Career Change at 40 something

Early in 2010 I won an all expenses paid trip to Cancun Mexico for two from the company I work for. Deciding who to take with me did not even take a second to figure out. I took my eight year old son with me. He deserved it and the trip was only cutting into three of his school days prior to his spring break anyway. We had a blast swimming, boogy boarding, sight seeing and just relaxing.

Upon returning from our trip I thought a lot about where we had been and the things we had done in the past eight years together. I decided that even though we had been to a lot of places and had done a lot of things together, it was time for a change…

My position for the past eight years was Operations Manager for a 165 seat call center which is an outsourcing business. This means, instead of one or two projects that some call centers have, we can have as many as 40 to 50 projects going on at any given time and have as many as 20 to 30 different clients from around the world.

As Operations Manager, I was the primary escalation contact for all clients and primary communication contact for all major clients. What does that mean you ask? Well for one, it means that if you have a client in Taiwan that has conference calls at 9:00am in the morning you had better believe that I was on that call which was at 9:00pm at night. Also, it means that if anything went wrong e.g. power failure, third shift agent call off, client escalation at 1:00am in the morning, I was the first to be notified and would need to be available to hustle in to the office. Operations Manager for a call center is a 24×7 job if you are dedicated and take it seriously.

So, this takes us back to “Time for a change”… I thought about all aspects of what I had given to the company over the past nine years (at the time) and decided that I would resign my position as Operations Manager and head down another career path which would allow me to spend more time with my son and I did so. I am now in our corporate quality department working as a Quality Auditor.

Since the time I moved to the quality department, my son and I have been able to do a LOT of things that we had not had time for over the past few years. We traveled, we went camping, canoing, swimming at the beach and sometimes we just did nothing at all, but we did that together with no fear that at any minute I would have to run off to the office to address some emergency or miss a conference call that lasted until 1:00am.

I must tell you that I do miss the money sometimes (like when the new Chevy Camaro came out). However, I am able to pay my bills and have enough left over to plan out experiences for my son to have and enjoy those experiences with him.

As I stated in my article ‘How do you measure success in life?‘, I will most likely never be able to afford a huge house or another new car, but none of that would ever be able replace the new found time I am getting to spend with my son anyway.

Maybe in a year or two I will make a change to another position that has better pay and requires a little more of my time but for right now I am right where I want to be and I consider myself successful.

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