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Other How I made half a million since the last time I posted.

Discussion in 'General' started by Solidus, 18 Aug 2020.

  1. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Hey all,

    No, not a troll. I just wanted to share a bit of a crazy story for anyone that basically remembers me from when I use to post here a while ago - I'm betting Nexxo is still about?

    I haven't posted in a while and when I last did properly with any meaningful interest in the forums, it was a long time ago in this thread here about how I was trying to start an online business as a side hustle: https://forums.bit-tech.net/index.p...e-want-to-be-a-part-of-it-pics-inside.266497/

    That one failed hard (I don't own that website anymore), so did the two others that followed it but my fourth attempt, after being about £3k down due to experimenting and testing worked really well and made me about £110k per year (not including my day job salary too).

    That business ended having netted about £450-500k profit after a bigger competitor muscled into my business but at that point, I was quite happy with it ending as things got pretty crazy and I couldn't cope.

    I'm not rich (far from it) and still work a day-job but this really opened up opportunities and friendships you wouldn't dream and it really opened my eyes on this 'entrepreneur' mindset and what it takes.

    Life became much more comfortable due to this although its not a massive amount of money by other standards.

    I wanted to come back and just share the story of how it all happened if anyone would be interested at all?

    It's a quite crazy, longwinded and at times unbelievable but all completely true. I think it could be quite inspirational on what's possible if you put your mind to it so thought I'd come back and at least maybe report what happened since that thread was posted.

    So two questions:

    1) Do you want to hear it?

    And if so -

    2) why/what insight do you hope to gain?

    What say ye?

    -Solidus
     
    Last edited: 22 Sep 2020
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  2. adidan

    adidan Guesswork is still work

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    Hello stranger.

    Why the hell not?!?

    Insight? Hm, hell I just like stories of things working out for people especially if it's not been smooth sailing.

    I like perseverance stories - so long as they're not Gloaty McGloatface stories :happy:
     
  3. TheStockBroker

    TheStockBroker Well-Known Member

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    Yes please, I do like a good success story - Found the the news about the Gymshark kid this week very interesting!
     
  4. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Appreciate the interest - I'll release it in chapters as there is simply so much to say and I think hopefully you find the whole thing interesting that way if its a story at least.

    Chapter 1 will come tonight.

    No, it's not to gloat and honestly im not really that rich from it but its really helped massively in a number of ways. I still work a dayjob which is about average UK wage but it's just made life a lot more easier which I'll talk about.

    Stay tuned tonight :)
     
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  5. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Definitely!
    From my perspective, the most interesting part is likely to be the business side of the endeavour: tax handling, advertising sales, and (I'm assuming, here) the final sale of the business as a going concern. Though I'm going to be interested in the whole thing, to be honest - and congratulations on what sounds like a stellar success!
     
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  6. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 1: The past defines the future.

    So I worked in a public sector job, I was lucky to work in the role I did as I never went university and this is something I felt really held me back however I landed a really good job in public protection in the midlands. I was 22 and had somehow beaten hundreds of university graduates who had applied for this role.

    It's a strange story how that happened but it really becomes relevant later and I think shaped my success.

    Before this role, I was at a point in my life, you might call lost. I suffered depression from around 17 to 21.

    My parents had gone through a really messy separation and it really messed with my head. My father was what you would call a complete selfish prick. My mum effectively raised me and my brother alone and growing up in a dysfunctional family with an abusive father, you can't help but look at other people who have normal families and feel envious - why isn't my family like that I would wonder? It really gets you down thinking you're different when as a kid all you want to do is feel like you're the same. No one else seemed to have the problems I faced or the money issues we did. When you understand a snippet of my upbringing it becomes easier to understand my mental health issues.

    My family grew up quite poor so we knew what it was like to have nothing; literally at the age of 2 (my brother was about 4), we came to this country with just a suitcase with my parents in the 1980s. We couldn't afford anything and lived at my uncles house for about 3-5 months while my parents would save up to try to get a place of their own. It's not nice imposing on someone else's home and it was really obvious we weren't welcome there.

    I still remember in the evenings we were not allowed to come downstairs and forced to sit on the stairs at the top so as not to disturb 'the grownups' and their discussions.

