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When meaning and purpose aren't enough

Updated: Sep 27, 2023

I loved what I did. The clients and participants that shared their challenges and aspirations with me enriched my life as we worked together to fix issues and achieve goals. I did this every day, morning to night (and sometimes later). The team I was a part of was cohesive, caring and upbeat. I was paid to be there and to make a difference in the lives of my clients and, I loved it. People would ask me where I got my energy or enthusiasm from and I replied "I do what I love."

And yet I resigned.

Despite the meaning and purpose within my role, a combination of absent and or poor leadership, confused communication and fixation on profit over people/client, as well as the lack of recognition for the team I am on and the challenges they have faced, have driven me away.

Not everything that can be counted matters and not everything that matters can be counted.

When I was asked "why" these are the things I cited.

  1. No leadership (we had a manager but not a leader) for 10 months

  2. Poor management

    1. Late for too many calls

    2. Too many preventable last minute requests

    3. Too few conversations about the person

    4. Too many conversations about the "number"

    5. Too many discussions to benefit the manager and not the employee

  3. A lack of recognition (see #1 above)

  4. No bonuses (see #1 above)

  5. Under staffed for most of the year (see #1 and #2 above)

  6. Pulse survey results seemingly overlooked or ignored

  7. Unreachable targets (see #1, #2 and #5 above)

  8. Low balling salary for open roles (see#5 above) in a drive to achieve profit targets

When I announced my decision to resign I had more messages and more meetings with leaders about my role, my contribution and my place in the organization than in all of the previous year. Read that again. More than in all of the previous year.

I still miss the people, the meaning and the purpose. But it wasn't enough.

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