Author Topic: Do you know what you're doing at work?  (Read 1732 times)

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #30 on: August 09, 2018, 10:15:42 PM »
My previous job involved dealing with SQL databases (my username is a very oblique reference to this, if anyone here is enough of a loser to spot it), despite having zero IT training or qualifications whatsoever (an English Lit degree and various waitressing/call centre jobs).

I somehow managed to stay for three years, and after I got over the initial paranoia of being 'found out' (not that I'd lied or anything - I was just convinced they would eventually realise they'd made a terrible mistake) I did manage to enjoy it and appreciate the opportunity to learn some pretty useful stuff.

So yeah, I'm sure there are plenty of people whose jobs sound impressive or complicated but they're just winging it and shitting themselves. [insert obvious joke about any unpopular politician]

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #31 on: August 09, 2018, 10:21:45 PM »
The first time I realised that Id become competent at my job was after about 18 months.

alan nagsworth

  • i remember cassette cathedral
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #32 on: August 09, 2018, 10:30:47 PM »
yes, i'm very good at my job. my bosses (they're a couple) think the world of me. they fed me a load of cocaine and beer and cigs once as a token of their appreciation. we stayed up till 5am listening to devo and x-ray spex, chatting all sorts of bollocks. definitely not how i expected their daughter's first birthday party to turn out but life can surprise you

Sherringford Hovis

  • ┌∩┐(ᵔᴥᵔ)┌∩┐
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #33 on: August 10, 2018, 12:09:42 AM »
"He's good at his job..." is a searing putdown at the organisation I work for - the implication being that the sentence would finish "...but an utter prick otherwise."

"He's alright." No higher praise for a relative newbie like me; the ultimate accolade after 5+ years in is to be described as "A bit of a character".

There's quite a high turnover: in my two-and-a-half years the team has varied between nine and fourteen, six have left and five have joined, and there's another one on a sabbatical having a think about whether he comes back or not. If you don't know what you're doing, people die. Best job I've had in 20 years - I'm staying as long as they'll have me.

FerriswheelBueller

  • Floaters gonna float.
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #34 on: August 10, 2018, 01:04:55 AM »
Yeah. Bloody hard work though.

Anyone for spreadsheets?

mothman

  • I don't know why
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #35 on: August 10, 2018, 01:22:05 AM »
Most of my notes are in Excel. I have detailed files. When I was just an analyst, most of our tools had an export to .csv option so we could bing stuff in there and wrangle deeper truths from the data.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #36 on: August 10, 2018, 02:25:03 AM »
Yes. Its taken 14 months and I'm essentially self taught (no company, three hours in a room watching a slideshow of an info dump is not enough to learn an entirely new system) but I get enough good feedback, and am trusted enough to go beyond my role frequently that I feel like I have a handle on it. I've always been decent with new systems and processes though so it helps.

I fucking hate it, but thats life.

the science eel

  • dynamite sack artist
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #37 on: August 10, 2018, 04:05:58 AM »
I teach 2-4 year old Chinese kids of course I wing it, and wing it well I do. Doing just enough, without getting figured out is a skilled job in itself.

That's exactly it.

I teach 20 year old Chinese adults right now, they're overworked and so am I. But I'll sneak off early whenever I can, only do the necessary, be nice to them, keep my nose clean. I got a good report from a class observation last week so I feel a bit more confident fucking about now.

AllisonSays

  • disappointed bridge
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #38 on: August 10, 2018, 07:50:49 AM »
I started teaching three years ago, without any formal training or even advice, on the frankly bizarre assumption that if you're doing a PhD you must be able to teach seminars. That means teaching things I know nothing about, at times - Nietzsche, International Relations, the history of car bombs. But it's fun, actually, and I think I have some ability for the performative and empathetic aspects of teaching even if I constantly feel ignorant or under-prepared. And colleagues in similar boats were incredibly helpful when I started.

This term I'm teaching much larger groups, of rich Americans rather than mostly working-class English people, about WW1. That will be initially quite troubling, I have never studied WW1 and I'll need to use a slightly different demeanour with the Yankees. But nobody can die, as my paramedic friend reminds me, at least not directly because of my actions.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #39 on: August 10, 2018, 07:55:30 AM »
As an add on to this, does anyone care about anything they do in work? It's all just passing the same data/paper/spreadsheets through a shit process or system for hours and hours of the day.