    After about a few months of my mother working menial jobs in textile factories, they had saved just about enough to rent a place of their own. This was a time where the minimum wage didn't exist so she would work for £1.25p per hour working about 100 hours per week (no, not kidding, I've just checked this with her now as I type this).

    So they had saved just about enough to move out and we rented a place from a local plumber but we had nothing to fill the house with.

    I still remember vividly the first day in that house, it was bare, completely empty, no carpets, no furniture, no nothing. Our first day in that house, my parents lay down two mattresses and I slept with my mother and my brother got in with my father - that was it.

    It really annoys me when people talk about how hard it is - try being an immigrant not speaking the language, growing up in the 1980s when racism was normal and not knowing how the country operates earning a pittance and then raising two kids. That's the kind of stuff my parents and me went through, it affects you.

    I never went nursery so until about the age of 4, was home. The house was empty as we had no toys so the first thing my parents bought was a TV so we had something to watch. It was devasting to come down one day to find the TV had stopped working randomly but that's neither here or there; picture an empty room, carpets now installed and a TV on a cabinet - that's it. We would sit on the floor watching this all day as it was the only thing we had really.

    The landlord's wife took pity on me and my brother and knew we didn't have any toys so bought us some matchbox cars to play with .

    I can't explain to you how much enjoyment I got from these cars as they were our only toys. We would sit and play a game where we would pick out a selection of cars each and then crash them to see which car would remain standing and won, or which car had flipped over and lost.

    I still had them until a couple of years ago in my mother's garage but a bonfire the neighbour caused which accidentally spread destroyed them.

    After a couple years renting my parents were able to rent a council house on a nearby street and we moved there. My mother would go out to work leaving a 5yr old me and 7yr old brother home alone from 6am to 6:30pm over the holidays and weekends with the explicit rule we were not to open the door to anyone or touch the gas stove.

    Most our time was spent watching TV, playing with our cars or entertaining ourselves, and of course, we would often play in the garden unknown to my parents as being inside the house all day was boring as hell. The neighbours had a spring rocking horse and swingset and were never home either so we would just jump over into their garden and play across both our gardens.

    I remember this one time we heard them coming into the side alleyway home earlier than normal while we were in their garden playing on their spring rocking horse and swings and panicking to jump back over into our own garden.

    We managed to jump over in time just as the owner came into the garden but he then stopped, looked at his garden and then us and asked us if we had been in his garden - I looked at him innocently and said no we haven't but could see him looking at the spring horse rocking frantically wondering why this was when there was no wind.

    ...tbc.
     
  7. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Just to add - my success has been primarily in the digital space rather than an actual physical store and I still own the business currently but I haven't touched it in a long time due to working on other things (since 2017).
     
  8. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 2: Being the last to get picked

    I got to secondary school and I was always the last to get picked for football. I enjoyed playing but was terrible at it and it sucked being picked at the end and usually slotted in goal. So myself, my brother and a couple of friends at school went around to everyone we knew and asked if they wanted to start coming football with us on Saturdays as we would form our own indoor football team that played regularly.

    When you're about 11 years old, arranging something like this with other 11yr olds and asking them to pay a deposit of £2 to book the indoor footy hall sounds easy but believe me it really isn't as £2 is a lot of money to an 11yr old kid to part with. Some were fine with it, others weren't but said they would turn up on the day with the money.

    Somehow we managed to convince about 9 guys to turn up on a Saturday morning before the days of mobile phones. We walked to the hall not knowing if anyone would actually be there or not as we couldn't exactly ring them but thankfully 9 turned up despite us needing 10 to cover the cost of the hall at £2 each. We all chipped in a little extra and so began indoor football every Saturday that would go on for about 15 years.

    Some players would bring a friend or cousin before the original player who came dropped out but the friend or cousin continued to attend. They would then bring someone they knew and so forth and it reached a point where football became the highlight of my week. I worked hard at becoming better as I was sick of being the last one to be picked and wanted to prove that if I put my mind to it, I could do anything. We had 4 teams of 5 people every week where the rules were 7.5 minutes per game, first to 2 goals wins and the loser comes off or whoever is winning after 7.5 minutes is up stays on. It was really competitive and got heated with up to 20 people attending every week.

