Just Call Me Mr Bubble

I’m a news hound. Mostly online stuff but I also watch The News Hour on PBS. The other night I was watching and they went from one bad story to another about the world financial situation. And I changed the channel. I couldn’t take any more. After thinking about it, it occurred to me that I must be feeling guilty. Because it is all my fault.

Thirteen years ago, I left my underpaid state job, took a pay cut and went to work in an entry level job for a software company (no, not that one). Within a few years, I was leading a team and had tripled my meager salary. We even were able to buy a house (well, the bank let us buy it). The company started having financial problems, and several layoffs in I was out on the street with thousands of other tech industry workers who lost their jobs when the tech bubble burst.

From the tech world I moved to the more stable financial services world. They matched my salary but it was still a pay cut because I was not eligible for the same bonus amounts. I was fine with that. I built a team, defined a direction, got re-orged around several times and survived several layoffs. Then the company started having serious financial problems and I was out on the street with thousands of other financial industry workers who lost their jobs when the financial services bubble burst.

So why do I feel guilty? Because this must be my fault. I was in my tech job a little over six years and the bubble burst, then in my financial services job a little over six years and the bubble burst, imploded and threw up on my shoes. There’s a pattern, right? The management in both industries repeatedly said they failed because of market conditions – it wasn’t their fault. They couldn’t possibly be responsible for driving their companies and the economy into the ground, right? It must be market conditions like they say. What if I’m a market condition? It all adds up. This is all my fault.

So to my next employer – mark your calendar to lay me off before 6 years have past – or it will be your fault next time.

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