Monday, June 21, 2010

Insight

I've purposefully avoided talking too much about my new job. I honestly just don't want to jinx it. It's a good job, with good people and good pay. I tend to be a little bit superstitious about things and what if...just what if...I say too much? Silly? Yep. But there it is. I'm not the "if-a-black-cat-crosses-my-path" kind of superstitious, though. (And for the record? If a black cat does, indeed, cross my path, my first instinct would be to find out if it has a mommy or needs a home! Come here, kitty kitty kitty!) But seriously, I guess I am just a bit gun shy right now when it comes to my job. I'm coming up on the 1 year anniversary of when I was laid off last July; a time that marked the beginning of some serious depression and self-worth issues. I think I've managed to come out on the other side OK, but I'm a different person; driven. And here's another thing. I don't know what it is about this particular job, but everyone here seems to think I'm wonderful. I feel very strange saying that out loud, to be quite honest, but it's the truth. I'm busy from the second I set foot in the door in the morning until the second I leave at night. I'm constantly directing folks toward things they need, troubleshooting technical issues, ordering equipment, returning assets that are no longer needed, submitting mounds of paperwork to process HR-type requests, onboarding new employees, terminating old employees, submitting for in-office moves, submitting for Work at Home transfers, coordinating employee activities and events and, of course, the usual simple administrative stuff I've always done including setting up conference calls, watching multiple calendars, meeting set up etc.... And paperwork, paperwork, paperwork. (GASP!) I am, in a word, busy. All. The. Time. So back to the "...seems to think I'm wonderful," statement. I cannot, for the life of me, figure out what I am doing differently here than what I was doing at my other jobs. Why is this job different? Why do so many people, on a regular basis, send me thank you notes, or words of praise or even make a point to stop my manager to tell her what a great job I'm doing? How come this is the first place I've ever worked where these types of things happen? Have I come out on the other side of the last year that vastly different? My hubby, and SM, seem to think that it's been a personality issue all along. When I first heard that I got a little bristled because I've always tried very hard to maintain a very professional attitude and be pleasant to everyone as much as humanly possible. But what they meant by saying that was the fact that I have a very STRONG personality; a personality that doesn't sit back and take whatever gets thrown in my direction by sitting down and keeping quiet. I'm a doer. A take-charger. I don't do well in menial (forgive the word, please) positions that don't require some actual thought on a daily basis. On an hourly basis. I seem to be more focused when I'm busy than when I'm bored. So are people afraid of me? Is that what this is all about? The first place I worked when I came to Tennessee...were they afraid of me? Is that why I felt like I was constantly treated as if I were dog-poop on the bottom of the manager's shoe? Why she made a point (and said out loud in my hearing range that she made it her mission in life) to make me cry. I was there for 2.5 years. The second place I worked, in an attempt to escape the first, was really no better. My new manager treated me just the same way my old manager did, except she pretended to be sweetness and light whereas the old manager didn't even pretend. I lasted 3.5 years there...and when I'd finally had enough I was able to secure a job at the place I was laid off from last year. That was my 3rd job after moving to Tennessee. It was a great job, I loved the people, I loved the location, I loved what I did. I was there for 3.5 years until... The 4th job I'm not even going to talk about because it was a nightmare from beginning to end. However what I will say about this job was that the personality clashes were blatantly obvious here. They wanted someone who would sit down, shut up, and never ever question anything. I am most definitely not that person. So, what I'm saying here is that I don't feel like I've changed my work ethic or my personality or my drive. I think maybe, just maybe, I've found a place where I can be my own, special, assertive, and not-quiet self, and STILL do a great job. But, finally, in a place where those attributes are appreciated and encouraged. I wonder if the quote, "I will not go quietly into that good night..." applies here?

2 comments:

Rosanna and Jeff said...

you're awesome sis, glad you are writing again. Black cat part=funny.

Anonymous said...

Jen,

Yup, I think you're possibly intimidating to some. Your directness can be scary.

Also, you might strike fear into the hearts of female managers. Who could see you as competition??

I don't really know. but I wonder.

Love you,
UB