Southern Scotch

Southern Scotch

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

I Quit: The Rousing Conclusion

At the end of Part 1, there were no guarantees. We left Reb MacRath in a thoroughly imperiled position.

Image result for goldfinger laser


Less than a year before I'd aced a phone interview for a plum position...only to fall short in the next week's one on one. Here, once again, the phone pow-wow went well and I was called in the following week. Over the weekend--gut reaction, as I wrote--I gave my notice on the present job. One week, instead of two.

I had a powerfully positive feeling about the Wednesday interview, though I knew much better than to count my chickens yet. So Thursday, when I wrote the post, anything was possible. But then, at 4:00, the call came through. One of those moments we live for:

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I ended up not returning to work. Another thing conventional wisdom pretty much forbids. But once again my instincts served me well.
1) The staffing agency and the new employer wanted me to move quickly on medical tests, which ended up taking most of Friday...and part of Monday morning too.
2) My commitment and availability were also being judged. If I'd been at work on either of those last two days, I'd have missed out on important job-related calls.
3) Worse still, I wouldn't have been paid a penny for either of those final days.. I only learned on payday, 6/24, that my paycheck was shorted by 38 hours--collecting in part for Paid Time Off I'd taken but not earned...and that they'd decided to hijack my last check completely.

What can I say? What can anyone say but






And:

Thank you, dear instinct, for being on the button. It's better than good to have gone.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

How and When to Say I Quit




I could have Googled till the cows came home about resigning from one job before the next is a done deal. And yet, impulsively, last Saturday I did exactly that.

Goal: to make myself available for a position that I hoped to win. I'd aced a phone interview...the company was interested...and I had a personal interview lined up for this Wednesday (6/22).
There were no guarantees, I knew, but I'd been told the company was willing to move quickly and I felt my chances were better if I could start by the 28th or 29th. A gamble, yes. And yet I rolled the dice.

My action flew in the face of the common wisdom:
1) Never quit a job until you have a new offer, preferably in writing.
2)  Always give 2 weeks notice.

I gave one week notice, based on the following facts. The present job was sucking the life force out of me. Most workers who quit there give no notice at all. And the company itself routinely fires staff with no notice or severance pay.

Experts say employers are reluctant to hire the unemployed. That can surely be a handicap if we present ourselves as unemployed or unemployable. But what if we put on a positive spin? E.g.: I left my job to free myself to find a more challenging and diverse position, something that makes use of more of my skills. What if we convey not desperation or fear of starvation but steely selectivity? What if we project a calm, determined search for high employment standards worthy of our skills?

Furthermore, what if our availability now can be presented in a way that creates a fear of loss? Tomorrow or the next day our hats may be out of the ring....

                                                                          *****

I write this post on Thursday at 7:30 a.m. While I wait for the company's decision, I've taken the following actions so far:

1) Called out absent on my next to last day at the current job.
2) Texted my contact at the staffing agency for feedback on the interview.
3) Sent my updated resume to the agency that landed me the current job and also to another agency I'd contacted last year.
4) Googled transit times to possible work sites outside Seattle: Redmond (impossibly far by bus), Kirkland (a 30 minute ride).
5) Strongly considered what I want in terms of work, pay and location. The interview yesterday took place in Capitol Hill--where I'd first hoped to live when I moved to Seattle.


                                                                         *****

Image result for change images


Stay tuned for further developments. The road may be bumpy, I know and accept. But it's unwise and unhealthy to start each work day with a groan and then dive into bed, utterly drained, before 9. I'd taken to sleeping 12 hours a day.

If that sounds like you, then follow me and

Image result for get your mojo back

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Coming Wednesday: How and When to Say You Quit




I know, I know, it's been a week between blog posts. But I haven't been idle and I will return with a post of real interest to many:

Is it ever advisable to quit your present job before you've lined up another?

Stay tuned. I gave my notice yesterday,,,,though the interview's not until Wednesday.

