Yesterday I made sure I arrived well before our meeting started at 8:30. I've always enjoyed having time to settle in at work, I dislike being rushed around, and I may have been feeling a bit smug until I opened the door and saw that the room was almost full despite my early arrival. I went to the back, stood against the wall by the windows, and tried to stay calm since this is one of the few times when the sales team and management is together. My boss was almost late, but managed to get there at the last possible second. Wednesday was my day off, Thursday was a long and not great day, I ended up getting soaked to the skin when I ran out to get a vehicle for a woman who forgot she was under medical orders to avoid driving. I sat at work in the air conditioning wondering why I had ever thought any of my career changes were going to work out.
The next day I packed an extra change of clothes, I had grabbed a second sweater on my way out the door on Thursday so I had that to change into. After some thought I went into the bathroom, took off my bra, and did my best to dry my soaking wet top in the hand dryer. We have one of those Dyson models where your hands go into the device so it wasn't as easy as it might have been with another model, however there was an admirable blast of warm air that I appreciated. I had no real way to dry my hair, later on I remembered that I had a cloth I use for windows in my bag, but my brain forgot it was available when I needed it. Wednesday I drove out to see one of my sisters, things were going along well, and then they deteriorated, partially due to things I had said and done. I had tried to mend fences, it had failed, and I didn't feel very good about anything as I drove back home.
Friday I went to see another sister during my lunch hour. When I got back to work I went to see my boss. I try to stay out of his way as much as possible since he is a very busy guy, the other day he had invited me to sit in on deals other people had going. I learned a lot and we had some fun even though some of the commentary was not really appropriate for work. When he saw me I told him that I was working very hard, I had started crying by this point in time, he asked if I was okay, I wasn't, but I didn't really know how to handle it. He isn't someone you really want to be crying in front of, but he's not without a degree of understanding. He told me that I needed to get out of my office, and that he had hinted I needed to do this, and told me, but apparently I hadn't gotten those clues. Anyways, I spent some time up front shadowing the receptionist and Friday afternoon went much better than the morning.
Saturday morning he thanked me publicly for getting my trainings done. As anyone who has followed what I've written from my previous job knows, trainings played a large role in my time there. I was surprised to hear the comment since this was not a big deal to me, and no more than anyone should have expected of me. He then went on to let the group know that the new people needed help, and he didn't name names, but of course everyone knew that I was the main person he was referring to, that was slightly embarassing, but what he said was true and a good reminder. I walked out of the room, but got called back into it which made me very nervous. Two members of top management were there, and they asked a sales guy who was eating a bagel if he would excuse us and then one of them called my boss to bring him back. Warning bells were going off in my head, but I tried to stay cool and pictured it going well.
One of the guys opened by asking how they could help me. I started to breathe a bit easier. Then they launched into things I needed to do, things I needed to stop doing, and that went on for a while. It got to the point where I told them I felt like I owed them an apology, then they said that I didn't, I think there was some talking past each other going on; I didn't know what to say, they didn't know how to get their points across other than each of them repeating what had just been said, but ultimately I feel like it was a win for all of us. I got some attention I probably needed, I better understand both my role and theirs in the organization, I had gotten a gift card during the meeting, they gave me a cash equivalent which was super nice even though I felt very small accepting it since it felt like one more layer of drama piled on top of a situation, but we all lived to tell about it.
Sometimes organizations say things, and then their behavior doesn't match what they say. To some extent this is most places. I think that this is a pretty well run place in terms of psychological safety. My boss told me that he wanted me to be me, and I think that I didn't realize that previously. I got roughed up a bit, got humbled, and decided to take a much more cautious approach than I had when I arrived. I'm used to knowing things and being an expert, and once again I am low person on the totem pole and expected to pay my dues. I am fine with that, and have really been pleased about some of the things I have done since starting there. I'm more conscious of moving and being active, I've made some friends, I've mostly steered clear of people I don't care to associate with, and it was a pretty funny moment when my boss told me I had done three months worth of training in two weeks <insert laughing emoji>,
I realize that I have a lot to learn, the meeting helped me see that trying to conquer the product knowledge mountain was a slippery slope, and that I needed to get out on the sales floor stat if I wanted to ever sell anything. It's strange being a woman in a male dominated work force, I'm still learning what the expectations are, and what they aren't, basically I need to be a lot more social than I have been, I sat outside to eat lunch the other day, and I think that helped everyone. My boss is an interesting guy, he stuck up for me on occasions that I didn't expect him to, and I was very appreciative of that. Someone told me that he was responsible for bringing me on board, but he wasn't a part of the interview process at all, so I am not sure if that is a factual statement or not. Regardless, I have a lot of respect for the guy, and if you're here for my personality theories, I wonder if he is an INTJ.
People are getting to know me, I'm learning how to better navigate their social system, yesterday a guy in the next office over told me that I have what it takes to make it in this business. There is a learning curve, and it is steep. I have other goals I want to accomplish, I feel like I have some new allies, some negative press, but nothing that I can't overcome now that I am armed with newer and better information. I took some cues from people I probably shouldn't have, it was really nice to have things broken down for me yesterday, I think they have some unrealistic expectations on their part, and maybe I do too. Knowing how to do something is not the same as being comfortable and familiar in a role and with a new culture. We were probably all frustrated and I'm really glad they took the time to meet with me rather than just firing me on the spot.
Yesterday I walked around until I was light headed. I went to sleep before 8:00, woke up around 11:00, went back to bed, went to church, and have spent most of my day off sleeping and messing around on Twitter a bit. I could go back to sleep, I could try to run some errands, read, or do something else. I'm really proud of myself for sticking with it and even though I made some mistakes, I am following the advice of my middle sister and giving myself some grace. She said it takes her three to four months to really settle in at a new job, and perhaps I was expecting too much out of them and myself. One thing that was really nice, I refused to give in to stress and anxiety yesterday. My customer interactions would be an entirely separate entry, but I will say that I had two medical professionals and their children consuming a large quantity of snacks, drinks, treats, and consumables without any indication that they will ever buy anything from us.
I'm excited to go back tomorrow. I'm still nervous, but I feel like I am developing some work related routines and habits, perhaps I have said this before, but I repeat it for my own sake. The hours are pretty crazy, but I have a consistent schedule and that helps. Maybe I am there for no other reason than to bring some health related insights to people who need them. Working long hours where you are either dead bored or insanely busy is a strange schedule to manage, but I am slowly managing. I am so happy that I took the month of May off, I really needed that. I am trying to make the most of my days off, budgeting my time, energy, etc..., I received a very nice pay check and am trying to determine the best way to apply that money now that I have it. I could save it, pay down debts, treat myself, do something on my list of future goals like get my insurance materials, or do some combination of all of these. Time will tell, there is no real right or wrong way here.
All my best,
P.S. I remember someone saying that this might be my calling. I think I will be good at it, and I'm really happy that they are giving me the chances that they have. Gratitude is huge and I am becoming more aware of how critical it is to my mindset. Also, working so many hours means less time to shop so I have been better about that which also improves my mood. Last night I had a dream that we were throwing a surprise birthday party for my youngest, I've set aside things only to have them rise back up when I least expect it. But we are all works in progress and today, I'm okay with pushing perfection aside to enjoy the many ways I have been blessed today.