Literally wasting around 75% of your life sat in a chair looking at a monitor at numbers that mean nothing, walking around carrying plates for fst entitled cunts eating themselves to death, moving bricks around or driving in a car. All day, for most of the week, if not all of the week.

Why do we not go insane?

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #40 on: August 10, 2018, 09:22:13 AM »
As an add on to this, does anyone care about anything they do in work? It's all just passing the same data/paper/spreadsheets through a shit process or system for hours and hours of the day.

Literally wasting around 75% of your life sat in a chair looking at a monitor at numbers that mean nothing, walking around carrying plates for fst entitled cunts eating themselves to death, moving bricks around or driving in a car. All day, for most of the week, if not all of the week.

Why do we not go insane?

Nah, I don't really care. I think it's probably worse in a white collar job as well. Trades or something have an immediately obvious purpose, but shoving numbers around in a spreadsheet may make you a cog in a process whose function you're unaware of, makes it harder to tell yourself what your doing has any benefit.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #41 on: August 10, 2018, 10:08:04 AM »
I don’t know about 75%, say you have a 9-5 and are lucky to live close to work then it’s well under 50% of your weekly waking hours, not to mention all that time you spend swaddled up in bed like a stupid baby

Buelligan

  • This is a people shooting hat
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #42 on: August 10, 2018, 10:10:44 AM »
This term I'm teaching much larger groups, of rich Americans rather than mostly working-class English people, about WW1. That will be initially quite troubling, I have never studied WW1 and I'll need to use a slightly different demeanour with the Yankees.

Bit jealous now.  Been slightly obsessed by WWI (fuck kno why) for a few years, by chance I happened on this exhibition when I visited Dublin last year.  Incredible stuff.


thenoise

  • Golden Member
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Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #43 on: August 10, 2018, 10:24:40 AM »
Blagging my way into a decent job is the one skill I wish I had. I'm lousy at interviews and have always been very underemployed, so no problems understanding my menial jobs. I can also recognise when my role is not really required, and make plans to leave accordingly. Most of my admin type roles I could have been replaced with a bit of software that I could have written, and I'm not even a programmer.

icehaven

  • I will be in the bar, with my head on the bar
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #44 on: August 10, 2018, 10:26:40 AM »
If you don't know what you're doing, people die.

Airline pilot? Pharmacist? Traffic cone dispenser?

icehaven

  • I will be in the bar, with my head on the bar
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #45 on: August 10, 2018, 10:34:06 AM »
As an add on to this, does anyone care about anything they do in work? It's all just passing the same data/paper/spreadsheets through a shit process or system for hours and hours of the day.

Literally wasting around 75% of your life sat in a chair looking at a monitor at numbers that mean nothing, walking around carrying plates for fst entitled cunts eating themselves to death, moving bricks around or driving in a car. All day, for most of the week, if not all of the week.

Why do we not go insane?

I do care about my job, although yes on the surface of it (and in the wider context of the place itself) it's not always terribly important, but it matters enough to enough people. Technology has already depleted the need for librarians (and arguably libraries) quite a lot, although much less so in jails, so we might be the last ones left.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #46 on: August 10, 2018, 10:39:04 AM »
As an add on to this, does anyone care about anything they do in work?

Yes, I take pride in what I produce. Not all jobs have room for that of course.

AllisonSays

  • disappointed bridge
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #47 on: August 10, 2018, 10:50:53 AM »
Bit jealous now.  Been slightly obsessed by WWI (fuck kno why) for a few years, by chance I happened on this exhibition when I visited Dublin last year.  Incredible stuff.



Those are great. I'm going to take them to the Tate to look at some war paintings too. Nice work if you can get it, although the thought of forming 70 hormonally-addled Americans into a safety crocodile so they can cross the road gives me conniptions.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #48 on: August 10, 2018, 10:58:11 AM »
That's exactly it.

I teach 20 year old Chinese adults right now, they're overworked and so am I. But I'll sneak off early whenever I can, only do the necessary, be nice to them, keep my nose clean. I got a good report from a class observation last week so I feel a bit more confident fucking about now.

