Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Breakup

A Job and a Relationship

A job is much like being in a relationship; you devote all your time, energy, and every emotion to it. It asks for your commitment, you work with a commitment, it asks for your care, you work with care. Much like in relationships, there may be times when it sails smooth and there may be times when things get rough. A job is much like a relationship because you get back what you give.

In a job just like in every relationship you ask yourself:  "Is it worth giving your heart and soul to what you believe in?"

In a relationship you ask: "Is it worth being truthful to a person whom we have met by chance?"

In a job you ask yourself: "Is it possible to keep doing the same thing every day with the same level of energy?"

In a relationship we ponder: "Is it possible to love the same person with the same enthusiasm?"

In a job you ask yourself: "Where will I be in five years from now?"

In a relationship you wonder: "Where will WE be in a few years from now?"

In a job you ask yourself: "Have I been doing this long enough to ask for a bigger role? To take it to the next level?"

In a relationship you ask: "Have I been with her/him long enough to take the plunge? To graduate from being a lover to being a spouse?"

You ask your friends, your peers, other couples for advice. If the answers to the questions above are the ones you want to hear, you decide to stay committed, with a dream that this commitment (to a job/relationship) will yield big results. If the answers are not the ones you had expected, you decide to do what you feel is right. You call off the relationship. You break up.

Falling in Love

For me it was love at first sight. When I first entered the reception of my would-be workplace there was something inside me that told me “You belong here”. Maybe because it was located in one of the most hippest tech park in the country, maybe it was the radiance and the energy the place was emitting, maybe it was the reputation and the brand name that it commanded in the market. Getting a job would earn me a few brownie points amongst my peers and friends, we all want to be hooked up with the “Prom Queen” right? And why a “Prom Queen”? Because it would improve our image amongst our peers. For me the new workplace was like a Prom Queen, someone whom I wanted to hook up with, someone whom you can show off to your friends, a name of the corporation saying which would raise eyebrows and make your friends turn green with envy. I had fallen in love with the company just like I had that crush with the new girl in my class when I was an eleven year old. It was like one of those movies where an outsider is invited to attend a wedding, and promptly falls in love with the endearing and loving family, secretly wanting to be a part of it. It was then decided that I would whore myself to any level just to get through those doors. For me Neverland was beyond those doors, and my resume held the key.

The Relationship

It started out like any other relationship. I was hopelessly in love with everything she had to offer - the ambience, the pay, the people, even the stale coffee. It was a period where I could say without no reservations that I was “married to my work”, a marriage fixed by the HR managers. I was blessed with some wonderful in-laws too, in this case my colleagues. I was in complete awe of the place, but like with any other relationship where after a given timeline the excitement level starts to come down, so did it happen with my affair with my workplace. My excitement of having the perfect job was coming down; the romance in the marriage was dying a slow death. No more had I the ache of a young lover who craved to see his beloved, the aspiration within was slowly being replaced by a feeling of monotony for continuing the same rigmarole of a job. And as the interest slowly started to die, my commitment started to take a dip. Mistakes were made like it happens in a relationship, questions were asked like it happens in a relationship, long nights were spent sleep deprived trying to mend the mistakes made, trust for a brief period of time was lost, a price was paid for a slip-up much like when a guy is caught unaware by his girlfriend for ogling at another woman. An unsatisfying job is much like a failed relationship, it ends up teaching you a lot. I learnt that a billion dollar organization is much like a gorgeous looking girl- it’s got a great reputation, it has a great package, it gives you a great job, but you tend to the do same chore every day. The best thing to do when the relationship is crumbling is to go for an honorable exit.

The Exit

The exit was carefully planned, no word of breaking up was uttered until a back-up was found after whoring myself with the same fake yet desperate enthusiasm with which I had done in my previous interview. When the deal was sealed, I told those clich├ęd corporate words to my superior which one does while breaking up - “We need to talk”.

With the formalities of an exit on the final stage of its completion, I returned my ID cards and my access cards to the authorities. It was like I was clipped of my wings, I was a fallen general whose stars were stripped off his shoulders, my name was deleted from the employee database and all traces of me were removed like I never existed. Final goodbyes were exchanged while fighting back tears and promises of meeting up again were made with friends, men and women whom I once met as “Colleagues” had been upgraded in my Taxonomy of Life as “Friends”. I walked through the corridors for one last time, these corridors had many stories to share, stories of employees who had carved a name for themselves and were legends within the office premises. These corridors were decorated with care for many festivities, these corridors had the laughs of employees embedded in them, it was a witness to their moments of triumph, it was a witness to their moments of despair, it was a guardian of many secrets and an alibi for many revelations. Of all the things that changed within that giant organization, it was these corridors that remained the same, strong and stoic, deprived of all emotions yet with many stories of success and failure to tell.

It did not matter if you worked for a year or for a decade, employees may come and employees may go but an organization is a behemoth that breathes on forever.


Matangi Mawley said...

:-) ... a very good analysis!

The Orion Belt said...

Romantically put. :)

Anuraag Seshadri said...

@ Matangi and TOB

Thank You! :-D