My notice has been delivered to two members of senior management, dispensing with the usual proceedure of notifying my line manager directly. I have informed senior management of the state of affairs in my department–an exit gift to the people I still respect and, have to admit it, it’s a little bit of revenge on my part. The culprits have made my life miserable for the last two years, after all. I did not name names, except for my line manager, whose role had to be mentioned in describing what’s happening and whose identity couldn’t be disguised. To be fair, reports of the state of affairs in my department have already been making their way to senior management. What I have said all along was that I was not convinced senior management would care about the state of affairs. You don’t get these situations where no one seems to be in charge, all communication is conducted through gritted teeth and your line manager is declaring that what’s going on in the department isn’t his/her problem without some serious failing from above. If anything, I think my line manager will be slapped on the wrist and things will go on as they are. Thank god I’m out of there.
So, I’m expecting quite a backlash toward me personally, but it has not materialized yet. Yesterday, I got an email requesting my input on something teaching related. (I am on research leave at the moment so I don’t regularly go in to the office.) So it looks like no announcement has been made. Interesting. Probably an oversight, but it’s going to add to the ire directed toward me–I’m pretty certain most of the anger at my leaving will center around the fact that my teaching for next semester has to be covered at short notice. Because that’s obviously a good reason to resent someone. (For American readers, leaving mid-year is very common so covering teaching last minute like this not unusual.) But the lack of an annoucement suggests again that senior management feels no responsibility here. Senior management should be aware that the staff need to know that I’m leaving in order to deal with the problem of acquiring cover–why has this message not been delivered? Incompetence? Maybe senior management have been in chock-a-block meetings for days. But how long does it take to write and email? Perhaps HR is consulting a lawyer to determine if I have a constructive dismissal case. Watch this space. I think D-Day is yet to come.
In other news, I’ve spoken to the woman I interviewed with a few weeks back. Regardless of what her email sounded like, I’m being given no promises about the job that will be available in a couple months. She seemed much more certain that some freelance work would be available to me. This has started to feel a bit too similar to my hourly paid teaching days when I was constantly promised teaching that would never materialized. In semesters when I was very unlucky I would find myself without a job, regardless of all the rosy accounts of teaching that needed cover. So I am moving on. I’m setting myself up to freelance, which requires a little bit of legal stuff, gettting a website, getting business cards and lots of other little tasks, all involving learning new things that I’d never have encountered in an academic job. It’s keeping me really busy, hence the lack of posts lately. I’m a little worried about whether I’ll be successful at this, but I’m also very excited. It will feel good to call the shots for a while. Then if the previously mentioned job materializes, I can take it not because I have no other options, but because I want to. Or I can say no, take the freelancing work and add those tasks to my portfolio.