“I Lost the Will to Work, To Innovate.” Why Your Life Depends on Leaving Reorg Inc.

Photo by Gianni Zanato on Unsplash

Part 2 in the Chronicles of Reorg Inc.

A flower in the dark won’t grow.

It begins to die.

I spent a long time in the dark. And a long time ago, I stopped growing creatively. I also started dying on the inside.

The same things … stunted innovation, a soul-sapping existence … might be happening to you. A bad employer will both smother you and kill you. But there’s a light if you’re willing to jump.

I’m begging you to jump into that light.

Does Hell Have A Conference Room?

For years, I labored at Reorg Inc., a place with very little light. At Reorg Inc., layoffs were the norm, and they were dispensed with rubber-stamp efficiency.

Layoff … Approved!

Layoff … Approved!

Layoff … Approved!

This environment — polluted, suffocating, disease-ridden — was my life for more than a decade. Every workday (half my waking hours and a large percentage of my you-only-live-once time) sagged beneath

… the gray misery of a Stalin-esque oppression.

… the heavy hand of my Orwellian overlords.

… the Darth-Vader-like tension of an evil empire.

All this just to say … it was hell!

Your Talents: Where They Go to Die

Hell, by its very nature, is anti-growth.

At Reorg Inc., I had lost the will to grow and innovate. Innovation, for the sake of the company, was a pointless and futile effort. This was because of the always impending, always soul-sucking reality of the next reorganization.

“Will I get that call today?” was my first thought in the morning.

“Thank goodness, I made it through another day” was my first thought in the evening.

The job became a just-enough job — just enough to survive — because the effort to do “more than enough” wasn’t worth the reward. It’s hard to grow when your reward is a day-to-day reprieve from unemployment. When that’s your reward, your will to create dies. You simply wither.

When Work Is a Daily Dose of Death

But withering was only half my hell at Reorg Inc. The other half was a walking death. At Reorg Inc., layoffs were an epidemic, and with any epidemic, there were those who perished and those who waited to perish. This waiting was my walking death as co-workers disappeared one-by-one, and I remained behind … waiting (another layoff) … waiting (another layoff) … waiting ….

It was in this state of waiting that I — disposable employee #1421 — succumbed to my dying-by-the-hour. Within my work day, I worried, I stressed, I what-ifed. But the real dying happened outside of work, where I worried, I stressed, I what-ifed …

… at dinner.

… at the movies.

… at church.

… at my daughter’s basketball game.

… at my son’s musical.

This non-stop worry — a symptom of the Reorg Inc. culture — wasn’t living.

It was a slow, cruel walking death.

Go Now! Run!

This death and its sister-symptom, anti-growth, are terribly painful. But they’re comfortably painful too. In this death and withering, there’s still the security of one-more-day. A job tomorrow is a tomorrow of safety, even if that tomorrow is one part uninspired, one part loss of your life.

But I beg you … leave now, leave quickly, or at least begin the process of finding a good employer, an employer that respects you, challenges you, and advocates for you.

I’m living proof that an escape — even if uncomfortable and frightening — is the key to a reawakening, to a life lived instead of a life wasted. I left Reorg Inc. for an employer that puts people, values, and innovation above profits. I find myself living for the first time in a long time, free of the 24/7 whisper that always warned of impending doom. I find myself innovating for the first time in a long time, knowing there’s a tomorrow for my ideas.

But don’t misunderstand any of this as a criticism against profits.

Profits are important.

But if “profit-driven” is smothering you.

If “profit-driven” is killing you.

Then you’re sacrificing your drive to live for an entity’s financial drivers. This counts against your limited days on earth, and if those days are unhappy and uncreative, you’re forfeiting your most precious resource to a company like Reorg Inc.

Social media expert, higher education advocate, writer, Founding Fathers fan, lawyer in a past life