One Important Decision
After twelve years of dedicated service, I was faced with the most difficult decision that I had ever contended with in corporate America. As a result of the economic downturn, the corporation decided to release large portions of the staff and made it my responsibility to do so. I, like many others, recognized this strategy as unfair and unjust. It would not only be a useless venture but would harm what was supposed to be our most valuable resource, our associates. I knew I was incapable of following through on these orders and fought for what I believed to be right. It was made clear to me that either I let these people go or my career would be in jeopardy. I was forced to decide between protecting myself and my career or the needs of others and my morals. So, I chose to end my long journey in corporate America and walk away with a clear conscience. This decision has caused some interesting effects in my life.
The initial financial impact was almost unmanageable. After over a decade of a certain income and lifestyle, adjusting to the immediate loss of my entire salary was going to be a long and painstaking process. Our financial priorities were significantly changed. Restaurants and entertainment were far down the totem, while concerns of how we would scrape together a mortgage payment became a new found riddle to solve. Holidays were more stressful and things we previously considered staples to our existence, quickly became luxuries. The loss of my retirement plan and medical insurance created even more far reaching concerns for our wellbeing and future. It seemed as if our lives would never be the same, at least monetarily.
Initially, the decision caused a large amount of unwanted stress on me and my family. Once the initial shock had passed, I found that I had a great deal of quality time to spend with my wife and son. My son and I had always been very close, but the new bonds we were creating due to this change proved to be stronger...