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My Dream Job Proved to Be a Nightmare So I Quit After 2 Months

by Mona Lazar 2 months ago in workflow
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A story of illusion and dread

My Dream Job Proved to Be a Nightmare So I Quit After 2 Months
Photo by Avel Chuklanov on Unsplash

A job you don’t enjoy is nothing more than a useless sacrifice. Human sacrifice. And in this case, the victim is you.

It was April 3rd of this year when my whole world came crumbling down.

I had just lost my job. I was isolated because of covid, and seriously depressed. I had 0 income.

I started writing online and was also applying for jobs. In everything! Whether I was a match or not, whether it was a good job or not, I would send in my CV. Was it the best approach? I didn’t know and I didn’t care. I did it anyway. I was desperate.

But the one job I was hoping for and truly wanted was to be a copywriter and/ or content writer.

I had 0 experience. But after writing my first article online, I felt it was what I wanted to do.

Of course, nobody was calling me back. I kept writing like a maniac and applying to jobs pretty much with the same intensity, until one day a miracle happened!

Somebody offered me a copywriter/ content writer job based on the portfolio of articles that I had posted online. Only 33 days after I started my writing journey, I had my dream copywriter job!

It was one of the best times of my life to see my dream come true. Making a living out of writing? Yes, please!

And then… I went to work. And found out it was all smoke and mirrors.

What I found when I got there was like something out of Alice in Wonderland, after falling down the rabbit hole and into a world of pretense and shifting perception.

The job that I got was in an advertising company that has been on the market since 2001. And they have been struggling ever since.

The building, made up of only 2 rooms and a toilet, is old and dingy, with air conditioning that sounds as hoarse as my uncle who smokes 2 packs a day.

Attrition is huge. People keep leaving a maximum of after a year or 2 of their employment.

For the first 2 weeks or so, my colleagues asked me daily if I was still going to come in the next day. Apparently, they had a lot of people who left after a few days, a week, or a month. I didn’t know I’d be one of them.

The salary was crap. That was something I knew from the start and accepted as such. Because I had 0 experience in the field, I treated the job as a paid internship. I wanted to learn and use my knowledge to get high-paying copywriting clients later down the road. I could tell I wasn’t going to make a lot of money from the advertising company and I was ok with it. It was supposed to be a launching platform for my copywriting career.

But that’s just the trick.

Nobody knew anything about copywriting. There was no copywriting!

Half my colleagues were very young. Under 30 years old, some of them fresh out of college. The other half were people who seemed to be shifting career paths or wanted to learn something about copywriting, marketing, or advertising. It felt like a railway station where people were waiting to leave.

I had 0 (zero!) training. They gave me some general facts to read about 2 of the company’s clients and that was that.

For the first month, they also gave me 0 work. Yes, I said 0 again. On the one hand, I liked it because it gave me time to keep writing my online articles and getting paid for doing nothing. Who wouldn’t love that? On the other hand, I was learning nothing, so the job wasn’t serving my purpose. Or its own purpose. Or the company’s purpose.

The ambiance was pure stress. The bosses were constantly stressed out, sad, overwhelmed, overworked, and basically in the wrong place and in the wrong life. They passed this on to their employees. Everybody was constantly looking for another better-paying less-stressful more-respected job.

You’re probably wondering what can be disrespectful in writing. It’s the attitude towards the employee, and that can happen in any field.

Granted, working with people is difficult. There are good clients and there are bad clients. If you’re a beginner, you cater to everybody, because you need to eat and pay your internet bill.

But if you’re on the market since 2001, supposedly you paid your dues and can afford to say no to some clients nobody wants to work with anyway. Wrong! If you act out of fear, stress, and anxiety, you take on everybody, can’t offer quality services, and eventually lose your valuable clients as well.

Example: a client wants to raise brand awareness. You come up with a lot of social media texts and about half of them include various plays on words starting from the client’s motto. The client doesn’t understand the reasoning behind that and wants the repetition taken out. You explained that you chose it on purpose, repetition being one of the core principles of marketing. This is how the public gets used to the brand. Build familiarity, trust, and eventually sales through presence, exposure, and repetition. Boss says no, just modify the text with what the client requested.

Well, if we do what they requested we are not giving them what they want, because they will not have the results they are looking for. That’s not copywriting, content writing, or marketing, it’s just being a doormat. And that’s not something I wanted to learn.

Texts for social media were the only things that had anything to do with writing. I wanted to leave from the very first day, but I loved my poor overworked colleagues. We bonded over the little things, like being human in a dehumanized workplace or how our boss’s eyebrow twitched every time she felt somebody did something wrong. Which was all the time.

I’ve never seen a company as mismanaged as that one since my little cousin’s unicorn company, and I decided that if these advertising guys have been in business since 2001, I have no excuse to not succeed. The only thing they did was not give up.

I said goodbye to them and I’m flying solo.

My online writing is growing at a steady pace.

I love doing it. I see results. I see growth. Passion. Love.

I might fail, but I’d rather fail at something I love than succeed at something I hate.

“There is no time for cut-and-dried monotony. There is time for work. And time for love. That leaves no other time.” ― Coco Chanel

The rest is nothing but noise.

workflow

About the author

Mona Lazar

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