Indeed, its all about playing by the book for 95% of the time to look squeaky clean, and cutting corners the rest. In my job, as long as the parents are happy I can do no wrong.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #49 on: August 10, 2018, 10:59:41 AM »
IT support for a company. Like most with this position, I basically owe my livelihood to Google and am a "magician" because I'm not afraid to click a few buttons, do the odd search and don't sat frozen like a deer in the headlights if an error message pops up or if I'm not sure how to do something.  Seems we're a rare breed somehow.

As for the "meta" of the company, the processes, what they're actually trying to achieve?  Not a fuckin' clue.  But I think the point is they don't have a clue either.  The leadership here is basically a repetition of "I don't know, what do you think?" over and over whenever they're asked for direction, and "I don't care how, just make more money"

FerriswheelBueller

  • Floaters gonna float.
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #50 on: August 10, 2018, 11:07:13 AM »
Nah, I don't really care. I think it's probably worse in a white collar job as well. Trades or something have an immediately obvious purpose, but shoving numbers around in a spreadsheet may make you a cog in a process whose function you're unaware of, makes it harder to tell yourself what your doing has any benefit.

I certainly shouldn’t care, but at times I can’t switch off. That’s why I’ve been awake since 4.30am writing bon mots on CaB and mentally composing my magnum opus on the shortcomings of UZR to measure positional player value/the “natural selection” of the flyball-hitter/the futility of the IBB/the sad decline of high socks in modern baseball/how I learned to stop worrying and love sidearm pitchers. My manifesto on managing a baseball team. So tired. Groundbreaking stuff though. Must find a publisher.

I go through phases of not giving a shit, but when I’m on the cusp of a promotion (an easier life and a better economic future for my family unit) then I become very motivated to get there. I don’t give a shit about spreadsheets really. That’s a nice motivation, pleased with that. Thinking out loud etc.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #51 on: August 10, 2018, 11:09:22 AM »
When I worked for a big IT company I found their internal proccess and structure to be like the buildings in Dark City.

Names changed, departments moved into different business units, but I still sat behind the same desk doing mundane tasks as my happiness leaked out of me.

Buelligan

  • This is a people shooting hat
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #52 on: August 10, 2018, 11:44:09 AM »
Those are great. I'm going to take them to the Tate to look at some war paintings too. Nice work if you can get it, although the thought of forming 70 hormonally-addled Americans into a safety crocodile so they can cross the road gives me conniptions.

Tell them to pretend they've been mustard-gassed or buy a cattle prod, that's my advice.

Sherringford Hovis

  • ┌∩┐(ᵔᴥᵔ)┌∩┐
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #53 on: August 10, 2018, 12:04:50 PM »
Quote from: Sherringford Hovis
If you don't know what you're doing, people die.

Quote from: icehaven
Airline pilot? Pharmacist? Traffic cone dispenser?

Hose monkey.

to infect aside

  • skin the bees and stripe the ceiling
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #54 on: August 10, 2018, 07:53:20 PM »
Usually, but I'm sort of an inept person in general so I try not to get roped into stuff that requires any degree of finesse. Pretty good at moving large quantities of bulky stuff from A to B, and intend on doing so until I blow my back out or something.

Johnny Yesno

  • I swam through the raindrop on a blue Astra van
    • Lines Horizontal
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #55 on: August 10, 2018, 08:37:26 PM »
Your mum

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #56 on: August 10, 2018, 10:54:52 PM »
The older I get the more I find that people really don't know what they are doing a terrifying amount of the time. It is incredible that we have built such a sophisticated and fragile civilisation. I think that maybe the people who do things that matter have to be more competent, but my civil engineer friend got terrible A levels. So god knows.

Z

  • The movie, not the TV series, or the book
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #57 on: August 10, 2018, 11:43:45 PM »
I know what I'm doing, I know how it fits into the overall thing, I haven't much of a clue what the overall thing actually is though and I also don't understand how it's so utterly unique that some out of the box existing system can't do everything they need.

Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #58 on: August 11, 2018, 12:37:29 AM »
Usually, but I'm sort of an inept person in general so I try not to get roped into stuff that requires any degree of finesse. Pretty good at moving large quantities of bulky stuff from A to B, and intend on doing so until I blow my back out or something.

What do you do, out of interest?

to infect aside

  • skin the bees and stripe the ceiling
Re: Do you know what you're doing at work?
« Reply #59 on: August 11, 2018, 10:01:28 AM »
I guess general labour/landscaping work.