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This Business and Moment...

Discussion in 'Careers, Employment and Professional Development' started by randomshenans, 17 Feb 2016.

  1. HangTime

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 25 Oct 2002

    Posts: 29,400

    Location: Hampshire

    Yep. I quit my job last year with nothing lined up. In the middle of a pandemic with lots of uncertainty around the job market, ironically in a situation where I should have been happier than I was before due to no commute instead of spending 18hrs a week commuting. It sounds similar to my situation, literally every single day was 100mph, on average probably spent about 6hrs a day in meetings, meanwhile Inbox filling up with emails. Even just attending meetings and responding to emails would consume more than my allotted 35hrs a week. No time for strategic thinking, getting frustrated at having to do an 'average' job of so many things despite knowing I'm capable of more given the time. Managing a fairly big team, involved in multiple very large (>$100m) programmes, having to balance all that with BAU for critical systems. Plus budgeting, resource planning, recruitment, vendor management bla bla bla. Zero time for training, thinking about how to improve things etc. Honestly felt like I was doing two jobs and I don't see how it would be manageable for anyone unless they were given the headcount to hire enough people in the management layer below to delegate to.
    Taking days off was MEGA stressful because it just meant even more work to do when I got back. The analogy I use is, if you work in a coffee shop and take a day off, you don't come to a queue of people out of the door and a day's backlog of coffees to make for people. And bear in mind at the time my employer was very highly regarded as a brilliant place to work (according to Glassdoor, one of the top 10 best companies to work for in the UK 3 years running).

    Like you, I spoke to my wife about it some months prior (pre pandemic in fact). She said not to make any rash decisions and I stuck it out for another 9 months before resigning.
    It's kind of weird, when I actually resigned, I felt a sense of relief, that I now had some light at the end of the tunnel. So rather than trepidation about being unemployed, I was looking forward to being able to step away from the job. And whilst I felt I could handle the stress levels, evidenced by having successfully kept things together for a couple of years operating at that cadence, I probably wasn't a million miles from some sort of mental health issue, I remember breaking down in tears during a discussion with HR on why I wanted to leave, despite not feeling sad? Very odd.

    I wouldn't say it was plain sailing getting another job but to be honest with the schools being closed for over two months I was more focussed on home schooling my son and going a few certifications to freshen up my skills. Then in the spring the job market picked up a lot and I actually had three applications at an advanced stage before taking my current role.

    Bonus I wasn't expecting a massive windfall given the way the company was performing last year, likewise my share option wasn't really worth hanging on to, option price was a fair bit higher than valuation. Might be different for you but in a way it kind of did me a favour, if it looked like I could make a killing on the shares and would have got a profit bonus, then I'd have been tempted to hang on until that matured.

    I believe you may work in the same industry as I used to, happy to have a chat about it sometime if you feel it would help.
     
  2. Rids

    Soldato

    Joined: 30 Sep 2008

    Posts: 6,703

    Thanks for the feedback all, I think you've summed it all up perfectly well here... this is my life. Easily 6+ hours of meetings every day, pivoting between a broad range of topics and very little time to focus on actually getting the job done.

    The team under me will be great, but they're are new, and its going to take time to build them up to the point they're able to take big ticket items off my plate but they're doing well in keeping the ship from sinking.

    I've decided I'm not going to act rashly and I'm trying to enforce a bit of a mindset change. There is no point letting it get to me and feeling stressed / miserable all the time, I'm going to do the best job I can in the time I have available, I'll put in some extra hours but I'm going to kill myself and make myself miserable. We'll see how that pans out.

    My shares are worth nothing at the moment, their value on crystallises in the event of a listing / private equity transaction which is the journey that the business is on. Even applying quite a conservative multiplier walking away now could see me lose out on a low six figure sum in the next 18 months, as well as causing the house purchase to fall through.

    I'm going to tough it out for a bit, at some point the sheer number of bodies we've hired should turn the corner, hopefully trying to enforce a mindset change between now and then should result in a less stressful time.

