For 30 years I've worked in the IT industry, both as salesman and as sales leader. In my last two roles I was sales leader for a major vendor and headed up their sales operation in the AsiaPac region, then sales director to a vendor that wanted to break into new regions, which I enabled them to do, Unfortunately I sold myself out of a job...something I won't go into.
After a year of trying to get an equivalent job, money became a leading necessity, because no matter how much saving you have they disappear very quickly. For the past 3 months I've worked for a recruitment company that specialises in day-by-day temporary work. Something I thought I'd never do.
Over the past few weeks I've worked in a major depot sorting out container lorries and carrying incredibly heavy boxes before sorting them into product types and sizes, then a number of days as a landscape gardener, during which I shovelled over 20 tons of top soil to create a number of borders in an incredible new garden. Over the last two weeks I've acted as a cleaner / handyman at a public school doing whatever I'm asked to do.... clean the showers and loos, shovel coal, clear drains, replace light bulbs, hoover the floors, mend the chairs, sweep the yard, stop that tap from dripping. And I love it!
The people I've been working with are without exception welcoming, understanding and incredibly nice. Even the boys at the school call me SIR! Is it humbling? Yes in a way it is. I used to earn excellent money in the IT sector and hopefully will again soon, but working with people who haven't been forced to work where they do by necessity, but by who they are has been wonderful. Without exception they've accepted me and become friends. Not only that but some of them have bought copies of my book Leap Of Faith. And no, I'm not using this as a base for advertising my book. Quite the opposite.
My experience over the past weeks has convinced me of the value of a "humbling" programme for employees of companies that have high flyers. Under no circumstances should they be allowed to say who they really are, but the need to empathise with people they would normally meet and would benefit them no end. This may sound condescending, but believe me it's not. It's a necessity. I've loved my last few weeks and probably will do for the next few weeks. Nobody has queried who I am or why I'm cleaning out the loos, they take me at face value and I have nothing but respect for them and strangely look forward to going in the next day again to meet them.
A strange blog post, but then that's life!
Blog on, Dudes!