My job isn't hard. I build software. Essentially, I listen, I think, and I type. I create something from nothing that makes other peoples lives better. I'm proud of that. Most people think I'm good at what I do. I do enjoy doing it.
But some days work is not so good. I'm a limited resource, with many people requesting my service. Those people often have conflicting needs that is my job to manage. Their expectations are not always met despite my efforts, and often they don't understand the work required to to the job.
The struggling economy has made the situation worse. Everyone is pressing. Everyone is trying to get their objectives met to increase sales, or reduce costs to make the profit and loss lines move to their optimum trajectories. Stress levels are high and the urgency is extreme.
Problem is, all those lines, objectives and strategies seem to intersect all in my cubicle. I feel like the Andrea Gail in the eye of the perfect storm. And that movie didn't have a happy ending.
I'm sure that I'm not the only one who feels the pressure, but it's not universal. I saw a perfectly sane co-worker get really unprofessional with someone who wasn't pulling their weight.
But then we are hit with an across the board 10% cut in pay, and told of a new "furlough" week in June to go along with the forced vacation week already scheduled in July.
Business is way down - I realize that. The company is doing everything it can think of to survive in this economy. And frankly, the fact that I am still employed is a blessing - many others in this economy haven't fared nearly as well.
But the fact that we are busting our butts for fewer and fewer rewards is not a way to build employee morale.
However, on Tuesday of this week, a series of events really put things into perspective for me.
Marie had a meeting at a downtown church at 5:30 I met her there to exchange the kids. Next to a the church was a local Memorial Park with a number of displays honoring those who have given their lives in the support of our country. Somehow, my issues at work seem insignificant in comparison.
That is perspective.
Happy Memorial Day to all those who served our country.