August 20, 2013

when it's not a good fit

I have a new job that I started about three weeks ago. This was part of the reason I was absent for the last month- that and the fact that I am terrible at being a consistent blogger. Since I have started this new job I haven't gotten very much sleep, I work 10+ hour days and had to work on a huge project two weekends ago, and I haven't been able to run any errands because I am either busy or tired from being busy... And you know what? I am so happy!

Before this I worked as a contractor for a large financial institution. I found the job through my dad who has been working for this bank for about 10 years. He loves working there, so I figured I would too. He actually told me not to take the job after I received my offer because he didn't think it would be a good fit for me. In fact, most people I knew told me not to take the job. But I was getting a raise! And this was a huge company that wanted me to work for them! So I took the job thinking it was going to be an amazing experience and really enhance my career. 

Three months into my 18 month contract working at this financial institution, I knew I had made a mistake. I could go into all the things that made me unhappy at this company but it doesn't matter. Bottom line, it wasn't a good fit. To say working here was a disaster wouldn't be completely inaccurate, but I also am glad that I did it. For one, I learned that I am more of a small company, start-up girl. I worked at a great start-up out of college and while I loved working there, I didn't fully appreciated the team outings, free lunches, or friends that I made while I was there. I mean how could I? I had nothing to compare it to. 

The other reason I am thankful for this experience is that I learned the importance of walking away when something is not a good fit. Growing up I was not allowed to quit anything. I remember signing up for a bowling league when I was in Kindergarten and absolutely HATING it. I would cry before, during, and after every practice but my mom wouldn't let me quit, which was a good lesson. But I also think there's value in knowing when to quit. I think that if I had left after working for 3 months that would have been a mistake. But a year and 4 months of being unhappy? That was enough time to figure out I couldn't make this work.

In the end it all worked out. I got some experience, met a few awesome coworkers, found a new job that is a much better fit, and I am so so happy.

Have you ever worked at a job that wasn't a good fit? What did you do? 

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