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Sunday, October 05, 2008

Zoo Animals: How to Get Out Of Dodge

Bad jobs can slowly kill your spirit. They can destroy your enjoyment of life.

Don't stay any longer then it takes to find a new job and if you can't wait that long, quit and spend the time you used to toil at work looking for that next thing.

No, you are no weaker in your job search if you are out of work. It is all in your head or in your wallet.

My first recommendation to a worker is to put 6 months salary in the bank. This is separate from anything else you save. This is critical. It is your emergency account. Not for that new car or HDTV but in case you are fired or choose to leave your job voluntarily.

Oh, I can't do that?


You have to do that and in fact a year in the bank is even better.

You own the job or the job owns you.

Tahiti people say you eat life or life eat you. I think that was the Marlon Brando version of "Mutiny on the Bounty".

I have left jobs for every reason under the sun but I have also hung in there (by my neck) because I was handcuffed to work by the need for money. The worst was my last full time regular employee job. I had a great deal of stock vesting but worked for a real bastard of a boss. But I stayed in there, took daily flak (and it was daily) and eventually cashed in after the company went IPO. The verbal beatings were those of a vicious bully who terrorized half the company into silence. After cashing in, I stayed on just to help get rid of him instead of getting out of Dodge. He was eventually fired but the price of staying was high. It took me months to recover. For 9 months I just lazed and relaxed. Then I went back to work as a consultant.

We are trained to stay and suffer. How silly. I still have to relearn that lesson. Money doesn't free you up if your mind is that of a zoo animal. The bird who lived in a cage so long that even when they took the top off, the bird never tried to fly away even though there was nothing restraining it from taking wing.

Zoo animals.


On Monday I am going to begin the strategic physical withdrawal from my present client's territory. In a way it is like pulling troops out of an occupied country. You have to do it in stages. At first it appears as if you might not actually be moving out but within a few days it becomes obvious as the time factor kicks in. The plain fact is that in 14 days my presence will NOT be there anymore. So a quick transition, a promise of availability by phone and email and puff.


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