Tuesday, October 24, 2006

When I grow up, I want to be a... firetruck!

I've been banging my head against the proverbial blogging-stone... What has been going on lately?
Aside from my full-on for WoW and my obsession with Hallowe'en decor...
My mind has been filled with a myriad of thoughts that have me questioning where I have been seated in the vehicle that drives my own career. Have I been anywhere *near* the driver's seat?
I have to say, my headspace isn't that of inspiration or creativity when it comes to my job, lately. I find that as I get older and the more time that I can calculate me being at work vs. doing the things that I enjoy (including & excluding WoW - b/c let's face it, folks, its like... wow!!!) the more I realize how much time we *really* spend on ourselves. I've never let my career choice bother me. I never let my decision to pursue accounting be any sort of negative force in my life. I've always thought of accounting as a different sort of way of expressing creativity, solving problems and in the meantime, making you oodles of cash. And let's face it, for the things that I do, I get paid an extraordinaryly ridiculous sum of money. Oil & Gas Industry is just like that. Sometimes I equate it to just walking into the office and having money tossed at you... "Here, take this!" I'm not bragging, I'm just saying. You can't *blame* me for taking on a career that can afford you financial freedom. Let's face it. The history factories are NOT hiring, hobby-photographers are a dime-a-dozen and I have SEVEN MILLION people in the world to compete with for a pro-WoW position. I have never questioned any of that stuff. Until now.
My malcontent (yes, I will go so far as to temporarily categorize it as such) has me contemplating the validity of my own position in the company. Do I make a viable contribution? Am I just holding a space for someone who's one and only dream in life is to be a Production Accountant in an Oil & Gas company? Am I really and truly responsible for dashing the hopes and dreams of someone so eager to pursue volumes and gigajules and revenue (oh my)? What of my past experience? What has that brought me and furthermore, if I am dissatisfied isn't that my own fault and not my career path? I've chosen this path, haven't I? Suck it up and wipe your nose with your giant wad of cash, Vera! *rolls eyes* I realize there are people out there that LOVE to complain. Perhaps I am one of them. Heh. Either way. What the hell is my problem?
So yah... *this* is what has been on my mind lately. And these are the thoughts that have been plaguing me. Let's face the truth. My career choice was made for many reasons. I had been an accountant for quite some time already and truly enjoyed my work in another department. It was similar to what I am doing now, but different in many other ways. I held a senior position, and at my age, in oil & gas, that is quite something. You have to understand it is the "old boys club network" and there is nothing more disturbing to an "old boy" than to see a young female doing the same work he is doing for the same pay and in less time than it took him to get to where he is. My situation changed drastically, for reasons beyond my control. I still held the same position and the same responsibilities but it was under very stiffling conditions. In fact, my responsibilities increased in order to make up for qualifications that my new boss lacked. It was tremendously stressful. An opportunity arose after being in said position for apporximately 10 months. I jumped at the chance to leave and pursue it. And here is where I make my confessional. Pursuing this opportunity was a conscious decision to put my career on a path that I did NOT want to take nor planned on taking. Ever. I knew this (right now) is where I didn't want to be, but in the same breath I will say that I knew THERE (back then) is where I did not want to be either. Six of these vs. one half dozen of the other. Any SANE person would have chosen what I did, if given the same decision to make. Was it made under duress? Ehm, maybe. Was I conscious of that duress? Yes.
Now, there have been blessings! Please, don't get me wrong. It's not like a movie of the week drama called: "Boo-hoo, Look At The Poor Accountant: True Story". I work for *the most* amazing person in the entire world. My boss is positively incredible. I have gained invaluable skill and learned so much more than I ever would have imagined in the short (14 months) time that I have been at this position. I am also in a group with two of my closest work-mates who are also great mates outside of work!
I just feel pigeon-holed. I feel like what I do is so very difficult for me to have *any* passion towards and that it isn't something where I really desire to be better. I'll tell you why I strive to be a good, competant and knowledgable worker. It's b/c what you *should* do. Whatever you do, you should always strive to be good at it. It is a part of you for whatever time you are working on it. It doesn't have to *be* you, but it is a reflection of you. At least, that is how I was raised. Do your job and try to do it well.
So when I have looked long and hard at my career and the decisions I have made in order to put me here, I take full responsibility for those choices. And I have been tampering with the thought of leaving this position to pursue something that *does* interest me while staying on in the same industry and with the same company as well. I love the company for which I work!! They are a tremendous organization and I really believe they strive to be better and to just be... *more*. Which is also why I feel guilty for being in my position. I feel that maybe I am not holding up my end of the deal as part of this company. Anyway. One of the most difficult decisions was having to go to my boss to tell them that I might be pursuing other opportunities outside of the group. As I said before, my boss is wicked-awesome. Those words coming out of my mouth were quite unbelievable to me, but I did it! They asked me why and I was truthful. I just didn't think this was in my cards and that perhaps I'd have a better fit somewhere else in the organization. In their truly wicked-awesome way, they were 100% supportive and told me that they had no hesitation in recommending me to a group elsewhere if an opportunity presented itself.
So I'm attempting to change the direction of my career. We'll see how that goes, and I'll keep you updated on the status. I'm not sure if any of you out there are in the middle of such a "crisis". Gawd, how selfish of me. If I consider this a crisis, how pathetic is that? There are people who are going without a meal, a roof or something else and I'm whining that my pillage-&-rape-the-earth western energy company pays me too much money and boo-hoo me. Get some perspective, Vera!
Ok, I'll stop whining now.