Hindsight might be 20/20, but there are some authentic lessons we can learn from our errors. One of my favorite starters is that sometimes we aren’t the best employees for the job or at least we failed to be the best for the company. I knew a fellow co-worker, who had been someone I looked up to due to his service to our country filling a highly stressful position in the US Army, succumb to personal demons. He found himself “on the other side of the gate” after medicating himself for stress. (Many people noted that he popped a drug test and I say that this was just one small event). He gave me a point of inspiration to reflect on myself and the struggles I created for myself.
During one of the biggest downfalls in my professional existence; I let a series of sour events and bad feelings combine to affect a great paying position. I ended up losing a great job working with great people but even before I shook the hand of my supervising engineers; I was able to reflect on what I had failed to do and what I did wrong. Looking back; my inactions were detrimental to others.
I failed to ask my first foreman for more input into the job. I had also failed to take him up on his suggestion that could have given me a start using some of my abilities in a positive way. He was a just person and he deserved a crew of people that yearned to grow. Although I count on him as a trusted mentor today; I feel as I could have given him more.
When tasked with a job that I was growing to loathe; I failed to ask my own supervisors and foreman for input on how to make it better. Or how to make it “my job”. I was unsure on how to be the best co-worker for my colleagues. I easily could have shifted my frame of reference but I did not go that route. I let things go south.
I had originally got involved with mentor opportunities. I was unable to attend the events and meetings. I did not relay this to senior staff. I also should have been more open to give feedback about the programs shortfalls. I left pertinent people out of the loop and I chose to pull out of the program altogether.
I let my spirits be dashed when several jobs I applied for dried up or were realigned. I had the opportunity to contact other people within the company’s bureaucracy in regard to possible opportunities and internship programs. I chose to be embarrassed. I failed to email, call, and write. I chose to have a weird proverbial taste in my mouth. I squandered a possible opportunity.
As much as I would like to ping the boogeyman known as Human Resources; I can’t this time. My actions had failed others. I didn’t help someone like Human Resources fill an important role. For my inactions; I was not surprised to find myself not working with them anymore. But now; I am aware that I could be doing something differently. This is what I can share with the HR department.