Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The process of exits

Recently, I read the most amazing book.  A book that had me sobbing during the Preface and keeping me weeping until the end.  Not the feel good book of the year.  Great books to me seldom are. 

The book was Unsaid.  You can decide if it's for you.  Me, I run around knocking on stranger's doors trying to get them to read it.  And I don't get any royalties or residuals.

Here is how it starts. The narrator-a veterinarian- is dead, recounting her life post-death.

In my experience-and I've had more than my share- endings rarely go well.  There is absolutely nothing life affirming about death.  You'd think that, given the prevalence and irrevocability of death, whoever or whatever put  the whole thing together would've given a little more attention to the process of exit. 

Maybe next time. 

Endings rarely go well. That is so profound.  So simply.  So true.  I read this paragraph way too often.  It is riveting to me. 

Switching to work stuff, I love hiring.  I love talking about HR work.  Recently, I had a couple of different inquiries by people who were interested in HR work.  One of the areas I try to highlight is a realistic perspective of what the work really is.

I hear - I love people.   Great.  Sometimes you get to see people AT THEIR WORST.  Remember this when you recall loving people.   When they yell at you.  When they are sick.  When they are difficult. 

Our work sometimes involve endings.  Endings may rarely go well but it's our work to try.  That takes a different interest and skill to help people transition well. The question I often ask myself is this:  Is there anything that I personally can do to make this situation any better for all involved?  If yes, then I have to do it. 99.9% of the time, the answer is yes. 

Now please, go read the book.


Jennifer V. Miller said...


Like we talked about at lunch the other day-- nothing lasts forever. We humans really don't like to think about the finality that exits represent. That's probably why we're terrible at them.

Sounds like I need to get that book.

Deirdre said...

Thanks for the note! :) The book is worth the read. Just thinking about exits - in general - is something.