Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Fear and Self Loathing

So, I have to be honest.

I am a little bit [completely] terrified that I am going to fail at my new job.

My current position is - as they say - in my wheelhouse.  It fits perfectly with my skill set.  I could do it in my sleep.

My new position requires knowledge and skills that are a stretch for me.

But everyone has faith in me.  One of the most brilliant people I have ever known (owner of our company) has chosen me to run this company for him.  I like to joke that he possibly had a stroke on the day he made this decision.  But he does know me.  For almost 9 years, we worked together, not quite side by side.  He knows how I say the wrong thing, how I get fixated, how I am relentless when I think someone is not carrying their weight, how I guesstimate, how I have zero attention to detail.  He knows me.  I think.

My new position requires me to have a new boss.

A new boss who I have been friends with for just about as long as I've been with this company (going on 11 years).  A new boss who I love drinking and talking with.  But who can be ... impatient with my whole saying the wrong thing at the wrong time (he told me a few months ago - and I quote - You don't ALWAYS say the wrong thing. Which he meant and I took as reassurance.  But he may not like my direct style.  He is the king of manipulation.  Which I find disingenuious so I avoid it.  Oh, and did I mention I'm following him? Taking his position? in which he has excelled for that past 5 years.  Not really my favorite upward mobility strategy.  I personally prefer to follow a failure.

My new position requires me to supervise the guy who didn't get this job.

My new partner, or the guy who should be my partner, is the guy who was also up for this job.  And I get to supervise him.  And although I have way more leadership, project management, institutional knowledge, and all around "success" experience and am a more dynamic [wo]man of the people, he totally has more product and industry knowledge than me.  And he's all aloof all the time which makes him appear more mature, but the people ran a smear campaign to keep him from getting the job.  But somehow I always feel inferior with him.  Lately, I've been ignoring him because that somehow makes me be on equal footing with him aloof-ness-wise but I hate playing games.  And I hate the way I feel around him.  So, there's that.  Its like he's always in control of the conversation.  Where's the subservience people?!?!

But its not all bad.  I have known these people for years, dreamed of being a part of their team, and never dreamed I would be their leader.  All the people smearing my competition were vocally campaigning for me.  And have been so supportive already and on an ongoing basis leading up to this move.  I get to be closer to my family in Iowa than I have been since 1995.  Yes, 1995.  Almost 20 years!  My boys will know their cousins and their grandparents and great-grandparents.  Its going to be so stinking good for our family.

And I get to be the boss.  And run my own business.  With someone else's money.  And make it my own.  Our own, with the people who I know are industry leaders.  Its an amazing opportunity.  And nothing worth having ever came easy, right?

I just needed to share with you all how insecure I am about the move, when I actually think about it.  That its out of my league, that I may have Peter-principled myself.  That my ambition may be my achilles heel.  That I may have peaked at 35.  That my friend, who will now be my boss, won't like me anymore when I don't measure up to the way he did this same job.  Even though I know in my heart I will do better in the end, and my means will justify that end.  I mean, I won't do it the same way.  And he may not like that.

Okay.  Enough of that.  Just had to get it out there.  My DH believes in me so solidly, he can't relate.  And there really is no one else I can reveal this weakness to right now.  No one who understands, anyway - they just give me platitudes of You'll get there!  You're crazy!  You were meant for this! Etc. Etc. ETc..  Its a lonely spot to be in.  Thanks for letting me share this weakness here.  Its cathartic.

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