I was so happy to be back in the “rat-race” a few short months away from retirement, but so far away from some challenges, I returned happily. The pay not nearly what I wanted (is it ever), it was an amount I could deal with. The benefits were worth their weight in gold. Not only did I have the comfort of knowing I had them, but the relief from stress was priceless.
I went to my new gig daily with an attitude of,” It is great to be here”. However, I looked all around me and saw the faces of descension. I saw scowling expressions and seriously unhealthy folks. I shook my head as one of these individuals allowed a door to close practically in my face. I resisted the inner self that said,” BITCH, I know you saw me..” I laughed to myself and said, ” These people don’t know how good they have it”.
I survived weeks of training. I tried to excuse the opinions and conclusions I was drawing; as I observed time passing and my retention of the material not nearly where I thought/ felt/ knew I should have been. I tried to keep it simple, “It was me”. I kept my composure as each instructor presented material and in most cases followed up the lesson with , “You probably won’t see this any time soon”. I carried around and tried to keep a manual organized filled with information that I was told, ” You cannot rely on this because it changes so often”. I tried not to think, ” I am gonna be out here on my own, not having a clue as to what I am telling people calling or writing in for…” I still tried to remain positive because my instructor and managers said, ” You will be fine”.
Then it became harder and harder to look at those faces I encountered, along with the impolite attitudes, and NOT understand “why”. I feared I was beginning to relate. The transformation began taking place in the final week of training. Then the very day we were no longer in the status of “training” we were treated as though we were seasoned professionals, rather than being recognized as newly released green–peas. When we asked questions our managers/leads/coaches now looked at us like,”WHY DON”T YOU HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS? ” This group of individuals who gave the impression as well as said, they wanted team work, now informed us we should not talk to one another and exchange information ( i.e. we should not try to help each other). I glanced at the mirror one evening, as I took one of many needed stress breaks, and noticed one of those unhappy scowls looking at me and guess what, it was me!
The morale has plummeted, in some instances bottomed out. The assistance/coaching has intensified to triple magnitude micro-management from folks who technically aren’t managers to complete disconnect by others. You are either being watched as you take every breath and step, or totally ignored and left out there with all your problems and questions alone. The actual managers appear to as well as demonstrate concern for one thing, themselves. How about that for a team effort, a far cry from “We’re all in this together”.
I thought about the faces, the bad attitudes, and the un-toned bodies. It began to make sense, more and more. Now as I pass through the gates no matter how I try to imagine a day that I will once again feel the emotion I had the day I got the job. For while I am grateful each and everyday; I have a lot of imagining to do and this is a far cry from a theme park.