This is my 1st installment of my Work Series Wednesday. Every Wednesday I will be sharing stories from my work journey and another work lesson I learned. This series is called WhitXWorkSeries!
WHY I LEFT THE CORPORATE WORLD
I left the corporate world in May of 2017. Initially, when I left I did not have a plan (which I do not recommend). All I knew was that my life was moving in a direction I did not want and I was unhappy. I needed to hit reboot. It was now or never!
It was rather ironic – I had moved up the corporate ladder quite quickly in my career. I was a Director for a global media agency running multiple teams all by the time I was 30, but I was miserable.
Let me give a bit of background to what I did in the corporate world…
I spent almost a decade working in the corporate marketing world. My job was to create advertising campaigns for some of the biggest brands in the world. Previous clients included: Pottery Barn, Williams-Sonoma, Avon, Sprint, Intuit etc. I organized National and International programs including TV, radio, search and digital ad campaigns.
My job required very long hours. There were technical meetings, supervising & training teams, and a bevy of clients to keep happy. I spent years working my way up at different agencies. I learned so much along the way. But the long hours and grueling pace caught up with me. My typical hours ran 7am to 10pm daily and often on weekends. I traveled a lot for work: New York, Kansas, Texas, Singapore, London etc. It may sound glamorous but it was stressful. Rushing off a 17-hour flight to make a presentation than to turn around and head back home again was exhausting.
As my 30th birthday approached I took a step back and examined my quality of life. After a deep and honest look I realized:
- I was unhappy
- I was in a toxic work environment
- I was burnout
- I was not valued
Initially, I struggled with the idea of leaving. Would I be abandoning my teams? Am I ready to walk away from it all? Could I be doing more? I dug in and work harder, tried to be more committed. It only made things worse. I was feeling depressed.
So I focused on building up my savings. And with no concrete plan, I finally made that drastic change: I quit!
I had to save myself.
I need to go find the better version of myself and grab the life I really wanted!
OUTFIT DETAILS: Blazer from Banana Republic (old), Blouse from Nordstrom, Citizen of Humanity Jeans, Sam Edelman heels
Starting over is painful. I had lived in the same city, worked in the same field for almost 10 years. Where would I go next? How would I find my way? I would like to give you a few suggestions I learned along my journey:
1. Make sure you have adequate savings – It is a luxury to walk away. Try to have at least 6 months of salary tucked away.
2. You do not have to have a specific plan. But be prepared. You are in transition. It is painful and frightening. But be patient as your new journey unfolds.
3. Starting Building Your Network – Prioritize relationships in your industry. Reach out to others in your field.
4. Work on your Resume – You might not be ready to walk away but be prepared. Update and polish your Resume. Have ideas where you might want to send it.
Do you work in an unhealthy environment? What do you struggle with in your job? Share it with me online with the hashtag: #WHITxWORKSERIES
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