I am a 50+ expert at applying critical thinking to drive to holistic, future-armored, innovative solutions and products.
I’m very good at what I do but I do my best work left alone to pursue answering a given question with the data, and/or careful combing of peer-reviewed industry outlets and academic databases. (Aside: I’m very good at interviewing and creating rapport to investigate situations and humans but anecdotal insight is situational and best used as such.)
I’m very good at what I do but I do my best work when my managers and leadership understand that I have ZERO interest in doing anything more than what I do so well.
I’m very good at what I do, but I do my best work when my peers and customers understand that I have ZERO interest in “sides” and less than zero interest in “blame”.
I’m very good at what I do, but I do my best work when forcing myself into a mindset that is so severely sieved of emotional influence that I am, effectively, an artificial intelligence.
As you might guess, this intense segregation is difficult on the body, and that’s before we consider the impact and stresses of colleagues and peers, departmental politics, culture, any of “the rest” in the world, etc.
I cannot force my colleagues and co-workers into such mindset (nor would I, seeing so clearly how it has contributed to my medical now), but it often seems this means I am doomed to spend my time being compelled to justify everything, to everyone, all the time and, if it proves the impossible task, we all lose. (Well, no, actually, it’s just me that loses… seeing ideas that cost me my job six years ago resurface as someone else’s and to glorious success – this is actually a regular and regularly exacerbating occurrence; one of which I am now sick of both figuratively and it seems, literally.)
All such things are, as you might imagine, stressful. Not to mention that cramming your mind into boxes is not how minds are designed and built to work. They do not take kindly to it, nor well, and neither for very long. My body’s responses went from easily suppressed/ignored to medical labs and test results that couldn’t be suppressed/ignored; their message was one I could easily understand… very direct, very clear, and free of opinion:
“You are killing yourself by trying to give people what they’re asking for while simultaneously fighting them every step of the way to do so. We’re not going to let you ignore that anymore. Either you work in an environment that you control so you can sustain your health, or you stop working, or you’re going to die.”
Talk about timing. You see, that was three years ago. I quit one job because of things that were causing epic and insane amounts of stress (Pivotal Labs).
I lost the next two jobs because my health is happy to throw me under the bus to make its point; but also because companies seem to labor under the misconception that any illness not resulting in disability is not deserving of accommodation. Or maybe it’s just that corporations are now become so inhuman that it’s more like “any expense beyond the projected is automatically a disqualifer” (Bluetooth SIG and Costco Travel).
Regardless, each fired me for being sick, despite promising to work with me while I tried to get better, or reach “medically certifiable” illness, whichever came first (the sadness of such a goal, eh?). Agentive personalities doing bad things because the company policy told them to… Milgram and Zimbardo upheld, yet again.
My final attempt was an out-sourcer of off-shored development teams. Let’s just say that there’s a reason people like working from home and almost all of it has to do with leveraging comfort for productivity; this is the first company I ever encountered that manage to break that benefit via incredibly intrusive monitoring and over-use/abuse of “metrics” to measure “people value” (Aurea Software).
So, it’s 2017 and here I am, unemployed, and it has nothing to do with the corporatist or cultural debates. It’s merely that my body won’t let me work outside the home and no company can simultaneously permit me to work inside of it and avoid treating me as a “second-class” human resource who cannot be trusted unless under the eye of a camera or otherwise micro-managed unto insanity. Catch-22.
Next time someone tells you that you’re imagining the machinations of corporatism and its intrusive and negative affects upon the individual, point them to this post.
As for me? You have to know that none of the above kept me down. As even my “enemies” will tell you, I get shit done. Not only did I anticipate it all, I prepared for it. Which is why I’m writing a post telling you I’m going “radio silent” rather than any other manner of plaint so common on LinkedIn, etc today.
Analyst that I am, I realized early in the above that I needed a contingency plan for continued medical/stress issues and the likelihood they would continue to be destabilizing presences in my life. So I put my talents to work for myself (finally!).
In 2016, in less than three months, we sold my house and made the leap into the next “life investment”. We also got married and when the same medical triggers fired twice more during the year, we replayed the plan outlined above and went into debt management to keep things sustainable on my husband’s income until the “life investment” timer runs out on this house.
In other words, we can now make it on a single income, and I mean a single income under 50k. But the target goal is actually making it on a single income under 20k and guess what, folks? We’ll be there with no significant loss in lifestyle by 2020.
And all of it, accomplished in less than 5 years using publicly available data and my finely honed mind, along with healthy critical and divergent thinking competencies.
So yeah, I think I’m justified when I say, in general, “Hey, corporations – you’ve missed out on me, big time.”
And yes, I admit, I’m salty. I WANT to work. I LOVE what I do. But I am also human, I require humane accommodation that no company, no matter how technical, seems willing to provide.
For the record, my requirements, due to medical and mental necessity, must take precedence. Small, humble standards, but they are mine and I hold them well:
I will be paid fair market value for my work.
I will work from home because it is required for my physical health and mental well-being.
I will not endure behaviors that imply my presence as a resource is of less value than anyone else’s in the company.
Needless to say, the silence is LOUD. *chuckle*
But hey, learning even here! “ProTip” for those seeking relief from recruiters of all manner – just change your “passive recruitment” settings to indicate you HAVE to work from home. It’s magical, it’s a miracle, it’s radio silence!
So, yeah, I’m out of work. Because I am, and because reality is as it is, I’m gonna spend more time in pursuit of my real, day to day life than a virtual one. I’m contemplating possible alter-careers (not sales, thank you) and if/when I decide and move on it, this will likely be the first place online to say so.
In the interim, those of you who want to reach out should do so by email – if you’re connected with me, you’ve got it that and, if you’re not, you likely know someone who is/does… regardless, best wishes for fulfillment, growth, success, and professional pride to you, each and all.
Radio silence beginning in 3….2….