Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

A week in review

Posted: November 18, 2011 in Life, Work
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Collage of Oslo.

Image via Wikipedia

It is about 10pm and I am sitting in a hotel room in Oslo hoping that my laptop battery will last a while longer. I have no intention to get up from the bed and find the power cord. I have spent the whole week here on business and it has been a very productive, fun and all in all great week. The only thing that is not so fun is… staying in a hotel. Being in a hotel on holidays is fun. Being in a hotel with a group of people together on a business trip is fun. Staying in a hotel on your own while on business is very, very boring.

When I arrived I had the fortune that a good friend also was in town for business so we met up for dinner and had a bottle of bubbly… and then another one… and then a few more glasses. We had a blast. I was, surprisingly enough, pretty fine the next morning. My friend however was not. I was woken up by a text simply stating: “I hate you” … followed by several other texts throughout the day describing her less than ideal state. For once it was not me feeling totally washed out.

The week itself was filled with coffee, meetings after meetings, great food, good laughs, lots of new things learned and a really good time – and that was just in work. The rest of the time I had a quite failed attempt at shopping (wow this country is expensive!), a laugh-out-loud fun dinner with some colleagues from the office here, some frustrated moments when struggling with the hotel internet set-up and an internal debate if shelling out 300 euro for a warm norwegian sweater really is something I should do… I didn’t in the end (thank god, my credit card has had enough abuse!). The week I arrived was the week the temperature dipped below zero for the first time this winter… and I had packed for Irish weather (don’t ask)… yep, it was a bit chilly alright and that sweater was very tempting!

I had hoped that I would have some moments over to take some pictures but as the sun rises at 8am and sets at 4pm at this time, it was always dark when I went to work and left. I guess I just have to come back again some other time.

As it is now, my flight leaves at the ungodly hour of 6am tomorrow which means I have to get up around 3am in order to check-out, get to the airport and get some tax-free shopping done. Why oh why did I book such an early flight…?

Hmm battery is at a critical stage… and so is my need for sleep.

Created by User:Fcb981

Image via Wikipedia

I spent a good few hours putting together IKEA furniture at a friend’s place yesterday and more is to come today. As neither of us own a drill or any electric screwdrivers it was down to using manual labour and manual tools. It was warm out and even warmer inside. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

There is something immensely satisfactory about putting something together properly and then seeing the finished product. It makes me feel good. I even love the smell of sawdust that always comes with any wooden product. I have always loved working with wood. Well… I do not love the feeling of the same sawdust filling my nostrils and eyes when it gets really dusty but hey can’t have the good without the bad I guess.

I was always taught that if you are going to do something then do it properly. I can be incredibly lazy (oh yes… there is no doubt about that) but once I actually do something then I have to do my best. I might not be a professional carpenter or handy(woman) and that I can live with but it irks me (or annoys the hell out of me) when I know I could have made it better. Good enough is not… good enough.

Sometimes I think I am in the wrong field of work but then I am pretty happy where I am now as well. I will just have to enjoy the existence of flat-pack furniture.

It is funny how my work experience has coloured how I react to new situations and new roles. In the last 10 years I have worked in IT sales, in different places. Been responsible for forecasting, reaching targets on a quarterly or yearly basis. Chasing customers, closing deals, pulling my hair in frustration… feeling the high when a deal closed. Ranted over the injustice of sales. Raved over commissions hitting my account.

After 10 years I hit a slump. It just was not fun anymore. The job that is. The people I worked with… well what can I say. I’ve met some of the coolest, nicest and funniest people while in sales. The last team I was in for 5 years…it was a blast. Best people I have ever worked with. Made some good friends and we are still in touch and meet up.

I have now for the last 8 months worked in the backend of things. Still in IT but this time in the back office. Great sales figures means more work for me so technically I should be more happy about less work. But you know what… I still get excited when it all rolls in. Happy for the guys in the field. I understand their talks about forecasting, get their frustrations in terms of pipelines, can sympathise when it doesn’t work out and smile when THAT deal closes.

