Coming to the end of the (Amber) Road

A casual glance at my CV reveals a lot of moves and job changes over the years. I have at times been quite self-conscious about it, but those who’ve “worried” about it on my behalf are, for the most part, of the older generation more often blessed with job longevity.

The case for the defence is as follows, your honour:

  • Early life: Temping / contracting jobs to put experience on the CV and seek career direction
  • Financial services “career”: In the late 90s, to get on and get ahead in the City, one often had to move jobs to move up the ladder
  • Working in IT, post-university return: A few redundancies (or threats thereof), following internal re-organisations / loss of business, with only one move being a dislike of the job

The defence rests.

For the last (nearly) 3 years, I have found myself with a company where that Venn Diagram sweet spot has often been hit; nice interesting job, ok money, nice people to work with etc. Sure, there were a few occasional niggles, but mostly relating to factors outside of my immediate environment. In short, I’ve had a very enjoyable job that I’ve wanted to get up for, and people I looked forward to seeing, every day. Travel to other offices of the company, my opinion regularly sought, and the breadth of my skill set valued, whilst being trusted with a variety of responsibility. Powers that be thought highly of me, and I was regularly of assistance to people across the company.

It hasn’t all been champagne and roses though. There’s certainly been a fair degree of frustration with decision making from those far more senior to myself, that have adversely affected my day-to-day working life. Not entirely unexpected however, and I’ve yet to meet a techie who doesn’t have the occasional moan about non-technical people more senior to him or her making poor technical decisions for bottom-line reasons!

This year has seen some changes for Amber Road, culminating in my office shutting and myself and a few colleagues being retained to work from home, whilst a great number transitioned elsewhere or faced redundancy. Working from home, outside of an “every now and again when necessary” set of circumstances, hasn’t really been for me. On reflection, I think that is mostly due to a thin workload, with my responsibilities having changed significantly in the absence of my previous day-to-day IT support responsibility. Whilst I miss the interaction, I also thrive on being busy. So being on my own at home, with not a lot to do, does not work for me.

Personalities and people played a huge part in why I enjoyed the job a great deal. However, incidents surrounding the closure of the Bristol office included a course of action from a senior colleague, now no longer with the company, that was utterly unwarranted, personally hurtful and angered me a great deal. On a related note, prior to the office closure, some colleagues’ attitude towards me and sharing their workload had also taken a profound shift, causing a bit of ill feeling.

All of this has combined to make me fall out of love with a job I had enjoyed immensely, feel resentment towards some colleagues I’d previously been happy to work with, and despite still working with some wonderful individuals, make me no longer “want to be there”. Once before, in my dim and distant “working in the City” Financial Services past, I left a job I loved that had people I loved working with. I had many moments of retrospective regret afterwards, and quite a few things may have been different had I not left. Ever since, I have been wary of leaving a job that I enjoyed…no matter what the enticements of the alternatives on offer. On that occasion I acted in haste and thought “the grass might have been greener” in the alternative I moved to. Those circumstances sadly are not the case now. Whilst it’s true that I have colleagues who I value, the environment, workload and many other things have changed quite profoundly. Unlike that previous occasion in the past, whilst I will miss my colleagues past & present, and think fondly of how the job was, I’m not leaving a JOB I love. Not anymore anyway. I’ll remember it fondly, will smile when I pass the building I used to work in, and enjoy the memories…but I won’t regret leaving. Here’s to the next chapter!

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