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Laid Off

Summer 2009--I was laid off.  We were told as a group on a Tuesday that management had decided to outsource IT services and that our last working day would be Friday.  3 of the SA team would go, and only 1 would stay.  I had seen this coming, so I wasn't all that shocked.  I appreciated being told a few days beforehand and further appreciated the included severance package.  Previous layoff "victims" had been told on their last day, so they had only a few hours to pack up their stuff and leave.  At least I received better treatment than that.

It was reiterated that it wasn't my fault.  The company's most important client had been Lehman Brothers, whose portfolios had been responsible for a significant amount of my former company's revenue stream.  Called the "Lehman Shock" in Japan, its shock wave had a somewhat delayed, yet disastrous impact on affiliated companies that were servicing Lehman's assets.  The assets were auctioned off, and the purchasers understandably chose to use their own in-house financial services if they had them.

During the year after Lehman's fall, my company saw a notable weight of its business literally slip through its fingers.  Various cost-saving measures were enacted, along with a voluntary resignation program; however, it wasn't enough to bypass eventual involuntary layoffs.  Despite a major step-up in marketing efforts, the gaping hole in core business was not close to filled.  Hindsight is indeed 20/20, and in hindsight it was not a good idea to base a company on a single client.

A few things about the layoff did irk me significantly:

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My Bout With Stealing and Subsequent Family Drama

At the ripe young age of 12, I briefly experimented with the fine art of thievery.  The idea came from my then-in-college brother who had returned for summer break with more Nintendo games than the "Angry Video Game Nerd."  His initial story was that the games were the natural result of winning the grand prize in a video game contest in the Bay Area.  The story made perfect sense--my brother was a superbly talented video game player, and the Bay Area was the national headquarters for video game contests at the time.

Surprisingly, my brother revealed the truth about the games to me.  He said they came from

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Facebook Reject Button

I'm so bummed because Facebook doesn't have a satisfying reject button to deny friend requests.  They only have an "ignore" button.  The closest I can get is to block the person and report them as a spammer.  That sounds a tad excessive, though.

I guess the only satisfaction I can get is to maintain my zero friends profile.  Another idea I had was to accept them as friends only to later delete them.  They would be fooled into thinking I accepted their request only to find that I negated our relationship just minutes later.  I really hope Facebook could accurately communicate that transaction via email notifications. 

It's All You

The only person I can 100% depend on is myself.  If I want something done, it's up to me to do it.  If I require another person's assistance, it's up to me to sufficiently motivate that other person to act.  Leaders are in the position of leadership because they are blessed with something that separates them from those being lead.  They have the talent and/or resources to call others to action on their behalf.  Take George Bush and Barack Obama, for example.  George Bush had the re$ources to obtain his position, while Obama clearly has the leadership talent.

If you're not a leader of others, then 

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F-U Facebook

Back in the day it was Friendster.  All my friends emailed me imploring me to join so that we could more easily connect and keep in touch.  Then it was MySpace.  And now it's Facebook.  These sites are a pain in my ass.  It's like a day job keeping them updated and approving retarded friend requests.  No thanks.  I've got enough bullshit to sift through just being a member of YouTube.

I'm gonna do a little experiment.  I'm gonna join Facebook just so that I can deny my friends' friend requests.  Then I'll blog about their damaged egos as they wallow in Internet sorrow.