2005-01-19

Getting Better at Work

It was another intense day at work. I sit down and plug into my job. I manage to tear away for the bathroom and tea a few times during the day - and nibble my way through lunch at my desk - but mostly the day just rushes by.

There are two halves to my job - failed jobs and emails. I mostly have the hang of the failed jobs, that came pretty quickly. I'm rather good at problem determination - especially with failed mainframe jobs. But it takes a little while to understand the nuances of a new shop. But I've felt pretty confident with handling the jobs for a few weeks now.

But the emails seemed way too much for me. So many of the emails require a good knowledge of the system. So almost every email requires research and most times asking for help to get the right answer. All the time the emails back up further and further. And we are supposed to give a 2 hour service to emails. I've felt very stressed about the emails. It doesn't help that the other person who is supposed to share this support is much slower and methodical. But I get the feeling that the others in the group see that I'm really trying to handle the load, and part of the difficulty is this other new person.

But I feel pretty good today. Up until today, I've needed someone - and usually it is my boss - to help out with most of the emails. I've felt bad that he had to take on so much of the work - especially with the emails. Today I managed to handle - and even catch up - on almost all of the emails when it was my time to work them. That included a bunch left over from the other half of my team. My boss helped me finish up a small handful of failed jobs before we left.

So while I'm getting better at work - which make me feel more confident - I still wouldn't say the work is rewarding. But I guess I'm too busy to really dwell on what it isn't. If I put in my time and do go work I have the potential to move from support to development. It is only mainframe development, but that is better than just support.

I've been working on a set of shortcuts that can help everyone. Most are based on shortcuts I'd developed in past mainframe positions. But the main one I've been working on - an update to an quick editing tool - I'm trying to get a new version done before I put out my shortcuts. I am working on some improvements I'd come up with 5 years ago, but never got around to putting in before. This seems like the perfect time - other than the support is getting in the way of getting it done quickly.

I've made some good progress, and I think I'll be ready for putting out a beta version soon. I hope the boss and the others in the group appreciate the shortcuts I have.

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