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May 28, 2012
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Hello old blog. I come to you once again, with a bit of writing that has been on my mind. Possibly to be hidden away soon, but needing to get it out just the same.

Work has been such a ridiculous high school affair as of late. Since February I have been helping out in Structural Design – mostly just making coating blankets because it’s a little thing and no one really likes to do it. For a long while I felt like I was like their intern – there to do the little tasks that get lost in all the giant, many things that are much more important – when what they really needed was someone who could build dies and blankers and all the other structural design-y things that help the business run. Even after I learned how to make blankers, I was too busy making blankets to do anything else – especially since I started voluntarily splitting my days between structural and graphics [where I was hired].

A few weeks ago I developed a new possible plan [one of a thousand I had been creating ever since they “asked” me to help out]: after one of the graphics ladies got back from medical leave, I would go to structural for a week or two and learn to make dies [what they REALLY need someone to do] and then go back to splitting my time. Apparently, this was not a good plan as last Wednesday I found out I am now a structural designer – permanently.

Now my problem is not that I was moved. It’s not that I hate structural design. I actually enjoy the actual process and the programs. What I didn’t appreciate was that no one told me I was permanently moved. That some thought it was fine to change someone’s position without asking them [which it is], but it’s also perfectly fine to change it without telling them.

Now I have learned so many things since I started this job [my first “real” job out of college]:
– I have learned that I am very good at learning things. If it has a process and is mostly logical – I can probably learn to do it on my own very quickly.
– I’ve learned even more not to fear asking questions. Don’t know how to do something  but don’t want to seem like an idiot? Ask a question. It will be much better for you in the end than if you just tried to figure it out yourself for fear of looking like you don’t know what you’re doing.
– This doesn’t mean you should ALWAYS ask questions. You should learn to use your intuition and take what you’ve done previously, and try to deduct the answer first. This wasn’t so much taught to me, as I find it annoying. Which is why I try to get things down quickly.
– I’ve learned a great deal about the printing process. Since I was put in structural I’ve tried to find out as much as I can about the plate making and cutting process. Two weeks ago I finally got to see the gluing/finishing process. I have yet to explore the actual printer, but I figure I’ll get to that during my time here.
– I have learned not to assume or state that no one has as much work as you. That what you do is more important than anyone elses job and tht people only complain or criticize you. Yes not everyone can know what it’s like to do your job, and maybe others don’t seem as busy as you – but that doesn’t mean they don’t work hard. That what they do is any less important than what you do. And to continually vocalize these assumptions just makes you yet another complainer who should be using that time to get work done.
– An important lesson I have really come to believe is to just get your work done. Catching up and conversing with others is an important part of work place interaction – but it shouldn’t get in the way of your work. Learn to multi-task, and your life will be much easier. At least that’s how it’s worked out for me.

While these are all very good skills and sure to help me in my future endeavors, they are not what I consider to be the MOST important things I’ve learned over the last few months. Most importantly I have learned what type of person I want to be. Sure, I’ve always had an idea and have tried to be aware of how my actions and words portray me to others. Here, I have really learned the type of person I do not want to be. I want to always try to be courteous of other people’s feelings. To tell the truth when I can because trying to spare someone, or just plain cowardice, doesn’t help anyone. The last point is most important to me, because I have been a coward in the past. When I didn’t want to see or talk to someone anymore, I just quit seeing and talking to them. While this may be “something kids do” – it’s not appropriate for adulthood, and especially not in the work place when important situations are involved – such as the changing of someone’s title/role in the company.

I realize all of this sounds kind of negative, and I have definitely learned and seen positive things during these last few months. There are great people at this company [among only a few not-so-great]. People that really care about others and care about the work they do. People who want to help others succeed at what they do and to help the company. This means there is also enormous potential for this company – if people will only act and behave in the right way.

If it weren’t for these great people, I would be much, much more miserable these days. As it is, I actually like my life right now – all things considered. I am trying very hard not to let the negative things at work affect me – both in and out of work. Since I graduated college [and a few months before] I have been going through what seems like lesson after lesson in patience. I always thought I was a patient person, but the trials over the last year and especially the last few months have shown me just how wrong I am.

So the only thing I can do, when I start work tomorrow officially [and knowingly] as a structural designer, is continue to soak up as much knowledge as I can and try to be more patient as I work towards becoming the person I want to be. Fingers and toes crossed.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Tori permalink
    May 29, 2012 12:48 am

    I still actually read this, just so you know! 🙂 and I don’t think it’s a negative post. I think it shows a lot of growth. No, it’s not fair that someone switched your job title without asking or telling you, but you are choosing to look at the positives and figure out how to do that job best (even if you hate structural design). I admire that.

  2. Tiffany permalink
    June 1, 2012 9:40 am

    I think it’s great that you can share these things, whether positive or negative. It’s a way to express what needs to get out. Life is far from ideal and I think you’ve got a good head on your shoulders. It’ll all work out for that reason.

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