Why I Chose To Leave My Corporate Job for BS+Co.
I initially wanted to sit down and write this for me. I had so many thoughts and so many feelings running through my mind the day I left my corporate position. I remember I drove home, swung the door to my apartment open, gave my daughter the biggest hug of my life, gave a kiss to my wife and a kiss to my son. I embraced that moment for a long time because it was in that moment I knew I got my life back.
After embracing my family I went straight to the bathroom to take a shower. My idea was that I was washing all the pain from my past job away. I sat on the shower floor, in the dark, and let my mind race. Everything was funneling through, all of my feelings about leaving, my feelings about what my job did to me mentally and physically, the absolute drain that my job had on my personal life and my family, even the things that my supervisors would say to keep me bought in.
I was filled with sadness and anger. And then finally relief, followed by an uncontrollable wave of happiness. I haven’t felt those emotions in sometime. It was so strange to feel them and then to try to comprehend the fact that this will be my life moving forward.
I wanted to write this not only for myself, but for anyone else questioning whether or not to leave their corporate jobs. I know leaving isn’t always an option, but if you have a passion for something else or are deeply unhappy in your job...you are not alone.
Here are the things that fed into my decision to leave my corporate job.
The Effects On My Family & My Mental Health
The first thought I had after going through this range of emotions was “Why did I continue to do that to myself and my family?”. I now realize I was on a constant chase for the dangling carrot. I was always reminded about how much money you could make in my corporate role. They even used this very promise way back in the interview process.
And it was a continual theme pushed throughout my career. This was the driving force as to why I became a corporate machine. As I began my career, all of the other employees coined a term for the lifestyle they had at work and that term was “working in the trenches.” They used that particular phrase because the job was a constant grind, eliminating work-life balance.
On the flip side, you are told that they care about your work-life balance during your onboarding. In reality...that's bullshit. You are required to work a 48 hour minimum work week (which quickly turned to 60+ hours a week), not including all the “days off” you have to give up in order to prove your worth or “earn your chips” so that they can use those “chips” to decide whether or not to promote you. Sounds like a real blast.
There were so many points in my career when I was ready to throw in the towel, and I would seek advice from my mentors. When I would hit my breaking point, I remember being given this advice: “You have to pay the price now so that you can pay any price later.” Makes sense right?
But at what price? The price of never seeing your kids? The price of never seeing your wife? The price of giving up your life so that you can put cash in the bank?
It got to the point where I was only seeing my family on Sundays (because we were closed) and hopefully, I could leave work early one day throughout the week. That is not living. That is NOT a life.
One time, while enjoying a day off with my family, I realized something was off with my wife. I asked her what was wrong and this was her response: “I have the Sunday Blues.” I had never heard of that before, so I asked her to elaborate.
She went on to say that she waits every week for Sunday to come because it is the one day she gets to enjoy life as a family, but it comes with the price of knowing Monday is tomorrow and she has to go another week being alone while taking care of our two beautiful children; hence the “Sunday Blues.”
That conversation hit me hard because that made me realize my family did not have a life either. They were not living. Now, this career is affecting my personal life. We should not have to wait until the weekend or until Sunday (in my case) to live.
Sacrificing True Career Growth for a Corporate Cult
When it came to personal growth...there was none. There was only corporate growth. Let me explain. Corporate growth is when you can “move up” or grow within a corporation. You learn the ins and outs of that specific corporation and “suckseed” your way to the top.
This is where it starts and where it ends.
There is no room for personal growth. Personal growth is where you grow as an individual within your “market”. You become more knowledgeable and a more valuable employee. I was scared of having a LinkedIn account for fear that the company I was working for would find it, think I was looking for other companies to work for and then use that as a reason to not promote me.
So to explain how my previous company promoted their employees; there were two primary criteria:
1: was your personal performance (sales).
2: was their personal perception of you.
According to the party line, they only promoted based on performance. But, if that was the case why would I be told that I have to schedule lunches with department heads, and network myself to build my personal brand if my performance should speak for itself? It was a bureaucracy!
They wanted me to get all the department heads and people in positions of power to like me so that it would increase my chances of getting promoted. Listen Linda, not all people get along. If I were to be myself, not all people would like me but in order to play this game I changed who I was.
In playing this game, I lost myself. I recall sitting on that shower floor the day I quit and feeling hopeful. Hopeful for my future and hopeful for the ability to find myself again.
The Code Is More What You’d Call “Guidelines” Than Actual Rules
At corporate, their motto was: “We take care of our customers and employees first and then the profits would follow.” That is something, as an individual, that I believe in and will always stand by. Customers and employees first and the rest will follow.
I heard this on repeat, like listening to my favorite song and it made me proud to be a part of a corporation that believed in that. After some time working in the organization, I came to the realization that these were just empty words, or much like the pirate’s code….just guidelines.
Those are the things they want to be seen as true but in reality, money talks. I won’t go into it a whole lot, but let’s just say that when COVID-19 happened, customer service and employee care became a thing of the past.
They took that moment to rake their customers over the coals and abuse their employees in numerous ways. The mentality was, “if we are not getting graded on our customer service then fuck ‘em.” That's the message that was sent, and that is what left a foul taste in my mouth.
That left me, as an employee, to work in an environment in which there was no care for customers and we were left hung out to dry. I was left to do the work of 10 people with a team of 5.
“This operation is unmanageable”, “Your expectations are unrealistic with the tools I have been given”. I found myself saying these phrases all of the time.
I could not function properly or even think clearly because of the overwhelming amount of tasks that were put on my plate and expected of me. At BS+Co, for example, we build our organization such that we have a team of 6 people to do the work of 4 (the opposite mentality).
We are able to maintain employee health and client focus and relationships. Look, people aren’t stupid, they can smell through bullshit. There is a reason why a genuine company smells like a fresh pie and why the others smell like...well...bullshit.
This is where “No Bureaucracy, No Bullshit” changed my life.
I was provided an opportunity to have a life, to have a career, to have the chance to be myself, and grow within a company as an individual. BS+Co has provided this and more. Don’t believe me? Don’t think that any company can provide a career and a life?
Just read about their promise to their clients and employees: https://www.brittandstacy.co/articles/who-we-promise-to-always-be
This, at its core, is everything I believe in and everything I was looking for. Clients and employees first! Seriously!
They live and breathe this mantra and aren’t just paying lip service. Being here I have seen first hand how their clients and employees alike are treated like family. We are all part of a well-versed, extremely knowledgeable, and motivated pie. There is no hierarchy. We all work as one and all play our own part to accomplish one goal.
Take care of our clients. One Pie, One Team, One Dream.
At the end of the day, there are a multitude of reasons as to why I chose to leave corporate. I have never been a corporate person. I also worked and managed restaurants previously (the farthest thing from corporate). This experience was extremely eye-opening and my heart goes out to anyone that is living like I was. You should never have to change who you are or lose yourself just to work for a company.
Money comes and goes but personal health and family should always be your number one priority. Start making a positive change for yourself now, you can thank me later.