Saturday, November 14, 2009

Change

All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.

~Anatole France


I'm born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. I moved to Richmond, VA when I was 18 to go to U of Richmond and after graduating, I stayed here for 11 years, working for a CPA firm for 8 years and then moving to a bank that is more known for its credit cards. During my 11 years here, I've met a lot of people and have become friends with a few of them. There were good times and tough times but through it all, one thing I had in common was the fact that I was always surrounded by good people. Despite the fact that I wanted to get out of Richmond (again, I grew up in Tokyo... nuff said), I was starting to get comfortable. It was an easy life. I had friends here. I have a good job in a great company.

And I'm gonna leave all of that behind.

About a month or so ago, I got a call from a recruiter. It was completely out of the blue and I have no idea how they got my number. Some job opportunity for a big insurance company. I wasn't looking but I never turn away job opportunities without at least entertaining the idea so I decided to string the recruiter along. It turns out it is for a director level position (it would be a 2 level promotion for me) in financial reporting... after the phone interview, I got the feeling that despite the fact that they really liked my experience, they were concerned about my lack of experience at the director level. Nonetheless, they invited me to Tampa, FL which is where their operations are located to interview me in person. Now I always said that if you get me an interview, I will get the job. Yeah, I know, I'm cocky. I'm also 100% in the interview to getting the offer ratio so it's not like I can't back it up. But this was a stretch. It would be a two level jump. They know that. I didn't even know if I still wanted the job... as in literally, I went to the interview unsure of what I would do even if I got the offer. Of course the money is better... but that's not what drives me and personally, I don't care about titles and such. I mean they're nice... but I have so much more in my life that I'm proud of that career/work is just a piece of who I am. At the end of the interview, I'm kinda worried that I may have actually nailed it... I mean the reason I was worried was that if I didn't get the job, it's a nonissue. I have nothing to worry about and I just keep going down the red carpet that my bank has laid out for me. But if I get the job, I have to make a decision.

Well, sure enough, by the following week, I get a verbal offer. I nailed it. What followed was probably the most stressful 2 days that I've had in a long time. As much as I act like nothing in the world scares me, I can only do that because I'm surrounded by my friends. It's easy to act tough when you know that you have friends that have your back. But this was a great opportunity... and a good chance for me to leave Richmond.

I talked to my boss about it the very next day. He then asked if I was comfortable talking to the CFO of our business segment so I said yes. So I talked to the CFO as well. This is where I'm convinced that I work for great people in a great company. They were very supportive... and appreciative of the fact that I was open with them about it. They essentially gave me advice on things to think about and they also mentioned that "as much as we would hate to lose you as an organization, opportunities like this don't come often, and we certainly cannot blame you for going after it." So, that weekend, I thought about all the pros and cons of staying vs leaving. Then, I realized that there were no cons for either one... I mean the cons were essentially missing out on the pros of each option. But there was nothing bad about it. So, I decided to take the job. My last day at my current company is next Friday. I'll be starting the new job in Tampa around mid December, after the blogger weekend.

Note: I will be unemployed during the blogger weekend so if you want to hook me up with drinks, I will graciously accept... I'm just sayin...

This decision, despite seemingly easy on paper, was not an easy decision for me. And the quote in the beginning was very fitting. There will be tons of things I will leave behind. As I started telling everyone at my current company, and they all started saying their goodbyes and giving me advice, etc, I realized that even these people that I work with or that I play basketball with will be missed. And these aren't even my friends! Of course, I'm sure I can find something similar down in Tampa. But, hence, the quote was so applicable. It's gonna be really hard to say goodbye to my friends. Of course, I can come visit or they can come visit but it will still be tough.

Having said all that, I would be lying if I said that I'm not excited. I am. Actually, I'm stoked. I'm definitely nervous and a little sad but I am mostly psyched for a new opportunity, new location, and a new life. I will enjoy the remaining time with old and new friends that I've made here in Richmond for in a month, I'll be starting all over again. But I am ready. And for that, I am psyched!

8 comments:

Fuel55 said...

Snowbird time!

lj said...

omg you're leaving richmond?! are you nuts?

BWoP said...

Wow. Congrats!

kurokitty said...

Congrats! Plus, that area is triathlon heaven, so it's a perfect match...

pokerpeaker said...

Kuro beat me to it. I've got two friends who just completed an Ironman down there last weekend. Something for you to work for!

Florida should be an outdoors haven. Awesome job and good luck.

SirFWALGMan said...

You saying your 100% at interviews is like me saying I am 100% at lovin' women.. probably true, but not a whole lot of empirical data considering you said you worked 11yrs and 8yrs at jobs. heh. Anyways Congratz! Good luck and all that shit. Sounds like a good opportunity.

Trebek said...

I bet this blog will be updated alot more frequently.

Congrats.

jamyhawk said...

Fantastic news! Don't know what the poker clubs are like in Tampa, but I'm sure you'll find them.