Other Mentions, Writing and Creative Thinking
Comments 16

One Door Closes, Another Door Opens

There’s no other way to say it so I’ll just say it.

As of Tuesday, I’ve been formally dismissed from my work. I failed my probation. But don’t threat, I’m actually not in a bad mood. Yes, of course I am a little disheartened but overall this feels like a very good breakup. (It’s strange but that’s the only way that I can describe it.)

I didn’t know how I would feel because quite frankly, I have never failed anything. Like ever. But somehow, I felt this huge rush of relief flow through me yesterday when the outcome had been confirmed in a confidential meeting.

Considering what had imploded in the past few months, it was probably wishful-thinking to think that I was ever going to pass. I wanted to keep that hope alive though because it’d suck to exit without trying and fighting and for the person that I am, I give my 110% in everything that I do. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t but hand on my heart, I tried my best and that’s what it’s all about in the end.

Trying and failing. Trying and failing.

I guess you can say that this is the last instalment of 3 consecutive posts where it’s come to a built-up sad end but really, I do not see it in that way at all. This is only the beginning despite the door closing because realistically, the job role was not suitable for me. I just didn’t want to admit it in the first instance because I wanted to give the job a chance and myself a chance too. It just goes to show though, that you can’t force something that’s not for you just like how you can’t force a relationship.

Some things should just never be together.

Despite this outcome, I have absolutely no regrets in trying my hand at a completely different career path as it was still a new experience and I made friends with so many people, some who I’ll continue to keep in touch with.

Prior to this conclusion, I suppose I had it in my mind that I would be leaving because I had thought of my exit and what I wanted to do. I thought that it would be a neat idea to write everyone a Thank You card because it was the least I could do in saying all the things that I needed to say. I wanted to put a positive spin upon my dismissal and leave my mark in my own way – through writing. I wanted to say goodbye properly.

If you have never been dismissed before then I’ll tell you what happens:

You are usually briefed by your manager to attend a formal and confidential meeting later in the day after they have processed the documents with Human Resources (or similar department) for the probation review (or general review if you have passed). The point of the meeting is to go through their reasoning behind the dismissal as well as gathering your side of the story too. Afterwards, they come to a conclusion. You are not expected to complete a normal day of work so most of yesterday was me awkwardly waiting and hanging about.

They told me to login on a computer (without doing anything) and sit with the team for a bit. That was unnatural in itself as one of the guys definitely clocked on that something was up as I wasn’t doing any work but didn’t want to ask. The air started to breathe sour at that point and whilst I wanted to strike conversation, it was hard to because how could I?

That was when I was briefed by my manager in a separate room just to confirm what would be happening. Shortly after, I was free to go and was advised to come back at 16:30 for the probation review. I went back to the computer to log off, grabbing my bag and coat. I wanted to say goodbye to the team or at least to one of the guys – but again – too obvious, how could I? So I just left.

Having recalled that moment to myself just now, I am beyond glad that I went on to write a Thank You card to everyone. Because it is horrible to leave just like that. Maybe that’s why it ended up feeling like a very good breakup. I gave myself closure. I kept the tone of the Thank You cards upbeat – having been happy to have gotten to know each person, thanking them individually and reminiscing some good memories in advance.

I thanked some people more than others for more specific reasons. The previous day, after confirming that I will not be passing, I said that I really wanted to thank one person personally. I don’t know why I was asking for permission because I would’ve done so regardless but I asked anyway and they said it was fine. Thinking back, it must have been because they were happy for me to finish at 5 even though my shift was until 5:45. (FYI – I left at 5:45 anyways.)

You know, I am proud of my growth because thanking someone personally like that is not something that I ever did in the past. I used to leave a lot of things unsaid. He was quite surprised by the news but the words of comfort that subsequently came from his mouth was so lovely. He gave me reassurance that I shouldn’t be suffering in a job that makes me stressed. He also told me that he has tried his hand at so many different jobs too from wanting to teach to being a labourer to staying in this job for 3 years as opposed to 3 months. He offered that advice as a friend and for that, I am extremely grateful.

I still remember what he said, and I quote, “Don’t worry about me! How are you doing?”…again, I let my personality slip. I really put others in front of myself sometimes especially in harder moments like this where the pill is difficult to swallow. But saying thanks really eased what could’ve been a sad occasion. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s still sad but I’ll take away with me the good memories more than anything. Saying thanks allowed me to process the good rather than the bad.

When I had confirmed the news with my family, bless their hearts – they were so supportive of me. My mum came to hug me as I got home and to be honest, she was gutted for me because she knew how much I was enjoying work. Well, until maybe recently. She felt stupid for not knowing anything but I said it was fine. My siblings and sister-in-laws have all been incredible too, saying to not worry and that they’ll support me no matter what. What did I do to be so blessed?

A large part of holding onto this job was the fear of letting my family down but sometimes, fate makes the decision for you so you don’t have to. That fear got quite big until I had recouped myself but even that was not enough to savour a place at work. It’s okay though – the stars probably have bigger and better things aligned for me. I’ll try again and fail better.

