I Hate Limbo

8 :00am - Today is Superbowl Monday.

Not just because yesterday was Superbowl Sunday, but because today is officially game day for me. The Chairman of my division, along with the head of Human Resources. has requested a call with me today at 10:30am.

This is it. This is the call that may determine the next 47 weeks of my year. My last year as an executive.

Rumors are flying that they need to consolidate divisions and I still haven't figured out what I am going to be when I grow up. The head of HR started this conversation with me a few weeks ago. I told her the truth: I don't want to be an executive after my contract is over at the end of the year. I am not sure what I want to do next. I floated the idea of converting and extending my contract to an independent producer role. She liked that except, "The company won't do any extensions right now."

So I can continue to "guess and stress" about how it's all going to play out.

11:00am - The call went well-ISH.

Our Chairman could not have been more complimentary and thoughtful in her explanation of the restructure. My current boss will become President of an additional network, but he will no longer be in charge of my department. My counterpart at one of our other networks will become the head of Original Programming for both networks (meaning that he is keeping his old job and will be taking over mine). He will also take over Scripted Programming for two additional networks, but not Unscripted Programming. He will now also report to our old boss who currently runs the studio--an entirely differs entity--but still has had a hand in the various networks. The other former network President will take on a new business development role.

If you are confused, you should be. Welcome to Hollywood!

So what's my role in all of this? Good question. They apparently don't want to "lay me off" nor "buy me out," but they also are not willing to segue me into an immediate producer deal role either. I am in limbo.

I hate limbo.

I try to avoid limbo at all costs. Limbo sucks. I like clarity. I like black and white. I don't like gray. I only like gray in paint swatches and cashmere sweaters.  I don’t like it in life at all.  So they started pitching me some kind of interim role in the "restructure." I would say "consultant," but I am not allowed to use the word "consultant," because it triggers bad things corporately. I don't mind the word consultant, but this corporation says it is a no-no. (I think it launches you into immediate bonus ineligibility and other terrible things like no health insurance, corporate email or permanent parking spaces.) So I suggested "Producer." They like "Producer," but not yet.

They say they "need" me for this transition. (They don't actually need me for this transition, but they need me to tow the line during this transition.)

I tried to be ok with this. I should be flattered that the Chairman spent an hour on the phone with me to reiterate my value, to remind me of the hit shows that I have brought to this network, the awards and accolades I have received of late. I have nothing to worry about. This is what I want after all and yet...

I feel worried.