Monday, April 14, 2008

monday morning ponderings

"A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." --Margaret Mead

last week, the department manager of my new department in my new job began a dinner speech with the quote above. i felt a surge of happiness and even a few goose bumps at that moment. it represented so much to me--a feeling of having found the right place to be, the right job, the right mindset, that i was now working with people who wanted the same things i wanted. i found myself palpably relieved, once again, to have left behind the job i left at the end of last year--yet another sense that leaving that job was the right thing to do.

it's so strange how you can slowly become miserable in a job (or any other situation for that matter) and not really see it. it happens slowly, over time. you keep holding onto the things you do like about it...the travel, the people you work most closely with, some of the projects, the customer you're serving (since these days, we're all in some sense in the service business). you tell yourself that these things make up for the things you don't like--the politics, the ever-changing array of bosses, the starting over every time from scratch with a new boss, the lack of continuity, the lack of really building something that you get to see though to its conclusion, the culture of blame, the fact that people hide what they're doing and only share it once it's done, the nagging feeling that all that talk about company values masks a lack of values--especially in the middle-upper management layer.

and then one day, you do wake up and realize you can't live that way any more and so you take the radical decision (in the face of your mortgage payment) to leave. and then, you start something new and feel hope because you find that it CAN be different. you can work for someone who has real vision and who has the patience and resources to see it realized. and that you, lucky you, get to be part of that. that you can use your passion and your brain and that it will be recognized and even valued! and you feel so relieved and confirmed in your decision. and happy that you've found what feels like your place in the scheme of things.

and joy that this is what you have to think about on a monday morning...


Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

My husband is going through the worst of what you mentioned.
Time is slipping by and we're holding on for fear of making a worse mistake. He knows the job is doing him no good and we're making plans to move on but it's taking time that we should otherwise be enjoying. Our only thing to do is to be happy for everything else we have!
I've said it before- I wish he had somebody like you to work with, and the kind of people you talk about. Thanks for reminding me there is hope! I will show him this post when he gets back from his trip.

julochka said...

it's a bit like the story about the frog in the pot...if you put him in and heat it up slowly, he won't try to get out and he'll just be cooked in there. i felt extremely cooked at the end of 2007. that's a bit why i'm so preoccupied with this notion in my posts. it sometimes takes a few months for you to be confirmed in your decision to get out, but i'm here to tell you that it's worth it!! if you'd like to correspond via email about this, it's jknachti(at)gmail(dot)com. :-)

Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

I know that story well.
I certainly would like to e-mail you, and thank you. I'll be right on it in the morning :)