Stockholm Syndrome

Today I had brunch with a friend who works for a former employer. I was in the same team, reporting to the same clueless manager.

Since leaving, I’ve tried to understand (with the perspective of some distance) how the job went sideways so quickly, why the company allows the manager to continue burning money, and why my ex-colleagues put up with all of it.

The last question is the most vexing. These are good people who could get jobs anywhere. Hot tech economy, hot local economy, great skills… All of them except one have prior work experience so they know the delta between the team and the real world. I had conversations before I left in which the situation’s shortcomings were tacitly acknowledged.

Why do people stay when there are better experiences to be had? I don’t get it. YOLO, folks.

  1. Brian Wisti said:

    Fear of making a wrong decision can be a big part of it. Went for a front-end contract that *sounded* wonderful: great pay working on fresh tech (Ember.js in that case). Started going pear-shaped almost immediately, starting from the two weeks I was expected to spend in Calgary. You’d think I would remember them mentioning that during the interview process, but nothing comes to mind. They weren’t *bad* employers, but everything after that was just out of sync. Contract ended short, and I ended up taking my current job. Better than most in many ways. but pays less than I was making before I made the decision to take a risk. Been with my current employer almost three years now.

    Pain makes people cautious. Fear of pain makes people stupidly cautious.

    • John said:

      Wise words. Yet staying put is also a decision! And can be a wrong one.

      “Pear-shaped.” Heh. Love that imagery.

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