    I did have an interview at a FTSE 250 insurer, role seemed right up my street, interview went well, asked the 'How did this role come about?' question as I wasn't comfortable with what the recruiter had pitched to me. Turns out the job has come about because the previous incumbent had walked away with nothing to go do as he'd had a nervous breakdown from working 80 hours a week for the last 18 months... no thanks.
     
  3. Martynt74

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Feb 2004

    Posts: 17,279

    Location: Higher Walton

    Proabably worth just sticking a few blocked out entries into your diary for concentrating on work so you don't show as available when people are scheduling meetings so at least you get a bit of downtime from that.

    It funny to see the culture of attitudes towards meetings. In my current place a lot of people show as in calls etc but they seem to just be short 1-2-1 calls checking information etc rather than full meetings requiring prep etc. Contrasted to my old place where in one quarterly call the CEO stressed the importance of downtime and a business wide rule to stop Friday afternoon meetings. Then promptly set up 3 meetings for the next Friday afternoon :/



    Also found it amusing that when i was leaving, i said to give me a call if they needed any clarification on tasks etc as i knew they would struggle. The busy month end reporting period is around the 10th to 20th of the month and i hadn't heard anything so assumed everything had gone well. Had a text today asking how to run something which would normally be done on around WD9 which would've been the 13th July, so over 2 weeks ago. That's a pretty key task in the monthly reporting too (and one of the less complicated ones) so i can only assume that they're not even reported consolidated accounts to the board for Q2 yet!
     
  4. randomshenans

    Capodecina

    Joined: 11 Sep 2009

    Posts: 12,774

    Location: France, Alsace

    I'm getting stuck in some of the above at the moment at work. 8-10 meetings a day. It's stupid and people are really bad for it and the reasons for them. It's just not at all productive and stupidly expensive. We currently are on this 2 week "rejuvenation" which is 2 weeks of no internal meetings. You can really use it as you like. Often people use it to catch up on work, or learn, or whatever. I'm doing the bare minimum - solving some key issues we needed to do on a couple of teams sessions, but not "meetings" apparently.

    I've actually decided in my downtime that I'm going to push no meetings, unless pre arranged and justified, more than 30mins. I'll just decline them. This came about as someone sent me 5 more invites to role mapping workshops. An hour a piece, so that's 5 hours and we've already had 5... 10hours of what, 10-12 people's time? I'm not saying this work isn't important (well, actually I think it's being run poorly but that's by the by), it's more than we can collaborate more effectively. Using Teams chats, or online tools we have to come up with stuff collectively prior to getting 10-15 people in a workshop for an hour. It's not needed. Just run through stuff and use the meetings for key decisions and next action. I'm sick of it so I'm going to make a stand. The company says one thing, but people don't do it, but I think it's because they can't think like that and don't know how to do it. I'll either get a load of **** or back patting :p we will see!
     
  5. Casdawer

    Mobster

    Joined: 14 May 2009

    Posts: 3,936

    Location: Hampshire

    Interviewed for a job last Friday and was told I'd hear back this week.

    It's Thursday and nothing....

    Every time my phone buzzes, I immediately check it :o

    I JUST WANT TO KNOW!
     
  6. HangTime

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 25 Oct 2002

    Posts: 29,400

    Location: Hampshire

    I did this to try and reserve desk time for working on stuff, the problem I found with that was:
    • All the time around those blocked out sessions would get filled up, and then I'd have something important come up, or someone in my team needs to discuss something, so I'd end up filling some of that blocked time anyway because I can't leave some things for days
    • Some meetings would be with multiple senior people, the organisers will just crash diaries because they know they won't find any slots everyone is free for weeks ahead, they understandably just go with whatever is least disruptive to the most senior people
    • Often I never actually got to work on what I'd planned to in that slot because I'd just be tackling the backlog of emails that had built up during meetings. You could argue that's poor time management on my part (i.e. don't let your inbox rule your life), but it's got to be done some time and it was one of the few things I would find rewarding, those small dopamine hits from being able to quickly despatch a task in 10mins rather than some mammoth problem that rolls on for months
    • I'd get people just coming up to my desk to speak to me on the rare occasions I wasn't in a meeting, so the reserved time only worked if I hid myself away in a booth or something (obviously less of an issue with WFH)

