Tuesday, September 22, 2009

My stay-cation so far..

I am calling these 2 weeks off between jobs a stay-cation. This is really the first time I've had time off and have spent it at home! Aside from my 4 day trip to Chicago, I'll be in Minneapolis the whole time. Which is pretty fantastic - there are few things better than sleeping in your own bed! On Sunday I made a to-do list that included things like cleaning my fridge, touching up paint in my bedroom, cleaning out closets, and other chores of that nature. You know, the stuff you tell yourself you should be doing on the weekend, but never seems to get done?

I started on one little chore on Sunday. I have these plastic bins under my bed - it's kind of the equivalent of a person's junk drawer or Monica's closet for all you Friends fans out there! I just throw stuff in them when I don't know what to do with it. So I went through those bins yesterday and tossed a heck of alot of stuff. I really do not consider myself to be a pat rack or hoarder, but there was some stuff in there that really should have been thrown out ages ago!

I did come across my stack of journals. Most of them were from when I studied abroad in Australia, but some of them were from other periods of my life when I have journaled as a release. I don't really do that very often - especially since I started this blog. I started to page through them and read entries, but I had to stop, because I didn't want to 'go there' if you know what I mean. Those journals hold alot of painful thoughts/feelings, and even though I am in a really good place, I didn't feel like walking back down memory lanes and re-visiting those feelings. So I packed them away. I am sure I will read them some day. Just not anytime soon most likely.

Another thing I stumbled across were all the cards I got when I left my last job with my previous employer. I love to keep cards and sentimental things of that nature. It was awesome to read the kind words of my former management team - I'll be having lunch with them next week and can't wait to see them!

I'm not really going to get into it here, but I will say that the manager I've worked for the last 2.5 years was not as supportive as my other managers have been. He's really good at the task side of things, but he just doesn't really have great 'people skills' if you know what I mean.

Well, on Friday I came in for my last day of work, fully expecting to see him. Turns out he took the day off. And didn't say good bye. Or send me a good luck email. Or thank me. Nada. Honestly, it was kind of hurtful. He technically doesn't manage me anymore due to the re-org happening in our department, but we still work pretty closely together. I get that people skills aren't his thing, but I think he could have swung by my cube on Thursday to say good-bye. Nope. Just odd as some managers that I had worked with on a lesser scale made a point to come up and say good-bye.

Oh well. I didn't let that get me down. Or at least I tried not to. I emailed my mom and as usual, she knew the perfect thing to say and said to take this experience and learn from it. And I am going to. If I ever have the opportunity to manage people again, I will make sure I appreciate them! And I will CERTAINLY wish them well when they are embarking on a new opportunity.

Anyways, aside from that, my last day was great. Another guy was also leaving the department and he is also Gluten Free so my friend Yulia ordered a Gluten Free cake for us from a little GF Bakery in South Minneapolis. We had "Death by Chocolate."

It was DELICIOUS. Please excuse the ridiculously terrible picture. I forgot my camera on Friday, so had to take that pic with my Blackberry. It was such a yummy cake and it was so sweet of my friend to get a cake that I could enjoy. And seriously, I don't think anyone missed the gluten when eating this!!

What is one thing, either good or bad, that you've learned from a current or previous manager?


Beth Dunn said...

Present solutions after you present problems. I'm happy to hear gluten free cakes can be good--I've had horrible brownies xxoo

Mama Nastase said...

What a wonderful "stay-cation"...I love having the time to get those pesky chores completed! You'd think as a stay-at-home-mom that I'd get all that stuff done, no problem...it doesn't work like that! (At least not at our house!)

I'll bet that was hurtful that your former mgr didn't stop by to say "goodbye." I am confused by the lack of common courtesy so prevalent today...didn't his mother teach him any manners?

Anyway, you are obviously appreciated by other past managers and supervisors! So sweet of your girlfriend to get that delicious looking gf cake.

Unfortunately, the first thing that came to mind that I learned from a previous manager was something "not to do". I had the misfortune of working with a manager who demanded things of his employees which he would never do himself. Even as a parent, I try to be mindful of NOT behaving that way.

Becky said...

That stinks about your manager - but your mom's right - you take that as a lesson (as in "I will never do that to an employee") and move forward with that knowledge.

Something I've learned from managers is it's just as important to give praise feedback and it is constructive criticism. And there's a fine line between a manager wanting to be "in the loop" and micro-managing.

That cake looked awesome!!!!

Becky said...

Oh and I'm totally jealous of your stay-cation. Enjoy!!!

Amber said...

I'm so glad you're having a great stay-cation!! I totally have a "Monica's closet" - it's the closet in my spare bedroom and it's just messy and full of junk. Ahh well, I will get around to cleaning it out. One day.