    We would pick teams based on the 4 best players being captains and I went from being the last person picked to one of the first or captain myself on occasions. This did a lot for my confidence really and football was my salvation in many ways and gave me an escape to a lot of the problems going on around me. Indoor football was really one of the only things I had going for myself at this point and really the only thing I looked forward to week in week out.

    Fast forward to around 25yrs old. I had worked some crap jobs and eventually ended up working at a call centre for a bank doing business banking. I still went football regularly until something terrible happened.

    I had an accident at football one day and after over 12yrs of football without any major injury, I ended up tearing my ACL and it's royally ****ed up my leg and I can't play. It's taken about 9months of appointments going back and forth to finally realise my ACL is torn and it needs surgery. It's devasting when the one thing you find peace and solace in is taken away. I had worked so hard to get good at it and went from being the last person to be picked from the age of 11 to being among the first or doing the picking as the captain myself.

    Football was important to me as it showed me really what you can do if you just focus and dedicate yourself to a cause and try and become better at your craft. I had dedicated over 10years of my life to improving and although I wasn't 'Ronaldo' - I had come a long way.

    I signed up for the surgery and waited.

    I've also met a girl I'm dating in my first real serious relationship and things are going well but I'm working in some dead-end job and desperate to leave. I utterly hate the job and the managers are toxic and the pay sucks. A good job opportunity comes up in public protection and I applied last year and never even got an interview but another chance to apply again comes up so this time I spend 2 weeks on the application form and send it off. The girl I'm seeing also works for this organisation which helps so she gives me loads of tips and advice on how others got the role I'm applying for by asking around.

    I eventually got a letter inviting me for a test where I am tasked with writing a report and doing a group work scenario with others there. I'm excited as hell as the last time I applied, I didn't even get past the application form stage. I prepped the best I could and attended this test with loads of other people there also applying for the role which intimidated the hell out of me.

    There were so many well-experienced people with such strong backgrounds as I talked to them, it really made me feel quite inadequate in comparison. I did the best I could and just hoped it was enough.

    I then got a letter from the hospital to tell me my surgery had been booked for my knee and ACL reconstruction and I begin making my workplace aware. As I have been with them for over 6 months at this point (1.5yrs actually) I get full pay while off.

    I go into surgery and go under general anaesthetic - if you've ever had this you will know its the weirdest trippiest thing ever.

    You go from completely awake in some gown laying down and can feel this cool liquid creeping up the veins in your arms and as it approaches your chest - boom! You're out cold and you suddenly wake up and its been like 4 hours but you cant account for the time - if you've ever noticed while being under general anesthetic, you werent even actually dreaming but its just dead time you cannot account for. It feels like you blink and its 4 hours later basically.

    I wake up in this hospital bed in pain but am kept in for a couple of days, its the biggest surgery ive ever had done (the only one in fact). I get home and as I crawl into bed with help from my mum, she hands me a letter to say something has come for me.

    I open the letter and its an invitation for the job I applied for which is about 1 month away. I have 1 month to prepare for a presentation and interview for this role. It's a good thing I'm not able to walk or doing anything because I'll spend the next 1month stuck in bed doing just that...

    ..tbc.
     
    Last edited: 29 Aug 2020
  9. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Will work for nuts Super Moderator

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    Caveat - don't take this negatively, that's not the intent.

    I'd be intrigued to hear about what you think are the right-place-right-time moments along the way. Because I think they're often the most interesting parts.

    And I absolutely don't say that to try to undermine hard work that went in by suggesting that any success is purely a result of luck. I like a success story, but sometimes the "work hard and it will happen for you too" message that comes out seems disingenuous and glosses over the simple fact that a component in most of them, at one point, was right place, right time. Again - this is absolutely not any suggestion that there's not hard work, smart decision making and perseverance leading up to that (i.e. in your persistence after your first few false starts), and hard work and smart decision making that followed to capitalise on it. Hopefully I've caveated that enough so it's not taken the wrong way!

