Twenty years


This post isn’t about photography, it’s more of a personal venting so if you don’t want to read it, come back in a couple of weeks when we get back to our regularly scheduled programing. Until then…

Twenty years…this story is not a new one. This story has been told all across Corporate America for some time now, the difference is now it includes me. You see after twenty years of loyalty to an organization, I was let go of my employment…restructured out. You might think to yourself, yeah that stinks but it happens all of the time. You would be correct in that thinking and that is the crime of it all, it happens all of the time.

Twenty years…you came to work whether your were sick or tired, even if the weather was terrible or there was a crisis on the home front. You were there, at work, doing your job to the best of your abilities.

Twenty years…people saw your worth and recognized your talent and what you brought to the table for the company. You honed your craft to the point where you made it look easy. Maybe that was part of the problem, you made it look too easy.

Twenty years…you have survived many of the organization’s restructuring processes but now it feels different. The powers that be are looking at you and thinking “we could get younger and cheaper.” You know in the back of your mind that some of the people in charge don’t realize what all you bring to the table anymore. They just see the floor plan that the most recent consultant has put before them. Oh those consultants, my company has hired more consultants than Baskin Robbins has flavors in ice cream.

Twenty years…the desk phone rings fifteen minutes before what is supposed to be the unveiling of the new restructuring plan. It’s Human Resources calling and that is never a good sign. The conversation in the H.R. office is short and cold. A one sided sheet of paper is handed to me explaining the demise of my job and my career there. Then a very unemotional “thank you for your service.”

Twenty years…not even a gold watch. “Thank you for your service.” In other words, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Twenty years…wasted?

This I am afraid is modern day Corporate America. Loyalty to employees is gone even though the employees have been loyal to the company. It happens in all of corporate America’s many forms including companies like mine who’s purpose has much to do with living a Christian life and human rights. That vision seems to get lost when it comes to it’s own workforce. ¬†All companies after all, are run by people and with that comes all of people’s self interests, weaknesses and sins. Even at Christian companies who should know better.

Twenty years…life starts over. You take your dream or part time business, in my case my photography business and try to turn it into something that will provide more joy than you ever got in the previous twenty years. Hopefully I will treat my people better.

Here is to the next twenty years!

6 thoughts on “Twenty years

  1. Mike, oh, I totally resonate with your words. For me, 22 years of giving 150 percent or more. And, boom, suddenly, I’m expendable. Old, maybe. They want young, even though we still had lots of creative and new ideas. Yes, I really do know what you’re talking about. That sick feeling when you see an H.R. person in your boss’s office late one afternoon and you’re called in (a little different from your scenario, but the effect is the same): You know your world is about to fall apart. Mike, don’t lose heart. Grieve. Be completely angry. Let it fly. Kick things. Break things. Whatever it takes. You have a right to be angry. Anger contains energy, so use that. And when it threatens to turn into your ball-and-chain, let it go. But just know, it keeps coming back but (thankfully) in smaller and smaller doses. As a life coach told me a year after it happened to me, Sonia, try to be thankful that your boss kicked you out of the nest because you learned to fly on the way down. Be thankful? But she was right. I did learn to fly on the way down. You will, too. And you’ll land in a good place. I just know it. But right now, it totally stinks. I’m glad you’re writing it out. Best to not keep it all inside. You know that I wish you all good things. And I can assure you there is life after 8765. Good life even! You know that. You just have to find your place in it. And you will. Thanks for your 20 years of good work. And blessings on the next 20-plus!

    • I know you have been there Sonia. I am actually doing quite well but felt I needed to put my thoughts out there for my own healing and for anyone else who could resonate with it. Looking forward to the next twenty years.

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