I’ve started looking for a new job. No, no, no, I haven’t been fired and I didn’t quit. But I’m already more than halfway through my Indonesian adventure and the end is in sight, so it’s definitely time to start trying to secure my next gig.
To be perfectly honest, I’m so over working for people. This is not really because of my experiences here, although I can’t say that those have helped; it’s also because of my corporate experience. I think the real me has busted out of the career expectation box I used to live in and now it’s difficult to contain myself fully to live by someone else’s rules, like working from 9 to 5, for example (or to 7 or 8 or midnight). But most importantly, I dislike someone else having control of a major area of my life.
Having said all of that, I’m not exactly in a position to not work for people right now. I’m a single woman who isn’t a natural entrepreneur and has no idea what I would start a business in anyway. So until that time comes when I figure out how to work for myself and still prosper, I need to work for people. Hence my job search.
I believe that at this time in my life, my work is abroad, that is, not in Jamaica or the Caribbean (too much like Jamaica – nothing new to see and do). I do have a couple of ideas about where I want to work next but even so, I’m not really hard-and-fast about that; in fact, I’m pretty flexible in that regard. I also believe that at this time in my life, my work is in service to others. Therefore, I tend to look towards NGOs and development organisations for my next job opportunity.
Now, people, I have a decade and a half of solid corporate experience. I’ve managed people, projects, processes and budgets. I’ve run large, mission-critical divisions. I’ve made things work better. I’ve made customers happier by doing these things. And just about anyone who I’ve worked with can attest to the fact that I’ve done it all with excellence. You would think that any organisation would want to snap me up fast. Shockingly (for me, maybe not for you), no, they do not. I have learned through bitter experience that the international development community is a pretty closed one; corporate experience, no matter how much and no matter to what performance standard or promotion level, basically means nothing to them. Still, I keep applying because all I need is one shot. Meanwhile, my TEFL certification also opens up another avenue for me to explore.
I’m quite flexible about what type of work I want to do; I’m pretty much willing to fit in wherever I can help or wherever I’m given a good opportunity. To be honest, my main non-negotiable criterion in my next engagement is about basic living conditions because I cannot tek anadda one like dis! No, sah! I think that when it comes to living situation, I’ve proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that I can put up with a lot, but that doesn’t mean that I’m willing to do it again any time soon.
That’s it. That’s all I want: work outside of the Caribbean that’s in service to others and that provides a living situation that’s clean and roach-free. Does that sound like too much to ask for? To me, it seems pretty basic and simple but, boy, getting basic and simple is a lot of work. On the days that I dedicate to job hunting, I spend literally hours at it. So far, nothing.
However, I do not despair because I know that God wants me out here; I absolutely know that for sure, without question. Therefore, I need to keep testing doors and trust that He’ll cause the right one to open for me at the right time. This is called faith and it’s not an easy thing to practice because it’s antithesis, anxiety, is always lurking in a dark corner, ready to jump out and attack my mind. Of course, it’s easy for me to say I have faith but the time has come for me to show that I do.
So, yes, my search can be frustrating and sometimes it can be a little disheartening – I mean, I think I’m brilliant but clearly a lot of potential employers don’t see it. But! Eventually, someone will. And then my search will be over and I will be on my way to my next God-given assignment.