    I'd stick it out in that scenario due to the large windfall, but depending on your personality I wouldn't bank on the mindset change. It's really easy to say "yeah, I'll just not work as many hours, I'll take my full lunch break every day" but then your sense of pride takes over and you sacrifice your lunch break because you don't want to go into that 1pm meeting and say "sorry guys I didn't have time to prepare anything to share with you". Some people can do it, I had a guy working for me who was hardworking but also very matter of fact about tasks, he would just say "I've not had time to do that" regardless of the audience, but not everyone can.
     
  7. Amplus

    Hitman

    Joined: 26 Aug 2018

    Posts: 742

    Location: Manchester

    How long do you give a new job? Been here 2 weeks now. First day barely anybody knew I was starting, wasn't exactly welcomed to the team, no one else in the company does the role I do or even knows what I'm doing, people seem shocked.that I do not have prior experience in the role I was hired for. Was in my last job for 9 years and took this as it was alot more money and was a newer career path but to be honest feel miserable at the minute. I know I have to give it time but there are so many red flags at the minute.
     
  8. HangTime

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 25 Oct 2002

    Posts: 29,400

    Location: Hampshire

    Six weeks IMO. First few weeks of most new jobs (at a new organisation) are pretty rubbish because you don't add much value and are just chasing around trying to get access sorted, knowledge transfer, find out what you need to know etc.

    Maybe pick it up with your line manager in terms of what your onboarding plan should look like.
     
  9. Amplus

    Hitman

    Joined: 26 Aug 2018

    Posts: 742

    Location: Manchester

    Yeah that was my thinking. Just disappointed that I have a bad vibe about the place already based on how they have sort of not given me a proper welcome by even knowing I was due to come the office that day or even seem to understand what my role is. The role itself from what I think it is I'm not sure is for me, took it as was alot more money tbh in a completely new sector. Started looking around already but think I should give it at least 6 weeks like you say.
     
  10. dLockers

    Soldato

    Joined: 21 Jan 2010

    Posts: 7,463

    Tbh if it is anything like the clients I am working with, you have landed at a really odd time. August is a dead month in pretty much every sector other than Retail/Tourism (I guess). Definitely stick it out and make your own good vibes... 2 weeks is hardly anything.
     
  11. Lopéz

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 28,205

    Location: LE9/OTK

    6-8 weeks and you need to be honest with your manager about the induction experience you've received, because it sounds really poor.
     
  12. Trifid

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 18 Feb 2006

    Posts: 8,603

    Work a few weeks ago: We need to spend a hour-90mins every morning talking to different groups about the work we are doing the previous day
    Work last week: Why is progress so slow??? :confused:
    Work this week: We are spending too much time in meetings, you must log the hours spent on meetings and report it the following morning for reports.


    Hmmm...
     
  13. randomshenans

    Capodecina

    Joined: 11 Sep 2009

    Posts: 12,774

    Location: France, Alsace

    I'm really struggling to concentrate at the moment. I would put this in GD as it's probably more suited to the relationships or mental health thread but hey, I prefer it in here :) it's having an impact on my work at the moment, so you know, it's related :p

