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Where the Road May Take Us

Last week I wrote about how I finished my job at Elastic and, unsurprisingly, ever since I’ve been getting questions about what’s next. Changing jobs in this economy is crazy enough, I get that. So first thing’s first.

I didn’t get laid off, I quit willingly.

I am writing this at the airport, so the priority now is – vacation. Easter is around the corner, which means some family time. Unrelated to family time, I think my mojo for traveling has returned. I’ve been almost constantly on the move for the past four weeks, and I feel more energized than I have in a long while. The pandemic definitely took a toll. A part of me was thinking that travel for fun (or for work) was behind us. I am so happy once again get to complain about long airport queues and the horrible plane food :)

Once my travel adventures are over, I’ll be joining a small startup. Really small, a startup of 25 people.

And I have to admit – I am beyond excited

If it wasn’t already obvious, I didn’t make a decision to leave Elastic lightly. The idea of leaving has been on the back-burner for quite a bit; but at the same time, I wasn’t willing to leave for just anything.

To me, a good job is a combination of good company culture, interesting problems to solve and a decent compensation. At different points in my career I was prioritizing a different thing out of the three. At this point, company culture is the most important to me and one thing I wasn’t wiling to compromise on.

I understand that it’s impossible to get a full picture of the company culture from a couple of interviews. But at work, same as in life, there’s that click with certain people and you just know.

It feels right

A part of me is always guided by my intuition. Some things look good on paper, but don’t feel right. In the process of interviewing, I turned down some great offers. Most of the time, something didn’t feel quite right, although I couldn’t tell you exactly what that was.

When I met the people from my future company, I felt a wave of positivity and respect. I felt like I was talking to fellow engineers, rather than being evaluated, probed or set for failure. It was obvious that there were some very smart people in the room, but none of them wanted to make it their case. This resulted in some very productive and insightful conversations.

So why am I scared then?

Over the past few weeks, all of my friends have received at least one text from me saying “What have I done?”, the context being: what have I done, quitting my nice job in a company that I adored.

Leaving something known for something unknown is always stressful. Add to that the lack of my experience working in a small environment like this one, and my fears are multiplied.

But without change, there is no growth. Whatever step we take, even if it is the wrong one, takes us closer to understanding who we are and we want. With time, it all becomes more clear.

Until then, no reason to stress out about it. After all, our choices are half chances, just like everybody else’s.

Wish me luck!

Published in life