    I've been lucky to have had conversations with many tech industry high-flyers over the years - including a few founders that can count their fortunes in in numbers that start with a capital B - and the part of their story I always find most fascinating, and each one of them has one, is the one or two defining right-place-right-time moments - especially when often they seem to be something they look back on as what was either a stupid/crazy decision, or just a misfortune at the time.

    I don't think it's just billionaires that have that moment. I (whilst I never founded a tech unicorn and can't count my fortune in billions) can attribute a lot of how the past 12 years has panned out for me to a redundancy in 2008 from what was kind of a wishy-washy job (but was way too cushy for me to consider quitting), and subsequently totally over-selling myself and winging it when applying for jobs, and lucking out after 5 months (when I was ready to give up and apply for jobs I could actually do) with one that either fell for it, or didn't and was curious to see what would happen anyway.
     
  10. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    Limited experience, but a startup website/social thing I was involved in many moons back could have benefited from a lot more right-place-right-time. Before it all went down the 'no more money' toilet, there was a rudimentary version of what pcpartpicker is, the beginnings of what Twitch is, and an effort to make a single interface for a bunch of different platforms.

    Had there been a RPRT moment, I've no doubt I'd still be working for that startup doing something far more interesting to me than what I currently do.

    I'd also be interested in seeing where those moments fell into place!
     
  11. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    You have no idea how on the nail you've made that point - its exactly why I'm telling everything in chapters as by the end of it, hopefully you will be able to read it and see exactly where 'things fell into place' and where my past experience and what I went through came into play to shape that opportunity.


    I would say there are about 4 key moments maybe where they defined this success - I'm going to leave it to you to figure it where you think they were and I'd love to hear your take on it :)
     
  12. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 3: bedridden.
    I got home from the hospital as mentioned and this was my view for the next month:
    [​IMG]
    This was taken on June 2008. I couldn't even have a bath. The pain wasn't too bad, it just felt throbbing and swollen.
    So I had a month to go until this interview and I was stuck in bed.

    *I forgot to mention, I had a group work scenario/report I also had to also do prior to this stage where I attended with 32 other people who were shortlisted. It was after these tests which were just before my surgery (about 4 weeks prior) had I for the invite for this stage.

    I figured if I wanted this job bad enough, I had to give it everything and I would use this month of not being able to move or do anything but focusing purely on this interview. The alternative was I go back to my **** dayjob doing something I hated.
    I was tasked with doing a presentation and then preparing for a followup interview afterwards too on the same day. 4 weeks to do this.

    I spent 4 whole weeks waking up at 8am and preparing my presentation from 8:30am until 4:30pm. I spent 2 weeks on the presentation and then 2 weeks on the possible interview questions. A friend even visited me for a whole week helping me prep for the interview, testing me and asking me questions. I got to a point where I memorised about 10 pages of possible questions and answers.

    Over 300 people had applied for 8 positions I would later find out. From those 300 applications, it was whittled down to 32 people and then the final 16 which is where I was now - this gave me a 50% chance of success. I liked those odds. Those odds were better than any odds I've ever probably had in my life.

    I went to the interview and delivered what I could only describe as the best presentation of my life. The feedback and scoring said the same.
    This was followed by an interview which was supposed to only last 45 minutes but because I had prepared so much, it lasted 1hr 45mins. I literally memorised so many responses and considerations to draw on, it was possibly the best performance I could have done - I literally could not have done any better and for someone who had no experience in this sector, I got the impression the interviewers were really surprised someone like me came out of no where.

    I was told I would know by Friday if I was successful - the interview had been on a Tuesday or Wednesday. They said everyone would receive a letter confirming the outcome by Friday.

    I waited and felt proud of how hard I worked but as the days went on and the deadline approached, I began second guessing whether I actually did as well as I thought or whether it was my own internal biases framing my performance in a way that seemed to suit myself.

    Friday came and I had been looking out the window for hours wondering WTF this postman was as he normally gets to us by the morning. In the distance I can see a figure with a red bag. It was him but he was taking his sweet time going to all the other houses - how inconsiderate of him! Does he not realise my destiny lays in a letter that he likely had with him!
    Of course im kidding - but i wanted to know. The excitement was too much as I watched him zigzag across the street that I needed to take a wee. I ran to the toilet, took a whizz, washed and then stood back at the window and I could see him just outside my house - but he seemed to have missed me and carried on going past it! WTF.

