Does the Captain go Down with the Ship?

To jump ship early, or to stay aboard. That is the question of the evening.

So, I guess to go back to the roots of this site, I need a mental coping space--something to help guide this. And if you're reading this, just prepare yourself and take it all with a grain of salt--there's enough of it in the tale, you should have more than enough to help cut the bite.

While proof-reading (now that it's been about an hour or so since my total brain dump), there's a bit of heat and emotion. I debated on whether or not I should even post this, but after some scrubbing, there isn't anything contraband, just some personal thoughts that needed worked out. If you're still on board... (heh heh...), then it's story time. 

In keeping with the theme of where I work, communication is non-existent. And by that, I mean just non-existent to me. I've given overview to how forgotten night shift is--how we're not just only the last to know things, but how I, explicitly, am the last to know things. Well, here's the cherry on top, and what I can only hope will be the last of my career, here.

I gave my two weeks notice to the company on the 9th of February. I had received a soft offer from Telsa that Thursday, so when I went into work for third shift Friday, I drafted my formal resignation. I submitted it later that morning, after I successfully submitted everything I needed to, to progress at Tesla. The very first person I notified--the person who I've been very open with about my job search elsewhere since last October, was my boss.

Somehow still, my boss was the last person to know. That Sunday when I went back into the plant for start up, I had hourly employees asking me if "the rumors were true". After submitting my resignation to my direct manager and to HR, I fired off an email to my peers, giving them all a heads up. I've spoken to each of them in person since then, but having given my notice on a day that I wouldn't be in until later, I figured they should at least receive word from me, first. Given how the communication trend is here, I didn't want them blind-sided on the 23rd when I no longer showed up for my shift. Coming in two days later, on a weekend we didn't run production, somehow folks on the floor already knew. How it leaked is still a mystery, by my does word travel fast.

Nonetheless, I've been, and will always be transparent. So of course, when I was directly asked what the scoop was, I told them openly I had resigned. Later on Monday, one of my peers on day shift went to ask my direct manager if he had any thoughts on reworking manager coverage. This was how my boss apparently found out I was leaving. Cue absolute silence from HR, my boss, and everyone else of any official capacity, for almost a week.

Finally, my manager comes and speaks with me, in person. That was an extremely awkward conversation, that further proved how little he knows of me, about me, and about who I am and what I do. To wrap things up, he verbally denied my vacation request, and left it at that. That's the last I've heard from him, until today.

I get that since I'm leaving, there are decisions moving forward that do not concern me. I do not understand, however, when my biggest piece of feedback to my manager has been the fact I am regularly and repeatedly left off copy of emails that carry vital information to the continued operation of this facility, I am continuously left in the dark. When you manage three people, I have a hard time grasping how difficult it can be to remember to copy all three, not just two, on your emails. The complexity of hitting "A"+tab when typing in the "To" column really baffles my brain. The icing on the cake to all of this, is that after my manager realized I was leaving, they had a staff meeting on day-shift to discuss coverage going forward. I get it, I'm not in that picture, no need to bring me in. Not that I've ever been told of staff meetings, even before my two weeks notice, but that's just the salt talking.

On February 13th, my manager sent out a site-wide email detailing the new coverage schedule, and new weekend manager coverage schedule. Guess who didn't get that note? Yep... So for the last week and a half, I've been receiving questions and concerns from my team on night shift in regards to something other managers have been talking about and trying to organize, with zero official word from above. Today is the first day I saw anyone from the management team since last Thursday morning. Not sure what happened yesterday morning, but I think my departure has left a peer upset enough that he's come to now being extremely passive aggressive and just ignores the fact I still work here. In fact, I've told him multiple times over the last week and a half, "I still work here."

I digress.

The issue is tonight I actually had a chance to get some clarity from a peer who sees the normal first shift team, aka, our manager. Lo and behold, the rumors are true. I open my email, and get the slide I'm supposed to present to my team tomorrow night, detailing the coverage change. This is the communication, the only communication, I have received from him since our in-person conversation last week. In essence, every comment, concern, complaint, and miserable bit of what they made me work has been eliminated. Why? Because no one in the day-shift crowd wants to give up their hours. So, in essence, they're rewriting the entire plant production schedule to eliminate what the most difficult, sleep-wrecking part of my job was. The part of me that tunes in to progress is happy--happy they eliminated something terrible. Every other part of me is pissed. Ab-so-lutely livid. It literally took me quitting to finally get change around here. And it wasn't even an "oh man, this is bad, let us change this because it's bad and it's the right thing to do." Instead, it's "I don't want to work what I forced her to work for the last year, so since I myself am not willing to do it, I'm going to make it better to fit my schedule". THAT is the part that pisses me off. THAT is the part that has me sweating in my seat, seeing red, ready to write a nice letter to HR saying I'm not coming in tomorrow. THAT, is a lesson from Poor Leadership 101.

