I’m sick again. This fact is only made all the more insane by the fact that it’s now easier to count the times I HAVEN’T been sick rather than those when I have been.
I’m going in today because the sore throat/cough/upper respiratory infection that started last Monday has now been resulting in no sleep and viscous green stuff coming from my head. That, in combination with the acid issue I’ve got, has thoroughly wiped me out. My honey has a pre-calc final this morning and he’s got the same crud. His study time this weekend was effectively blown.
On the work front – I stood up for myself and our team last Thursday. Net result? Perhaps some changes for our team. When it came down to putting it all on the line, I felt like two things happened: 1. all the stress the professional staff are going through (at least those who have spoke up) was discounted with “you’re internalizing.” 2. my team-mates, who had been vocal advocates for themselves in the other two major meetings, were suddenly quite silent in the final meeting. I felt substantially like my butt was left hanging in the wind.
What did I learn from the experience? Well. No matter what I stood up for myself. The dynamic will be forever changed because of it and that’s a good thing. I know who in my office will back me up and I know who will fade out when the chips are down. Discounting what your staff are telling you by saying, “You’re internalizing it” (essentially – YOU are the problem, not saying “I acknowledge your concerns and understand you are feeling the pressure/stress.” )… this does not help either the situation or your staff.
I’m hedging my bets, particularly on the heels of being out sick yet again. If my contract isn’t renewed, then I have a way to keep us afloat for 3-4 months while I find something else. Do I think my contract won’t be renewed? Not really. I think it will be fine. We don’t get raises and we’re wickedly short staffed. I work my ass off, even if I do get sick a lot (frequently). This isn’t to say that it couldn’t happen, but the odds are small.
Still – there is a reasonable position open on campus. It’s a position that I am more than comfortably qualified for and the pay decrease would be offset by the fact that I wouldn’t have to work more than 40 hours per week because it’s not a professional staff position. It’s a good match with my impending MBA and my stress level would likely decrease. PLUS it isn’t a brainless position or a total backtrack. I’ll get my app in to be prepared.
Our big boss (aka, director) listened to what we had to say in the lengthy, impromptu meeting and then effectively discounted what all the professional staff are saying by using that one little phrase. I realized I have a choice right now – I can hang in there, respecting all of the hard work and training I’ve been through, while essentially supporting a system that simply does not want to change. Or I can say no, I won’t be a part of something that just keeps perpetuating this same cycle.
I haven’t yet decided what I’m going to do. Being sick and miserable doesn’t help. The alternative position posting closes tomorrow, so if I want to have this as a viable option, I have to toss my hat in the ring. I’m scheduled for a big out of state training at the beginning of June and could cancel out of it by May 14 with no cost to my department. I’m considering that option right now as well. If I determine I won’t be staying, then I can’t put a financial burden on my department… it’s not the right thing to do.
No idea what will happen. Feeling horrible and the acid crawling up my throat is awful. I’m heading to the doctor’s office in a few minutes and hopefully they will be able to offer me a solution that will get me back on my feet more quickly.
I understand organizations have to operate a certain way. But alienating and wearing out your staff doesn’t seem like a healthy way to handle things.
More to think on. More to write, at another time when I’m not phlegmy and miserable.