OK, nobody move and no one will get hurt, or advance, or thrive, or get wealthy, or have a second home in Scottsdale or retire without a worry. Just stand right there and let the Laws of Inertia run it’s course. Yeah, and let’s keep the running gag about your plans, about your “maybe if”s” about when you get a new boss, a new job opportunity appears out of nowhere, or your handsome prince shows up.
Break out the calculator to figure out your total net worth in 5 years 10 months, 3 weeks, 2 days and 26 minutes. Then head to the automated cafeteria for lunch.
After a shit sandwich, return to your presently, unbearably repetitive job, (that your pet monkey could perform) every day with a scowl on your face , kick your waste basket, throw darts at pictures of your leadership team and learn the correct spelling of martyr.
Then your alarm goes off! Shit! Reality bites!
Are you watching what’s going on here? Have you noticed what’s happening in the so called traditional job market? Opportunities are coming along like the MBTA on a Sunday schedule. Only it’s Monday in America. Are you taking solace in the phony job numbers the government puts out and scratching your head as the stock market turns the country into a monarchy?
Are you going to spend your sunset years picketing for dental benefits in a Wal-Mart parking lot?
Your adoptive company is in possession of more minutiae about your contribution ratio to their organization than you ever thought possible. They know to the millimeter how many square feet you take up on their property, how much heat, AC, health insurance, 401K contributions, dead air and even have an equation for how many toilet flushes you are capable of in a month. They see you when you’re sleeping….
Here’s what I would say to anyone that will listen, START PACKING! Cram and scram! Steal every fucking intellectual idea or concept that’s ever bubbled up in one of those oxygen deprived meeting rooms. Steal voraciously! Use this dump as your think tank with you being the only one actually thinking.
Start acting like this is the year you will be escorted off the property. Do it with a vengeance. Make a list of all the transferable skills you do every day and add more. Much more. Ask questions. Look interested. Weasel your way into every stupid steering committee they will give entree to.
No one remembers what they say in those things anyway. Change positions, job titles and buildings if you can. Take a transfer. Go into sales. Collaborate. You don’t have a career, you are a preferred provider. For the moment. But It’s all good. For you.
While you’re feeling nice and warm, loved and protected in this womb-like environment, your temporary parents have other ideas. The pain is coming. Like the realization you were an orphan all along.
This might be your vaunted career, but it’s their b-u-s-i-n-e-s-s. There’s a cold shot in the nuts for ya! ” You mean they don’t love me and want to care for me and understand all my emotional needs?”
Uh, no. You are not really part of the organization. You are not on the team and never have been, no matter how much smoke they blew up your ass while your fearless, out of touch, leader floats across a fake catwalk, with “Hail to the Chief” playing in the background to give his benediction at your annual sales meetings.
We don’t need to do a SWOT analysis to understand the threats to your very shaky existence today. You can see how the digital landscape is erupting. You know all about globalization, immigration outsourcing and how they came to realize after 2008, they didn’t need half of you. Now, that was depressing wasn’t it?
You’re probably still keeping in touch and sympathizing with all your MBA drinking buddies who can’t catch a break. Big shots, captains of industry they were. All the dudes you thought had it going on. Belly flops, all of them. How can this happen? In other words, “what the fuck is going on here?”
I’ll tell you, I’ll break it to you even if your best friends won’t. You need to take stock and commoditize your ass off. You will either be a lone wolf or a dead duck. Stare in the mirror every day and ask “Who am I? What can I offer the world that can help someone? Did you forget the art of marketing yourself? Or did you ever? Can you articulate your value to anyone? “You used to be a contender, you used to be somebody”
When was the last time you interviewed for anything besides your current position? Was the last thing you negotiated a night out with the boys? Just who the hell do you think you are? Take a shot of Endust to the temporal lobe and get back in the game.
Use the opportunities buried in the confines of your daily grind to ready yourself for the future. Every mundane job function that you do should be looked at as a potential transferable skill. Learn public speaking, blog, tweet, get a web site, turn yourself into a marketable entity. Get a goddam opinion. Brand yourself, like “Enlightened Whatever” 🙂
Be…. You Inc.
It’s what I call, Parallel development.
Welcome to the jungle.