Thursday, November 19, 2009


So there I was planning a lovely chilled post about how nice it's been to get a whole list of to-do's ticked off, spend some time with the family, put some career development plans in place, and generally depressurise. Some winning poker sessions have even been booked in Hold Em Manager!

Then I checked my voicemail tonight and found a message from the agency I'd recently been working through...

'Hi, err, we've just heard from megacorp and, err, well, err, they're wondering if you could start back on Monday with a view to working til Christmas?'

It was after five, and I needed some time to think, so I didn't bother phoning back.

Having worked for so long in IT, I've long since come to the conclusion most British businesses are managed by people I wouldn't trust to walk my dog (if I had one).

Generally I'm not someone who panders to fools, though neither do I often seek confrontation with them. I think that's why I ended up as a freelancer.

Career development in big companies requires a degree of politicing, and while I'm smart enough to recognise what's required, I don't always have the inclination to do the needful.

Being a contractor I can tolerate the buffoons for a while then move on to fresh pastures with no harm done to my career, and no middle-managers left lying in a pool of blood and teeth.

However the longer a contract goes, the tougher it becomes to keep the frustration bottled up, and I'd long ago realised the breaking point was looming on my current contract, so I'd already started making moves towards finding something new.

When the end came in this contract a little prematurely it was a surprise but in some ways a relief, and I've felt ten times better for it over the last week.

Now I have the chance to grab another five weeks or so of earnings before the festive period, which in the current economic climate isn't to be sniffed at. It also gives me the opportunity to actually have a conversation with my parents that doesn't involve the 'have you found anything yet?' question.

On the other hand, I've earmarked some of that time for training and re-skilling, and well as general life enhancing stuff.

Plus I'd need to take in a huge box of cakes, as is the convention for people who are given a leaving card and present, only to be re-hired within weeks.

Yes, there is a precedent for this very situation within the department I worked in. Which pretty much sums up their ineptness.

There are other considerations too. Many of the people on the team are friends as well as workmates. Not going back will clearly be leaving them with more shit to shovel (albeit with increased job security); but going back also bails out the idiots who got themselves into a state where they couldn't afford to keep me in the first place.

Decisions, decisions...

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