12/05/2017

How It Goes From Here


Hi, it's me. So, let me give you a quick update: your homegirl is no longer a jobless couch potato. Well, okay I still am (a cough potato) but slightly better now that I am no longer unemployed. It's also the reason why I haven't been blogging as much as before but don't worry, I'm trying to figure out how to balance both duties. For the meantime, let me talk about the job I landed on.

I don't remember the exact date of my interview but it was a meet up at Coffee Bean sometime around noon. I remember fidgeting out of anxiety even with the boyfriend there to accompany me. My mind was occupied with a lot of negative what-ifs; what if I couldn't nail it? What if I acted too blunt and straightforward it came out rude and condescending? If you are a fellow INTJ, you'd understand how we have these "weird" ways of analyzing things, the world and our surrounding and more often than not, this gives other people the permission to misinterpret us as snobs. Most companies, or at least the ones in Indonesia, also find these traits less appealing and would rather have someone who is not only promising in terms of hard skills but is also very social. While the hard skill criteria does not make me squirm too much, the socially active extroverted part does.

Fast forward to the interview, it wasn't as stressful as I thought. The people I met were the company director-slash-owner and his second in command who I assume is not only the company's lead developer but is also the project manager. Long story short, what first felt like a nervous wreck turned into a chatty and welcoming interview that gave me hope.

I got a call when I was helping my mother out on grocery shopping. The phone call was more than just a call — it was an invitation to join the team. It only took me less than five days to give my answer and excitement for the team. It wasn't until May 8th did I start working in this company as the one and only ux designer. Uh huh, you read that right: I'm the company's only designer.

Maybe this sounds stupid, maybe I decided too fast. But I did and I'm quite positive that I'm glad I did. The company is a startup web and mobile development agency with a small but very close knit members of eight. With me joining the team, it has since then turned into a 9-members thing.

My first week went on pretty fine. The environment is very, how do I say it, home-like. It feels more like a group work session as opposed to working in a company. There is none of those intense atmosphere you usually find in big corporates. There is nothing that makes me feel like an office slave. As long as one is responsible enough to complete his or her work, office hour does not really matter — which is such a blessing for someone who is not a morning person like me. We also have two dogs here, a golden retriever named Kimchi and a hyperactive toy poddle named Dompy (who enjoys barking and jumping at me so I can pat him...or her?)

I think one of the most asked questions I received from everyone else (especially adults and baby boomers who think passion is a lot less important than money) is why I chose to work in a startup instead of a polished corporate located in a very grand office tour that stands tall like a skyscraper. It's simple, really. I don't want to be a corporate slave. I want to be respected and appreciated for who I am and what I do. I want my work and effort to pay, I want to create and design things without being caged. I'm a free spirit who wants to build my profession out of passion, not out of written contracts and paychecks.

I know that paychecks are important. Money is what makes the world go round. I get it. But to work behind the cold desk or in a cubicle, surrounded by authorities and higher ups whose names I probably won't remember and people who look at me as nothing but a tool to achieve something for the company — sign me out of there. I don't want to wake up in the morning only to groan and feel dreadful about going to work or having to stay in such environment for hours. While I know the ideal, perfect workplace does not exist (or even if it does, the chances are very slim), it's nice to know that you can work in a place where you can grow your passion and be appreciated.

Of course, my workplace is far from perfect. Just because it fits my cup of tea doesn't mean it's completely flawless. I still have my fair share of anxiety, my constant worry about whether or not I did a good job to fulfill the criteria. I am not the most confident crayon in the box, you know. It still gives me jitters from time to time. I also still have difficulty socializing and communicating with my co-workers but it's nice to know that they do not pressure me to talk more.

Fingers crossed x

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