Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Gettin' Down

This post is the opposite of whining about work... read on.

Work has been getting me down a bit lately. With a huge project ramping up and the number of contractors in my life doubling overnight I'm looking at every aspect of my work day turning into cramming something in between two other things that I already don't have time to do.

But then some meetings happened.

I was off this Monday and returned to work somewhat dizzy from my allergies, not really wanting to dive back into the world of capital projects. The first meeting was with the Infection Control officer who was impressed by my calm response to a sink she caused to overflow. This is a woman that my department used to be at odds with. I'm happy to say I've won her over by listening to her requirements and attempting to meet them. I must have been the first because I don't usually manage to meet all of them but just trying seems to have scored big points with her.

The next meeting had me sandwiched between two contractors and my bosses. One of the contractors lead of with, "I don't know what you're payin' this guy, but it's not nearly enough." I dug in my pocket to hand him a tip but I had no cash. Uuuuuuhhhh.... still chuckling at the irony, which was not lost on my superiors.

Later in the day when I finally got down to doing some actual, hands on work, I heard from a co-worker that the general contractor had been asking about me. I had been trying to give the impression that I'm easy to get along with and it's my job to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible. I guess it doesn't hurt that being charged with monitoring Life Safety measures makes me a fearsome sight in the eyes of outsiders. Once they find out that I have a truck load of responsibility and a thimble full of actual authority I'm sure we'll be able to settle into an easy working relationship.

Then the fire alarm system went haywire, keeping me from my lunch, but when I finally got to sit down it was across from a department manager who's always got good advice for me. When I told him that I felt like I was drowning he told me that it was all right because at least I was managing, "managing". He said it twice. Apparently my boss is so glad not to be stuck in the fray himself that he's got some leeway for the mistakes I make while I learn the job.

I guess the lesson learned is that as much as I would like this job to be like my previous experiences with chaos, running music festivals and such it's going to take a while. I'd like to be the guy on the ground with things running smoothly, using my expertise to thwart mishap and dodge calamity. Remembering back though, on the morning of my first fest I nearly threw up when I got out of bed and nearly got back in. It took a decade of running events before I got comfortable in the chaos. I'm hoping that decade pays off with a quicker acclimatization to this environment. I guess at some point though the work load has to peak and I'll manage to get my footing.

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1 comment:

Julia said...

It sounds to me like you've made good impressions all around at the job, which is helpful in the learning/adjusting process.

Hopefully the craziness DOES peak at some soon point. At least it seems like various people will have your back if it stretches longer.