Saturday, August 4, 2007

Why I Left

I get asked a lot in interviews why I left my old company. And I'm sick of lying to them. They can tell, and then they hone in on it. They know that I'm not telling the truth and I think they suspect I was fired. (Which I would have been, but...)

But I don't know how I could possibly tell the truth without sounding like a lunatic.

I left because I had to. I left because my boss was an abusive maniac who hurt everyone around him. I left because the company was threatening lawsuits when important employees tried to leave. I left because the owner had banned teamwork. I left because I couldn't possibly succeed when I was set up for failure. I left because I was accused of being a liar despite concrete evidence to the contrary. I left because I was tired of the childish games. I left because budgets were constantly slashed so customers could pay a fraction of what they paid elsewhere, and when they inevitably went overboard, they took the excess out of employee paychecks.

Ironically, I didn't leave because I was overworked. I didn't even leave because of the impossible deadlines. I didn't leave because of the constant chaos. In some ways I feed off those things.

Ultimately I left because I was tired of supporting a man who so badly hurt those around him. How many times did I save his butt? How much money did I make for that company? All so he could make grown men quiver. All so he could constantly scream at his wife (at work). All so she could show up at work with a mysterious injury that was consistent with his criminal past.

I couldn't support that any longer. I wish I could have because I have created financial hardship for my money. But I couldn't. I hit a breaking point. I started to think awful thoughts. I formulated plans in my head. I entertained the notion of lewd vandalism. Imagine his surprise when during an important meeting is clients would see what we really thought of him. And most of all my thoughts turned to violence. I wasn't alone. He had recently survived a gruesome beating at the hands of a neighbor. Another employee had to be turned into the authorities because he had a plan to murder the man in his sleep.

I remember the point where I knew it was time to go. It was Friday night and I was driving home. On the radio came news of a massive accident on the road to the owners home. Then, the news that there were no fatalities. And I was disappointed.

I had turned into a monster. I was consumed with hatred for a man that didn't deserve the time of day. It was true that the world would have been better off without him. He was abusive to his wife, and his own children had disowned him. He would ultimately be missed by absolutely no one.

One night I went to dinner with a fellow employee who said he couldn't stop worrying about work. He was literally shaking at the dinner table. I had no idea. But in hindsight, my thoughts were consumed with work too. It was all I thought about day and night. The difference is that he was a meek, shy, but kind man, where as I'm far more likely to fly off in a manic fit of rage.

So I left because I'm not sure I really had a choice. Besides, the writing on the wall was very clear. After my projects were done I was set to be let go. It might have been a week... maybe a month or two at most. My original plan was to keep working until I got fired... milk every penny out of the guy. But I changed my mind. I chose to leave with my head held high. I chose to regain my dignity and self-respect, and literally walk out in the middle of the day. I never even said a word to the man that I had come to hate.

My Completely Crazy Boss

I was reading an article about the local housing market this week, and in it was a quote from the owner of my old company. He was quoted a lot in the newspaper as a so-called expert.

Anyway, he said that the forecast for the local economy was good and that we shouldn't see any housing slowdowns. Well, there's two problems with that. One, the forecast for the local economy is always good. They never tell you it's bad until it's too late. Two, I wouldn't trust my old boss to predict the future of the housing market. A good day for my boss is when he wasn't urinating in front of people.

Part of me actually feels sorry for the crazy old man. He's clearly losing his mind. Nearly everybody hates him. But they hated him before he ended up in the looney bin last year. That's just who he is.

So This Is My New Blog

I decided to start a new blog... a personal one chronicling my highs and lows and all that inbetween. I miss writing about life. So this is it. You'll probably have to hear a lot of angry comments about my last job or my inability to get gainful employment or who knows what. But that's just what I have on my mind, and this place serves as a great outlet for that. Anyway, enjoy!

They Are Going to Be Lost

I feel really sorry for the analysts working at my old company. Absolutely nobody is left who will be able to update various important indexes. At least when I showed up we had one guy who had been there over a year. Now everyone is gone. It's not like these things were well documented. I feel sorry for anybody who looked at the mess of data that I compiled.

Of course, like usual, the company will survive by just making stuff up. The quality of work won't just suffer... it will be completely invalid. I no longer have anyone to talk to inside the company, but when they're 12 year (and only) veteran left, they started firing people the next day. Their absolutely incompetent management is killing their own company. The best part is they only blame their employees. A company with over 100% turnover rate is not a company with bad employees.

Expect more rants on this subject, cause... well, just cause.