Saturday, May 9, 2015

Why I Quit My Job

A few days ago I've submitted my resignation letter. I'm a research team leader in a big, international corporate organization. I had the opportunity to fly abroad several times, present our work at conferences and to customers, manage 8 skilled researchers. A good job according to many parameters, definitely much better than the average 27 year old can expect - right?

Why did I quit then?

I'm leaving to work on my own projects for a few months, and then work at a company with a single-digit number of employees - whether it's my own company or someone else's (depends on how I'll feel about my projects). Leaving a good and stable place - and plunging into the risky unknown.
As with many decisions in life, there are emotional reasons and rational reasons. Since feelings often control us more than they should - I made a conscious effort to formulate the logical motivations and make sure they made some sense before moving forward with my decision.

I believe life is measured in experiences, not minutes.

Experiences mold us, shape our personality, give us knowledge and resilience to withstand future challenges and make better decisions. I think time should be "traded in" for a variety of experiences, knowledge, emotions and skills in a cost-efficient manner. This idea can be thought of as a rough guideline to living a "life well spent" - each day bringing something new.
Experiences are not just "stuff that happens" - they are new, meaningful, non-trivial happenings, challenges that you've faced, surprising pieces of information you've discovered, interesting people you've met.
The amount of true, unique and meaningful experiences in a certain environment/professional domain naturally rises in a manner similar to a logarithm:

The amount of new things you discover during the first day on a job is roughly equal to the amount you discover during the rest of the week, and to the amount you get during the first month or 2 after the first week - etc.
This model is very rough of course - for example the quality of experiences rises with time (mostly during the adaptation period): finding out how to get lunch is new (and vital) information but hardly an experience, while presenting to senior management is clearly an important experience but has to be earned first.

I spent several years in a huge organization, and now ~1.5 years in a big corporation - I believe it's time to have a taste of something completely different. I'll drastically change the organization size, style and mentality - as well as the professional domain (putting infosec on hold) and position (not managing people - at least at first).
It's time to reset my logarithm curve - get a batch of fresh new challenges and experiences - whatever they will be.

Until next time, may you trade in your days wisely.


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1 comment:

  1. Very interesting article. I liked your point of view about the subject.