Source | Forbes : By Liz Ryan
I am a big fan of your human approach to work. I started to get very disenchanted with my job last summer, but it took me a while to get my job-search act together.
I had my first interview for a new job in November. I didn’t like the job and they didn’t like me either, but in that interview I realized that I was completely wasting my time in my job.
There are so many great things happening out in the world and I wasn’t involved in any of them.
My boss “Charlotte” is one of those fearful managers you write about. As a human being, I feel sorry for her but as one of her subordinates, I don’t.
One day she acts like your best friend and the next day she throws you under the bus. It’s all unconscious. She is on auto-pilot all the time. She is a mess, but I have to manage my own career.
In December I was in a lunch meeting with Charlotte at a client site. The two client representatives stepped out of the room at the same time and Charlotte said “Can you believe it? Grace gave notice. She’s leaving me just before our biggest project of the year.”
Grace is my teammate, and she had already told me she was leaving.
All Charlotte could see was her own discomfort — she didn’t give a damn about Grace, who was a great employee.
“Yeah, she told me she accepted an offer,” I said.
“I’m not even sure I’m going to keep her for the whole two weeks of her notice period,” said Charlotte. “I might just tell her to get out, and not pay her.” This is the way Charlotte thinks.
“I think you should keep Grace for those two weeks,” I said.
“Otherwise it signals to the whole team that anybody who dares to give notice is going to get screwed out of pay.”
“You sound like an employee!” said Charlotte, and I said “I am an employee.”
Charlotte said “Do you ever take the company’s side?” and I said “Honestly Charlotte, if there are two opposing sides then something is badly broken.”
Charlotte ended up letting Grace work out her two-week notice period, but I knew from that conversation that it would be dangerous for me to give Charlotte two weeks notice when I eventually got a better job.
I accepted a job offer in mid-January.
I went straight to Charlotte’s office and said “Charlotte, I’ve accepted a job offer. It’s not a competitor. I can leave right now and start the job on Monday, or I can give you two weeks to tie up loose ends here if you prefer.”
Charlotte could not speak. She stared at me.
“You, too?” she finally said.
“Charlotte,” I said, “as a friend, do you really see things changing here? Are you happy here?”
She said “No I’m not happy, but I’m loyal!” which was very sad to hear. Charlotte has confused loyalty with her own fear of change.