I’m taking a little break from the Balance Series. This week includes a little insight into some of my rhetoric I use when out inspiring people to play a bigger game for themselves.
Last week I found myself talking to amazing women at a couple of events on how to articulate their awesome.On both occasions, I reiterated my standard theme:
You date a company; you don’t marry it.
I constantly use this phrase as a frame for referencing the different “dating” phases you, as an employee, go through.
Phase 1: Swiping Right on Tinder vs. Looking a company up on Glassdoor
Phase 2: The First Date vs. The Interview
Phase 3: The First Blush of Love vs. The First 90 days on the job
Phase 4: Saying “I love you” vs. Getting your first big project
These side by side analogies are endless; however, most come to an end with the inevitable breakup.
I use the first analogy frequently because your work is an enormous part of who you are. Also, the people you work with are sometimes as close to you as a family. I’ve lost count of the number of times I hear, “I LOVE my job!” This statement is an emotional response rather than the practical, “I LOVE my paycheck!” Like many of you, I put my heart and soul into my work, so it is a little like another relationship. Sadly, more often than not, there is a point where you’ll break up with your company. Which begs the question:
Are you thinking about your last impression as much as you are your first impression?
Take a second to think about that. Think about all the people you’ve broken up with, your past relationships. Do you have fond memories of them all or have you given a few of them names you shouldn’t utter in polite company?
Now I’m not going to delve into your dating lives, but this analogy should make you think about the concept of leaving companies gracefully. I was genuinely heartbroken when I “broke up” with my last company. While I was angry and hurt at times, I truly tried put it all aside and exit gracefully. I focused on remembering the fun, the laughter, and the astounding endeavors my team accomplished together. I left with my head held high and a favorable impression on those still at the company. I left with the same positivity and energy with which arrived. The bonus is that I have lovely memories too.
Shouldn’t you have an amicable break up too? Shouldn’t there be an amicable breakup from both parties perspectives?
I’m genuinely curious to your thoughts on this whole idea. Do you agree? Do you think I’ve gone too far? Do you wish someone had pointed this out to you when you first started out? Are you interested in a deeper conversation about this?