Wednesday, June 22, 2005

An almost farewell to corporate america

As I was walking from the parking garage to my building on my corporate campus, I realized, "wow, I will do this walk again tomorrow and then n'er more". Great feeling. Weird feeling. While I will still be working for this company from new city for one month, I can't help but feel that a significant part of my life here is coming to a close.

I remembered this morning the first time that I walked from the garage to my building feeling nervous and yet so proud of myself in a naive sort of way. It was really something in my mind to work for a company with name recognition in the smallest and largest cities all over the world. My parents didn't go to college nor most of my extended family. So getting a job at a place like this was really a big deal. And in some ways, having Big Corporate Monolith (BCG) on my resume will always be a good thing. I remember thinking I was coming to work with the best and brightest in my field. Um, yeah. Very naive.

I won't say that the experience has been all bad. I am very thankful for the benefits they have provided me, not the least of which was no worries while I was on bedrest during my pregnancy... or the ability to stay at home with my DD until she was almost 6 months old. I progressed. I got promoted. I got raises. For work that is frankly, usually not that hard. And for that, I will always be thankful.

On the less rosy side, I am also thankful to have re-inforced to me constantly that no company is ever going to consider "you" as a person in there master plans, so you shouldn't worry about them in yours. I have learned that I don't like corporate america. Icky. Greedy. Mostly pointless. If they went away today, the world would clamor at the shock, but given 6 months, no one would miss it. The biggest lesson that I learned though is that you shouldn't, if you have a viable opportunity to change your situation, stay somewhere where you do not like what you are doing. I see people everyday who have been with this company for 20 years or more, who HATE what they do. But well, the salary is so good now, and well, they get a bazillion days of vacation, and the pension is suhweet... "if I just stick around until I've got 30 years in, wow retirement is going to be nice" Ugh. What an awful way to motivate yourself everyday. (Not knocking people who don't have a lot of other options. I know that sometimes you are stuck where you are.)

The thing that I hate is that we have layoffs cyclically. When I started here, 7 others joined the same year. All like me in that they were 5 or fewer years out of college. None of them is left here now. It's just me. 3 were laid off. The others all left to pursue higher education in fields that have nothing to do with what we did for the corporation. And they are all much happier now than when I knew them here.

So, it's my turn. I'm getting out to persue a life-long dream. Then it's up to me to find or make a job for myself that I will love and look forward to doing.

Taking charge of your own destiny is a rush, isn't it?

1 comment:

stag said...

Good post. Glad you're moving on to more important things.