Thursday, May 31, 2012

Troubling times at work

I moved up to Boston (from Florida) almost exactly a year ago for a job.  Life in Florida had been giving S and I a rough time ever since the recession began especially since both of our careers are so highly dependent on the economy (me in the construction industry and S in the non-profit arts education industry).  My job in Florida had been on the verge of collapse for a couple years with all the joys of pay cuts, hour cuts, benefit cuts, and furloughs... and layoffs all around me.  When S lost his job and then house we knew it was time to head to higher ground.

I was ecstatic to find the position in Boston... it pays great, solid benefits, and the type of company I really wanted to be with.  So we packed up the moving van and headed up the coast hoping for a better life.  And in many ways we've found that life, we've made some new friends, the area is amazingly rich with things to do, and we've both got great paying jobs.  On the other hand, neither of our jobs are going the way we had anticipated they would.

Shortly after I started working I realized that my company has an extremely high turn over rate of employees... within the last year I've seen 4 full time employees go and a handful of part timers (the place only has 12 full time employees on any given day so you can see how disproportionate that is).  And it's not because we don't have the work, new hires have come in immediately and we're all extremely busy.  At first I only though it was odd but as time passed I started understanding the many reasons behind the high turnover rate.  And most of these many reasons have at some point smacked me in the face.  

Let's just say that my boss has a knack for forcing people out if she decides for any reason that they aren't performing up to her incredibly high, unrealistic standards.  If the person doesn't leave on their own after a period of her applying her tactics, she just fires them.  And even though this sounds like the paranoid ramblings of discontent employees, I can assure you this is actually something she has proudly stated to me.  Now I'm not sure where I fall on her spectrum of discontentment but I have noticed an increase in particularly passive-aggressive behavior over the last month so I'm starting to worry that I've made it onto her list.

Also, I'm just not used to feeling so discontent at work, I love my profession and have generally enjoyed every job I've had in the field.  Most days at my current job are a struggle to get through with composure and there have been more than one occasion over the year that I've eaten lunch in my car so I could cry without my co-workers seeing me.  

I am going to be working on my resume and starting to feel around for other opportunities but the whole thing has me wondering if I should be focusing more on building a savings account just in case.  How many months worth of expenses should I have socked away?  It took 6 whole months for me to find this job but that would mean needing $13,500 or so in the bank to support me if it took the same amount of time again.  I'm not going to get anywhere near that kind of money socked away in a short amount of time and it would mean I would have to stop paying down debt beyond the minimum.  I'm feeling really uneasy about the whole situation and the stress of dealing with this person day to day is starting to wear me down.

I guess the best I can do right now is try to quit with the "what if scenarios" until I have a little more time to think over the best approach :(

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