My Brash Young Adult story published here June 1st, provided an account of my introduction into the full time working world.
This is a continuation of that story which includes a dispelling of some youthful ideals. I was a bit reckless following my own standards, but then I learned the older adults were, too, in the interest, I suppose, of what they believed to be justifiably good business practices.
I could not quell my restlessness that resurfaced not too long after that frustrated employment change effort I first wrote about. Once again I sought to satisfy this need for more challenge in my work by seeking employment at a different business, but locally. They said they wanted to hire me, but had to resolve some issues beyond my control.
Little did I know, there was an unwritten understanding among the major employers in town, national companies, banks and other establishments that they would not hire employees from each other. If they did hire another's employee, I expect they wanted to be certain that competitive salaries didn't enter into the mix. This was the matter my prospective employer had to resolve with my then employer.
Because of the efforts of my previously described employer-guardians, as I now thought of them, (one was the son of the company president, the other my immediate supervisor,) they prevailed upon the president of the company to act in a manner I would want. I could not believe it when I heard, that this top national company official, of the second largest corporation in the country in their line of business, had met with the president of the local bank, where I had applied for a job. I was told they had to discuss my situation, agree they would let me change jobs, then establish there would be no hard feelings between them. I began later to wonder, just how far such business management networks extended.
I was allowed to change employers, but unfortunately, once I mastered that bank position, I immediately wanted something new. I inquired about the opportunities for my advancement now, considering I had been one of the two first women they had ever selected to attend special banking classes. I was among the top performers completing that class that was now no longer gender limited to just males. The question to my bank vice president employer was, what other positions did they have for me, coupled with increased salary? I indicated a willingness to pursue additional education and training they might require.
Imagine my disappointment when I learned just how low "the glass ceiling" for a woman was at the bank. Any move would be, at best, basically lateral, or would consist of a title and little more. Even that wouldn't happen until someone then in that position retired. Plus, that would be as far as I could go there. I was already frustrated to know I was making considerably less than my male, married with children, co-worker, who was employed after I was hired. This clearly illustrated my gender as a college educated woman (he didn't have any post high school education) and my single marital status with financial obligations of my own, were hardly assets deserving of a higher pay range. They were, possibly even liabilities for me.
About that time, a change in my personal life resulted in ending an "affair of the heart," as certain relationships are sometimes described. This added momentum to "my restless nature" surfacing once more. I became very discontented, making successive arrangements over a period of time for several employment changes that I later cancelled each time, a couple of weeks before I was to start work. One was a position I had accepted at a college some miles away to which I had planned to commute, together with a younger acquaintance who had simultaneously been hired at that same institution.
After accepting my position, on a first meeting with her parents, I was told how pleased they were that she would be with me, with words to the effect I was being viewed as being responsible for her well-being. This was a responsibility I did not want. I had enough of my own. So, for that reason and other second thoughts, I withdrew from that employment position, assuring her she would do quite well without my presence.
I stressed the opportunities she would have to meet new and interesting young people her age with wider interests than those she knew in our town. Additionally, she could begin to pursue a college education. That wasn't enough motivation for her, I guess, as I learned later she withdrew from her position, too. I know the high level university administrator for whom I was to work was more than a little unhappy with my decision. I was angrily told that if I ever applied for employment there again, I would not be looked upon favorably, to put it mildly.
I could have conducted myself better in these employment pursuits, and resolving my various personal issues. I certainly did subject myself and others to considerable drama. I blithely proceeded ahead during this early period as a young adult, but I was not yet finished creating complexities in the manner with which I was directing my life.
Then, an opportunity for me arose at the local radio station owned by the same family who published the local newspaper, but I'll save the portion of this story for later.