Behind enemy lines

My psychology teacher told us a story about how every single time that he had left an educational institution it had closed. He then went on to say, if I stop teaching here, watch out it might be closed. I am not sure why that story stuck with me, but I still remember it until this day. He was a very good teacher and used several psychology principles while teaching. What brings this story to my mind is how every single time I leave a job it seems that I leave teammates behind enemy lines.

The must recent one is one of the most painful exits. I left my last job with more than just a sour taste in my mouth. I left with the knowledge that serving the customer was not one of their goals. The projects has been so mismanaged that I wonder how they were going to work things out. When a project runs out of money and there is nothing to be delivered but smoke and mirrors…

I had seen a migration from a company before, but I did not find out about this migration until I was out of there. The latest person to leave was one of the people that pushed me over the edge into the I cannot work with this people anymore. Not only did this person help run through the budget, they also cultivated a personal relationship with the client at the expense of how the company looked. I witnessed first hand how trashing the company made this person look good, but the reality was that it was only to hide incompetence.

Now I have a couple of friends stuck behind enemy lines. They truly thought that the company could pick up the pieces of the project and move forward, I know better. Management is clueless about how serious the problem is, and even though I tried to voice my point of view, my concerns were dismissed. I also did not go as far as to say that the person leaving now had truly damaged the image of the company in the clients eyes. hindsight is always 20/20 and even thought I did get out of Michigan thanks to these people, I am not sure if given the chance I would have done it all over again. I am left with the question of should I say something? Should I share my ideas and my plan to recovery? Should I care since I have friends behind enemy lines?

Past experience tells me that once you leave a company, you become a scapegoat for all the things that are not going quite right. Credibility is then gone and what you say has little or no value. I just wish there was something I could do to help, but I have a new job now that is a lot more deserving of my time.

5 comments on “Behind enemy lines

  1. “[…] but I have a new job now that is a lot more deserving of my time.”

    It is hard not to look back when there are people left behind, and who are dealing with the same crap you had to deal, 10 times worse. But there is nothing you can do, except for encouraging them and wish the best. Sometimes it isn’t even wise to talk crap about your former employer. After all, nobody’s going to fight your battles for you.

    Aren’t you just glad that you saw the place for what it really was before things got messier and you got yourself out of there?

  2. I am glad that I saw the place for what it really was eventually, even though I should have seen it sooner, but that is another post. This is not the first time that his has happened to me, and it just seems to be difficult for me to leave the other people behind without even an attempt at something… you are right though, no one would probably do it for me… I guess I still feel in debt to my one manager that told me to jump ship from a company when he found out they were in the process of clossing the office in the coming months.

  3. I would say to let it go b/c then you’re putting yourself at risk to either be the scapegoat or then constantly be used as a free resource.

  4. I think you become a scapegoat when you leave a company no matter how you left it. I left my last job on pretty good terms with everyone and I started hearing complaints about how this or that program was written within a few weeks of me leaving. I suppose it is just easier for people to blame someone than it is for them to have to figure out how you did something.

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