    So I went downstairs to look at the letter box thinking he hadn't posted anything and there was a brown envelope waiting with my name on it. This was it...

    ..TBC.
     
  13. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 4: Opportunities

    I picked up the letter, it was in a brown envelope and I wasn't expecting any mail so I knew this was it. The letter was strangely thin it felt, almost like there was nothing inside.
    I tore it open to see what the outcome was. It was short with at most a few sentences and the outcome...wasn't good.
    I was unsuccessful in my application it basically said and that they understand it must be disappointing - that was it.
    This opportunity was supposed to change my life as although I never went university, this role would have paid for that and given me the chance of a good career, literally a key moment in my life could have happened at this point right here and shaped me on a completely different trajectory than the one I had been on the last few years living a pitiful existence.

    I literally did the best I could, I gave it my best shot and I was told it still wasn't enough. I honestly don't know what more I could have done and I can't imagine anyone else put as much effort in as I did having been bedridden for 4 weeks and dedicating every day in preparation for this interview.

    It's heartbreaking to think, you literally did your best with nothing held back and it still wasn't enough - you can't help but feel like a failure under those circumstances.

    Now I was faced with the prospect of going back to my dead-end call centre job which I hated as soon as my left healed. At this point I had been off work for about 1.5 months and my sick note was due to expire in 2 weeks. I was upset, devastated in fact and I thought to myself 'well, this is it then'. Buying my own home, saving, doing anything that I watched my more successful friends do was going to be nigh on impossible now it seemed.

    I was upset and my mother could tell, she told me not to worry or let it get to me. She knew I was upset but I don't think she realised just how much. I had pinned all my hopes and salvation on this opportunity but it never materialised.

    Then something strange happened.

    I was still at home recovering and a week after I got this rejection letter I received another letter, again in a brown envelope.

    This was odd, I wasn't expecting any mail as usual so who could be writing to me? I opened it and it was a letter from this employer stating that although I was unsuccessful in my application for Role A, they were so impressed that they wanted to offer me Role B.

    Role B earned good money, overall less than Role A and it wouldn't give me a degree as I had hoped, but it was a huge step in the right direction at least and I would get my foot in the door. I couldn't believe it - I actually had an escape route from my pointless job and life now with a potential for a career.

    ..TBC.
     
    Last edited: 29 Aug 2020
  14. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 5 - Zero to Hero.

    I started role B and it was a key moment in my life I'd say - a huge turning point as it gave me a step up in earnings and the ability to try strive for some things. The money wasn't fantastic, I'm talking £20k ish but it had the potential to go up every year and this wasn't bad for someone who hadn't been to university. Plus it was a step in the right direction and a big foot into a possible career. This wasnt bad considering it was 2008 and the recession had hit the economy badly with a lot of people losing their incomes.

    Before getting this role, I was earning £850 per month (which is nothing) and saving £600 every month and forcing myself to live off £200-250 for all my expenses. Thank god I lived at home.

    One of my favourite bits looking back now was before I started this job as it gave me the chance to say a big **** you to my old employer in a way most people dream.

    So before I started this job, I was still off due to this knee surgery and I now knew that I would be starting this new role which I rang and accepted. I managed to get my sick leave extended for another month due to my knee and I knew the whole vetting process/references etc could take months anyways so I was now on 'chill mode' if that makes sense.

    I took this extra month off to recover and then went back to work to try to lay the groundwork for me leaving. The day I got back to work, I had one of the managers approach me and ask me to apply for a senior position. Effectively hinting that they wanted to give it to me.

    Before I went off to have this surgery, I had applied for a higher position but didn't even get interviewed for it because this place was run on not what you know, but who you know and if your face fits and if management likes you (I suppose every place is like that?).

    This was another reason I wanted to get the hell out of there as no matter how hard I worked unless I kissed ass, I was never going to work my way up and kissing ass just doesn't sit right with me.

