Who Will Hold Your Hand? – Stories from 10 years at Google
Inês Paler, Coach, Mom, Traveler
Who will hold your hand?
My manager asked me this and I was caught off guard. Me, sick? Hold my hand? Are you kidding me? Can we go back to talking business, please?
“I’ll tell you what. It won’t be Google”. Bummer. My manager was not giving it up… “Okay. I hear you. It’s important to have friends and I am away from my family. I’ll make sure to join a club. ” My reply didn’t land very well and was obviously insufficient.
Anyway, I had to stay at home for a while to recover. Who will come to hold my hand?
Google did. Sure, some people from the MBA sent messages and a few came to visit. They were already my friends and late night companions for projects, study time and venting.
But my manager came and held my hand. My teammates came and brought food and chocolates. They offered their ongoing help to go to the pharmacy, change my bandages, talk or sit quietly. No one judged me or said “I told you so” / “I knew this would happen”. They gave me comfort and support.
Who will hold my hand? Those I connect with, either with work, love, studies, family ties or hobbies. And they did.
Google, as any company, is not a person. It can’t possibly hold your hand. But the people that work there, all of them, make Google.
It is more than the sum of the parts. The interactions, the environment, the context… it all becomes the company – far more than the products or services it sells.
And with that episode, as in many others, I knew I was in the right place. And that it was time to change and make significant changes to my life, if I were to remain healthy and be happy.
Struggling with Work-Life Balance? Coaching might be just what you need to find your equilibrium. I would love to help you so if you are interested, visit me at Coaching for Me or just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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