I had an email exchange today with the President of a prominent non-profit organization. As we both attended a seminar this week on microfinance and I mentioned my future plans of getting an MBA or heading to the Peace Corps, his response to my interest in taking on a volunteer position was not entirely surprising:
“I sensed from your question that, no matter what, you were leaving Seattle fairly soon.”
Over the past several weeks I’ve been in contact with multiple groups, all in an attempt — no, in a desire — to participate in their efforts, to provide a bit of assistance on the side while also learning about the very businesses I want to explore and help after this little journey’s all done.
I’ve unfortunately been met with indifference and questioning of my dedication to various causes. And it’s happening in my job as well.
It’s left me with the very pressing, yet all-too-common question that many MBA applicants face: when is the best time to tell your manager/supervisor/local sage that you’re making the leap? After all the frustrations I’ve encountered, I’ve concluded that never ever ever is the best answer.
I’m not someone who likes to withhold information from people that have a firm hand in my development as a person and employee. Call me weak if you will, but I’ll simply say that I’m a product of finding worth in community and direct, brutal honesty. I can’t hide behind a curtain for a prolonged amount of time and keep a straight face.
Maybe in a future role as a business leader, this approach will reap rewards for the clientele I serve. But for now, all it’s done is place me in a position where I wish the next step would come sooner.