    Some people are able to fake it and kiss ass, laugh at their bosses jokes, give them the admiration and attention like lapdogs but this is something I've struggled with doing. I'm not an asshole about it but I try to speak openly and honestly at all times and if someone says something that's a bad idea or not possible, I tend to share my thoughts and this isn't well received I guess when you have lapdogs around you saying otherwise.

    I knew I was leaving and here they were telling me to apply for this role, I think because they needed experienced people who knew wtf they were talking about - so I thought, why the hell not, I'll do it for the experience and fun of it.

    I applied and got an interview and literally did zero preparation for the interview to see if the whole thing was rigged. I gave half-baked responses in the interview and then waited to see the outcome.

    About 6 people including myself had applied for this senior position and I thought, I might as well do it for a couple of weeks before I leave and pocket the extra money and just jump ship after.

    So the managers made a rookie mistake with me - you see, they went and rang everyone else first and told them they had been unsuccessful in their interview and then rang me to tell me I had been successful. I was invited to a meeting to discuss the hours of the role etc and this is where things went south for them.

    They stated they wanted to place me in another team in this senior role despite a vacancy for my team existing. I asked if I could do it within my own team as the hours currently suited me and I knew the team well (plus there was a role that needed filling there - I figured I might as well enjoy the last few weeks with the team I liked than some strange team) - they refused because they wanted to dictate how this opportunity was going to pan out being the overlords and all.

    So I queried this a bit more and as it became clear that they weren't going to let me stay in my team with this new role, I said, "In that case, I'll have to reject the job offer unfortunately, I'll stay in my current role thank you" - and this basically stunned them.

    I don't think they could quite believe what I had said and I politely thanked them and left and continued to do my work.

    The manager, I think his name was Tim, came out and looked a bit shell-shocked as he went over to my team leader and told him "He's just refused the job offer". No one in this place had ever done that and now he was in a predicament as they had gone and told everyone else they had been unsuccessful because they assumed I would just fall into line like everyone else had.

    The news began spreading across the department floor that I had refused their job offer - it was actually fueled by my team leader who found it hilarious and literally began whispering it to the other teams that I had just refused the promotion and stuck it to senior management because they wouldn't let me stay in my team. I think I won a lot of respect from my colleagues from that but now I wasn't looking so hot with the management team ha!

    The next day, I had one of the most senior centre managers ask to speak to me. This was a woman who never knew I existed but apparently she had got wind of the fact that some little low-ling like myself who was given an opportunity other people strive for had rejected their offer to join their elite little circle.

    We sat in the middle of the room visible to everyone and she asked me why I had rejected it and I explained I wanted to remain in my own team and despite a vacancy being available, this was rejected. I enjoyed the hours I worked, moving would mean a change in them and I had a sick mother who I was caring for at the time too and her hospital appointments worked well with my current shift pattern.

    She made a bit of a veiled threat stating 'we can change your shift patterns you know' which they could but I explained it wasn't to be disrespectful but I have things going on in my life where the need is greater and if they wanted to do that, that was their choice but I'm just hoping they can understand this.

    After a discussion of her trying to size me up, I think I came across sincere and she let me get back to work. My manager had now gone and told everyone in the building I had rejected their offer again despite her intervention and I started to get dirty looks from the managers as I came to work for the last couple of weeks.

    About 7 years after this happened, I would actually bump into an old colleague in a bar while out one night and he still recalled this day where I told management to **** themselves - he said that was one of the most awesome moments of working there before he moved on himself to better things.

    Then came the day I would hand in my notice officially itself at this hell-hole.

    ..TBC.

    P.s - is this at all interesting for anyone? I'm hoping it's at least enjoyable for some of you so far :)
     
    Last edited: 29 Aug 2020
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  15. hamza_tm

    hamza_tm Well-Known Member

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    Loving it. And rooting for you! Go get ‘em mate :thumb:
     
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  16. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Chapter 6: The end of one chapter, the beginning of another

    So after waiting a number of weeks for my vetting in my new job to finish, I finally got the all green and was given a start date of early October 2008 and they were just awaiting my references from my current employer and a former employer.
    I spoke to my team leader who was cool with me and had already agreed to write me a reference letter and I rang my old employer to give them a heads up and she was cool with it too.

