A First Impression That Went Wrong

I have been working in my new role for about a month now. The rollout is slow and transitioning takes time. I am just getting to know all of the managers that I will be supporting and I am doing my best to make the best impression possible. I understand that I am a very junior employee and that I have to work extra hard to ensure I gain the trust and respect of senior leadership.

My first big event with the local leaders is a presentation, in which I am to train them in general Human Resources processes. Now I am not one of those people who gets nervous about presenting to groups, I actually LOVE presenting. I cannot wait for my chance to shine and show off.

A couple of days before the presentation my throat starts to tickle and scratch. No way. I am not sick. I run to Saje on my lunch break and spend $50 on essential oils, vapours, rubs, lozenges, throat spray and bath soak. I start drinking copious amounts of water, gargling with salt and dropping oregano oil. I can beat this sickness.

I wake up on the day of the presentation and can barely lift my head. My neck is stiff and I can’t swallow. Uh oh. But no way am I going to miss this opportunity to showcase my knowledge and prove myself. I do my best to cover up my sickness with concealer and blush but when I arrive at the office my supervisor takes one look at me and says, “what is wrong with you, your face is grey?” I let her know I wasn’t feeling too great and that I would be leaving after our morning presentation to go to the doctors. Maybe this was strep throat?

It took every bone in my body to stand up and deliver this presentation, every time I swallowed it felt like I was swallowing rocks and my eyes were drooping. Finally, I reached the end, I did it! I immediately grabbed an Uber and went to the doctor.

It wasn’t strep, but whatever it was, it was bad. I was totally out of commission for the next 5 days. Good thing it was the Canada 150 long weekend and I didn’t miss too much work.

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