What a month… it’s been awhile and I just had a life changing event again so I’m back to reflection of it. Its the end of March and about this time last year I started to look seriously for a replacement position from the one I left in Santa Monica. In May of last year I accepted a sales position at a very large German corporate organization. I understood the perception of corporate stereotypes and half knew this coming into the position expecting some of them, however, I knew I’d pick up some new skills from ze Germans. I’ll be the first to say, my own hype didn’t live up to the reality.
I was very excited at first – big company – big name – lots or responsibility – big title, but…. smaller than expected package, and no flexibility. However, I was expecting to fair better than I would have staying in CA so I kept with it. I was introduced to managers and executives that had been at this company for over 20 years. This tenure is completely new to a kid from silicon valley where after 6 years typical employees already have 4 positions and 2 careers under their resume header and you may even be the “senior” employee in your group/division/branch of the company after several years. I had mixed hopes for mobility at this company just with the prospects of meeting a few of the other guys on the team. All are capable and talented in their own way, however, I already can’t see myself here for that long of a term.
I have to say the regional director and his counter part are some very smart individuals; very well capable of leading an enterprise team and I’d work for them selectively again, however, the flaw came in hiring a middle manager for myself and 2 others. Initially he impressed me with his ability to quickly digest a situation and regurgitate it back out to whom every he was speaking to in the most simplistic form. However, his failing came in dealing with people (especially clients) and this is huge for a sales person. I can’t see where this guy gets the skills to run an enterprise team. After 5 months, the manager still doesn’t get the simpilist aspects of wireless or the difference between IDS and IPS. But more so, the rub is he’s not of use for me to help navigate the processes of the company, can’t be a go to guy to fight for terms, and has been reduced to a roadblock to get things done rather than a motivator within the group. The only time I would interface with him, was the mandatory daily check-ins in the morning, the daily call reports, the activity reporting, some hr crap and the like. I serious believe his need for micromanagement had me spending more time generating activity reports than developing revenue generating conversations with customers… what a loss of motivation, not to mention waste of my own time to get a pay check.
So I’m ecstatic to say I am finished now with the German company, and they are finished with me. I couldn’t be happier; in fact both my friends and family have noticed significant changes in my attitude (positively) and personal interactions with people… um also positive. When I got the opportunity to leave the company I had already prepared myself to find my new gig… and within weeks I signed the contract for what I think will be totally self motivating (and money making) position here in New York. More to come when everything is settled…