So I quit.
After years of anguish, ups and downs, various emotions, I decided to move on.
As if it wasn't obvious already, I never liked this job. I still made sure I was really good at it though - made sure my teams liked me, the clients liked me and that the audit was a quality audit. I went back and forth on it for years. I even started blogging as a form of therapy years ago so I could vent about some of the absurdities of this job. I struggled because I was debating whether it was worth it to become an Audit Partner - were these short term pains all worth it for the long term gains. So I stayed and kept plugging away, working my way up the ladder. Then, as the industry changed, the work became more and more unbearable. The client service went away, and our work became more fear-based. The auditors were doing audits to present a product to their auditors (the PCAOB). While some saw this going away, I didn't. I tried to visualize myself as a Partner going through this, and I just couldn't. I started to value happiness more over money. I spoke to several partners during this time, and heard their cases to convince me to stay. I spoke to several other individuals who left the audit firm - the one thing they all shared was that they were happy they made the move.
To some, it may have been just a matter of time before I quit, but there was a period when I genuinely believed that in spite of the job itself, the holy grail (partnership) would be worth it. This kept me going. I couldn't do it anymore.
I have more to say here, but I have to go. One thing though - I'm considering pivoting to write about working in private and dealing with the auditors - let me know if this is something you'd be interested in. If that is the case, I'll keep this blog alive. Otherwise - it's been a fun ride...