As I work my penultimate Friday, it’s hit home that I’ve only 28 working hours left until I leave the scintillating sphere of financial services to carve out a career in writing and begin studying Philosophy, Politics and Ethics at Brighton University.
From the tender age of 17 to kidulthood at 22, I’ve worked four and a half years in the sector and feel obliged to share a parting wisdom that has given me unbridled success without the (perceived) corollary stress: work your ass off but don’t take your life, your career or yourself seriously.
Learn to disengage from the BS of FS and have avenues through which you can unwind and decompress. It’s on drink and drugs that people in the sector too often rely; they offer only illusory support: they’re destructive, unsustainable and deceptively unreliable when used to the excess.
Highs are finite, possibilities infinite.
Personally, I travel, box, volunteer, write, attend festivals and crossdress to counteract the dulling effects the 9-5 can have on a soul.
My greatest achievements haven’t been the promotions or qualifications, but the relationships and good times spawned by them.
So, that’s the heavy stuff out of the way. Now, without the worry of a current boss or future employer scolding me for impropriety and in the spirit of not taking oneself too seriously, here’s a tongue-in-cheek rundown of a few ‘accomplishments,’ cringes, loves and hates from my time in financial services… enjoy!
My Crowning Accomplishments
- My first business trip to Gibraltar…
Gibraltar was cute: small, quirky, multicultural and weirdly familiar…
…basically, it was a rock with a few thousand pissheads clinging to it.
- ‘Fighting the power’ by growing a horribly ginger beard in protest of a clean-shaven rule.
- Being the impetus for a day of bright and bold outfits and crossdressing for my last day next week (more to follow). Chirp’s infectious.
My Crowning Cringes
- After a day chugging back Aguardiente, being half-consciously spoon-fed soup without an eyebrow and much of my head’s hair at the banquet of the 2011 employee Christmas party in Portugal.
- After a day and night chugging back cervezas at the 2012 employee Christmas party in Spain – and immediately after incongruously smoking multiple blunts with colleagues from another jurisdictional office – I found myself inexplicably lost on a pitch-black and labyrinthine hotel floor above the one in which the company was put up. Needing desperately to relieve myself, I thought it safe to do so in the dark, up against a nondescript wall some way from the illumination of an elevator light at the end of the corridor. To save from inflicting further flashback on myself, we’ll cut the story short: the stream flowed… on to a door that opened.
- I’m done with this stupid list. Five minutes spent on two events and my cringe has reached spasm.
What I Shall Miss Of The Office
- Embellishing underlings’ unsatisfactory work with phallic feedback.
- High pay, low exertion.
- Post-nominals. ‘Liam Doherty MICA Int.Dip.(AML)’ gave me a cheap ego-hit.
- Smiling at tradesmen from inside the toasty office during winter months.
- Delightful summer and debauched Christmas parties.
- Initialing documentation.
- The ability to afford and have spur-the-moment holidays.
- Lunchtime swims in the bathing pools, which I cannot recommend highly enough.
What I Shan’t Miss Of The Office
- Shirtless tradesmen smiling at my soulless vessel as it rots behind a desk during the summer months.
- The unidentified, reoffending fuckers who bastardise the communal sugar supply with coffee pissing granules.
- Financial Advisors’ grammatical howlers. ‘”With regards Montgomery structure, we should be greateful if you could duly reassess you’re position in respect of the investment which underlyes the aforementioned vehicle.”‘ (Grammatical and spelling errors lifted from real-life emails.)
- Financial Advisors in general.
- First-world office problems:
‘”Could somebody reset the hole-punch to A4 when they’re done please!”‘
‘”Oh it’s bloody freezing in this [optimally temperature controlled] office!”‘
‘”The desk cleaners have moved my screens again!“‘
- Perpetual provision and consumption of junk food.
‘”Cake… because it’s Thursday! Sure, six slices sounds bad, but I’ve had a salad for lunch.”‘
- Office politics. Disassociating yourself from the people playing games and occupying yourself with your own business pays dividends (note to self: discontinue business-speak).
- Staring through a computer screen – staring into the void – after a holiday or festival.
- My job. As much as it’s given me, and me to it, I’m not going to miss my job a fraction of a smidgen of a tiny liddle bit.
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You can contact me using firstname.lastname@example.org if you’ve a potential story or some fan/hate mail or just fancy a chirp.
Happy Friday and have a kickass long weekend!