I have some good news!! For those who’ve read my previous blog posts, you know that I’ve really been struggling with my sanity at work over the last little awhile. It’s been really tough trying to feel good about what I do, and I knew at some point that it was never going to get better. My only choice is to move on.
It happened kind of strangely. I started looking, but wasn’t getting any real hits. My colleague, G-man, knew I was looking. He was having drinks with a friend who owns an agency, and complaining about work, like I’ve been doing here. This friend of his was sympathetic and listened to our plight. G-man is very supportive of me looking for other work, so he mentioned that I was in the same position as he was.
Then this friend of his perked up. Apparently he was excited to hear that I was looking for work. He’d heard of me, and knew my experience in the agency world. Apparently he’s been looking for someone like me to join their team, and asked my colleague if I might be interested.
G-man was excited for me, and immediately gave them my number. I was surprised to get a message from this agent, asking me if I wanted to come in for a meeting. I’ve never had anyone call me before like this. Normally I’m applying for jobs and interviewing. I went in to meet him, and we had a great talk. I mean amazing!! He has this vision of the future that I really connected with, and before the end of the meeting, things were positive. He called me in a few days later for lunch to meet the team, and we really clicked. So they gave me an offer.
But there was something a little strange about the whole thing to me, which I was honest about with this agent. I’ve never gone to an interview before where the prospective employer knows all the dirty secrets of my current job. He would ask me questions, and I would hesitate to answer. I told him that I know he knows the truth of things, but I would never normally talk about those things in an interview, or at all. We chatted about it, and they’re giving me all the time I need to leave my current job professionally, especially because my current colleague is a friend of his. But still, I find it a little odd to have everything out in the open.
Now comes and even stranger part. At my current job, I suddenly felt better. We had our Christmas party, and I started chatting with other members of the team. A few of us ended up staying late to have a few drinks and chat, and I was shocked at what they said to me. Of the four of them, two had already given in their notice, one had tried, but had been asked to reconsider, although he didn’t think he was going too. And the last one was also looking for work, and would leave as soon as he found something. After listening to them, I admitted that I was in the same boat. It was shocking to learn that all of us are in the exact same position and feel the same way. We’d never really talked about it. I had with my other colleague, but not these guys who work in a different department. As we compared notes, we found out that all the issues we have are exactly the same!!! They span different departments. Trying to remain professional, we’d never told one another about them.
To find out most of the company is in the same position as me, and even more-so because they’ve already handed in their notice, made me feel… odd. I mean I knew there was unhappiness, but this mass exodus is a little nerve-wracking. As much as I have huge problems with the management, I don’t want the company to implode. I’m worried about handing in my notice after the holidays. When I was the only one, it felt easy. They can replace me just fine. It’ll suck for my colleagues because I do so much, but they’ll survive. Now, it’s like abandoning a sinking ship.
In the end, I have to think about my own well-being. This new job is something that I can really be part of, and feel good about. No matter what, I’m accepting the offer and joining that team. But I’m going to have to find a way to do this so that I give as much support as I can to my current job.
One of my previous employers said to me, when I contacted him upset, that I’ve always maintained a high standard of professionalism through my career, and not to throw that away. No matter how I feel, burning a bridge will never hurt anyone other than me. It’s been hard to remember that, but it’s amazing advice.
Does leaving now mean no matter what, I’ll be unprofessional for not helping them through this time? I’m stressed about handing in my notice. I’ve never done it before, not in this way. I’ve left jobs, but always for a reason. I’m going back to school, or it was always a temp job anyway. I’ve never left a job of this kind for these reasons.
Leaning that a huge group of my colleagues feel the same way makes me feel better. I’m not the only one with these problems. It’s not just me. I tend to blame myself for a lot and take on a lot of guilt, but this has taught me that there are serious problems within the company, problems that I’ve been doing my best to deal with. For the first time I truly see that this is not all my fault, which is good. But I can’t seem to erase my guilt about leaving now.