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Want to leave current contract

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    Want to leave current contract

    HI All, my first post

    I started a new contract a couple of months ago and it's hell on earth. Extremely long hours, very stressful, awful politics and a huge blame culture - everyone doing teh crazy hours, not just me. Simply put, i need to leave fast. I have't slept properly for about a month and feel completely overwhelmed and stressed and sometimes i look back on my day and know i handled things terribly but im pretty stressed at the moemnt and its making me ill.

    My development lead (who reports into me) has just quit, citing stress and saying he wants to leave immediately. I need to say that this is nothing to do with me, we get on very well and i've really tried to provide support for him but met serious resistance form above in getting him what he needs.

    I handed in my notice and im in the middle of my notice now, and i feel like i cant go on. I have far too much to do in a very short space of time and i just cant do it

    Can I just walk out citing stress? pretty sure a doctor would sign me off in the condition i'm in at the moment anyway.

    I've totally bitten off more than i can chew here - not so much with the role, i have all the experience needed ten times over to manage the piece of work, so its not a technical thing, but its the politics, ridiculous expectations and underhandedness. im beginning to feel completley paranoid with every email taht i cant answer the phone to anyone. i feel like i don't belong there at all and don't trust a single person. frankly its awful.

    for the record, I have a solid background, have been contracting for 15 years and have great network and refernces, so deep down i know it isn't me, but its destroying my confidence.

    Any advice?

    Thanks

    #2
    Get a doctor's note. Inform the agency that due to circumstances outside of your control, you'll be unable to fulfil the contract. Your health is not worth the contract.

    Failing that engineer a sacking. Be creative. Have fun with it! Here are some suggestions.
    1. Turn up to work with a bottle of whisky and start drinking
    2. Accidentally spill coffee over someone important
    3. Park your car in the MD's space
    Down with racism. Long live miscegenation!

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by blossom View Post
      HI All, my first post

      I started a new contract a couple of months ago and it's hell on earth. Extremely long hours, very stressful, awful politics and a huge blame culture - everyone doing teh crazy hours, not just me. Simply put, i need to leave fast. I have't slept properly for about a month and feel completely overwhelmed and stressed and sometimes i look back on my day and know i handled things terribly but im pretty stressed at the moemnt and its making me ill.

      My development lead (who reports into me) has just quit, citing stress and saying he wants to leave immediately. I need to say that this is nothing to do with me, we get on very well and i've really tried to provide support for him but met serious resistance form above in getting him what he needs.

      I handed in my notice and im in the middle of my notice now, and i feel like i cant go on. I have far too much to do in a very short space of time and i just cant do it

      Can I just walk out citing stress? pretty sure a doctor would sign me off in the condition i'm in at the moment anyway.

      I've totally bitten off more than i can chew here - not so much with the role, i have all the experience needed ten times over to manage the piece of work, so its not a technical thing, but its the politics, ridiculous expectations and underhandedness. im beginning to feel completley paranoid with every email taht i cant answer the phone to anyone. i feel like i don't belong there at all and don't trust a single person. frankly its awful.

      for the record, I have a solid background, have been contracting for 15 years and have great network and refernces, so deep down i know it isn't me, but its destroying my confidence.

      Any advice?

      Thanks
      Yeah just stop worrying

      honest, just let the anger wash all over you. Go home a bit earlier, respond to anger by being professional, don't respond by being angry. It will take a few days to "switch your emotions off" but it is possible. Float above the fray, pretend they're all nice people, even if they aren't, smile and greet people, make small talk even if you hate their guts. But above all go home early. There is no point in staying late because the objectives are not achievable, even if you do.



      Frayed tempers in projects are fairly normal though some places are worse than others and bad projects will always lead to people going to war. Good practice to learn to deal with it.
      I'm alright Jack

      Comment


        #4
        Remember that at this stage your inability to complete any tasks is not your problem. It's theirs.
        Down with racism. Long live miscegenation!

        Comment


          #5
          Hi Blossom and so sorry to hear your situation.

