Gainfully employed?


As vacations come to a close, you begin to think about what you are going back to. Your life and your job, of course. Life is great for the most part-even with all the ups and downs but what about work? For the first time in quite a long time, I have a job I can barely stand. I accepted the position as it was a wonderful step up (yes a huge pay raise as well!) and I thought it would be exciting. It has turned out to be quite the opposite, in fact.

There are huge problems which the higher ups are ignoring and expecting our little team to deal with. Each time we make progress in our department, the higher ups suggest a different result but offer no direction. Both the people I work with closely have one foot out the door because of things going on in their personal lives and because they have been there longer than I and already know that it is almost impossible to make progress in this role due to systemic issues. I have been in the role less than 6 months and am feeling very frustrated. Part of me does not want to run off-I am only on a one year contract and feel I should finish it-but the other part feels so unfulfilled. This feeling is not one I am used to as all my past positions since graduating university have been very rewarding.

I have been keeping an eye on postings elsewhere but nothing much is coming up. I am guessing after the summer it will improve and I may have an out. In the meantime, I will try to do my best to deal with the ridiculousness. I have just finished a book and had to dog ear a page as it described my workplace quite well. Here is the quote:

Emile starts to actually see hazy silos of information, silos of processes, silos of small-brained bureaucrats like this man, and none of these silos communicate in person-they all e-mail each other, copy subordinates and sub-subordinates, obscure information; rewrite memos dozens of times, make simple memos into academic dissertations so laden with cover-you-own-ass modifiers that they become meaningless.

-from ‘Waiting for Columbus’ by Thomas Trofimuk

Reading this quote made me smile as this is how I feel about my job. At 30, I thought I would have a career by now-one that I love. While I have definitely made some progress in moving up (and before now I always loved my jobs), I still have a long way to go. One of the scariest things for me is settling down to one job for years and years. I just cannot imagine it. Hence, one of the things on my list is to start my own business. I won’t be able to pull it off this year but soon. Then, perhaps, I can feel a bit more secure down the road as my life progresses.

Speaking of careers, my immigrant husband is also anxious for progress. Now that he has been here a bit and adjusted to some extent, he is ready to take the next step and explore career paths rather than just the entry level opportunities he has had so far. This month of July, as my career simmers and stews while half the office is on vacation, I suppose we will focus on him. It will be exciting as he has a clean slate and no transferable work history. He can choose any path to train for. Occasionally, I feel an urge for something like this…but the time is just not right. We will have to see what the next year or two holds.


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