He was shocked, amazed even. Was this real? He looked from one face to the other and read determination in their eyes. They meant what they were saying. Over the past few months, he had been applying for jobs at several companies all to no avail. They always said he was good and they would get back to him but they never did. Then, he had come across Limelight Incorporated and had sent his CV. They had called him for an interview and here he was expecting he would be given the job. Well, he was going to be given the job but there was just one small obstacle in his way.
He had aced his interview and his letter of appointment had been shown to him. What was left was to sign an agreement before he could be given the letter. He had agreed of course to sign the agreement and it had been brought. It was only when he had the good sense to read the contents of the agreement that he realised what he was about to sign and then the colour drained from his face. He read the agreement again, thinking he had probably not read it well or his eyes were playing tricks on him. He even adjusted his glasses so he could be sure. The words were still the same.
Between right or wrong
“Mr Oke, I don’t understand this.” He said addressing the man who had asked him questions most.
The man laughed. “Mr Henry, what don’t you understand? Look, in life, one has to be smart. If you get this job, you’ll earn 50, 000 a month. Can 50, 000 solve your problems for a month?”
“No sir but how does this relate to…”
His other interviewer, a woman cut in. “We are trying to help you Mr Henry. If you agree to sign this deal, when the profits come around, you’ll be earning in six figures and even an illiterate knows that beats 50, 000.”
“So, you want me to sign a deal that means I’ll be duping the company I’m working for?” He asked aghast.
“Precisely.” Mr Oke replied.
“And if I don’t?” He asked again.
The woman answered again this time by tearing his appointment letter. “You’ll lose this job Mr Henry.”
“But…Sir, ma, this is wrong!”
“Yes we know. It’s your choice. You can choose between right or wrong. Right might retain your integrity but you’ll lose this job which I’m sure you can’t afford. Wrong on the other hand will give you this job and the only thing you’ll lose is probably your integrity, if it means anything to you.” Mr Oke said with a nonchalant shrug.
Henry got up. “Mr Oke, Mrs Onah, I thank you for your offer but I’m afraid, I have to decline. Signing this deal goes against my code of conduct and like you, sir, mentioned earlier; my integrity is everything to me.”
Mrs Onah spoke up. “Young man, do you know what you are doing? If you walk out that door, you are saying a definite bye to this job.”
“Oh, I know. Thanks.” Henry replied and with that, he walked out of the room. He got into the lobby of the company and was surprised to see the GM of the company waiting for him.
“Congratulations.” The man said shaking Henry’s hand.
“On what?” A befuddled Henry asked.
“On your new job.” Mr Oke who had come out of the interview room with Mrs Onah replied, shaking Henry’s hand.
“You my dear are just the man we’re looking for; a man of integrity who can stand his ground. Despite the fact that you were desperate for a job, you chose to do the right thing, congratulations once again.” Mrs Onah said shaking his hand.
Henry was speechless. The only thing he could think was if he had failed that simple test, if he had chosen to do the wrong thing, if he had thought to put away his integrity for just a while, he would have definitely lost the job, if not more. It really did pay to be a person of integrity.
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