WWYD?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-27-2009
WWYD?
8
Wed, 04-17-2013 - 11:47pm

Hi everyone, I have been on hiatus for a while because I am a little overwhelmed with life in general right now...

On the good side, I have made good progress with staying current on bills and paying off debts consistently. I have also been able to get a few more home improvement projects ticked off of my list. 

On the more stressful side…

I have said this before, but I wanted to give a little background. I work for a local county as a residential real estate appraiser. I LOVE my work, but am grossly underpaid for all that I am required to do and my credentials. I applied for and received a new position within the office as a commercial appraiser. During several conversations, it was discussed that this would "probably" just be a lateral move. When they offered me the position, I accepted right away and kind of forgot to nail down the salary. I went back to my office and thought about it for a while and sent an email off to new boss asking if he might be able to use the move as leverage to increase my pay a little. That was seriously a BAD move on my part. I almost got and lost the job in less than an hour...Whoever said it never hurts to ask was very wrong in this case (I guess my timing was off). It made my supervisor's boss so mad he was ready to write me off right then. My new supervisor and I had a long chat and I felt about an inch tall when it was over :( I left work feeling awful Friday evening.

In addition to the work stressors, the two babies have run me through the ringer. They have collectively been hospitalized six times since September for a few different reasons. I feel like a failure as a mama because I can’t keep them fully healthy to save my soul :( I actually broke down on the pediatrician’s shoulder this weekend when the youngest was intubated after a severe seizure. I told him I felt like I must be doing something wrong...

Ok, so now to the point of my post...I have been in Grad school for my MBA since August 2012. I have almost completed 18 of my 36 hours required and I feel like I have lost my motivation. It seems like I am doing this all for nothing. I have sent out close to thirty resumes to various companies with about ten being very closely aligned with my desired career goals. I have heard about exactly 0 of these in the past 3 weeks. I have customized my resumes and designed individual cover letters for each one. My new supervisor even commented that I have an “impressive” resume. What is the point of all of this education and experience and work product if I can't even get a nibble in the real world??? I was ready to throw in the towel this weekend and unenroll for the Summer and Fall semesters when I got a call while I was in the PICU with the baby. It was from my school letting me know that I had been awarded the biggest fellowship/scholarship our department awards. Talk about the big man throwing me a curveball...I really thought that I was being directed to lay off the extra education/stress for a while with the new job’s learning curve and the baby getting sick.

So what would you do? Throw away the free money (maybe put off the degree for a year or so) or plow through and finish in May 2013? It really isn’t going to take much time away from the kiddos. I learned after the first semester how much we all could handle and have adjusted my schedules accordingly. Any MBA’s out there who find it invaluable to actually have the degree as opposed to just real world experience?

 

I know I kind of rambled, but your insight and advice is invaluable to me :) Thanks everyone.

JenAaron.jpg picture by jen2075


iVillage Member
Registered: 12-31-2010
In reply to: jen2075
Sat, 04-20-2013 - 1:36pm

Jen -

First HUGGSSS you are not a bad mom, there are just bugs out there, and little kids tend to get ill. This has been a particularly bad winter for colds, it seems. Do not beat yourself up- but I know, as a mom, we do.

Second, I have been where you are, working mom, going for an MBA, trying to get ahead, trying to please people to make my way up. I would say in business today the MBA is definately worth it because there are now so many more positions that won't look at you without it, and as far as you are up the ladder now, the MBA will give you a wider playing field of possibility. I have gotten my last positions with the MBA edge and tout it now. My DD is going for a JD/MBA combined as law degrees are just not worth what they used to be. An MBA in the numbers area seems more valuable than marketing, HR or Management, so be sure you are able to concentrate on Finance or Accounting as those discipliines have less competition, and fewer women, so companies are trying to hire more women to level the playing field.  You have good experience and have moved up the ladder at your current position, so that is all positive.

 As far as other jobs and resumes, you are doing all the right things with customization, the missing link is the KNOW SOMEONE rule! Today you really have to network, using LinkedIn and other social media, asking around to find someone who can connect you directly to the companies you are applying to. Then they can walk your resume into HR to get you at the top of the stack.  Many companies still give referral hiring bonuses so there is a reward for them if you are hired. IF you are applying to large companies, use their EXACT verbiage in the resume as they are using computer scanners to leaf through resumes now, not human eyes, so if you use their words, it will get picked up faster - but you said you are customizing.

The research shows moms who work have kids who achieve more, so don't beat yourself up too hard! We teach are kids to become resilient, responsible and that work is important, too. And we let them know we love them. Sometimes it does not seem worth it, but when you can afford to help your kids with college, it will be much more meaningful.

-M

#Marie
Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006
In reply to: jen2075
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 7:45pm

Although I don't think I could do all that you are doing, it seems to suit you.  So I say since it is paid for, go ahead and steam through.  

My life isn't quite as hectic as yours, but I can still relate.  I am debating whether to do school full-time next year, or not.  It really will only be going from 8 credits to 12, but right now I kind of have everything dialed in and afraid to over do it.  

Work is busy, DD13 is having major issues and I can feel my small jump from 6 or 7 credits to 8 now.  Oh yea, and getting married in June!  DD13 activities, etc. etc.  