One rule I personally live by, is I would never ask someone to do something I, personally, am not willing to do. The occasion may arise where I am not capable of doing it, either physically or by lack of knowledge, but you can bet I'll be there supporting them every step of the way. It blows my mind that all it took for change to happen was to tell someone else to do it. The lack of empathy. The sheer hypocrisy from those placed in leadership positions... maybe I shouldn't write while I'm this hot, but I'm ready to walk out the door, right now. I've been drowning in questions from my team, because the repercussions of this change will affect an entire shift, an entire crew of people that only had a voice through a manager that clearly gets ignored, and to find out this is their solution. A solution that in the grand scheme, I'm happy is creating change, but that doesn't change the fact it's yet another example of not sharing important details with the people it's going to affect the most.

Now, the part I need a bit of help rationalizing, is I really don't feel like finishing out my two weeks. Not only am I apparently off the distro-list for important things (in reality, I was never on it to begin with), but going through more notes, sure I keep my shift afloat, but I'm so sick and tired of the passive aggressive BS. I'm the youngest manager here. The other two that run the floor have 19 and 20 years of experience with the company. My manager has 10 (trust me, he's made a point of telling me this, multiple times). I have 2.5. You would think we could all act like adults, since I'm the only one still remotely close to my adolescent years, but hey... this is Industrial Manufacturing.

My official resignation stated that I would be here until the 23rd, so the part of me that was raised to honor your word is fighting hard with the side of me that has any scrap of personal pride, left. At this rate, I could just sit it out, get paid for the next three days, and call it a clean cut, but that's just wasting my time and theirs. I don't know... like I said, this is highly fuelled by emotion, and I'm just stewing. I think I'll hit the gym on my lunch break, tonight. Yes, for the first time in months, I'm going to actually take a lunch break. At least, that's what I'm telling myself, right now. 

I guess I just needed to get this off of my chest. When I was first going through Basic, my cadre told us to start a black book. A book of leadership. A book where we list every leader we've ever had, and write traits about them--the good and the bad. The traits we can only hope to emulate, and the ones we pray to never repeat. Reflecting on my time here, on the last 2.5+ years with this company, I've only had one direct manager that I can think of that would get a gold star by his name. One direct manager that really made a solid, positive impact, and even then, with enough time in the company, people change. Don't get me wrong, I've met some great people and wonderful leaders, and some of the best, most supportive folks I've worked with here have been in management and assumed an unofficial mentorship, I just didn't work directly under them. Of the 7 individuals who have, in my time here, been listed in the org chart as my official direct manager (turnover and movement is a very real thing here, and hopefully you have a better understanding of why), only one stands out as a positive role model. Another is a good leader, just their leadership style did not line up with the role they were in. Manufacturing is very much a lead-from-the-front, be on the floor type deal, and their background was very different from that mentality. Still, they supported their people, communicated, and most importantly, tried. 5 of those folks happened over 1 year and 6 months with the company. The last two happened in the last year. While my current manager was transitioning to his role, I reported directly to the site director. My current manager has been my longest standing manager, and quite frankly, I don't see either one of us moving from our current positions within this company any time soon. That works out for me, because after today, I've got three days until I no longer work here.

I'm trying to focus on the bright future ahead, but man is it difficult when the tunnel continuously constricts with the ebb and flow of the BS stream, here.

In the time I had to cool off since starting this, I've been contacted by folks on my team trying to verify when my last day is. They wanted to verify I was working the remainder of the week. When they ask, my immediate response is yes, I'll be here to finish the week off with y'all. So, I have my answer there. No matter how peeved I get, I've got three days left. That's it. And no, I won't waste time, I still have some groundwork to put into place to help my team in the transition when I leave, and after the word I got coming in today, they're going to need it.

I won't go down with the ship, but I won't abandon my people in it, either. I'll do what I can to help them out until my stated time is up. I guess my parents ingrained that bit well enough into me--even it it means a few more days of this nonsense, I can stick it out if in the end I uphold my end of what I said I would do. That's the important part.

So, thanks for making it this far. Thanks for reading, and ultimately, thanks for your support. This trip has been a rough one, but on the bright side, only three days left.