I didn’t do any work today. In fact I’ve been AWOL since about 3.30pm yesterday. I’ve not really done much work since Wednesday morning to be honest and no matter how many times I look at my to do list, nothing is worth starting.
Department away day at beautiful out of town stately home. Despite driving in a torrential downpour at dawn, the sun peaks through storm clouds creating a very special sky. So stunning I sit in the car staring at it for a good 10 mins before realising I must look like a loon and seek out coffee. I bump into work colleagues in the café. They are surrounded by overnight bags and breakfast.
“Where were you last night, Northern Lass”
Turns out the leadership team got a head start on the team building with a dinner & overnight stay at the stately home. I should have been there but my boss forgot to invite me.
The morning is spent playing Survivor – just like the TV Show. We are split into countries, don flags as head scarves and have tribal councils ‘n’ shit. I’m in team with my boss, who I wasn’t keen on before she forgot I existed.
Our first challenge is to create a tribal chant for our team including singing, dancing, poetry and lasting 30s. Quite a big chunk of my soul dies.
How are we still doing this competitive, humiliating shit in 2015. Surely this shit has been proven not to work?! Surely it just bonds the introverts in hated against the extroverts who just compete for attention and self-gratification?! It’s all just a bit too 1980s for me. Surely we should all be sat in groups practicing mindfulness techniques these days??
There are lots of presentations as you’d expect at these things. Lots of patronising sucking of eggs, lots of mutual backslapping. Big talk of “back to core business” and defining our mission and core values. My business area is not mentioned once. Not mentioned despite being the only business area to grow year on year. Not mentioned despite a number of first to market initiatives launched. No, instead the girl who logs the invoices gets a prize and we all cheer. Not to take anything away from her, she’s got a shit job, but I have a great one, juggle 3 people’s workload and get forgotten about. By my own boss.
The final session of the day is the new department structure, unveiled as the last piece of the jigsaw for us to put our best feet forward and conquer the world. There’s much anticipation and I swear if you listened hard enough you’d hear the drum roll.
Lots of changes. The Gen Ys freak out clamouring for answers to their very self absorbed questions. I join them.
Forget about the last jigsaw piece, this is the last straw. My role isn’t in the org chart.
Director Lady goes pale when she sees I raised hand and I asked where me and my business area fit into the plan. Seems I don’t. Just another thing my boss forgot to give me a heads up about.
That’s why I didn’t do much work Thursday and Friday. I was busy trying to find out what the fuck is going on.
After a weekend calming myself, I return to work and book in time with my boss. Note: she hasn’t attempted to follow up with me. I begin calmly expressing disappointment, seeking clarification, showing her how my disappointment could have been averted if she’d given me a heads up.
“You’re looking at me like this is my fault. This is how the corporate world works. It’s going to be 12 months of hell and if you’re not resilient enough then you need to question your future here.”
I wasn’t very calm after that. I got emotional, ranted about the irony of defining values like integrity and respect and then being excluded so publicly.
The conclusion of our catch was I should look for a new job as my role won’t be around but they can’t tell me officially or put any timeframe on it, or even offer me alternative employment. (Well she kinda did but the roles a joke and she’s making it up as she goes along.)
And so yesterday I spent the day with my business area gossiping, leaving early to enjoy the autumnal sunshine with my fellow colleagues. Today I applied for new jobs and caught up on Mad Men.
Well there’s no point doing anything seeing how my business area won’t exist soon.