    Over the last couple of years it's been difficult at home and it's got to a point where my wife and I have decided we need some time apart. We are currently in therapy separately, which is useful. We both have past that has impacted our present and need to work on ourselves. My wife had a lot of trauma in her past that I think she never processed, which comes out in ways I don't think it should. Either way, we both are friends and we both love each other, but we equally know that we need to do this. We're wearing the scars of 10yrs of our relationship. I know for me personally my sense of self worth is extremely low and I really don't know who I am.
    I think I spent so long now trying to be who she wanted me to be and being told it wasn't good enough, I need to work out how to be me, for me. This isn't to say she was a bad wife in any way and I'm not perfect in any way at all and have contributed my own **** into all of this. We've just hit this point where we're not effectively communicating and in a toxic communication infinite loop.
    Therapy has made me realise that I also need to be needed. Scars from the breakup of my mum and dad when I was a kid, when he buggered off and didn't give a **** etc etc. and probably why I wanted so much to keep the family together. I do everything for this family. I put in everything I have to it. I don't have a lot of friends over here, but I think I'm OK with that... I think! I have the husbands of my wife's friends, and people I used to work with, but I don't have those people who really get me. I think that not many people understand my brain, least not me lol

    I am going to try and get away this weekend, and maybe some of next week and go to the alps. See if I can get some head space. My wife is looking for a house nearby - we just want it to be all normal for the kids. Like I said we're not arguing, we're friends and still there for each other. Probably harder in a way but best for the kids. I couldn't put this in GD, it'd be all "she's run off with someone else" or "good luck she's going to screw you over" but I get it's not a normal situation. Most people don't come to this conclusion. Most people don't take the time to understand their relationships and see that they are not aligned and on the same frequencies. They leave it. They continue bickering and not resolving things until it's too late and the resentment has set in. We don't want that and have simply decided before that point to see if some time working on ourselves can help us both independently and then see what happens down the line.

    Sorry for the mumsnet post. I am really trying to work on myself through all this. I spent so many years trying to be the best career-wise I could be, but neglected to look at whether I was trying to be the best me I could be, too. We're not defined by what we do, but who we are. It's taken me a lot longer than it should have to realise this.

    I have some flexi-time at work and so might use up some of this and spend a long weekend or something in the alps. Get some space. Cycle. Walk. Just "be".

    Right enough of my ****. Hope everyone is OK! Sorry for the bleugh!
     
  14. bloodiedathame

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 11 May 2007

    Posts: 8,313

    Location: Surrey

    Have you managed to get some time together away from the kids? Also, I know this sounds stupid, by try talking about issues via Whatsapp or something rather than face to face. If I have a problem I need to sort out with my wife, we do exactly this, so the kids don't hear and we have time to respond correctly rather than impulsively.
     
  15. Martynt74

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Feb 2004

    Posts: 17,279

    Location: Higher Walton

    Sorry to hear that Ross. I know you were having similar thoughts just before Christmas before things looked a little better with therapy etc.

    I guess from the side i see, is that you have a lot of drive/determination and so much going on all the time (Work, side projects, cycling etc), that maybe you need more downtime where you and the family just do nothing? Do you have any local people who can babysit if you wanted to get away with the wife, even if just a night. Just to be away from any distractions and enjoy the time together. As you say, you're still friends and love each other so maybe just

    You've got my email if you ever want to chat. I know how it can feel from the friends side, i moved away to be where my wife lived and never really made friends locally. Granted mine are only ~30/40 miles away so still accessible with effort, but that distance makes it tricker for just spontaneous trips to the pub etc and then i see on group chats they'll go out midweek for a few drinks and then save their weekends for family time and i miss out on that which makes it tough. I imagine it must be even tougher for you.
    Plus i know sometimes it can feel easier to chat to a stranger. I'm always a lot more open with strangers than i am with friends/family!


    EDIT - Also realised that second paragraph makes it sound like i think you ignore the family and spend time just doing "you". That's not how it was intended, i know from other posts you do a lot with the kids!
     
