My Year With KKday Singapore, My First Resignation

January 30, 2017

When I joined KKday, I was only 20 — hardly an adult yet my superiors trusted me to be one. To say that I enjoy my job would be an understatement, since I absolutely love my colleagues and the company is dear to me, especially when I was there when the Singapore office was only beginning. I never foresaw myself leaving KKday just after ten months, a terribly short amount of time by any means, but that's growing up and that's life as an adult — filled with surprises.

Ironically, the beginning of my journey with KKday came as a surprise to many as well. Who knew I'd join a company headquartered in Taiwan when I swore that I'm done with Chinese after secondary school? Guess you can never speak too soon.

Although a grind at first, I came to love Chinese language eventually, and I finally understood why Taiwanese feel so strongly about traditional Chinese. The beauty of traditional Chinese is something most Singaporeans can't comprehend since we don't grow up with the language. 沒有心的爱 is not comparable to 愛.

Putting in utmost efforts in an attempt to better communicate with my colleagues, I started following Taiwan dramas to improve my Chinese. My efforts were eventually recognised when people around me expressed that my Chinese improved tremendously. Even colleagues I haven't talked to in a few months conveyed their surprise at my quick acquisition of their slangs and Taiwanese (台语), their version of hokkien. Hey, that's what happens when you chat in Chinese on a daily basis.

But all good things must come to an end.

What the TV shows I watch didn't prepare me for is the emotional roller coaster prior to resignation when you're on good terms with your superiors, get along well with your colleagues and love your job. Truth be told, I've had a few offers in between but each time, I told myself it's not the time yet. When it boils down to it, I'll never be ready to leave this company that's growing at rapid speed, a company I'm used to pitching about whether to potential clients or people around me.

There and then, it was a choice of a new opportunity VS a company I've grown attached to, colleagues I click with, a job I love. Not forgetting to weigh in the pros and cons, factoring in pay, benefits and whatnot. Eventually I made the painful decision and I tendered my first official resignation letter. It was less dramatic than I imagined — TV shows often portrayed overworked people rage quitting by slamming their printed resignation letter on their boss' table, but what happens when you're on good terms with your colleagues and genuinely want to help as much as possible before you leave?

After informing my colleagues of my decision, I merely printed my resignation and passed it to my direct superior. And that's that. That was my goodbye. I announced my decisions to some of my colleagues in Taiwan over a few drinks when I was there and soon, more colleagues came to know about my resignation.

The annual company dinner was a bittersweet affair as I reunited with the colleagues I haven't seen in half a year, but we knew that could possibly be the last time we meet. I remember that night filled with hugs — the first hugs since our last meeting and some final hugs before I left. I remember the screams of excitements that we were seeing each other again, chit-chatting and catching up, laughter over the silliest things and lastly, tears.

During the after party when I was standing around waiting for more drinks and capturing photos for memories, my manager — someone I respect a lot both work-wise and personally — came up to me and told me he knew I was leaving. It took me by surprise; while I knew that he was definitely informed of my decision to leave, I never expected a farewell speech from him. Regrettably, I only remember 50% of his speech that left me in tears because we had a lot to drink by then but I know I'll always keep those words close to my heart.

More colleagues came up to me and offered me hugs and words of comfort, even some whom I haven't met in real life or spoken a word to. I took the time to get to know each colleague more personally, beyond a working level. I savoured that moment because I knew I'm gonna miss that night, and dammit, I do. I wish that night lasted much longer but looking back, I've already been incredibly blessed.

Dream course, done.
Dream internship, over.
Dream job, checked.

Thank god for all the opportunities given. 

To my colleagues, thank you for always taking care of me, treating me like your little sister, watching out for me and bringing me to places (I'd like to annoying remind everyone for the last time that I'm born in 1996 HAHA). Thank you for taking time off to have a few drinks with me no matter how tiring your day has been. Thank you for trusting this inexperienced girl with big dreams, and for making my first job a fun and fulfilling experience.

To my interns past and present, thank you for teaching me as much as I hoped I had taught you. It's been a pleasure knowing you through the interviews and months after.

To KKday, thank you for making it so hard to leave.

If you want to grow, you have to let go — I'm taking comfort in these words now because saying goodbye is painful, and I'm leaving behind so much of what I love.

For someone who never liked change and always chased stability,  this is a huge leap of faith. I don't know what the future brings, and it's a bleary path ahead but one thing's for sure, this is a stepping stone to the road much ahead. I'm back where everything started — this time, I returned a little more experienced and I believe that'll be the case several times over.

How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard. Indeed.

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