it’s your Friday good news

It’s your Friday good news!

1.  “I don’t remember how I started reading AAM: Probably a link from Captain Awkward. I’ve received so much bizarre and ridiculous advice over the years, and it has been invaluable to have your column to guide me. Reading all of your posts has helped me greatly in advocating for myself, learning how to deal with tough situations, improving my interview and work skills, and spotting dodgy advice. This column has done a lot to demystify the hiring process and help level the playing field. I have more confidence in myself, and no longer feel like I have to take shit from employers because ‘that’s just how things are.’ It has been so much better to remind myself that I am trading labor for money, and that I’m not a supplicant or a beggar who needs to gratefully accept whatever measly crumbs an employer deigns to throw at me.

As for my own story, I had a job I was good at and liked well enough, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do forever. I applied for and got hired for an entry-level job is my chosen field. I was both excited and nervous.

The first few months were rough. They weren’t used to having to train people, and there wasn’t a lot for me to do. Despite that, I have survived and think I do an okay job. I actually like the work itself, and the way everything is set up is ideal for me: I get to choose where I work (in-office, hybrid, or remote) based on what works best for me, no one cares that I have piercings/tattoos/dyed hair, and my hours are super flexible.

Everyone else seems to think I do an okay job too, because when one of my coworkers who was one level above me quit, my boss and several other coworkers all messaged me separately to tell me to apply for the job. For my boss to do so was an especially big deal because I had only been there for eighteen months at that point, and was new to the field when I started; usually people would be in my position for three years before they would be working at a senior level.

I got the job! It’s a 44% raise. That is a life-changing amount of money for me. It’s also the first time I’ve ever been promoted. On top of that, I recently received a bonus, and I just became the first person in my department to switch to working four ten-hour days.

This isn’t a fairytale, so the job is not without its flaws, but for me the benefits greatly outweigh the relatively minor issues, and making enough money to be financially secure is amazing. It’s hard to comprehend how much of an impact living paycheck-to-paycheck has on your life until the stress of that is gone. I even make enough money to donate to charities now.”

2.  “I started reading AAM after a toxic work environment left me crying at my desk and put me into therapy. Yikes! I knew I needed to change jobs, but through 10 years of luck and good connections, I’d never had to actually apply cold for a job before.

It took three years, one pandemic, the realization that I wanted to change careers all together, two of Alison’s books, new volunteer work to grow my skill set and a dedicated routine to be able to meaningfully work on applying without burning out, but I gave my notice last week!

I’ve got a new job lined up with a little more money, better hours, better benefits, a culture I already think I’ll love based on the interview process and I’ll get to work in a field I never thought would be open to me, but that I have dreamed about since I was a kid.

Thank you thank you thank you, for being my companion on this journey, and now I get to put the tactics in Managing to Change the World into practice.”

3.  “I wanted to let you know, now that I’ve just completed my third week at this new, corporate job, how much I truly appreciate your site and advice.

Because of your blog, I had the language and skills to do the following:
I negotiated a start date that worked for me.
I negotiated unpaid time off for previously planned vacations.
I negotiated WFH days that work for my brain tumor medication.
I talked with my manager for the time I need to go to the doctor for followups. They have been more than accommodating. It has been refreshing how much this company is about life and not just work after coming out of education.”

{ 12 comments… read them below }

  1. Goldenrod*

    Yay! Well done & congrats to you all!!

    LW #1, sounds like you are more than “okay” at your job. Don’t sell yourself short! ;p

  2. LW2*

    LW2 here! I’m about a six weeks into that new job by now and I’m indeed loving the growth opportunities, new environment and culture.

    It has its bumps, like anything, but also thanks to AAM, I’m much better prepared for the reality that those bumps are just how it goes.

    My coworkers also genuinely seem excited that I’m there, which is so nice. And I’ve been recommending Alison’s book like crazy.

    1. KateM*

      That’s great to hear! I always worry a bit when I see Friday good news from people who have not yet worked in their new place.

  3. Jean (just Jean)*

    It’s so nice to see other people making their way through the work world on their terms–without turning into another version of the terrible boss, inconsistent manager, or psychotic coworker.
    For those of us still struggling to become the best versions of ourselves, thank you for reminding us that there is indeed a path to get there! We may have to hack our way through underbrush or overgrown grass, but if you can find or build your path, we can do the same.
    Always good to read good news on a Friday afternoon. :-) LWs, enjoy your jobs and your non-working time. All the best to you.

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