I’d worked for my company for almost 8&½ years. In that time I’ve moved from several team and departments, worked my way up to the person they ask to step in when team leaders need someone to cover, only to have my team or department disbanded and have to start again. I’d only been back a work for a day when we were called into a meeting with the director. Yeah you know what I’m about to say…
The company had take the decision to close my department and we were been offered the choice of redundancy or redeployment.
It seemed everything was spiraling, my health, my home, my work… I was losing grip on my life and there was nothing I could do about it
To bring you back to 2012 I recently had to explain my reasons for returning to education and why I had chosen the communications discipline as one of the tasks for university. It is because I was made redundant. You can read the letter I wrote here.
Dear Fellow Redundant Employee,
Eighteen months ago I found myself in your shoes. For years I’d been honing my skills and helping others improve theirs through coaching, training, team building and problem solving. My bright career plans were brought to a crashing halt. I, too, was left thinking ‘what am I going to do with the rest of my life?’ It isn’t easy to change careers. It’s much easier to make excuses, to continue on the path most travelled and slip back into the accidental career one might just happen to be good at. Communication skills I have in abundance, so why on earth would I waste my time on a degree in Communications Studies?
Firstly, studying Communications is not about becoming qualified in communication skills. It’s about the art of communication. Something which has fascinated other disciplines for many years before Communication Studies declared itself a social science. As scholars we cross into the boundaries of these disciplines, historical, philosophical, sociological, political and more. To communicate not only do we speak but we write, we draw, we dance, we show expressions or maybe doing nothing at all says more than a thousand words even can. For me, who we are and why we behave the way we do have always fascinated me. As newborns the first skill we learn is communication: A baby cries to attract attention to their needs. The caregiver’s attention to the cry builds the foundation of their bond. The psychological depth of communication is intriguing to me.
Secondly, I discovered an enthusiasm for building websites, next came the passion for elements of design, soon followed by the fascination of how to get traffic to the sites I’d build and then social media brought the interaction into what had been a lonely hobby. When I said goodbye to my bright future with my former employer and the time came to answer the life altering question there was really only one answer. I want to work in Web Design and New Media Marketing.
Communication Studies maybe one of the youngest disciplines, but it is certainly one of the most fascinating and by studying New Media I am able to study design. I am also able to study into the depths of New Media Communications. I find the social media explosion over the recent years particularly interesting. We can remove the barriers preventing people from connecting around the world with shared interests. When ‘old’ media platforms fail in a crisis ‘new’ media keep networks of information flowing. People create new identities, separating their ‘real life’ personalities from their online selves. Others abuse the power of anonymity to cyber-bully, or stalk, or become predators in serious criminal activity. By studying how people behave online in comparison to their real life, we can gain an insight how people use communication in the converging technological age of the twenty-first century because communication is at the forefront of the up and coming generation.