Not that ambitious.
Six months ago, I started a new job. I had been laid off at the end of March but within 5 weeks, had found another permanent job that matched my requirements: interesting content, short commute (30 minutes maximum), reasonable working hours, good salary and benefits.
Now last week, my boss and I had a small meeting during wich he told me that management was very happy about my work and truly believed I could do even more for the company. Which is why they would like me to go back to evening school and get a master degree – for which the company would be paying.
Everyboyd I’ve been talking to about this is soooo excited – except I am not. Not at all.
Five years ago I would have killed for such an apportunity, because I was then a youg executive assistant frustrated with the lack of responsibilities and dying to prove what she was worth. But then I got occasions to show what I was capable of, and now I think I am at the right level on the corporate ladder, and I don’t need to prove anything. What I want now, is my job to be done at 5PM so I can leave the office and start living my life.
Because, see, I consider my job primarily as a way for paying my bills. I enjoy that there is some intellectual challenge involved but honestly, if I won the lottery, I wouldn’t go to work anymore. For me real life starts after 5PM, when I have time for seeing my friends or family, for reading and writing, and for doing some copywriting gigs in the hope that I can be my own boss and make a living of my writing one day.
I don’t dream about my boss position, because that would mean working longer hours and travelling – which I don’t want to do at all. And my resume as it is now, is perfect for the kind of job that I have and want to keep.
So, while I am giving this master’s proposition a second and even a third thought, I can’t help but wandering: why should I give up all of my free time during one year to get a degree I don’t need, that would qualify me for positions I don’t want?
Plus, as there is always a counterpart, I’d have to sign an agreement about paying back for those very expensive studies if I leave the company within 2 years – and I hate to be tied by money.
And on the other hand, how am I going to explain this to my bosses?
Because I know where this all comes from: I am young, I am single and I am child-free: this has to mean I am ambitious and willing to dedicate myself to my career. As explained in today’s article on The Anti 9-to-5 Guide blog, this is the number one myth about single women at work: they have nothing else important in their lives, no important people, no important pursuits.
Maybe it is time for companies to realise that, single or not, man or woman, not all of us are ambitious about their careers, because – I swear – there are other important things in life.