Goods news: According to this year’s performance review, my personality is no longer “too strong.” I’ve either gotten soft or my new manager is constructive.
Last year at this time, I had the distinct pleasure of reporting to a man that hated my guts. Like for real hated me. Three months into my promotion, his only managerial way of checking in had been when he was standing in my office waiting for me to count out his requested petty cash and asking casually “how’s it going?” and then walking out before I answered.
My old CEO, as I’ve described him before, was kind of like trying to catch a greased pig. He was almost always on the road, wasn’t the best communicator and often expected to me to read his mind. I was working hard at doing a good job and still a year later still firmly believe that I did do a very good job.
But as I walked into my review last year– with a supervisor that hadn’t given me more than 2.4 seconds of advice or feedback or assistance ever, he ripped me apart. Told me I was a “work in progress” and thought my “personality was too strong to deal with Hill schedulers,” with the caveat that he was just trying to be honest. I was destroyed. And also furious.
Let me tell you something, those of you who manage people– no one wants to work hard for you when you’re a dick. And there was something about that conversation that literally depleted me. All of my dedication to sticking out my promised time in that position, and dedication to our CEO and the company literally vanished. All I could think about was fuck him, fuck him, fuck him. I promised myself in five years I could call him up and tell him I thought he was a horrible person and started applying for new jobs.
Yesterday, I had my first performance review at my new company. I had some sort of strange PTSD before I walked into my VP’s office and shut the door. I left 45 minutes later without the tiniest urge to cry and positive marks on my review. It was constructive, it was positive, the feedback was useful. Not once was my personalty insulted. It was everything a performance review should be.
I guess the funny thing is– I may have never fully recovered from that terrible performance review last year without my strong personality, so take that former supervisor. And as a result of that terrible review, I got my supervisor switched to someone who was nice to me and that started the chain of events that landed me at my current job. How’s that for silver lining?
And by the way, have you met my mother and her 9 sisters? They’ll tear you apart, pick you back up, give you a hug, clean your house and then make you enchiladas for dinner. I give them full credit for my “strong personalty.” Thank you.