Monday, October 01, 2012

Job Change Thoughts

As I said that day, I was having a myriad of thoughts. But it has now been 6 months since I quit my previous job and I can see a semblance of feelings: primarily being old habits, extraction, guilt, interactions and achievement.

Old Habits: My previous job was something that I had held for over 9 years. A user name which I had used for over 9 years to login to the computer – that is how my day in the office used to start every single day. So it doesn’t come as a surprise to me that sometimes even now I use the same login name to start my day only to realize that the mind has not fully accustomed to the fact that I am in a new job with a new login name and hence the old one is not valid anymore. The same happens to meeting audio conference number. The mind subconsciously tells the fingers to dial that same conference number which I was so used to all these years. After all, 9-year-old habits don’t die easily.

Extraction: It is amazing how much knowledge we would have gathered during our livelihood. We will only realize it when we quit and start transitioning it all to our substitute(s) in the job due to our departure. All the knowledge, all the processes, all the dependencies – it is like you are in the middle of a shrub that has fully grown and you need to now place this entire shrub onto someone else. Each time a piece of the shrub is extracted, there seems more to it than what it initially appeared. Finally when you feel you have done a good job transitioning, and on the last day you return the badge and the laptop and other official stuff, it is as if you are metaphorically dying – and leaving behind all you have known for decades. The next day is a new day, new job, new people, new place – as if it is a new life.

Guilt: I have to say that sometimes I feel guilty. Continuing the allegory - It is one thing to die naturally; it is another thing to end one’s own life. The same is with employment I guess. There will always be heaviness in one corner of the heart. For so many of the life-altering circumstances, for affording the luxury of life, for creating footprints in distant corners of the globe – one has to be eternally grateful to the company that provided the safety of the nest, taught the necessity of knowledge and gave the wings to fly.

Interactions: Colleagues, of course, matter a lot. All those wonderful people with whom you interacted for years together not only add to the guilt but almost stop the ultimate step to be taken. How much ever it is promised to ‘Keep in touch’, life will never be the same again. A high likelihood is that, you will never see your colleague-turned-friends never again in your life. That job and that office was the foundation for day-to-day interaction. Once that foundation is lost, there is no more interaction. And this interaction was the best part of the working life: be it time-pass chat over Instant Messaging or the discussion during the coffee break or the interesting conversation at lunch time. This interaction was what made the working day bright, and a stop to this chit-chat is a huge lump in the throat.

However, considering how everyone wishes you ‘Congrats!’ when you break the news to them, it is as if you have done an achievement and it makes you wonder why you have not done this often!!

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