What a bummer about your manager. I have learned from different managers/bosses that being POLITE and KIND even when you're disciplining or giving constructive criticism goes a LONG WAY! For example, my current bosses are AMAZING. They would never make me feel like an ass when I mess up and they are so good at correcting me and telling me that it's OK to make mistakes and it's a learning experience.

On the other hand, my other current boss (at the University newspaper) is a major b*tch. She sent out this nasty email the other day threatening us because someone complained about a caption that SHE wrote. It was the kind of situation that could have easily been handled with a lot more poise, but because she got "bothered on her day off" she took it out on us. Now we all have hostile feelings towards her and are definitely NOT doing our best work.

Anyways, this is getting long, but good people skills and being polite is SOOO important for anybody in a leadership position!!

Have a good day, Lisa! I'm jealous :-)

Amber @ A Little Pink in the Cornfields said...

Enjoy your time off!! :)

Being a manager myself, I know how hard it is and one thing I have learned is to treat everyone exactly the same. Consistency is key...

Anonymous said...

That cake looks AMAZING. (It also doesn't help that I haven't had lunch yet today!)

At any rate, what have I learned from a manager that isn't good? Well, I see a lot of poor communication & project/people management skills which I think are rather essential =) I'll leave it at that for now!

Chelsea said...

Yes that's pretty lame of your manager.

Enjoy our time off! I'm jealous!

crystal said...

First off, I was going to tell you that your to-do list on a staycation should include nothing other than reading and sitting outside....that was until I read that you have an equivanent of Monica's closet! That needs to be taken care of! :)

One of the biggest things I have learned from a manager is how to treat your employees as the top priority. I worked in a restaurant where 1 manager would treat you like you were scum when a customer complained (which usually has no bearings). While another manager would stand up for you, he actually kicked 2 tables out for me, 1 for calling me the F word and 1 for accusing me of "trying to kill her with diet coke!!"

Unknown said...

What I've learned from bad managers....some people are users. And, if you are a person who takes her job seriously and works hard and performs well, that type of manager/user may appear to be your friend because you make them look good and make their life easier. But, when you need to move on in your life and career (which happens), if that person can't see beyond himself/herself and wish you the best and see it is the right decision for you, his true colors come out. That, I believe, is what you observed last week. He couldn't wish you the best. He is not evolved enough to see beyond the end of his nose and took your leaving personally. To me, that would be the most definite sign I was making the right decision to move to a new position!!!! The first time one experiences this type of situation is the most difficult. The next time (which happens) it is much easier. Just saying....Do I sound too jaded? Enjoy your time off. You have earned it!

The Many Thoughts of a Reader said...

I've learned that if I am ever on an interview committee or have to call someone to tell them they did NOT get the job they applied for when they will have to continue to work for me (suck up to* I will not tell them they did not get the job because someone else interviewed better. I will tell them someone with more experience got the position. Cuz gee freaking out wondering how one can interview different doesn't help the whole job search. Not that I have personal experience with this or anything. :P On the journal front, I found some journals from age 10-18 and I kinda want to throw them away. I was completely boy crazy.

Abby said...

That tears me up to hear that he couldn't have the generosity or courtesy to say goodbye to you. That is truly something you will learn for the future. I am also sure he has some built up animosity. A great, intelligent, hard-working employee like your self, who has put her all into the company for 7 years and attained her MBA...and now he's losing her.

How unprofessional!

I am proud of you. And this gives you more reason to look forward to NEW BEGINNINGS! :) Love you Sis!!

Oh said...

first of all, congrats on moving on! and despite the photo quality, are you kidding? i'd be all over that chocolate gluten-free cake!

As for a manager that was good or bad? I have an excellent VP to whom I report. Really, she's excellent and also the business owner.
Funny that in the same office, I have a jerk-o-matic co-director who for whatever reason,thinks he outranks me and all I do is smile and do not respond to his high-school ahahaha-he's-so-not-funny comments. I have learned not to exert any energy in his regard.
It's all good, all part of the workaday tapestry.

qwerkyqook said...

That cake looks delish!!!! Too bad about your manager. Maybe he was at home making a commemorative scrapbook of your time together... prob not. It's truly amazing how many times a day people's behavior makes me think, hmm that was a strange choice. People are wacky! Don't let it get you down. Youre a hard working intelligent woman, I think they know what they are missing :)

Lauren @ Sassy Molassy said...

Yeah, I've had a few of those "not a people person" type coworkers, but never a manager. THat's too bad he wasn't able to say goodbye or thank you. And then sometimes I just shrug those things off thinking "they probably didn't know they were offending me."