Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The New Role

Initially one thought the work was not done well, plans forming in the mind to make improvements, dropping the manual job of entering stuff in a separate spreadsheet, instead thinking that extracting a report from the tool will dictate work like a breeze. What a moron! Deluded that innate intelligence, insouciance and luck will make the job easier, another overconfident idiot walking naively to the lion’s den, a naïve lamb to the slaughter.  Soon one is confused, dazed and bewildered, scrambling to respond to emails, lost in the tumult of work traveling at the speed of light, aware that more organized managers stay calm, one thinks the work volume is larger than anyone else. What a mess, looking around for help (panic just below the surface), finding assistance from a French lady and a middle aged manager, showing their ordered demeanor while one flops from one near disaster to another. One was filled with overconfidence, a walk in the park; one’s clever plans would make it, trying all sorts of new things when one just needed a notebook and a daily check list. The trick was to focus and complete one task at a time, keep your wits despite the onslaught of emails, problem tickets and stressful meetings.

But the mind reels from blow to blow: a sudden request to enter time sheets, to reconcile figures, to schedule meetings, an emergency rush job, change in personnel, missing team mates, people without commonsense, looking for someone to blame. It is a milieu of confusion or rather the hectic bustle of ethereal work invisible to the eye: emails, online chats, meeting invites, all occurring in cyber space, eyes glued to the computer screen (and wrestling with abstraction). One attempts to use white boards to visually manage work, to write check list or reminders, to unearth all the tasks in mind and bring out in the open, plus the need to communicate by phone or emails, all under deadlines, hampered by poor leadership and clueless supervisors. To survive is to follow a work flow process, to intelligently use tools at hand,  master the spread sheet one scoffed at, preferring to keep everything in mind and wing it like some hero until one finds he is unprepared, a sure recipe for disaster. One gets to the basics: write a TO DO list daily, keep a notebook, read your emails and plan meetings.

In the early months, one was buried in customer demands, with never ending wants, the mind jumping from one task to another, planning work at home or at weekends but lost in distraction of television, after all one needs time to rest and keep sane. The program has sophisticated dashboards and filters, extracting reports to check status and organize work, but one did not master the craft, instead relying on experience to survive the daily grind. In the end, the work is not difficult, one’s ignorance, naiveté and overconfidence had blinded one to the challenge, as the onslaught pummeled him without mercy, one must control his emotions (or cultivate detachment) and do the task one by one, rising above work that came like the flood that drowned New Orleans after the levees broke.

NEW ROLE + NEW AUDIT PROCEDURES + NEW TOOLS + PREASSURE and STRESS + VOLUME OF WORK was a tsunami the washed over the overconfident moron.

So what is the plan?


Hence, one goes to work, look at the dashboard, extract report by status and do the job required: follow-up, plan meetings, write emails. It’s that simple.

No comments: