worries were getting high, one of the management staff who happened to be friends with my colleague from way back, offered to open to us their backdoor which will lead us to the other institution. This was a door reserved for top officials, VIPs, and for emergency situations.

In life, the backdoor presents itself in all the opportunities that you receive without going through the process. They are those unmerited favours that you receive, especially those reserved for some kind of people. The backdoor sometimes is not noticeable by all, therefore they spend hours trying to get to their destination like we almost did.

There are many factors that determine the availability of the door but one, not too common is the tribe to that you belong. By that I mean your network, the people that you know. You will agree with me that not everyone that visits the institution we engaged with, has had the opportunity of using that door.

Depending on your network, there is some rare information you may be privileged to receive or access like in our case. People within a particular network provide support to each other and this usually depends on how well that relationship has been nurtured over time.

The moral lesson behind this write-up is that you need to identify a network and align yourself with it carefully. Never look down on people you meet as they may be connected to even higher networks than you may know. Where casual relationships are made, endeavour to stay in touch as that may be one way of building a formidable network for your future.

Make new friends but keep the old ones.

So I ask again, what is your tribe?

1071 1041 Didi Idang

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