I remember

When I first stepped into the new office in December, there were only few people eating a blue/red bento boxes at their own desks. The floor was still cement, the ceiling was like it was about to break at any minute, and I could still see some air-conditioner’s cables hanging in it. The wooden separation wasn’t finished and furnished – when I knocked it, it was hollow – and I was interviewed in a small corner separated by white boards from the main “office”.

It was a fresh three-months old startup after all. It was a child company of a really huge and successful technology service company in Indonesia. The business model adopted that of someone else in another country – and they wanted to apply it here in Indonesia, hoping we could “help those clients” by “bringing them customers”. The office itself was adjacent to its parent’s company so founders came and went between two. The air of “start-up company” was so vivid. It was nice having able to see people building it fresh, toward a goal and its vision.

The interview went awkward by my opinion. I didn’t expect I would be asked all about business and all – not even one about technology or whatever I wrote in the CV. I was surprised they didn’t even need anything from me, not even copy of my academic transcript. Not about my expertise in any field. I quickly felt that I should have stepped back, but I had no choice since I had been unemployed for some months already.

And then it happened – was beyond my expectation but couldn’t wish better – I finally sat in Engineering desk. Suddenly, in my first weeks here, I feel the air of “start-up” quickly disappeared. It was true that people build everything from anew and we created many plans, but I felt like I was not supposed to be here. There wasn’t any briefing. There was no clear role. Your career title spoke nothing. I didn’t effing know who my boss was or what product this company made. People just started doing their jobs and left me wondering what I could do to help since I had zero knowledge on every field. I was instead told to “be proactive and do whatever you believe is right to do” then left me alone to do whatever I wanted.

It sounded like it was a dream job, wasn’t it? No. It only felt good for a day or two, but for an entire six months it felt like hell. Why didn’t I involve myself, then? The answer is: I tried – that was why I could endure this for six months. I really enjoyed a project my friend invited me but when it ended, I was stuck back in my desk again contemplating about my existence. I initiated to be a firefighter at first, but no one heard me so I no longer bother giving a suggestion anymore. Then I became a self-proclaimed “quality-checker”, helped entering data, sorting chaotic emails and cc them to right departments, but even after all this, I still felt hollow. Every morning before I get up, I wonder what I should do in the office or my presence wasn’t needed there.

Was this article guilt-tripping my employer and spreading hate? No, just stating out the fact and letting go my anger so I could move on. People in the office might have seen me doing nothing and started gossip (Yea – I didn’t know how they thought I was involved romantically with a founder that I should raise my middle finger to shut his fucking mouth… If he overheard me saying “suka”, bad for him, it was a swearing word. Blyat). Since I sat in new office last month, people stopped talking to me because they were too busy and I stopped talking to them unless necessary. I could safely say I had no bound with anyone anymore so even if I leave, there’s no difference.

So I opt to leave.