“…You will be sorely missed”
My eyes became moist as I wrote the message on John’s farewell card. He was retiring this month end, after serving our company for 32 years.
When I joined the team eight years ago, John had ensured that I felt welcome in the team. He was very patient while I picked up the necessary skills and nuances required to be a payroll accountant. It wasn’t very easy fitting into the role for someone straight out of college, but John made the transition seem so easy. His patience and perseverance are unmatched in the entire department, and I realized that as I read some of the messages written by other co-workers. Almost everyone seemed to have credited John for their success and thanked him for the mentorship.
Having spent a significant part of his life in this organization, John had garnered enormous respect and admiration from the CEO as well as his peers from other departments. Although John started out as a payroll assistant at our company, his hard work and strong work ethic fueled his progression and for the last 10 years, he had been the Head of Finance. We believe that his successor will have big shoes to fill, after he retires.
John had plans to spend his retirement with his son’s family in his hometown. He had not spent a lot of time with his grandchildren who were now in primary school. He loved teaching; his love for numbers was well known in our department. I would not be surprised if John started tutoring kids on Math.
Farewells are such poignant occasions where you experience mixed emotions. While you are happy for the person moving on, often to better places, you are also sad especially if you shared some good times with them. Over an extended duration, colleagues often become friends, and that’s when their leaving hurts most.
While I handed over the card to Maria across her desk, she quipped, “John is moving to his hometown. I just hope he does not misplace this card which holds all these lovely messages from us.” She had highlighted a valid point.
I wondered if there was a better way to do this, so that John could treasure this card, filled with all our best wishes, forever.
Meanwhile, Raj, our techie said, “Well, there is a way. We could have used a digital e-card instead. They’re simple to set up, easy to update and available for ever.”
Looks like the digital world has an answer to all of our challenges. Digital e-cards are the new avatar of our ever-loved greeting cards of yesteryears, yet they come with awesome flexibility and convenience. While the recipient will miss our physical presence, our memories and the kudos penned at farewell will forever stay with them, reminding them of the good times we spent together.
Until we meet again…