This is a really lengthy post but if you do read until the end, you’re a true reader. 😘

If you can, please don’t say sorry in the comments. I am enjoying some free time now until my holiday to Hong Kong and have even extended my trip by an extra week!

I’ll be taking this time again to find what I really love and who I really am. I am not too bad – I smiled all throughout that review because I said to myself that day that I’d wear my best smile and I did. When they finally asked if I needed to collect anything from upstairs, I almost laughed and said I had done so on Monday after gathering the hint. I still find that funny so at least I can laugh about the whole ordeal.

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  1. Even if you don’t want to hear it, I do feel bad for you πŸ˜‰

    I think some time back you wrote about crying at the job.
    That’s never a good sign.
    So far, I had 3 jobs in my life. And in each freaking job I have cried in front of the manager.
    I am not a quitter, so I’d always stay and struggle myself through the unhappiness.
    But that was never a good idea.

    I promised myself that no matter what. I won’t cry at my current job.
    It took 3 months, but this week I have cried.
    My supervisor caught me completely by surprise when he handed me a written warning.

    A few week back, he gave me task to do.
    I did that and wrote him back that I did.

    Apparently he told another colleague to check my work.
    She reported that I didn’t do the task.

    In the written warning it said that I am a lazy employee and that I was trying to shame my colleagues by pretending I did the task.

    Wow. I had no idea what the hell was going on, but I also had no way to prove it.
    Later it turned out that I didn’t upload the document where in HIS opinion it should have been, but where I was told by the customer to do it.

    There is no right or wrong here regarding the task, but him writing this bullshit about me was the end of it all to me.
    I told him I was going to quit.

    Later HIS manager, who is a nice guy and who had hired me in the first place, asked me to give it one more chance.
    I need a salary, but obviously I am searching for something else.

    School wasn’t fun, but working is really unnecessary challenging.
    Sometimes you just don’t fit a certain job or company.
    I really think it’s best to not waste time and emotions on it.

    Hope everything will be good in the future! And enjoy your break πŸ™‚

    • Hi there Andrea! Thank you so much for your reassuring comment. It was nice to read of your experiences too although not so nice to hear about how you were treated. I can share the sentiments though having had a whole report handed to me in a white envelope prior to the dismissal. They actually write everything word for word down and honestly, I was a little taken back by some of the comments. It was almost too honest or maybe I was too naive to think a report wouldn’t exist to that extent?

      Anyways, I have no doubts that you worked to your potential. I think they should have been more professional IMHO but like you said, if you cry in a job, that’s never a good sign. So maybe it’s good to be leaving for once and for all.

      If you need a salary then of course, search something in the meantime.

      I wish you the best of luck in that.
      Also thanks for sharing about your crying experiences – I am also a bit of a crier and thought I had gotten over that until recently. It’s definitely lessened though so there’s that. πŸ™‚

      • The managers and HR can be really cruel sometimes. They will almost time your every toilet break if they have to.
        They will remember your every word.

        I have always given it my all at work, but sometimes you and your manager are just a bad fit.
        And then there is no point in trying. I need to learn that!

        Cry whenever you need relieve!
        But don’t expect too much sympathy from others, sadly. So if you do it, maybe don’t do it in front of colleagues!

        And remember, this also shall pass.
        In a few years you might laugh about this or you will be given someone professional advice on how deal with this kind of situation πŸ™‚

      • I haven’t cried one bit this week πŸ™‚ I gained all the closure I needed through writing and I think writing helped me to take care of my final emotions which was the closure I needed in this type of situation.

        It was hard because like I said, I have never failed at anything before but now that that’s happened, I no longer have to worry about failing again and again.

  2. What an odd process for dismissing someone, seems rather laborious. In the US, it takes about 5 minutes and you’re escorted out – maybe that’s just as shocking.

    I totally agree with you, I left teaching within a year of completing my Masters. It was too much stress and heartache working with kids. I think it was for the best, I do something completely different now and when I get the opportunity to work with kids, I’m more present and feel like I’m making a bigger impact.

    You’ll find something else that gives you peace of mind and purpose. Good luck 😘

    • I believe it differs from company to company or I would assume that is the case. It’s a bit ironic because although they claim to have an open culture, I think certain things are still kept very corporate and to the book and that includes dismissing workers. I had a whole report handed to me in a white envelope – this is how serious we are talking about. πŸ˜‚It’s not nice to know a whole report of you exists like that but it’s actually what happens. I was surprised too – or was I too naive?

      Teaching is a very hard job too! I think any job that deals with people constantly is hard to be honest. My best friend used to work in a nursery and although she loves children, she wasn’t really enjoying the job a lot. She does something completely different now and is a lot happier.

      Thank you so much Stella though for reading and replying. Really appreciate it. πŸ™‚ I know I’ll find something – I just need to follow my heart.

