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My crazy mining stories (1) - The intimidating manager

I've decided to dedicate a few of my blogs to talk about some of my crazy mining experiences. And here is the first one...


Around 2015/2016 I was the Senior Geologist at an underground coal mine and one of the managers there was a very intimidating person. He was a large, tall man and he had a loud voice, he also happened to have served in the army wayyyy back. He was very intelligent and a force to be reckoned with. I had seen people doing literal disappearing acts when he would walk down the passage. He was exactly 30 years older than me. You get the picture.


My office was one door away from his, and I was in trouble almost on a daily basis for some or other thing. I was practically furniture in his office, because I was always being called there. Technically speaking we actually got on well because I was always honest with him and I wasn't scared of him.


One day he appeared in my door and pulled a hunting knife out of nowhere, obviously as an act of intimidation. He looked me straight in the eye and said "Look at my new hunting knife", I blankly stared him in the eye, reached into my bottom drawer and pulled out my own knife (granted it was a steak knife, but it still counts). And then we just stared at each other. Finally I said to him that by virtue of me growing up in the ghetto, and being small and nimble, I would probably win this fight. Then I told him that we should probably take this outside the mine gates, because mine property is not a place for a fight.


He put his knife away, I put my knife away and it was as if nothing happened. He left and I moved on with my life. There are no witnesses to corroborate this story but I promise it really happened. This is only one of many stories I have from my time at the mines.


I absolutely loved being a production geologist and there was never a dull moment. It was the environment and the people that made it so eventful and interesting. The lesson I take away from this is that it's important to stand up for myself because there are intimidating people in every environment. It's not easy to do, but it's very necessary.


Navigating the career landscape can be lonely, but it doesn't have to be. There is a place for every person.


Book your free 45min Career Clarification Session and we can talk about your career goals: https://calendly.com/laurengamba/clarification-session


I hope you enjoyed my crazy (probably unbelievable) story.


Until next time, stay safe!





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