Fingers crossed!


Sunday, June 12, 2016

James Bond and the Jaws of Age

Imagine a man in his thirties, who discovered James Bond in the form of Daniel Craig, 38 at the time of his tenure--and now pushing 50 as he prepares to drop out.

Daniel Craig Picture

Craig has done four Bonds, with 2-4 years between. And many fans feel that the first was the best, quality sinking thereafter. Our imaginary fan agrees and yearns for the same sense of freshness he'd found in Casino Royale, when he was a senior in college.

Now, after Spectre, he may have to wait a few years for the next film in the franchise--by which time he'll be in his mid-thirties. More alarming, he now learns that Craig might just possibly come back to a fifth film when he's free. Why is this alarming? Because even if the film is great, we'd now have a Bond in his fifties. If Craig went on to do a sixth, by then he'd be in his mid-fifties, too old--as Roger Moore and Sean Connery had become at the end of their own Bond stints.



Never Say Never Again Poster





Equally alarming: if Craig didn't return for a sixth, new casting would begin...and the entire usual time span would pass: two to three years, at least, once again. And now imagine this: if our fan cannot stand the Bond chosen, the math will devour the last of his youth. More than likely, the new Bond will do 3-5 films, with two to three years between them. And our once young fan will find himself a disgruntled older man who's spent, by that time, decades waiting for the real Bond to return.

The Bond epochs come at us in huge blocks of time. And almost all of those great blocks have only a few shining moments. One or two great films at best.

Connery's fans grew older, then old, as they waited for a worthy heir to bring back the glory of From Russia with Love and Goldfinger. Lazenby gave us one great film, then split. Moore, Dalton, Brosnan, Craig...The math goes grimly on and on as we wait and we pray for real magic again.

Will we get it? Fingers crossed. Even if we do, though, we need to learn to wait less
intensely while we live. Or we'll end up thinking of the past in terms of which Bond ruled: e.g., I did that when Con was king...and that when Rog wore Spandex...

After all, we can add to the list of life's sure things: the films in any Bond epoch decline in quality till the Bond either quits or is put to pasture. We'd damned well better do our living before we're put to pasture too.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Enjoy a Happy Breakthrough Day: August Assault #3



On the long road to your quest destination, you must enjoy a breakthrough--and it must be properly timed. The best breakthroughs are unannounced and result in glowing feedback that adds still more fuel to your fire. And the best of these are not ends in themselves but useful indications of what's been accomplished and what's still to do. The very best are strategically timed so that there's no need to rush.

Example:

You have a three month plan to get from Bod A to Bod B:



If your deadline is August and you start in May, eating right and working out, you'd better see clear signs of progress by June. So set yourself a breakthrough goal for the first week in June.

To prepare for mine I tackled specific goals in May:
1) I had to facial skin discoloration spots removed. They'd embarrassed me for too long.
2) I found a top stylist who gave me a cut that was right for my hair at my age: a modified Clint Eastwood 'do.




3) I began eating mostly raw and drinking fruit and green smoothies, nibbling on apples and carrots at work, eating a salad at night.
4) I ordered a cool home workout combination from Amazon: a Perfect Abs Carver wheel and the Perfect Pushup Elite:

  




5) I began working out intensely, escalating my workouts each time.


Finally, B-Day came:






Reaching for a T-shirt, I happened on one I'd forgotten I had: my last remaining Large in a stack of XLs. What the hell, I slipped it on. Impressively snug in shoulders, chest and arms...with the subtle outline of a mini-roll at the waist when I sat. Off to work I went to learn if June 3 really was B-Day.

It was. Looks and compliments, then a supervisor's rave: You. Look. Fabulous.

So I had a good day. But, far more important, I had a damned useful one. My self-esteem had had the necessary jolt...the mirror had showed me the progress I'd made...and I knew where I needed to focus.

B-Day 2 will be:



Till then: Happy B-Days to you all!