it’s your Friday good news

It’s your Friday good news!

1.  “I have a success story that happened on Friday the 13th, of all things. I work in the office three days a week and usually have two appointments Friday afternoon that I can do from home. On Thursday, I prepared all the necessary documents and took them home so I would have everything I needed for the home office. Friday morning, I unpacked my bag and put the documents away, thinking, ‘Oh right, these are the things I need for my appointments tomorrow.’ I happily went about my day, planned to see a friend in the afternoon and checked my calendar which I had somehow missed to write the work appointments in. You see where this is going. I don’t know which brain cells were misconnected in that moment, that I was somehow able to simultaneously check that Friday afternoon was free and
not make the connection that the documents I had just put away were meant for Friday afternoon, but I did.

I had wonderful day and a very chill and relaxed afternoon with my friend. Right until she was about to leave. I checked my phone and saw several messages and missed calls from work, which is when it hit me: it was Friday and I was supposed to be in a zoom meeting with a client right now. My stomach dropped. My gut reaction was to cover things up. My mind started fabulating excuses but nothing I came up with sounded believable. My friend suggested telling the truth and my immediate reaction was a mortified ‘No!’ — I couldn’t let anyone know what happened, they couldn’t know I forgot, I needed a better reason … but then I thought of your blog and how often you mention owning up on your mistakes, admitting you’re mortified, explaining how you’re going to remedy the situation and just trying to do better in the future.

So I took some time to cool, mentally prepared what I was going to say and then I called my boss. And told her the truth. And that I was mortified and really sorry and how I was going make sure it didn’t happen again. And it was fine. She wasn’t happy with me forgetting, naturally, but she was just glad that I was well. ‘This is so not like you, we were worried something bad must have happened. And don’t worry, things like this usually only happen once.’ I called our receptionist who had gracefully told my clients that I was experiencing technical difficulties and couldn’t make the meeting, explained what happened and thanked her profusely for helping me keep face with the clients. And it was fine. They were all just glad I was okay.

Thank you so much for the work you do here and thanks to anyone who has ever shared their story here for giving others a learning opportunity. This blog helped me immensely when I tried being brave enough to take responsibility. And it was fine. I still can’t quite believe it. But I’m so glad and proud I handled it this way. And I’m so amazed that the reaction was exactly what you always said it would be.”

2.  “I’ve never written into AAM but I’ve been following for several years now. It’s been an invaluable resource as I entered the workforce after graduating college and working my way up. I started at my first job several years ago and thought about leaving multiple times but always found a reason to stay. I’ve been underpaid to varying degrees almost my entire time here, and just like everybody else in the past couple of years I have been thinking much harder about what I want my career to look like going forward. Last year I made a case for a promotion and got it, but I got much less of a raise than I was hoping for and it turned out having more communication with upper management just left me more frustrated over the bad decision-making than ever. I had hoped that officially having more seniority would make them more likely to listen to me, but that was naive.

A few weeks ago, my mentor and favorite person to work with quit, leaving me as the only person in my role when we really need 3 to be properly functional. Well, this is going to be very bad news for my current team because I’ve accepted an offer from a leading company for literally twice my current salary (and well over market rate and the top salary I expected to make in my entire career), top notch benefits, and a pivot to work I’m really interested in and is more in line with my personal values. I’m just waiting for the background check to clear before I give notice.

I’ve felt so much relief since accepting the offer. This job has been toxic in a lot of ways and I hadn’t realized just how much it had been dragging me down, especially over the past few years. I always read the updates on here about people making these amazing career moves and I never thought I would be one of them! Multiple people I spoke to during the process told me that the hiring manager is one of the best people managers they’ve ever worked with and I’m really excited to be moving on. I’m hoping I can help my current boss hire a replacement before I leave, but the advice here has helped me yet again in recognizing that it’s not my fault they failed to staff properly or treat their employees well enough that we want to stay.

Wishing the best of luck to all the other job seekers out there!”

3.  “A few months ago I’d emailed you about my fears in filing for medical leave (and then immediately emailed again asking you not to post it). I was worried, for various reasons, that I’d experience negative professional consequences(?) after my leave was over. Well, instead, my crappy employers laid me off right BEFORE I was supposed to go on leave! The timing was super suspicious in several ways, and HR gave me some pretty damning info via email, so I lawyered up. It was a lot of stress, but I got a much better severance in the end, and now I can actually do the medical stuff I was planning without panicking about health insurance or immediately finding a new job.

I’d like to say my former employers learned a lesson, but knowing them, I doubt that. But at least I annoyed them on my way out!”