          It can be a nightmare balancing your professional commitment to a role against your personal health, and I really feel for you. You said you are half way through your notice period - how long do you have to go? Even if it is all looking bleak, if you can see the end date now and each day as a step towards that, it may help you to cope a bit better with it.

          We all know that contractors are expected to put in the effort to get things done, but there has to be a limit. With your dev lead leaving and the project in such a mess, your client has to appreciate how much they need to keep people like you on side and functioning. Is there no way you can talk to your hiring manager and tell them that you cannot keep working these hours and with this stress, and that you are going to start working more sensible hours. Also talking to him/her about what it would be sensible to try to achieve over the remainder of your time there, rather than just firefighting until your last day and then (as they would see it) leaving them in the lurch. You probably have a lot of knowledge of what the current issues are and perhaps some good insight on how to fix them - can you convince them that your remaining time is better spent at a more strategic level identifying how to get them out of the mess rather than on the front line?

          Also, at the end of the day, the project sounds pretty screwed anyway, you are leaving soon and someone else will have to pick up the mess, and so if you do 12 hour days rather than 18 hour ones how much difference will it make in the long run? Just because you are a contractor, they can't expect you to work every hour God sends on this.

          From your current position, it may be that whatever you do you will not walk out of there with much credit having handed in your notice in the middle of the mess, and with the blame culture etc you talk about. However, what you do from here may well have some small impact on how they see you and more importantly on how you see yourself. Nobody but you knows whether you can cope with however long remains on your contract, but if you can find something positive you can do to put them in a better position when you do go, you can leave with your head held high knowing yo did what you could.

          Of course that might all be esoteric and bs in the reality of your situation - your hiring manager could well be useless and just expect you to get on with fighting the fires at the coalface (if you will pardon mixed metaphors) and you just have to find a way to get through the next few weeks. Walking out without notice citing stress is probably not the best solution regardless, as it would give the client the opportunity to blame it on you not being up to the job. But only you will know whether you can cope with a few more weeks.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by NotAllThere View Post
            Get a doctor's note. Inform the agency that due to circumstances outside of your control, you'll be unable to fulfil the contract. Your health is not worth the contract.

            Failing that engineer a sacking. Be creative. Have fun with it! Here are some suggestions.
            1. Turn up to work with a bottle of whisky and start drinking
            2. Accidentally spill coffee over someone important
            3. Park your car in the MD's space


            Haha thank you that really made me smile, much needed on a day like today.

            Comment


              #7
              Thank you all for the genuinely constructive replies. Some good advice from all of you, much appreciated.

              I'm going to try the route of talking to them about what is achievable in the next two weeks and focus on that (assuming I don't have a major wobble in the meantime).

              The project is pretty screwed and not much I can do is going to change that. I've never left a project on bad terms before and i cant bear to do that.

              If I fail miserably and miss some key deadlines (which will ultimately impact the wider programme and know out release dates etc), can they blame me? Could I be sued for incompetence? I know that's what my PI is for, but what if I have handled things badly? I've tried to implement improvements and been totally shot down. I've asked for help on particular things and been shot down, not support in place and I had no handover at all, in fact my hiring manage met me on day one and i didn't see of hear form him for a week. He just left me to it and within 48 hours I was receiving stroppy phonecalls and email from several people for things not having been done and things needing doing urgently.

              I'm hoping that the stress has just majorly scewed my perspective and that I'm being completely paranoid!

              It certainly is good experience in the long run - the warning signs were there in the interview (and on Glassdoor, not that I really believe those) but i thought the project looked really interesting.

              Also - just about every contract ive had over the last decade has been through people I have worked with previously. This one was through and agency so I didn't know anyone. Really makes me think about how I can ensure a role is right for all parties going forward.

              Comment


                #8
                Walk. Right now.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Exercise your right to substitution?
                  'CUK forum personality of 2011 - Winner - Yes really!!!!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I really see the main problem here is the long hours, if you stop doing the long hours you will feel a lot better, cutting the hours is far more preferable to walking. Nothing like a good night's sleep, but you can never get one doing long hours.
                    I'm alright Jack

                    Comment

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