Be Careful of What You Wish For

I know I didn’t post anything last week. But, as always, I’ve got an excuse: a lame excuse, but an excuse nonetheless.

The story begins about two years ago. A reorganization in my department changed my role and left me working in a generally unfulfilling role. So I kept trying to get into a position where more of my skills would be put to use instead of just being a phone tech at a help desk. I got my wish this past June, when I was sent to work on a project for another part of our IT department.

My role with this small six-member group has morphed so fast in four months that it in no way resembles what I was doing when I initially signed on. Which is exciting, terrifying, fun, overwhelming, and stressful all at the same time. Because I know that my role is bound to keep changing for at least the next two months.

About four weeks ago, I was handed a set of projects with consecutive deadlines that were pushing my personal knowledge envelope: I was asked to crunch data to find accurate information. This would be fine, except for the last eight years, I’ve done a negligible amount of number and data crunching. And that stuff was easy. This, across two of the projects alone, involved consolidating and determining the changes to one set of data when compared to a second set. It involved literally hundreds of thousands of lines of data, and hours upon hours of sorting, filtering, and extracting.

It’s like being told to build a house with power tools right after learning how to use a hand saw. You theoretically have the skills, but knowing which ones to use at specific times is the challenge.

So I’ve been a bit stressed. And two huge deadlines in the last week-and-a-half didn’t help things. So I just couldn’t come up with anything to talk about here, and really didn’t want to have to force things out.

For the first time in about three weeks, I’m not heading back to work with a Monday deadline facing me.

Don’t get me wrong: while I’m glad I don’t have the deadline for now, I’m also happy that I’m doing work that’s really pushing my limits, and that I’ve proven in every case that I’ve been able to deliver the results that have been asked of me.

So, with any luck, I’m back to a normal schedule here for the foreseeable future. Good luck to all of us.

See you tomorrow.