I arrived at the office at 6am. I rehearsed my speech a few times. First at my desk. Then in his office. I was planning to do that a few times more before my boss arrived at 8am sharp. But, as life would have it, he arrived early. He neverrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr arrived early.
“Oh! You’re early too?” he said.
That’s when I had to make the decision. I could either talk to him right away or let my nerves win and postpone the chat to another day.
I dived right in.
I asked him to let me take leave of 1 week. No, not to go to Thailand. I wanted leave to go and try out at another job while keeping the safety net of my current job!
Mad, right? Who does that?
The background is that I had just received an offer for a great new job! It was a new company and everyone was talking about them. They wanted someone IMMEDIATELY, so I told them that I would negotiate that with my current employer. And, that’s what I planned to do. Negotiate. I came armed.
He said “Well, I can let you go for 1 week”. I heard angels! “But, if you want my honest opinion…..” The angels stopped. (I hate those words. “Honest opinion?” What’s that supposed to mean? Are some of the opinions not your honest ones?)
Anyway, he said “If you want my honest opinion, I don’t think you are good enough for that sort of environment. Maybe in a few years’ time. Of course you are very bright, don’t get me wrong (another phrase I loathe) but it needs someone a lot more mature and….ummmm…..I don’t know. I just don’t think you are ready”.
I put down my weapons. Negotiation over. I hurt. For two seconds. Then, I smiled. I did it! I did it, I thought. I just did the scariest thing my 20-something old self could imagine!
After a Strawberry Daiquiri in the sun after work that afternoon, I proceeded to buy my first designer pin-striped suit and I marched on into the unknown.
But hey, if you want my “honest opinion”, I do think I was pretty damn crazy! But look at us now, sitting and writing stories about those wild days of youthful guts.
Aluta continua, my friends! The road is long (for me). Allow me to wish YOU many beautiful moments of crazy ideas, mad leaps of faith and unconventional routes to your scary hallways too.