4.  “Two years ago, I left an abusive marriage and began raising my children as a solo parent. We were scraping by, but money was very, very tight. I loved my job but I knew I would eventually need to make a change to higher paying employment. I had no idea what that might be, and needed some time to recover before I forged a new path anyways. In the meantime, I read this site diligently and continued to pursue as much knowledge in my field as I could. Preparation meets opportunity, and all that. Well, at the start of the year my workplace brought in a specialist to audit our practices and provide feedback and new strategies. After seeing my work, the auditor offered me some consultancy work and then a full role in their organization. I’m making nearly 4x my previous salary, still working in the field I love. I make my own schedule and can do most of my work from home, which allows me to be there for my kids. This is truly life changing. I’m still pinching myself!”

{ 26 comments… read them below }

  1. JSPA*

    Kind of startled that auditors poach the employees of their clients, but glad it worked out for the OP!

    1. RandomCPA*

      It depends on what kind evidently. I do financial statement and single audits and if a client indicates they’re going to quit anyway, we’ll talk to them. That being said, this sounds like more of a consultant process “audit” which is usually a one off type engagement so less need to maintain relationships long term.

    2. LW4*

      LW4 here! The auditor had a long standing professional relationship with my employer and got their okay before approaching me. The auditor didn’t know anything about my personal circumstances but my employer knew a bit and thankfully recognized what a massive opportunity this would be for me. Everyone is still on excellent terms :).

      1. Alana Bloom*

        I’m glad to hear that it was all above-board! Congratulations on your new position, LW4!

  2. A Pound of Obscure*

    #4 – I just love this one! Part of me wonders whether an auditor essentially stealing away one of its client’s employees is sketchy, but the awesomeness of your update makes me not care. Congratulations!

  3. Falling Diphthong*

    All of these are great, but I especially appreciated “But at least I annoyed them on my way out!”

    Great job, OPs!

  4. Thin Mints didn't make me thin*

    I am SO PROUD of you, LW#4! You got a lot of messages that were meant to keep you down, but you rose up and you’re taking care of yourself and your kids. Give yourself a gold star!

  5. hellocupcake*

    Well done, LW#1! We’ve all been there with a complete accidental disconnect. Glad to hear that you work with reasonable people that were primarily concerned about your well being!

    1. Squirrel Nutkin*

      So proud of you, LW#1 — what you did to admit your mistake was hard, but you acted like an adult. Give yourself a big pat on the back for choosing honesty!

    2. Lawyera*

      I agree, this is a really great story and also I’m glad it’s included in the good news section- it really is the right way to handle an error like that and to own up to it, and hopefully build trust between you and your supervisor, and never forget to put the appointments in your calendar again! Good luck!

  6. StellaBella*

    Great updates again this Friday, thanks so much Alison, these help inspire so many of us.

  7. WindmillArms*

    I really like the first letter! It’s great to see a real-life example of taking responsibility for a mistake and how it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Thanks LW1!

    1. Middle Aged Lady*

      I second this. I was leisurely walking back from lunch one day when I realized I was supposed to be interviewing someone for a part-time position at work. The administrative assistant assured the candidate I never did this kind of thing and she had seen me go to lunch; I would be back soon. She chatted with her and answered a couple of general questions until I got back. I was 10 minutes late.

  8. TG*

    LW #4 – so happy for you! It’s nice when people recognize your work and see the value you can add! And to have the financial security and time also to give your family when needed – fantastic!!

  9. ICodeForFood*

    LW #1 – Hey, human beings make mistakes… I’m just glad your boss knew that, too!

  10. Lady_Lessa*

    Congratulations all.

    I wonder if HR that spilled the beans to LW3 did it on purpose, because they didn’t like what happened to her.

    1. Chilipepper Attitude*

      I’m sorta hoping for more tea from OP#3 but am just happy it worked out for them!

    2. Flying Fish*

      I was thinking the same thing! I hope the HR person was appalled and tossed that information out there as a way to try to help.

    3. LW3*

      It’s possible! I was definitely surprised she told the truth. But this was the same HR person who told the COO that I was planning to file for leave before I actually did. So she also is maybe just naive and has loose lips. (I think it’s most likely that she knew I’d been laid off when she emailed me the info in question, but it’s not 100%–it was very lopsided, tellingly so, who knew before me and who didn’t.)

      When HR accidentally got shamed into giving me the standard exit interview (which they hadn’t scheduled, but then emailed me asking for feedback on their offboarding protocols), it was conducted by the same person, and she was very kind. But I don’t really trust anyone who’s liked by that management, and they really like her!

  11. Ellie*

    I absolutely love this letter, and am so happy to read that things worked out so well for you. This made me feel really great.

Comments are closed.