2007-01-04

Making Life Changing Decisions

You probably noticed that this blog has been dead for quite some time. Too many things are happening at the same time that I'm have a hard time keeping track of them all. I don't want to make a full summary of all the items on my think list, but I'll give you a glimpse.

Health

First things first: I need to get into shape. I have been postponing this item for way too long. I should I put this... Well, in my youth I was a true sports freak. I was involved in many sports some of which at the exact same time. I did swimming, water polo, tennis, biking and handball. Not to mention all the other smaller things. I even reached the pre-competition series in swimming, that is, the next step would be to train every single day and join competitions. In handball I was federated, that is, I actually participated in the Regional Championship. But I had to give all that up to study.

Please don't get me wrong! I don't regret making the decision of giving all that up. I'm happy with what I do. I have the possibility to do what I like every single day, although that is changing a little. But that is another topic.

So, what should I do? Well, I will start doing some sport and dancing. You're probably wondering "Why Dancing"? Well, it is like a sport and I get to learn something that I have always wanted to learn. At the same time I get to meet new people. For sports I'll go back to swimming. I think it is one of the most complete sports. I don't know if I'll go for a Gym like everyone goes, but I'll probably start swimming right away. For the dance part, I'll go with my sister as partner.

Thesis

I'm making a Master Thesis. Well, I guess I am. I say this because it has been too long since I actually written a sentence in the Thesis. I need to end the Thesis. It will probably be a rage weekend but I'll get it out of my system.

Work

We have a saying in Portugal when we want to emphasise when thing are getting really bad. It goes like this: "Vai de mal a Pior". In English it is something like "It goes from bad to worst". And believe me, that is how things are at work.

There many things that contribute for this. The first thing is that the division is moving to something like 100Km away from its current location. When your workplace moves this distance you start to make some operations in your head: how more will you spend to get to work it terms of time and money; if you are willing to move to somewhere nearer; if things will get any better there and so on.

With the change the company has decided to hire people that are willing to move to the new location or that already live in its surroundings. They have been doing this for over a year now. But this was a strategy that I didn't saw at first. Their goal is not to reduce the burden on the already overloaded workers that we are. Their goal is to get people in that will absorb the knowledge and tasks of those that don't see them moving to the new location. Recently this has gotten so visible that all the old people are seeing it.

Don't get me wrong, this is a viable strategy on their part. It is a strategy that I don't agree with, but it is a viable strategy. But they have a flaw in its implementation. The oldest people are the most experienced ones and the ones that know the core parts of the system. To replace them you need at least people with almost the same level of experience in the technologies involved. Their flaw is that they are hiring the cheapest resources, people without any experience or basic training or knowledge needed to perform the task.

What I see happening is that the projects won't meet the delivery dates. Why do I say this? Well, simple: the delivery dates are after the move. If the older workers leave the new ones will have to take care of business. The new ones will eventually get things done, but the time they will take to get things done will be greater and there goes the delivery date.

You are probably thinking: "hey, get a grip, everybody is replaceable". Well, I agree with that sentence. It is true that everybody is replaceable. But it is also true that everybody is different and that there are people who are more creative and more experienced than others. What will happen is that something that those creative and experienced people would do in 2 months and that the client would live ends up being developed in 6 or more months and the client will hate it. It is a simple fact that the longer you work on a project and if you are a open minded person, you will get a deeper understanding of the users and their expectations. This is particularly true if you have real contact with the users and you see them using the product and explaining what they want. This is a type of knowledge that can be taught: it must be learnt by trial and error.

On top off all this the group spirit that made me get out of the bed everyday is almost gone. We work to accomplish the dead-lines that are just around the corner, in a group were almost everybody is working without any motivation and some have their own personal agenda.

I still don't know how I will proceed on this issue. Part of me wants to get out before I loose my mind. Part of me wants to say and grab the compensation for being dismissed. Part of me just wants to forget all about these issues, be professional, get the work done and don't let this get into my system. There is also a part of me that would love to get to work and say: "Bye, bye, I'm out of here", in a more lyrical way and in the faces of the bosses.

For now it seems that I will simply train myself to get this out of my system. I'll try to live more my life so that work is just something I do to get paid and something that I'll always do to the best of my abilities.

Know What?

Well, with all these items on the back of my head I have to make some resolutions. I have to give priorities to things and try to enjoy life. I have wasted a lot of time thinking about this issues and just cruising through life like it was passing by me. So, I guess this is my New Year's Resolution: to live my life to its fullest.

What's your resolution?

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