“I’m really sorry. Financially we just can’t carry on.”
I joined the company as a ground level customer service grunt in 2001. It was my second job and finally the one that was going to use my skillset. They were a web design outfit (in the loosest possible sense of the word) offering one of those DIY web builders that were all the rage during the dot-com bubble. That’s right, a dot-com bubble business after the bubble had burst. Probably needs to tell you everything you know.
A myriad of things happened out of my control that led to me staying in that position, always one step away from being let go, always being the guy no one could rely on. I’m not ignorant of my failings and will always throw my hands up when I’ve fucked up, but most of the time my fuck ups were I was breathing and existing. I don’t think I need to tell anyone what the impact was on my mental health.
However, a strange thing happened. The company started to die as other technologies leapt past its put-together-with-wallpaper-paste-and-running-on-compromised-Windows2k-boxes and customers started leaving in droves with the time honoured “fuck this shit I’m out” approach. Whilst others were losing hours and jobs, I was static. No one even noticed how little I contributed. When the company was sold off to an investor looking for a DIY web builder extension to their core business, I was part of the package.
It was utterly bizarre and taught me that if you stay out of anyone’s sight, nothing bad can personally happen to you. Advice I have in no way, shape or form listened to ever since. Unfortunately the new owners were savvy. They knew they’d bought an untamable monster very soon into their tenure. At that point the writing was on the wall.
So why have I told you all this, when it has nothing to do with forex? Well, due to the length of my service and the appreciated but very misguided boost in pay the new stewardship had given me, I had a redundancy package valued at thousands of pounds.
What do you think the vast majority of that went on, I wonder?
Hint: it was not chocolate cake.