  16. randomshenans

    Capodecina

    Joined: 11 Sep 2009

    Posts: 12,774

    Location: France, Alsace

    The main issue is that we've lost the trust in our relationship. She doesn't trust me and I don't really trust her, so no simply getting away will change that. This has come from a lot of behaviour from both sides over the years and we need to really sort out why we are like we are or do the things we do before we can even try and come back together. I wish on one hand it'd be as simple as going away to fix it, but at the same time I don't... which is weird. I think it's really needed this time apart. I think she also needs to realise everything I do right now for the family and maybe she'll realise this when she has to do it all herself. I cook, clean, do the washing, help kids with homework, pick up kids, sort all admin, work full time, side projects, spend a lot of time with the kids on various projects and try and fit in some fitness too. Really at the moment, she gets in from the office and is done for the day. She socialises a lot more than me (she's out tonight, and friday. Was out twice last week) and I don't, which is my choice, but at the same time doesn't mean I wouldn't like a break from all the aforementioned **** I do. Which I don't think is understood because her breaks are socialising, whereas I would just like a break from having to keep everything together and sorting it all!

    Like I said, it's really past the point of time alone together making any kind of difference if we're not effectively communicating. It just glosses over the core of the issues really and then we pretend it's OK and then really we've not dealt with anything. It's needed, but it doesn't stop it hurting.

    Just because it hurts, doesn't mean it's not the right thing to do. Change is hard.

    I really appreciate your thoughts and input, so thank you. We are making progress in therapy and haven't ruled out the possibility of us finding ourselves and rekindling something down the line, if it works. The risk is that we don't, but at the same time it's more important for us to find our happiness independently than anything else. I want nothing more than her to be happy in herself. For me, I just want to feel confident in who I am and that I'm a good person.
     
  17. Martynt74

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Feb 2004

    Posts: 17,279

    Location: Higher Walton

    Yeah i guess that's where it's difficult, time away can help but as you say sometimes can just paper over cracks and you'll know your relationship better than us.

    I agree it sounds like you need some time for yourself, that's a hell of a lot for you to do on a regular basis. I would add though that i know i can be pretty useless and leave stuff for my wife to do often and it's only when she reminds me that i've got pretty useless that it snaps me back again. I guess it depends how she takes that feedback though as it does sound a little like she's got used to doing nothing. The worry then is you move out and she wants to get back together just so you do all the chores rather than out of anything else!

    Maybe time apart will help you both see what you miss of each other, but if it doesn't and you find you're happier apart then that works too. Better to catch it whilst you're on good terms and friends than letting it descend into resentment which then makes for a nasty environment for the kids.
     
  18. randomshenans

    Capodecina

    Joined: 11 Sep 2009

    Posts: 12,774

    Location: France, Alsace

    This is pretty much it really!

    Thanks dude. I am picking my bike up from a mate's house tomorrow night, and going to head to the alps this weekend for a bit. No idea how long for. Can't be away forever :p although at this stage it feels like I need it, but know that'll cause issues too here.
     
  19. Martynt74

    Capodecina

    Joined: 20 Feb 2004

    Posts: 17,279

    Location: Higher Walton

    Have you considered an au pair?

    Not so much for the kids now since they're a little older, but just someone to help with cleaning/cooking/general housework. I'm not sure what kind of cost they incur but your salary would have been enough i'd have thought and they could drive the taxi!

    Would take a lot of the strain from you and mean you get less annoyed by there not being a fair split of chores, then you can spend time on you/the kids and worst case if it doesn't work out with your wife you have a ready made next step :p
     
  20. Amplus

    Hitman

    Joined: 26 Aug 2018

    Posts: 742

    Location: Manchester

    Thanks for the responses.

    Almost a month now and tbh it's getting no better. I feel more relaxed in the office and people are alot more open now. However I literally have no idea what the point of my role is and neither do the company. Was introduced in a meeting to lots of managers from different regions at head office in Manchester to see how I can add value or how I can be used. Not one had an idea or said anything. Awkward is an understatement.

    I'll stick it out for now as it's a big pay jump for me and seems a decent company but as time goes on, if they still don't know what to do with me then might have to look elsewhere. Can't sit here doing nothing all day as great as it sounds, it really isn't.