Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A Step Forward Into the Past

Leaving a job can only ever be one of two things:
a sad experience
or a joyous occasion.

In my so far short life I've had and left quite a few jobs with a mixture of the above experiences.Three years on from my last day at the school where I worked in London I can still feel the anxiety and immense sadness that caused me to break down in front of the whole school. I loved those children, loved the staff I was fortunate enough to work with and loved the families that I'd gotten to know well over my eighteen months working there. I even loved the crazy three-storey Victorian monstrosity and the cramped school yard with no grass!

Words will never encompass the sense of joy I felt when I left the wretched HR administration role I worked for a few months in 2007. Nor could pictures ever capture my miles of smiles as I walked out of that ghastly south London school after my brief stint teaching there in 2007. I have never slept as soundly as after my last day working in snake pit that was the HR Branch I'd had the misfortune of stumbling into.

The last job I left was a mixture of the both. On one hand I was sad to be walking away from such a great supervisor and heartbroken to be removing myself from one of the friendliest, most welcoming teams I'd experienced so far. But at the end of that final day my sense of relief to be leaving was overwhelming stronger than my sadness. I was relieved to be finally working part-time, to be leaving behind all the workload of three people, to be walking away from the reception desk, to be leaving a work environment that frowned upon fair conditions and hours, to be walking away from crazy work expectations and constant demands. And mostly to be leaving rude, arrogant ESL teachers who thought they were God's gift to Adelaide! While I cited the need to devote more time to my studies, which in essence was the truth of the matter, the above list shows all the other valid reasons I had for wanting to leave.

So four months after leaving that last, crazy, stressful, hectic job I somehow found my way back there, to help them out for three days during one of the official busy periods. Never underestimate the lure of a brilliant supervisor when surrounded by so much dead wood at my organisation.The three day visit allowed me to meet my replacement (who is just lovely!) and also to witness the changes that have occurred as a result of my resignation. My lovely replacement only had a few shifts helping out over the official busy period. When this time occurred during my tenure I had been required to work the majority of the shifts. My lovely replacement no longer sits at reception one day a week. The most surprisingly aspect of all was the fact that a casual had been recruited to help my work team cope with the demands placed upon them. Very, very interesting!

Oh how I love taking a step forward into the past!

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