Two journal entries in a week: now that’s something, isn’t it? I feel like writing for the second day in a row because, to be frank, I still have some steam to let off. Work wasn’t terrible today, but it wasn’t smooth sailing either. One of my supervisees, Adam, started complaining in the afternoon about all the mistakes on the website, and we ended up having a deep discussion about all the problems with the company and the general lack of progress that seems to be being made in certain areas. On that score, Adam’s take on things appears to be much more positive, in that he seems to think going to the directors with our concerns could actually solve things. Even though I’ve been an employee of the company for nearly two years, I was surprised by how negative my own opinions were in comparison to Adam’s. Unfortunately, my honest feeling is that things will never change. I never really got over the debacle that I came back to after my long break earlier in the year, when I had a long list of customer complaints to respond to. A simple bug fix could have stopped those complaints from being opened, but because the company had other priorities at the time, we had to wait months for something to be done.
Recently many things have occurred to further erode my faith in the company. Things keep being changed in the system, and every little thing they change seems to have a knock on effect elsewhere. It drives me mad, and no one seems to care. Adam believes I should march up to the directors in their next board meeting and air my concerns. “It’s their website, surely they should be made aware of things that are not working?” he says. After two years of having to put up with certain things that would make our lives much easier were they not there, I’ve started to believe that the company must know that things aren’t working, and they just don’t care.
The way we’re almost entirely left to look after ourselves suggests that this must be true to some extent. I’m not happy about it. I would love to be able to follow Adam’s advice and tell someone how I feel, but who? By the time I’d finished talking to Adam this evening I felt so disheartened by the whole thing that I was close to crying. Eventually it struck me that I ought to speak to my boss. I really ought to. Trouble is, I don’t know if she’ll like what I have to say.
I’ve had no professional support of any description since the day I started, and it bugs the hell out of me. Is it selfish to expect some reassurance from a manager that I am doing a good job? Everyone else in the company seems to get along fine without formal appraisal – is it just me? There is obviously a culture of autonomy here. Do I really need my manager to listen to my problems?
I wind myself up so much thinking about these things, it does me no good. It’s no wonder I can’t sleep any more. My part in the problem – and it is a major part – is that I don’t know how to reach out. I get so frightened by the thought of offending people, still, that I won’t ever say anything, instead allowing resentments to fester. It’s happening here and it needs to stop. I need to say something. I just don’t know what to say!
I went to a meeting tonight and found myself sharing about it all, really honestly. It was good. People listened and they definitely understood. I could see them all nodding. I did well to say those things in front of a room full of alcoholics. For some grounding and support, I will always need to go back to AA. It is AA that has reminded me, time and time again, to be honest with myself and others. I have to speak to my manager, I have to be honest. It’s no good laying awake at night thinking of all the ways I’m going to steal her job from her. I’m not taking any action.
The big question is this: what do I want to achieve? What can I achieve? A closer relationship with my manager would be a good start, but could anything else come out of it? It’s the not knowing that is the worst thing. Nothing could change whatsoever, that’s also the worst thing. If I don’t accept that things are the way they are because they’re meant to be that way then I will probably drive myself into the ground. So much could be improved on at work, but while I wait for things to happen I really ought not to torture myself about it. The job title, for better or for worse, is something I’m stuck with for the time. If I can’t accept it then I know I can’t move on and grow.