Hey there kids! long time no see 🙂
So, another year, another job. Like I mentioned in the last, long ago post the place I was working became… all of a sudden.. very strange. As the IT guy there I was asked to do some… things that I wasn’t overly comfortable with. Nothing illegal, but when the owner of your company calls you into his office, shuts the door (always a bad sign) and instructs you (and yes, it was made perfectly clear it was an instruction, not a request) to perform digital surveillance of the supplied list of employees, one of which has become a close friend, it sets off so many ‘dodgy alarms’ it’s not funny.
The reason for this odd, Stalin-esque behaviour all became clear when a general staff meeting was called, and it was announced that recently, 3 companies were formed, and assets quietly moved from the parent company into them. The parent company was then liquidated, taking all of the debts with it.
The legality of this move is borderline… morally it’s hideous. The surveillance, as it happens was to ensure that creditors didn’t get wind of what was going on. Some people were friends with, or had family members involved with creditors. You can imagine the scramble to collect if this sort of information got out- this is a small town and there very well may have been a lynching.
So, it all became a bit weird for this particular Aussie. I got very good at keeping my mouth shut, mostly by putting enough food in it that I put on 10 kg (I don’t smoke anymore so I needed *something* to replace Mum’s nipple when I’m stressed) , and my home life suffered… I became so used to keeping secrets that I would hide stuff from Sally, for no other reason than an instinctive need to avoid confrontation (note to self- don’t do this again. She’s going to care more about being lied to than the fact you drank the last of the milk).
And, quietly, I made plans for escape. Lunches took a little longer (but no too long) for meetings and interviews, resume’s were posted… and finally I was offered a position at a training company owned by the local University.
Notice was duly posted at my last job- which made the boss actually cry- he couldn’t, for the life of him, fathom *why* someone would leave that workplace, after all, on average, we got the correct pay (but not always on the right day), and what about the bonuses in my contract? and then I pissed off as quick as I felt I could, knowing that I wasn’t going to see any benefits or entitlements.
The letter I got a week after I left, outlining the fact I was fired for ‘gross misconduct’, rather than resigning, with all the implications being fired has, confirmed this suspicion: the fact I was left on the payroll for a full fortnight after I left, essentially giving me what I was entitled to, told me that whomever is running the universe has a particularly wicked sense of humour 🙂
So, now I’m here, in this magical new workplace. It’s strange- I’m seeing procedures followed, the new boss is extremely hands off (after all, she says, if I didn’t know what I was doing it would be pretty obvious pretty quickly), I’m seeing a clear, consistent management style, and a business model that actually works.
I’m also seeing a bigger pay packet 🙂
I’ve also come full circle, in a way- when I was a much younger, and less annoyed aussie, I had my first real job at WEA Hunter (a training company), first as a ‘logistics officer’ (ie, janitor), then as a trainer in I.T., then as an I.T. maintenance consultant, and it was lovely. The people rocked, the management effective, the location, just around the corner, in fact, if I hadn’t chased Sally to the Northern Territory I’d be there still.
And it kinda ruined every job I’ve had since- nothing has every come close to that feeling of security and purpose I had there, every boss has been less.. together than Ben Grushka (a man, whom I once saw deal with a man who was absolutely murderous with rage at something no-one quite understood: he just.. talked him down and within 10 minutes the man left with a cup of tea, a biscuit and a voucher for $10 off a self-help course. And a smile :)) except now.
I’m not training here, however- I’m working with Moodle, a Learning Management System- basically a way of delivering lessons and doing assessments online. Perfect for distance education work… and right now, it’s my job to play with SCORM, or Sharable Content Object Reference Model– which after you cut through all the crap around it is a standard method of communicating with a Learning Management System for packages of interactive files, like Flash or an HTML file with some Java.
I hope I can chronicle my adventures a little more thoroughly now I’ve found a home… and thanks for all your patience. Even if it’s just the two of you that read this…