Given that this blog is largely my diary, I wanted to take a moment to write down some feelings of my recent work issues and how things feel so differently now. I think that my stress at work has affected my workout commitment (and I also know that many of you would not allow work to be an excuse for reducing exercise...we're all different).
Here's the situation. I am in the housing industry, selling building materials for a large publicly-traded company. We are the high-end product and NOT the cheapest...a tough sell in this market. Our sales began to drop in August of 2008. Layoffs began happening in my company and among my customers.
|image of Sword of Damocles|
Within my company, the layoffs would happen every 2-3 months or so. And each time, my co-workers on the sales team knew two things:
- Our lack of sales were the cause of these layoffs (which left us with feelings of guilt and pressure).
- Any one of us could be next, which my boss frequently and gently reminded us.
It all came to a head about two weeks ago, when it was announced that our local division/factory was going to be shutdown forever. Dozens of people were given their 60 days notice (but some were let go sooner). Of the 75 employees (including people in my department, my boss and HIS boss), only 14 of us "worker bees" will still be employed. Everyone else has either been given a severance package or offered a position with the company in another state.
My new bosses from California have been meeting with us and our customers, as they strategize how we do this transition. They have been great.
After a long day of meetings, I was dropping my boss at the airport and finally had to ask the question that I never dared to ask since 2008:
"Is my job safe now?", I asked.
He quickly responded "Yes...we really need you". He explained that there will be no further layoffs and that they have confidence in me to do my job.
I feel like I can finally exhale and leave this worry behind me. Clearly, I still have to do my job well and our business may struggle with this transition. But I am no longer bracing myself for impending unemployment.
Time to get back to the Clydesdale Project and get some miles in.
Thanks for hanging in there with me, my friends.