Many of my colleagues now have not been in sales and it a very different mind-set. Not worse or better, just different. I am happy where I am. I work with great people. I just never realized that what I have done would be so beneficial for me now. It was not wasted when I left. It complements me. It makes my interactions more valued. It is also great when approached by really annoying, pushy sales men/women – been there, done that… doesn’t work on me.

Damn… I am a sales person still. Haha!

Men in white coats…

Posted: November 30, 2010 in Rant, Work
Tags: , , , ,

Right people…I am losing the plot! Focusing abilities are out of the window. I am supposed to sit and work very hard in front of my work laptop right this minute… instead I am writing this. My excuse is that as I believe that I am losing the plot I might just as well document this before the men in white coats take me away.

I have spent the morning literally staring blankly at my screen while the minutes, nay make that hours, tick by. I receive an email with an important query and I cannot scramble enough brain power together to actually figure out what I need to do. Arrgghh! Is this lack of caffeine (still no espresso in the house), lack of sleep (should really hibernate as it is a bloody blizzard outside) or is it time to check into the nearest “health farm”? (Please note I said health farm and not loony bin).

OK, will try to harness enough mental capabilities (no smart remarks now please…) in order to at least not totally eff up my work. Thank god my manager doesn’t read this blog…oh…and if she does…I am working very focused and this was all just a rambling joke written during my short lunch break…

Traditional maracas

Image via Wikipedia

It is Thursday evening and I am so totally having a Friday feeling today. Most likely because I have actually taken tomorrow off but also because I am just back from a dinner with a bunch of colleagues in work. It was really good fun. I was not able to have a few glasses of wine because I was driving but I did have many great laughs…especially in regards to all the sarcastic comments and underhand threats to remove the in-restaurant “entertainment”. There was this guy on a keyboard and two girls singing (if you want to call it that) while shaking maracas… to mainly ABBA songs… now please tell me…were there ever any maracas in any ABBA songs?? It was hysterical!

At least the food was good even though it took forever before we got it and the espresso that I ordered never arrived…they must still be in negotiations with the coffee bean vendor in Brazil or something. At least work paid for the dinner…so I am just smiling at all of it. It would probably have been a very different experience if we hadn’t had so many laughs about it or if we had to actually pay for all.

All in all a fun evening. Now I am off to bed and tomorrow I will have a nice long snooze in the morning. Oh yeah!

Mount Zen II

Image by adesigna via Flickr

Another long day getting towards its end. It is almost 21.00 again. I can’t believe how fast the days are going at the moment. I do not seem to have time to think half the time…ehh well, not completely true as I am blogging ..but you know what I mean.

Work is taking up a very large chunk of my time these days and those who know me also know that this is not something that I am known for. I am no workaholic, never have been. I have never had a need to prove something by putting down a ridiculous amount of hours in the office. However at the moment the work load is a bit off the charts. There is a never-ending steam of emails, IM’s and requests. I spend a lot of time in front of my PC cursing and giving out to people who have just emailed me..especially when it entails really stupid questions. Don’t get me wrong…I am very good at asking stupid questions, which my dear and extremely helpful colleagues, probably hate with a passion but they are all too nice to say so to me. I am however not as nice…at least not in front of my screen. I am also extremely glad we do not have a swear box in the office as I would be very poor indeed. The best discovery so far…the “Do not disturb” setting on our IM. Ahhh bliss!

Either way, being very busy in work means longer hours spent in the office and less time at home. This means less time talking to friends or even just spending it watching a film together with my partner. All the sudden it is really late and I just have to go to bed, cos trust me… I need my sleep. I am the most cranky person ever with too little sleep. It’s things like that and all those other small acts like meeting up with people, sorting out all those small but fun to do whatnot’s at home, playing a silly Xbox game or browsing the internet for a nice holiday… those are the things I have very little time to do at the moment. I need more hours in the day or at least find a way to better balance my work load I think. Never really had this problem before as I am pretty organized so it does bug me. Any tips out there?