      • Haha! I think that HR is probably required to keep reports in white envelopes on everyone πŸ˜› The review process where I work now requires an employee questionnaire that my boss has to sign, then he fills out a questionnaire that I have to sign and HR has to sign. It’s a mess.

        Of course, you’ll figure it out πŸ™‚

      • You’re right, it is a mess. I am going to be sent something on Monday to confirm and apparently I have 7 days to appeal if I wish to. Luckily, I’m off to Hong Kong so I won’t have to deal with that.

        Ive already chucked my work notes and work diary in the bin.

  3. Everything happens for a reason hun. I’m pretty sure you’ll find something that will work perfectly for you. Have an amazing time in Hong Kong ❀️

    • To be honest, if I truthfully had to answer – I couldn’t see myself working there for years. I had thought of it before but I couldn’t picture it. I just didn’t want to admit it because I thought I should leave it to how much work I put in and I guess….destiny? Sounds silly but that was my logic. In a way, I almost admitted defeat and thought “is this it? is this my life now? (in this job)” so maybe destiny wanted to cut it short for me to prepare me for something better! I really believe in stuff like that.

      Thank you so much for commenting – really appreciate it and yes, I will definitely enjoy Hong Kong. ❀

  4. I know you said you didn’t want to hear anyone say sorry in the comments, but when you hear that someone has been dismissed from their job it’s hard not to say sorry about it, haha. Either way, I’m relieved because it sounds like you are doing okay, and I’m happy that you had closure and got to thank the coworkers you wanted to thank. Sometimes I think about that, too – if I were ever let go, I would never get a chance to thank some of the people who have guided, mentored, and changed my career in the best way possible.

    It sounded like this job was really draining for you, so maybe things worked out for the best in the long term. Sometimes we are just not a good fit in a position for whatever reason – finding a place to work at is not unlike finding a significant other, you’re not always a good match with everyone.

    The process of being dismissed at that company sounds REALLY drawn out…is there a point to have someone sit there all day when they know they’re out of a job and most people just want to go home and cry? We just went through a round of layoffs last month and it is literally a 5 minute process for each employee.

    I’m glad you’re getting the support you need from family. There is something better for you out there! In the meantime, enjoy your trip to Hong Kong – you deserve it!

    • It’s funny because I thought fashion design was super hard but something I actually could do and could go on and understand. I guess everyone has their talents set differently though and maybe I underestimated this job a little. It was mentally draining up until Christmas and just after but when I thought I had recouped myself, and set out with a plan, it sadly wasn’t enough. To be honest, it’s probably good that my journey has been cut short because I could never picture myself there for years.

      You’re the second person to say that now! Obviously this is my first ever dismissal so I have no idea πŸ˜‚That day was rather pointless though. I went into work at 11:00 and waited around until 13:00 to be told to come back at 16:30. To be honest, I didn’t tear up at all in the end – I was prepared to go and it felt like the right time at that point. Obviously I’ll miss some of my colleagues though but they have responded to my Thank You card and have wished me all the best which is sweet. Some disagree with my dismissal which is cool because it means I made my mark so I’m quite pleased with that.

      Thank you! I’m going to rock out at my brother’s wedding and enjoy myself. πŸ™‚ ❀

  5. Sounds like this wasn’t a good fit and you were able to part ways in a reasonable manner. Glad that you were mentally prepared and not shocked by the decision – and it was so kind of you to write thank you notes to people. You just never know if your paths will cross again. It must be a huge relief to put all this behind you. And to know that your family is supportive of you no matter what.

    It’s an interesting process how they do the review and dismissal. I’ve only done exit interviews when I’ve resigned from positions so it’s a different process. I’ve also had to dismiss people from my team before and it is usually a surprise to those people (we are obligated by HR to not say anything in case the person decides to sabotage company property or otherwise disrupt other employees and ongoing work), and the process is very quick.

    Failing is actually a huge part of growth. I’m glad you see it as that. ❀

    • They had given me a few hints here and there and when it was strongly hinted that I wouldn’t be going into Tuesday as a normal working day, I knew what I had to do (collect my belongings). Luckily, I had been wearing a backpack to work in the past few weeks so I managed to fit everything in there discreetly without people noticing.

      I’m finding it interesting that you’re all finding the dismissal process interesting. πŸ˜‚

      Thank you Stashy for your kind words. I think after this time, I am prepared to fall again and again and not be afraid of it.

      When I walked out that door I was not afraid. Had no pressure. I walked confidently out and said I’d never look back. I’ve gathered my experiences there which I’ll keep for life so I haven’t lost.

      I’m already looking for my next chapter and will thoroughly enjoy myself in Hong Kong. πŸ™‚

  6. Jessica says

    I am glad you’re remaining so optimistic about this! While I am sure losing a job is a self-esteem blow to many, it is just a job & there are many like it. You are still so young & this gave you experience, I am glad you are no longer stressed because I remember your post from a few months earlier when you were overwhelmed with the workload. I am looking forward to your next adventure!

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