    I submitted my references and everything was now all cleared - all my ducks were lined up and I now had to hand in my notice - it had been about a week or two (I think 2 weeks) since I rejected the job offer at this place at this point.

    I should have mentioned this earlier but I basically worked at a banks call centre and what I'm about to say, I imagine this might be the same for other banks (I wouldn't know, I've only ever worked at one) but because you're dealing with money transfers and sensitive information, when an employee hands in their notice, their resignation is processed there and then and you are escorted out the building once done - no notice period served and you're not allowed access to the computers while you wait.

    The reason for this is when people know they are leaving, their concentration levels drop and they can start dicking about which can cost the bank thousands - for example - a customer rings and says they want to transfer £5k to someone and ask you to do it - or they may call and ask you if a cheque has cleared and is part of the available balance - you make a mistake because you're in 'wind-down mode' since you're leaving the job and this can have serious ramifications and make the bank liable.

    It's amazing that a low paid job like this has such a high level of responsibility really - I've never understood that but it was a tough job (one of the toughest really) for very little money.

    Instead of dressing in a boring shirt and trousers as you're expected, I dressed smart-casual and thought I'd make a bit of an effort to stand out - I figured I might as well look cool as hell on my last day and make an effort.

    I walked in, sat down and ripped out a piece of paper from a notepad and I wrote something along the lines of:

    "Please accept this letter as my formal resignation from my post. I wish to thank the bank for employing me and I wish it all the best in the future" -

    Literally, 2 sentences and I handed it to my team leader and just sat as he went to speak to one of the managers about getting this processed.

    I sat and watched as colleagues I had worked with for almost 2 years came into work as normal that morning and logged in across the department floor and started taking calls. I just took it all in and tried to accept that I wouldn't be seeing them anymore.

    Some asked me why I was just sat there twiddling my thumbs leaning back on my chair and I told them I was leaving - the surprise on their face. As happy as I was to be moving into something better, it was kinda sad too in some ways to think my colleagues would still be there.

    I had become friends with many of them; we would go for lunch together either to Subway or to a local burger place and we had a united hatred for work and the managers that bound us.

    At some point, others had got wind that I was leaving and came and said goodbye quickly while others didn't have a clue as they had come in and got straight on the phones. That was one of the annoying things about this job; it was really hard to talk to your colleagues as you were on the phone non-stop and making meaningful friends was tough. I had a handful I got along with but the job made it hard to form any in-depth relationship with them; you always felt quite alone in it too.

    After waiting for about 45 minutes, I had Tim come over to ask me to complete some final paperwork with him at the middle desk area where everyone could see. As we walked there I remember distinctly he just turned around and one of the first things he said was "so when do you start your new job?".

    I had rejected his job offer 2 weeks ago as mentioned in my last post and he had twigged now that it was because I had another role lined up and this was why. I said soon and he asked what I would be doing and I told him which was a significant step up from what I was doing currently.

    I think people form an impression of you and they think you're not capable of anything better and you are what your role is.

    The chance to tell him I had a really good role lined up and that another organisation actually saw potential in me, which was also paying more than he was on, I hope humbled him somewhat as he and the other managers walked around like they were the bee's knees in that place. I think there was definitely a 'class' divide in that place, much like that episode of Friends where Ross and Joey couldnt sit together in the cafeteria where Ross worked and Joey was temping at because Joey was the underclass there and the managers were the chosen ones.

    I sat and completed the paperwork and I remember as I left, one girl who started at the same time I did almost 2 years ago was on the phone and saw me being escorted out and she quickly put her call on mute and mouthed to me "are you leaving?!" and I said "Yeah I'm going, take care" and waved goodbye. She mouthed "OMG" in total surprise.

    I guess I had become part of the furniture at that place and when you see someone leave, it makes you reflect on yourself and whether you should do something similar. It's sad to be losing someone I think but it also forces you to reflect on yourself I find - I hope it did that for others there and I hope it helped them lead on to better things too, many people there deserved better.

    I walked out and turned around and took one last look at the building and said to myself "Never again" and walked to my car and left. I had the rest of the day now to spend and in another 2 weeks, I would be starting a new chapter in public protection.

    ..TBC.

