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A prison of my own making

Updated: Nov 29, 2022

So let's talk about the job that is no more.


You know, that time I proclaimed that if I was going back to corporate america, I was going back to a company that was doing good. That the only place I would seriously consider working at was #Salesforce. . . the very place I just quit.


Here's the high level of what went down. . .


In May, I got hired as a contractor for a 6 month gig. The perfect amount of time for me to decide IF I really wanted to go back. As a contractor, I could test the waters by being a part of the team while not really being a part of the team.


About 4 months in, there was a full-time opening on the team & I was asked if I wanted to apply. This was around the same time that I was moving back to Indiana so I already felt a bit overwhelmed.


But because the conversation implied that only 1 of the 2 contracting positions might continue, I thought I might as well apply. After all, more than likely I'd have time to get settled during the course of the interviewing process.


As (un)luck would have it, less than 2 weeks after applying I was offered the position. Ironically, the recruiter kept apologizing for how fast the process was moving. . . something most candidates would prefer. #butnotme


Because I was still in "temporary housing" at my parents, I asked if my start date could be delayed long enough to allow me to move into my new digs. I was granted a week to get moved in & get myself settled. . . all while still doing my contract gig.


As the new job started & the "indoctrination" began (yes, that's the word used internally), I was still expected to do my contract gig too. While most new hires were completely overwhelmed with the #onboarding process alone, I was overwhelmed with onboarding, being in a new place aaaaaaand doing my old job.


The second week into my onboarding, I was assigned a bid to run. . . on my own. While my new hire peers were still learning the "Salesforce culture", I was being thrown a Canadian RFP to lead.


Now, while I'm a born leader. . . I understand how procurements work, pretty much regardless of country. . . & had a grasp of the team's program process. . . what no one had bothered to teach me, nor allow me time to learn, was the fucking technologies that we were actually bidding.


For months it was drilled in at nearly every team meeting that the team's job was to protect the company by providing "compliant & compelling responses".


As I sat at my desk with the realization that I had been assigned a response to lead - that it was my responsibility to put forth a compliant & compelling bid while still allocating time to my old job aaaaaaaaand continuing to onboard - I was furious.


Furious in a way I hadn't been in years. Furious at the lack of leadership, not from my immediate supervisor but from the VP of the team. Apparently this is how "she tests people". Fuuuuuuuuuuuuck that.


Almost immediately I felt the sucker punch land. My hope that this job would be different because the culture was different was extinguished as the air was sucked out of the room. . . & out of my lungs.


I actually couldn't breathe. I could feel the walls closing in around me. I felt duped. I had been hired by Salesforce. . . to work at this magical company that people adored. . . & the team I was on was dysfunctional AF. . . because of one person. The person in charge.


All the sudden I realized I was sobbing. . . hence the reason I couldn't breathe.


As pissed as I was at the VP & the process & the apathy of the team overall, I had no one to blame but myself. No one had forced me to apply for the job. . . or to take it when it was offered. I had done this to myself.


Even from the seat as a contractor, I could see the dysfunction. I sat in on the meetings where the VP would explain the process & then a week or so later would say the exact opposite, leaving us all wondering who was actually crazy. . . her or us?


I saw how the process was clearly broken & the level of chaos that was created by her near-constant changing of direction. I heard her talk about how the AEs didn't understand how to do their jobs & how her team's job was to protect the company. . . essentially from them. I felt the us vs. them mentality. . . something I've always detested.


Despite all of that, I accepted the job because a part of me wanted to say that I worked at Salesforce. #shallow


There's little doubt in my mind that had I been hired onto a different team, my experience would have been vastly different. I might have experienced what so many others have. But that wasn't my path to walk.


After just over 3 weeks on the job, I had a choice to make.


I could choose to remain trapped in a cell of my own making or I could consciously choose to free myself.


I chose my freedom.


As soon as I made the decision to quit, I felt the air come back into the room. I felt the expanse of possibilities return. I felt empowered by prioritizing my health & sanity. I felt love. . . self love.