This year marks 15 years of being in the workforce full-time. In that time, I have seen and experienced quite a bit. I’ve had experiences with people who gave me great advice, people I’ve looked up to, people I’ve admired for their tenacity and how they’ve climbed the ladder. I made many friends along the way, and one of them even became my husband. I’ve also had experiences with people who define “uncooperative,” and contribute to poor, toxic, and downright nasty workplace culture. It’s been a mix of both good and bad, and I’ve learned quite a bit about the “real world” of work in the U.S.
It’s taken a while to get to a company where I actually feel people are overall, all genuinely good and well-meaning, though, where everyone for the most part not only has the best intentions, but also assumes you also have the best intentions. That’s huge, especially in the competitive environment that is the technology industry. Sometimes, I catch myself in disbelief when I see how helpful people are at my current company. How is it when I post a request in the marketing or content or product Slack channels that someone not only immediately responds within two hours, but if they don’t know the full answer, they’ll cc someone else who may know, and THAT person not only has the answer, but also supplemental information that I could potentially find handy? People are proactive about joining meetings when and where they could add value. They are eager to hop on a Zoom or phone call to better explain (since so many things get lost easily over text on Slack or email). Sometimes, it really does feel like a utopia working where I do. Why are people so eager to help — all the damn time?! Maybe it’s because of the type of persona that an education tech company like mine tends to attract. People are less bloody and evil. Maybe they are less cut throat and just have bigger hearts. Who knows. All I know is — no where else I have ever worked has been this positive. It only took 15 years to get here. But exactly how positive and helpful people are here is also a reminder to me of all the past trauma I’ve faced and exactly how unhealthy and unproductive my previous work environments were.
I’m grateful to be working where I am, especially in this current economic climate, and at this time when many other tech companies are laying their employees off left and right. Though it is funny to say that this is the most positive work environment I’ve been in — and I’ve been 100 percent remote this entire time.