So again, I say "gitter done!"

p.s.  sorry about the raise thing.  I guess although I can see how maybe it upset them (it happened here and they were not happy) but they did NOT tell the employee it p*ssed them off.  They kept it to themselves.  

I still don't know that you really did anything wrong though.  

Serenity
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-27-2009
In reply to: jen2075
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 11:48am

Thanks for the advice.

You hit the nail on the head about networking as I am really lacking on that front. I am actually using my MBA to get more contacts (went into it with that in mind) and I have a pretty good Linkedin account and have tried to leverage the connections that I do have. It is little help at this point as I want to go in a little different direction than appraisal at this point and a lot of my contacts are in the same business.

JenAaron.jpg picture by jen2075


iVillage Member
Registered: 07-27-2009
In reply to: jen2075
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 11:40am

Sorry, yes it is May 2014. The fellowship covers the cost of all the classes that I need. I will only have to purchase books (and I am REALLY good at finding cheap books like a $200 book for $20 or less and then I can usually resell them for a small profit).

I will have to think about a few months in the future. The nature of the boys' sicknesses is very sudden and unexpected every time so who knows if they will be well or not then...They are both seemingly very healthy even today after the crazy weekend with Liam.

I too know about a non-sleeping baby and I feel your pain there...James didn't sleep through the night until he weaned and moved into his own room.

The salary issue really left a bad taste in my mouth. It makes me a little nervous to be working with people who get so bent out of shape over a simple request (what else are they going to blow up about?). I have been having reservations about taking on this new position, but I don't want to affect my image/career by backing out now. My plan is to stick it out and learn as much as possible while still sending out resumes for a better oportunity elsewhere.

JenAaron.jpg picture by jen2075


Avatar for poorboy2011
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-02-2011
In reply to: jen2075
Fri, 04-19-2013 - 2:13am

Education is always a gamble, and it often requries sacrifice. It sounds like an MBA will improve your prospects, but in real terms, what will it take for you to cash in on the degree? Will you have to get a different job? Will you have to relocate? How much improvement in income and work environment can you reasonably expect? What's the job placement record of your MBA program?

If the chances are good that you can do something with the degree, then I'd urge you to stick it out, especially if you received a fellowship. The end is in sight! (I'm assuming that the fellowship covers most or all of the costs. I'd definitely take advantage of this.)

Secondly, I have some graduate students who are also parents. In order to finish the degree, often people have to reprioritize. If they don't, then they either end up taking longer, or leaving the program. I know parenting is probably the most important thing to you right now, but if you want the degree, you may have to have the DH do more of the childrearing. You can't be so taxed that you're on the verge of tears, even if it's a hard season on everyone's health. This is not abandoing your maternal duties. This is just a temporary shifting of responsibilities -- a delay after which you will return refreshed and more devoted.

Sorry to hear about the salary negotiation. I don't see why they should make you feel bad about it. I mean, they said no. So why be an even bigger jerk and inflict unnecessary harm?

Hang in there. It's tough now, but it's not going to last forever. Soon the kids will be healthy, the work atmosphere will improve, and you'll be back to school pulling down those A's. You can do it!

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2008
In reply to: jen2075
Thu, 04-18-2013 - 10:17am
As for your current employer......they are out there...they need to wake up. Some day you will be gone.
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2008
In reply to: jen2075
Thu, 04-18-2013 - 10:16am

If it were me, I would suck it up (poor choice of words, but you get what I mean) and finish up.  The big man made this happen for a reason.  He means for you to finish.  When it's time to get a new job, it will come.  I am a firm believe that things happen for a reason.  This happened because of your previous hard work. 

As for kids.  WOW..what a lap full of hardship on you and your husband.  Sometimes despite all you can do these things happen.  Just continue to love and watch over them as you have and maybe things will turn around.  Maybe a second opinion on the babies would help, maybe not.  Have a good conversation with the doctor if you have not always done so.  I sincerely feel for you.  This has to be super stressful. 

{{{{HUGS}}}}} and I wish you less stress.  You've had enough for an elephant!!!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-14-2008
In reply to: jen2075
Thu, 04-18-2013 - 10:04am

Hi Jen,

I am assuming you would finish May 2014 and not 2013 or this would be a non issue. Does the fellowship cover all your costs? Curious. Because you were going to finish it on your own originally. This seems like a wonderful opportunity. Fast forward in your mind a few months with the health of the babies possibly being ok? What do things look like?

I am so feeling for  you right now with the sick babies. That must be sooooo stressful Jen. I don't know what the problem is, I hope it is resolvable and only a few one time things. My little girl has not slept at night since she was born(9 months old now). She wakes up between 2 and 4-5 times a night. We have tried the sleep training but everything seems to bother her, from each tooth she gets and a cold and an ear infection, and she is not even in daycare yet to catch things from other children. I am having trouble thinking of what it is going to be like when I go back to work soon here and I am still sleep deprived. It is nothing compared to having children in the hospital just wanted you to know I share your feelings. A seizure does not sound like your fault.

I wanted to let you know that what happened at work with asking for a pay raise was totally out of line. Employers should never treat their employees that way. All you did was ask. You are ambitious, and talented and very intelligent. If I were your employer I would be dissapointed if you didn't ask even if I could not give you the raise. It shows gusto! I really hope another job turns up for you soon.

You know what the balance is like, you kno what your breaking point is. Just consider it a few more days and see what your heart tells you.