Friday, April 30, 2010

Follow Your Gut

I recently went through some serious soul searching regarding my employment. I was"offered" a new position which was to be located in the new corporate billing office that our company was setting up. It was really not a surprise that this move was coming, we have been one corporation now for about 6 years but our billing was always managed by an outside vendor and the time had come for us to "man up" and take on the entire billing function ourselves.



This means, of course, that it will impact each and every person in the company in some way. Some employees more directly than others. I unfortunately am falling in the more directly category. I work as the accounts receivables specialist in one of the practices associated with the company.



This is not the only function that I perform in the office, my job is varied and some days are a lot more about other functions than about AR. This is probably what makes me so good at the AR portion of my job, because right about the time I feel that I absolutely cannot deal with another insurance company or another claims issue, that is when something that is going on the office pulls me away and needs my attention. I enjoy the fullness of all of the different aspects of what I do.



I enjoy working with the other employees in our office. I am able to help them with so many of the issues that come up and have helped to train them, direct them and also to learn from them.



The new position seemed as if it would be an ok fit for me at first. I was under the impression that it too would be a job with variety and the opportunity to learn and grow. I met with our COO and discussed a lot of different things regarding work hours, where the different people would be located in the new office and what their goals were for getting the centralized billing department up and running. Sounds good on paper right?



Thursday I went down to meet with him again to discuss a proposal that he wanted to offer to me. I went with no expectations but wanted to get a chance to talk about what my specific role would be and what my exact job was going to be. The offer was to take on the AR for another surgical practice in addition to the practice that I currently work for. This too in the big overall picture does not sound bad until I began to realize that there would be no more variety in any aspect of my job.



Each and every day would be spent in a cubicle on the phone calling insurance companies to ask for the money we are owed. I know that there is no issue as far as the fact that I could do the job and at I am sure that I would do it well. But I know myself and I know that I need to have a job with variety and the opportunity to do more than one thing well. I need challenges. I need problem solving, fact finding, helping other employees with the issues that they may need to resolve. In other words I know that I would burn out very quickly if I was doing the AR only and it would only be a matter of time until I wasn't doing the job well because I would not love it. Slowly but surely I would need to have something else and that would force me to look around for another job.



My fear was that this is probably the worst time to even remotely have to think about trying to find another job. The market is just dry out there and if my honest feelings about this new job cost me my employment, what would we do to make up the difference and cover our bills? this dilemma is something millions of other people deal with on a daily basis, covering up their feelings about a job they dislike in order to earn that all important paycheck.



I am lucky enough to have an office manager who has encouraged me to grow both within the job that I currently have and also to look toward the future to where I want to be. She encouraged me to go back to school, she made me confident that I am a good employee, I do a good job and I deserve better than to just go with the flow to keep a check. It was wrenching for both of us to come to the realization that if this did not go well, I may not have a job and she would lose me as an employee altogether.



A meeting was scheduled between the two of us and the doctor in charge of the business end of the practice. I expressed my concerns and we all came to the conclusion that the new position was not going to be the right place for me. He assured me that if it came down to a decision whether I would leave the company or they would need to pay my salary out of their pockets rather than the corporation taking it on, he would personally make sure that I stayed employed within their practice rather than leave to go to the CBO.



I will have to contact our COO and tell him of my decision. I don't have any unrealistic expectations that he will be pleased that I am turning down his offer but in the big picture, I have to do a job that I care about in order to do it well. It may turn out that in the end I will have to leave the company and go out looking for something else, I'm hoping we can reach a compromise.



The person that you have to live with every day is yourself. If you sell yourself short and you don't stand up for what you want, need or love in your life then you cheat only your self. Sometimes we have to do things we don't want to do to get through a certain time period and then we come out on the other side better people because of it. This was not one of those times. My goal is always to do the best job that I can possibly do. If I walk out of the office on any given day and I feel I did not give 110 percent, I am disappointed in myself. No supervisor, manager or any other type of boss can set goals higher than the ones that I set for myself. Therefore that old saying "to thine own self be true" is my motto. If I know up front I will end up hating what I do every day, and I know that my performance will suffer for it then I am not doing myself or my employers any favors and I have to make the right choice.



Here's hoping that it works out for all of us. For me I can finally sleep through the night without obsessing over the fact that am not speaking up and saying what I really want to say. Thanks Linda for believing in me and for giving me the courage to believe in myself!

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