Wednesday, May 6, 2009

When your best isn't enough

Today I have an excuse to finally start the blog I set up months ago. Yesterday, I was laid off from Microsoft. Okay, okay, so it's not the most positive place to start, but stick with me. :) When I was first reorg'd just over a year ago, I wasn't convinced that the new org and its charter was going to be exciting, but actually it was, and still is. I had some fun and Iwas blessed enough to continue to meet and work with some smart and interesting people. However, it didn't take long to realize that I was "legacy". I had experiences, knowledge, contributions, and more weren't necessarily recognized or appreciated by the new powers that be. I just wasn't going to be part of the long-term future of the org. My best work wasn't enough.

Over time, I supported some great new businesses, and saw first hand how new marketing practices were valued, showed results, and were quite fun to work on. I found a new career path and I grabbed it. Even though I became a convert and drank from the firehouse to learn as much as I could, it wasn't enough. Again, my past work was what the powers that be seemed to remember most and considered to be "traditional" or "old marketing" and not on the bleeding edge. My best work combined with my on-the-job education, wasn't enough.

Even though my confidence was rocked (that's fodder for another blog post, right there), every move I made questioned, I kept going...I asked questions, took classes, attended a conference, met with experts, read, gained as much knowledge as I could. I embraced the changes as an opportunity, but again, my best efforts weren't enough.

I met with someone today who helped me to realize what I inherently knew and reinforced what so many colleagues have said...I am good enough, I'm start enough, and gosh darnit...sorry, channeling Stuart Smalley. Seriously, though, my background is great, I am good at what I do, and I'd be a valuable member of any company and team I'm a part of. I have foundational marketing experiences and I'm learning new marketing strategies and tactics every day and seeking out opportunities to put them into action. So, here I am opportunity...I'm looking for you.

Like so many things, I take this entire experience all in stride. It is what it is. What else am I going to do? What else SHOULD I do? Kick, scream, cry, laugh, yell, shake a fist at the cruel cruel world? I could do all that--I have laughed. I did cry and even now fighting back a little lump in my throat. But, out comes my inner cheerleader and the stupid pom-poms and "READY!?, OK! P-E-R-S-P-E-C-T-I-V-E!" I work hard to keep things in perspective--remain "cool as a cucumber" as some dear friends have said of me :). In the grand scheme of things, this is nothing. I've loved and I've lost and yes, it stinks that I need to look for a new job in a tough economy; yes, this puts a massive strain on our already strained family budget. The list could go on, but really, I have my husband and my kids, my intimate and extended circle of friends, family, and colleagues that are looking out for me, everyone's healthy, so I have everything. I could be living in a van down by the river and as long as I had my peeps, we'd be just fine...everything will be okay.

Geesh, that's three SNL references in what 200 words or less. :) See? I'm still laughing.

Like so many experiences in life, this is an opportunity for something new. So onward and upward. Just about every single person I've worked with in the last 14 years who has been laid off has landed and in a far, far better place. Why would it possibly be any different for me and the other 1199 people that were laid off from Microsoft's Puget Sound campuses?

To be completely and totally cliche, when one door closes, another one opens. Granted, the hallways are a bitch. The question is how will you make your way through that hallway and open one of those doors? And what big, best, awesome, miraculous things will you do when you make it through...because you and I WILL make it through, NO. MATTER. WHAT.


  1. Something great is ahead! You are an awesome person, and I believe you are destined for greater things!

  2. Your talent and experience will take you far. The forward thinking companies are the ones that continue to market through the bad times so that the customers know where they want to spend when the times get better.

    And don't forget all the old marketing stuff. We recently handled securty for a launch based solely on buzz/viral/tweets/FB, whatever. My teams at the locations vastly outnumbered the customers.