I had four days remaining with my current employer when I drove to work this morning. As I type these words, I have three days left. But I still wanted to do an entry for today.
My current employer taught me a fair bit about how the corporate world works.
The extent of my corporate experience, before this job, was working as a salesperson for Office Depot while I was in college. Before graduating college, I transitioned into a job that was part of the educational field. Moving from the private sector to the public meant that I did not really understand how the private sector worked.
I have been given the chance to learn this over the course of the last five-plus years. While not every lesson has been pleasant, they have all been instructive.
I have learned that supervisors are often well-intentioned and just as often ill-equipped. I have had supervisors who knew precisely what my job entailed and supervisors who had not the faintest notion, though they wanted very much to do a good job — their prospects depended on their performance as well as mine, after all. I have had supervisors who were excellent mentors and supervisors who offered no mentoring at all. The difference, I think, is largely one of personality, but whether or not the supervisor received any mentoring seems to factor in as well.
I have learned that decisions are most often made based on pure economics. When the company does well, new hires are frequent and needed materials are easy to come by. When the company does poorly, layoffs are coming and expenses — even necessary ones — are difficult to get approved.
There is more — so much more — that I have learned and that may or may not be consistently true across all companies in all industries, but my employer has given me the ability to learn at close proximity. I am grateful to have been given the chance to re-learn how the private sector operates while also benefiting from and, I hope, being of benefit to my company.