No Regrets

For seven years I worked at a company that was very good to me. They kept me on when financially they should have laid me off. They encouraged (and paid for) me to learn new skills. They highly valued my abilities and told me so frequently.

Even when I spent 1 ½ years thinking that every day was going to be pink slip day, I couldn’t bring myself to create a resume: Somehow that felt disloyal.

Got Guilt?

Once I realized I wanted a career change and started preparing myself for it, writing that resume and looking for a new challenge no longer felt wrong. I wasn’t jumping ship and running away – mentally I had made the transition into a new field, where they couldn’t give me that experience.

An opportunity of a lifetime came up recently. It looked as if the position description was written based on my strengths. Although it was a blind ad, I Googled the company description and figured out who it was. I then addressed my cover letter to their president. It turns out, I was the only one to take that step.

At my interview, I immediately felt at home. All the things they were asking for I had either done or done something very similar. The president, who would be my boss, was blunt, much in the same way Kurt is, and I love working in situations where I know exactly where I stand. That interview ended with the scheduling of my second interview, which further cemented in my mind that this is the perfect-for-me job.

The offer came a week after my first interview, and I said yes. There was much happy dancing. I knew it was the right decision when the only thing I was anxious about was telling my employer that I was leaving. I can’t get over how great that conversation went. His response on my breaking the news: “Good for you, bad for us. While I am saddened by your decision, I understand it.”

I spent three weeks getting things as ready as I could for my replacement, writing “how to” guides, ensuring 100% of what was in our paper files had been scanned and electronically filed, and polishing off all those last minute projects that kept popping up.

I’ve now been in my new role for a week. I hadn’t had the new job learning curve in a LONG time, and I’ve been unexpectedly overwhelmed. Once I was finally able to tackle a couple of projects that I knew how to do, I felt better. My new co-workers have been wonderful – lifting my spirits on days when I wondered if I would ever be able to keep up. Some fabulous opportunities have already presented themselves, and I know I’ll eventually be able to do great work for a fabulous cause. I just wish it would happen a little faster … like yesterday!

Has anyone else ever felt guilty about the thought of leaving an employer? or Have you found your perfect-for-you (at the moment at least) job?

10 thoughts on “No Regrets”

  1. How wonderful for you! I could feel your excitement at landing this new job that fit you perfectly. What a great feeling.

    The learning curve is scary, isn’t it? But it is such a short time, and it sounds as if you work in an encouraging, helpful environment.

    Congratulations!

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    1. Thank you so much! The job is exciting, and this week has already started out better than last. Gave my first tour of the facility today, only a week in. It wasn’t much, but it was a start! One day I will be competent – I can see that now, despite some moments of doubt last week.

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  2. Oh congratulations, congratulations, congratulations Tammy! This is me over here clapping for you and your success and your new adventure – aren’t new beginings, especially those that are a perfect fit, fantastic? Very happy for you and look forward to hearing more about it.

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    1. Hi Barb! I think the initial learning curve is more of a “good for you” or “character building” activity. Don’t you love how we try to put a good spin on horrible feeling events.

      I did have a flash that I won’t feel incompetent forever, which was promising. I can’t wait until I get to do those “perfect for me” activities. I’ll definitely use this post to remind myself how far I have come.

      I am so proud of myself for leaving the comfortable rut of my last position. And hopefully when I get ready to move to my next post I’ll remember that the learning curve is there and real and even applies to me!

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  3. Ooh, congratulations! Love what you said about the timing being right – putting the resume together when you had made the mental transition. Fortuitous that you were able to make an actual transition to a new position. Frustrating is making the mental transition but not having the new opportunity present itself.

    Enjoy your new position!

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    1. Thank you, Lisa.

      I have been unfortunate enough to have the “ready to move but no opportunities come” experience, and I must say, having things work out really is much better. 🙂

      Each day the job gets better. I now have tiny little pockets of competence that are forming. The owner complemented me today for something I did, and I blew it off because to me it was nothing. He stopped me in my tracks and said that while it was nothing to me, it was huge to the organization. I love getting caught doing something good, especially when I just thought I was being average!

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  4. WOW! You deserved that new role with all that clever researching and efforts you made–as well as all the skills you’ve worked hard to gain. I love reading stories like this. And how cool about your former employer. Sounds like this all happened right when you were ready for it.

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    1. Thank you so much!

      I need to keep reminding myself that I am in the learning curve with the new job and that things will get easier… right? I love the company I’m with, and each day there are more and more things I can do. I guess one day I will wake up and suddenly realize I can do all parts of my job. Just thinking about that day and that realization makes me happy. I know it will come.

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  5. Congratulations on getting into a new position. You’re such a good person to feel guilt about leaving your old job. It must have been a good spot to be in. Don’t feel bad about leaving though. You got to move on sometimes.

    I’ve never felt bad about leaving anywhere before. The last time I could say I came close to feeling bad was when I left my high school job. I had been there for years and it was my first job. I guess I was sentimental about it. It was special because it was my first. Since then I’ve always tried to look out for what’s best for me and take opportunities for that.

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    1. Thanks, Steve. I started week 3 today and had my best day yet!

      While I know that I’m the only one looking out for me, but sometimes not all of my brain gets the message.

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