you get what you need, volume 192121
I’ve been in a bit of a funk for the last few days. Part of that was because of the usual suspects, but then a bit of nostalgia punched me in the face recently. And, ironically, I found myself grieving because I’m not constantly grieving anymore.
Sometimes, running into the weight of the shit you’ve gone through is enough to pull you down again.
It just wasn’t the best situation, given that my job is to be upbeat and helpful. Work was really taking a mental toll on me over the last few days, but things were lightening up after a particularly busy period. I was looking forward to exhaling a bit. But the stress was enough to prompt me to grind my teeth in my sleep. Yesterday, when I got up for work, I had pretty severe dental pain, so I decided to take the day off. I’m glad I did, but getting up today was hard. I’m not sure why, but breaks, for me, are never rejuvenating. I just want more time. It never seems to be enough. Just like there’s never enough sleep.
Last night, I was dreading work today. Dreading the constant barrage of people nagging me all day about things I couldn’t give updates about because those I’m nagging never respond. While my workload was better–I was left with the worst. The hardest things and the impossible people. It’s demoralizing to know you will work all day and not see progress–through no fault of yours–and that your paycheck is tied to their actions.
In any case, change was on my mind. Like–how much longer can I do this? Is my fantastic team worth it? Will it get better?
I got up and did my thing, as always. Hurried through emails. Prepped for the day. Dealt with the bitchy people. Dealt with offers. Then found an email from my manager asking if I could chat as soon as possible.
This scared me.
After working in RPO for so long, I know that your job can disappear in a minute. It doesn’t matter how good you are. Another company may outbid your employer. Or the client may go bankrupt mid hiring spree. (Both of these have happened to me). I chose to work for my current company because I was guaranteed a job. As long as I was performing, I could go to whatever client, and they always had clients in need. My old employer wasn’t like that. They’d stick you on the bench–which is basically unemployed, but still employed until they found you someone new.
My first thought was I was being punished for taking PTO. But I also had an inkling that our client was not doing well, and that things were coming. I thought it would get slow and maybe I’d be put on a stretch project–loaned out until we got busy again.
I wasn’t really prepared for what I heard.
Our company just won a BIG client that’s been in the news A LOT this year. It was going to mean lots of business for us. Senior leadership came to my boss and said they wanted me to anchor and lead this huge team to support them since I was a top performer and a manufacturing expert. My current client hires similar roles and is in the same markets–so it made total sense. My stats were even used to show the client what we could do. And the strange thing? Right after that call, my boss got a call from our client talking about lots of canceled reqs and possible layoffs–which meant we had to lose a team member.
I could say no–of course–but it was even unclear if my boss would be staying much longer.
I said okay–because this is cool and it is flattering…but I’m uneasy given all the news stuff. In some ways, this is a better fit than my current client. It’s definitely less of a moral question for me. And I’m sure I’ll do well, but the politics attached to it makes me fear its stability.
So, we’ll see. I’m going to try to keep an open mind.
The tough part, though, is–as much as I was sick of my current client and probably needed a change–I’ve been here 2 years. That’s a long time in RPO. I was the veteran of my team. I had close ties to everyone here and with our clients. I’ve made friendships I was surprised to find. And I’ve learned SO MUCH about myself. I’m a better person for having accepted this role I really almost turned down.
I do feel like the universe is giving me something I need. Though I’m not sure what. I will be joining another team for a 2 week stint until my client launches, so I’ll get to work with old friends and do more of my comfort zone again. I know it’ll make me more marketable and more visible. But I worry–given my moods lately–if this will be a loving thing for me. If I’ll be able to withstand the pressure and high visibility. Transitioning is always hard–even when you’re prepared for it–and I am decidedly not. I don’t even know who my new boss will be.
I had a nice long chat with a coworker who just left our team. We had gotten to be good friends in the time she was with us, and she is so much happier with her new client. Our team just wasn’t a good match for her. That chat helped me feel better. We have both lost parents and have done this for a long time–so we have a different perspective. She basically just said I can do anything. I just have to figure out if I want to do it. I do. I want to succeed and do well. You can’t worry about the unknown. You can just trust that other people believe in you for a reason and do your best not to let them down.