    P.s - Previous chapters updated with more information and context - its so hard to remember the last 15 years accurately.
     
    Last edited: 29 Aug 2020
  17. Solidus

    Solidus Superhuman

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    Apologies for the delay in updating - I've had a Crohn's flare lasting literally months which has made life very difficult plus juggling a new job etc.

    Chapter 7: A difficult choice


    When I got this new job, one thing I forgot to mention was I was actually offered two jobs.

    So initially I got rejected and was heartbroken and about a week later, I got a letter offering me a position in that was a grade below what I had applied which didn't require me to go back to university.

    However 2 or 3 days after accepting that role, I got another call from other members of the panel saying they wanted to offer me the role I had initially applied for but it wasn't in my home town but in Nottingham instead.
    It would be on a lower salary and involve me going on a train every morning which in itself would add to the costs but they would pay for my degree and after 2/3 years, I could achieve this with a potential to earn more.
    The downside was, after 2/3 years of study and getting qualified for this public safety role, there is no guarantee they will have a job for me and that would be the risk.

    So do I accept the job that's a grade down, in my home town but on more pay and permanent? Or do I risk it and accept the job that offers me a university degree, less money, travelling a lot but the potential for more earnings in the future (assuming they keep me on?).

    I decided to take the role that's a grade down naively thinking the opportunity would come again where I can apply for this more senior role later and in my home town. Hopefully, with experience under my belt, I should be a good candidate.

    This decision would have a big impact on me a number of years later and contribute to me starting my online business in a way no one could possibly foresee at the time, least of all me.

    I started my new role in 2008 and really enjoyed it, it was like no other organisation I had worked for before.

    The environment was relaxed, the people were genuinely nice and had a really good work ethic, something I hadn't come across until starting there.

    After 10 months in one position, I was lucky enough to make an internal move into another team which again was really enjoyable.

    The team and manager I worked for simply left you to it and let you manage your own workload like an adult, no micro-management, nothing. It was brilliant.

    The team I worked in worked directly with offenders of all types in groupwork settings and it was really enjoyable - challenging but enjoyable. No sooner had I joined this team (after making an internal move from my last team) that other members of this team started to leave to.

    It wasnt because of me but it seemed like I had joined this team at a point where it was evolving after years and years of having a set group of people. I had joined at a time where members of this established team had decided to all move on.

    One person that's been in the team for ages leaves and it likely got the others in the team reflecting and wanting to move. They then move and it then leads to another and another. I had joined during this changing period and a number of staff left shortly after I joined and the team needed additional new members.

    So they did a recruitment and 4 other new members of the team joined about 6 months after I had started.

    They were all female, 3 of them my age and one slightly older. Lets name them Violet, Abby, Lisa and Tina (not their real names)

    Abby, Lisa and Tina were all lovely and we got along fantastically well. Myself and Abby hit it off and spent most our time laughing and joking as we had a lot in common and Lisa would join in at times with the office banter and it really made the time fly by and the stressful work we did more enjoyable.

    Tina was slightly older but also had a good sense of humour on her and was lovely too.

    Violet, however, was ok but it was clear she was not my kind of person. Me and Abby would be talking about all sorts of stuff while working at our desks and because Violet's desk was nearby, she would snap and make a comment like "do you ever stop talking? I'm trying to work".

    Pretty rude for someone who just joined the team, you would think they would be more mindful and aware of that fact a bit more and I wasn't even talking to her but someone else but she obviously found it irritating.

    I ignored her and it was clear we weren't exactly going to be friends.

    What was also very clear was she was doing a lot less work than us too. She became very good as feigning confidence and making herself seem important and act like she was a hard worker but I would later pull up stats on workload and the amount she was doing was drastically lower than myself or other members of the team.

    Fast forward to 2013. I've been working in this role since 2008 (5 years) and the organisation is recruiting again for the senior role I had applied for 5 years prior. I've been waiting for this and feel it's my time now to make a change.

    5 years worth of grafting my socks off, working hard. I even did another work-related qualification you needed in 3 months when normally it takes 12months to complete to make sure it was completed in time for me to be eligible to apply.

    Literally it felt like the stars had aligned to make this possible.

    Or so it seemed.

    TBC.
     

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