I’ve been on a consulting assignment for 18 months in Memphis, and it ends on Friday of this week. It’s been an interesting project, and the city has been interesting as well, but I’m really glad to be going home.
In a weird way, my leaving is like that of countless numbers of people who give their notice because they’ve found a new job, or like someone who knew their position was being eliminated and was given a date, and that date has come. You’re never quite sure what to do as things wind down, as some of the work you’ve been doing is being shifted elsewhere.
When you’re doing speaking engagements, or if you’re an entertainer, you always want to go out with a bang. Most of the time it’s because you want to keep people talking about you when you’re gone, and you’re hoping that maybe someone will buy your stuff in the back of the room or over the course of years, and maybe even tell someone else about you and get more fans along the way.
When you’re working in some way… well, that doesn’t happen all that often. As a matter of fact, in all the years I’ve been a consultant where I’ve gone into a place for at least 3 months or so, I’ve only had the opportunity to leave with a bang once, and that was at one hospital where I battled upper management for a month trying to do the right thing and, that last week, they saw the biggest cash week in their history, proving that I was right all the time.
Every other time I’ve left with a whimper, and sometimes early on the last day because, well, I just wasn’t needed anymore. That same thing will happen this Friday as my plane leaves the city around 11:35 in the morning so I won’t even be putting in a full day.
I have to admit that almost every time I’ve left a place, I’ve felt a little bit incomplete, as though I had more to do and more to give. Scratch that; I’ve always felt that way until this time around. This time, I’ve done everything I can possibly do, and I’m only in mop-up mode because they don’t need my skills going forward, based on what I do. They’re moving to a new computer system that I have no education on, and the system I’ve been using is being phased out. It’s a good time to be heading home.
Still, it’s an odd feeling, leaving something I’ve been doing for a long time. Everyone that changes jobs voluntarily goes through the same thing. We all hope to go out with a bang, on top of the world, with people singing our praises. Instead, if we’re lucky, we leave without anyone hating us, with people happy for what we’ve given, and maybe, just maybe, one or two people will remember us and bring our name up in a positive light some day in the future.
Or am I the only one who’s ever thought of something like this? Let me know; meanwhile, I’m looking forward to going home, having a long rest, and tackling the next adventure head on, whatever it may be.