I recently left a company that had pretty much the best group of people I've ever worked with. I don't think that I've ever worked for a company where I have genuinely liked virtually everyone I met and worked with. I only hope that any of you will have the experience that I did. The company has issues like any other, but I found the people are not it and that's unusual.
Now the tricky part was I wasn't particularly passionate about what I was doing. What can you do?
I do have to share that my wonderful boss actually gave me the opportunity to try something COMPLETELY different that I expressed some interest in learning about. It's worth noting that many bosses would say tough and give you no help, but mine did. This (among many other things) is why I am very loyal to my former boss and the company. It is a unique example of a company that lives its core values in my experience.
Ultimately I decided to leave. My last day at the company, as I went around to say goodbye to a number of people, I actually cried. I knew I would (and really do) sincerely miss them. And I know that over the last year I grew more as a professional and a man as perhaps any year of my life.
For the time being I'm back to working for myself full time (I kept my consulting up, moonlighting while I was there, a good call in retrospect) and am finding my work to be more rewarding and invigorating. I LOVE pitching in with really early stage start-ups and making a difference. You get a chance to do a lot of different things when you prove you can add value.
So I REALLY like what I'm doing (I'm not ready to drop the other L-bomb just yet) and for now I mostly do it with.....myself. I'm sort of half-kidding when I say that perhaps this is another opportunity to learn to love myself. What better way to learn if I can handle myself than to be with myself virtually full time for a while?
One thing I took from my former company was the simple rule when hiring "No Jerks, No Idiots". Directness can be beautiful, can't it? I'll apply the same rule to who I work with as a consultant.
I just hope that as a self-employed person that I can pass that test myself on a daily basis. :)