I’m happy to say that my “time off” was short lived. I now work for Service-now.com. The company makes IT Service Management software. This is the software I used as part of the newly reformed Plexus Service Desk team a year and a half ago. My new title is Sr. Solutions Consultant, assisting customers with the discovery of their hardware and software items on their network, and building an effective database to use in their IT processes.
In 23 days I went shaking hands goodbye at Plexus to having an offer from a new company. I owe a lot of thanks to those who helped with job leads and advocates within Service-now who made a strong case for me. I can never repay the debt I owe.
Once I accepted the offer, I had to get some paper work done, book a trip, and drug screening. OK, the trip was booked prior to the drug screening and criminal background check completing, but c’mon!
On June 7, I flew out to company headquarters in San Diego CA (actually Solana Beach) for two weeks of training. (note: no relocation necessary. I get to work from home with periodic trips to the mothership and travel to customer sites as necessary.) I felt pretty good on the first day when we got on a conference call and I was able to contribute some technical knowledge. The second day wasn’t such a high as we dug in to the specific areas where I was to be trained. While my technical knowledge was solid, my customer delivery needed some work – and that’s putting it mildly. Knowing a subject and teaching a subject (with confidence) can be two entirely different things. I was reminded of my high school freshman algebra class where the teacher would walk us through problems. Everything was easy to understand. It made sense. Then when I got home and was all alone with the book full of exercises, frustration set in because they never seemed to work for me. The nice thing about that freshmen algebra class was that I made friends who helped me understand and pass. I feel the same environment to succeed at Service-now.
Everyone at Service-now has been very supportive. Over the past couple years, I got to know several of the employees either through working with them directly or hearing their name. In some cases, I met people only weeks before when I was out here at the Knowledge user conference in April. Those relationships are only growing stronger. I was humbled that several remembered my name (I only wish I could return the favor.)
As my second week progresses, I feel better about my “pitch” and have been getting some hands on experience resolving customer problems. It’s been a long time away from home. I left Appleton on June 3rd to travel to Colorado Springs for an HDI local chapter officer summit. Having been elected as our local chapter President during my unemployment phase, I thought it best to go and learn more about the organization I represent and how to make our chapter more successful. It was a great four days, but it makes this additional two weeks seem very long. I look forward to returning to Appleton on Friday.
In terms of my career, this is not a management position, as the last five years have been. However, I feel I need to first understand the company, employees, products, and opportunities plus prove myself before being given a leadership opportunity. The company structure is pretty flat now, but they are growing rapidly (another reason I desired this company.) I expect opportunities for advancement will present themselves in due time; with them may come a choice and/or requirement to relocate – I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it with periodic conversations with my wife. She’s been so supportive over the years. I am truly blessed.
My advice to those who find themselves in a similar situation:
- Stay positive. It makes a difference. People talk to other people and your attitude factors in to your conversations with those around you.
- Rely on your network. Keep meeting new people and stay in touch with them. They are going to be your biggest asset when the time comes.
- Be prepared. Keep your resume sharp, backup your contacts (offsite, in the cloud, etc). Fortune favors the prepared mind.
In some ways, I’m a little sad that I didn’t have more time off to do more of those odd jobs around the house. On the flip side, I’m happy the severance package is paying at the same time I’m collecting a REAL paycheck. Donna is happy too!
Thank you everyone – I look forward to this next chapter in my life.