Kent Sterling – Recovering Program Director by kentsterling

by Kent Sterling

An interesting thing happens when you focus your attention on moving in a direction.  The first is that you move farther away from being the person you were before you started moving.  The second is that you get somewhere else more quickly than when you stood in one place.  That sounds elementary as hell – so simple that it barely deserves to be written down.

Learning instead of doing is wonderful.  There is freedom in admitting that I don’t know everything.  The pursuit of the knowledge that has avoided me has been very rewarding.  So much of our time at work is spent trying to prove that we are worthy of our position – or the next rung on the corporate ladder that we become impervious to the notion that we have so much else to learn.

The last year has been a time of ridiculous change.  My boss and friend died quickly of cancer – six months from diagnosis to the grave.  I was fired by the new manager for the place I had called my professional home for 17 years.  This was the place I thought I would retire from.  He told me when I was fired that he was probably doing me a favor, which is the kind of trite bullshit that most of us hope is true when we fire someone, but so seldom have the stones to say out loud.  Oddly, he was right, but he gets no credit for that – at least not from me.


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4 Comments so far
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“I yelled back more dramatically, “This is a God-dammed bike path, you f**king idiot!” The vet looked at the bike path, rolled up his window with a look of resignation that I still savor, and drove away.”

Ok, that’s damn funny. But on a more serious note, that was a great piece.

Comment by jimjohnsonpbm

Most people who do firing have no idea what they are doing and will usually get the same thing sooner than they know. I have never been in a job for more than five years at a time and I have three college degrees and a ton of exprience.

Comment by Neil Dixon

Well said, Kent. I know what you mean about baby steps on the path to decency. I think you’re farther along than you may realize…

Comment by John Strauss

Your thoughts and raw honesty bring tears. My great parting line (from my boss of 8 years when he fired me) was, “It’s nothing personal.”

Funny. It felt VERY personal. I was suffering from an illness and they couldn’t wait for me to beat it. As much as it was his loss, it was also mine, and somehow I think he’s gone on much easier than I have.

Comment by Not your average CARMEL MOM

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