Long Term Service

Is it worth staying at a company for more than 5 years? My simple answer is no. Not unless you want to progress into management and climb the ladder of hierarchy.

I’ve been at the same company for 12 years. I was asked, in the past, if I wanted to train as a team manager but I turned it down. The reason being that I’ve done the ‘responsibility’ thing at other companies. I’ve done the jobs where I’ve been in charge of other people, where I’ve been in charge of departments, jobs where I’ve had to exert authority, or where I’ve been in charge of personal details. Jobs where the responsibility meant that I needed to work over often as I needed to make sure that things got done, materials were got in on time, orders could be despatched on time, or staff knew that they were being taken care of in the company. I’ve had the nice job titles that impressed people.

It all changed when, at a particular manufacturing company I was working for, I found that the guys on the shop floor where earning more money than those of us working in the offices. What I mean is that they were earning per week what I and others were making per month. I then found a very nondescript job of entering data that paid the same money and was shorter hours, and it was right across the road from where I lived. Since then I’ve looked for the money and an easy life. 12 years ago I figured the call centre fell right into this category.

For several years I earned a lot in commission from the sales I made. It paid off big time. Then the FCA decided that agents (in any company) should not have commission as the proverbial carrot to motivate us. It was decided that a basic and a small bonus based on quality of calls was what was needed. I lost a lot of money in commission, as did many of my colleagues. However, at my age this job suits me. I feel too old for the responsibility that had in my 20’s and 30’s. I don’t want it any longer. I just want a job that I can do and then it leave at work, so I can go home free from stress.

Over the 12 years I’ve been in different departments and I’ve learnt a lot about the company. You’d think that experience would be greatly appreciated and looked after. Far from it. Those of us who have been there many years are being pushed out of the door, whether they’re trying to fire us for stupid things or whether they’re giving us a 1% pay increase, they are trying to make life difficult for us. People who have been at the company just a short while have had £500 pay rise while us ‘oldies’ have had £150 to put it in a nutshell. They’re saying that they’re trying to level out the pay structure. Experience means nothing.

I’m now in my 50’s and regardless of what the government says, companies do not readily employ older people. I just want an easy life at work but I want to be treated fairly. I want my experience to be worth something. But it seems that loyalty to a company means nothing. Unless I’m eager to climb over people, lick ass, and climb the ladder I’m considered worthless. And how many people in their 50’s want to do this? Ageism is alive and kicking in British companies regardless of what is being said in public.


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