This may be a rambling post so I am warning you now...
Where am I in my life, where am I ultimately heading. I have spent a lot of time on these questions over the past few months. Questions that I have no immediate answer to but need to come to some resolution in the next month or two.
My career, despite my effort, is in a decline. Predictors years ago were evident to this fact and while I was the one holding the sign of the impending doom, I was treated the same way as a mentally ill man on the street predicting the apocalypse. We all discussed the problems at length but no one in upper management seemed to listen to us workers. Economic indicators all said things will turn around, and they have, but in a different market than the one that we are in.
So three years ago when I kept saying we need to change markets, they kept saying it will get better. I hate to be the one that says I told you so, but in this case it is my future that is being affected.
Yes, I should have made all the plans to move on last year or even before that, but I kept thinking that maybe they were right and I was wrong, afterall they all make six figure salaries so they should know much more than I do about this.
Inevitably as I see all my coworkers slowly leaving the company, or in this case being let go or having their salary reduced to poverty levels, I think about why I am still sitting at this computer hoping for a turn around or some sort of realization on the part of management.
In the past few weeks I have been giving more work, more responsibility, more stress and have not seen a dime from any of it, all the while I do the work because if I don't I will be facing the same as my coworkers. I am now a proposal manager, a project manager, business developer and all this in addition to being the IT supervisor for the office as well as anything else they can dump on me because they let the six other people that used to do these things go.
In a different industry or a different situation I would welcome all those things because it advances my career to where I should be right now, but having not seen any kind of raise in the past six years and the ultimately anguish of not knowing what tomorrow will bring leaves me stressed to the point where I mentally check out of work for periods of time.
It is to the point where I can not complain to my wife anymore because she is tired of hearing how the company has made poor decisions over the past six years and I have to suffer because of it. Even though I knew the state of the economy long before any of the people that make the decisions seemed to know it. Either that or they just refused to make the necessary changes or maybe they did not know what to do and that is even worse.
I once was told that they were not interested in commercial work because there is too much risk involved in it. To me it is simple economics, we have to have work in order to have risk. If we refuse one line of work due to risk and the other line of work has not produced any new jobs in a decade, which is riskier?
To them it is simple risk analysis, if you do not have any work there is no risk to manage. Of course I joke about that but sometimes I wonder if that is really what they think.
So lately I have started thinking about my future. I have the attitude that I rarely give up on things that are failing, but to what consequence. If I have no power over whether or not this company fails in the long run, then what I am really working for.
The sad reality is that if/when I leave there will be a huge loss for the company. It is almost to the point where I hold together a lot of the work that we are doing, so my departure would be a huge blow to this division and could ultimately accelerate the decline to a point of no return. But on the other hand I have to think of myself. The company will not think of me when they are closing the doors.
These past few years have been some of the most successful in my career, especially after moving to a new location. I need to capitalize on those successes and find a company that will reward me for all that I have accomplished.
I finally need to accept that I can not change the attitude of the company I work for, but I can find a different company that fits my attitude and my future goals much better.