Leaving so soon?

Today is my last official day with my current employer. I say last official day because I’ve had a week of holiday at the end, so instead of spending time in the office deleting emails and rearranging pencils on my desk, I’ve been living it up in the Maritimes. Although it’s been chucking it down with rain all day today, which has rather crimped my ability to celebrate.

I managed almost two years, whereas I did eight years with my previous job. I have a slight worry that if we continue with that sort of progression, then I’ll be out on my ear in six months time, but I have faith that jobs don’t follow geometric series in quite that way. Although I suppose if I have to ride Zeno’s paradox all the way to the job centre, at least I’d be doing it somewhere warm.

It was a strange two years. I learned a lot during that time, both about things that I wanted to do, and things that I didn’t want to do. There’s things to take to my next job, about not over committing time to tasks that aren’t key to your life, and (more importantly) being clear on what things are key, so that you can ensure you know why it is you’re doing some things and not doing others. I think I would have spent more time earlier on getting to know my team better, and understanding better what they cared about. It struck me with monumental sadness on my last day that I didn’t know which were the appropriate flavours of cake to buy for my direct reports. Then again, everyone likes mango.

There were lots of positives. I know a lot more about how to measure things after this time. I know much more clearly the limits of some of my abilities, and when to go and ask somebody else to do things instead of trying to figure it all out myself. I think I can recognise with a bit more clarity when some people are talking complete bunk. And, most importantly, I met a lot of different and interesting people, and got to understand some of what they cared about and how to motivate them.

I have a fairly long list of things that I’ll try to do differently, or concentrate on more, during my next role. Those aren’t things that are necessarily appropriate to share here. At some point down the line, I should check back and see how honest I’ve kept myself on these things. But for now, I’ll sit back in the Nova Scotia evening and listen to the sound of foghorns blowing in the darkness.

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