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Sunday, March 25, 2018

Reasons to quit, and reasons to not quit

I'm a little sad that I have to be explicit about some things, but no, I did not quit because of a conference room naming issue. A conference room naming issue happened while I was in the process of quitting. Do you see the difference? It's the icing on the cake, not the cake itself.

I wasn't fired -- I resigned. I wasn't asked to quit, and when I did, it came out of left field and shocked management. They had no idea what was going on. They apparently had no idea how incredibly hard it was just to go in and have to deal with this emotional bullshit that had been going on.

There was outright bullying and singling out happening. If you're not a relatively close friend, you probably haven't heard this yet, since it hasn't been in any posts up to this point.

I also didn't leave because of the performance review results. If you paid attention to the dates, I left before that came out. Also, my former manager had left the country for two weeks right when the tool opened up and it was time to share feedback, so there was no way to obtain it. (Figure that one out, if you like).

HR later told me that I had gotten a "meets all", but I was out the door by that point. I'm talking days later, as part of another conversation, that little data point was handed to me. I don't know anything else about the review that never was. (This is also why I didn't share it internally like the others -- I never got a copy.)

I bailed due to a toxic environment, but not one of my creation. It was a bad situation caused by incompetence and perhaps a little bias here and there.

I don't even think it was all necessarily done maliciously, because, well, Hanlon's Razor. Frame it that way and a whole bunch of stuff starts making sense.

Guess what, I wasn't particularly unlucky. Since coming forward with my experiences, a lot of other people have reached out to me to share their stories. Many of them are laying low inside the company because they have visa situations, or family obligations, or whatever.

I have no such visa situation. For no other reason than I was born in a particular place, I can tell a company that I'm done and walk and not need to worry about anything involving immigration. I can go off and do my own thing and not need to chase down sponsorship, or somehow find $500K to buy into a business, or whatever else it takes to get a "green card".

To my friends who are in these situations, I repeat my advice from a previous post: keep your head down and shut up. Do not wander around working on projects other than exactly what your manager puts in front of you. Don't talk about me in public, or my situation, lest you get grouped as "one of the rebels". You can be a rebel, just don't be open about it, okay? I don't want people getting hurt over this.

Your posts in public groups will be used against you. Your Workplace posts to your internal timeline, if they start trending or otherwise making waves, can also be used against you. I saw it in enough calibrations and heard it from enough managers over the years.

Don't take my word for it. Go find the PE Q&A from April 17, 2017. Listen to the first couple of minutes. You'll know you have the right video if it includes "1427477117275466" in the URL. (Bonus points for noticing the dog whistle term around 4:15 in.)

If you want to talk, you can talk to me any time. Hit the feedback link, or if we're already connected through other means, send me a message that way. I've been having lots of lunches, dinners, and just random "grab a coffee and walk around a part of the valley" meetings with people. I may have left the company, but my friendships stand, and my promises to help people grow and learn stand with them.

If you want to get your story out there, hit the feedback link and let me know. I can anonymize it and aggregate it pretty effectively. Also, keep watching here for more updates with things I've already heard.

Me? Toxic? No. But the truth's a bitch sometimes, right?

Also, regarding "regrettable attrition" vs. not, at the point I talked to management post-departure, they "wanted me back". I assume this is no longer the case given my writing of late, but, who knows, and really, who cares? You can't put the genie back in the bottle, and you can't revive a culture which is now well and truly dead.

Lay low, do your assigned job, and save your money. There will be another place which "gets it". There always is.