My buddies are all highly successful people. Mergers & acquisitions are a part of their regular vocabulary and they are well skilled in the art of corporate speak.
They are good guys, great friends, and have been a valuable sounding board for me on many occasions. They are the very model of professional success.
I must say though, that I amazed by how often they change jobs. Truly, it seems that every time I talk to them they have a new title. new job, or even a new company. With each new opportunity comes a bump in salary, better benefits, and “unlimited growth potential.” Yep, the sky’s the limit... That is, until the phone rings again.
I am amazed how often they are contacted by recruiters who found them on LinkedIn or some other such site. They are sought after because of their experience, their skills and what they "bring to the table.”
It all seems a bit icky to me, this constant pursuit of something better. It's like Tinder for jobs. It's hard for me to understand because in my seventeen years on the podium, the only people who ever sought me out were people I was trying to get away from!
To be honest, part of me is a little envious. Their world seems so exotic and interesting. While they attend corporate events in five star hotels, dining in fine restaurants located by the ocean, I am staying at the Hampton Inn, next to the freeway, eating a Subway sandwich.
Yes, in some respects, they have what I want. They are the “it” people and sit at the corporate "cool table." They are at the top of their game and are highly sought after.
So if they have it so good, why do they hate their jobs so much?
As I write this, I am wearing a tee shirt and jeans. I am unshaven, and not for a cause. I am unshaven because I didn’t want to shave. My calendar this month does not contain a single conference call and I have not sent or received anything that contains the word “memorandum” or “360 review” well... EVER.
I have work to do, but it is work I created and in a field I choose to be in.
True, I don’t have an expense account but, then again, eating with my family does not require one. I don’t have a car allowance because I don’t drive anywhere that I don’t want to. I don't have car service to the airport, but I don't have to travel unless I choose to. And yes, while my buddies are by the ocean, they are likely stuck in a conference room with cranky adults, while I will work in a concert hall crafting a musical phrases with some really nice kids.
It occurs to me that maybe the reason my buddies are always changing titles, jobs and companies is because they don’t like the ones they have. And conversely, maybe I should stop chasing what they want and appreciate what I already have... HAPPINESS.
Perhaps it's time for me to understand that my worst day on the podium is better than their best day in an office and that while they are LinkedIn, I would much rather be LinkedOut!
Enjoy making music today.