Monday, September 23, 2013

What's Been Going on in My Life Lately

1.  Salaries and Responsibilities.  At work, we have done a bit of reorganizing, and the person who used to be my supervisor now has another person between him and the Person at the Top, so he has (in theory) moved down a notch on the org chart, although most of his responsibilities have remained the same, he has the same title, and he has the same salary.  I now report directly to the Person at the Top, so I have (in theory) moved up a notch on the org chart, and I now have a nifty new title and (thanks to a move down the hall) a bigger office.  What I do not have, however, is a larger salary.  I make about 50% less than my former supervisor but, on a typical week, work about 50% more.  Well, maybe not 50% more lately. He seems to be working harder these days.  But in the past couple of years, the feeling of unfairness that he works a lot less but makes a lot more money has grown and grown in me, and recently I broke down and talked to the Person at the Top about it.  He seemed to understand my position and thought it was a bit unfair himself, but due to the budget situation (which is not dire but leaves absolutely no room for anything that isn't necessary), there wasn't room to give me a raise.  What came out of the meeting was that we would start having twice monthly project review meetings, which should make parts of my job easier (since I can get input from different departments in a meeting they have to attend instead of harassing them on a regular basis until they finally agree to tell me what I need to know for a particular project to go forward).  He also arranged it so that I would chair the committee, which gives me a certain amount of additional authority, but also means more work.  And then today, the Person at the Top told me that starting in October, I would start supervising someone who now reports to my former supervisor.  So I will have additional responsibilities that will help me grow as a professional (which I appreciate) but will also take up more of my time, for which I will still receive no raise.  Dang it.

2.  Serving on Non-Profit Boards.  I'm on the board of our local historical society.  We're a small organization and just recently got started, so on the one hand, being on the board doesn't take up much time.  But on the other hand, because we just recently got started, there's so much that needs to be done, set up, decided upon.  Board terms are up in October, and I was so happy, thinking, 'Hurray, I don't have to have an officer position anymore! I can help out in a less responsibility-laden way, and it will be fun.' And then at our board meeting last week, since no one had expressed interest in being chair next time, they nominated me.  Daaaaaang iiiiiit.

3. The Benefit of a Bad Memory.  At work today, I received an email from JLR with links to pants I liked that were on sale.  Score!  I made a mental note to see if the pants were still available when I got home from work, and then, realizing a mental note for me is next to useless, I forwarded JLR's email to my personal email account, hoping the message would serve as a reminder to check on the pants this evening.  This evening, when I checked my email, I saw a message from myself with the subject heading 'Fwd: Pants," and I thought, 'Well, that sounds interesting; I wonder what it's about!' And so you see, having a bad memory can make the little things in life seem so much more exciting.

4.  Email Calendars.  Three years ago, I worked on a project that involved coordinating meetings with several grad students who did not have job-based email calendars or similar set-ups that would allow us to send meeting requests to each other.  So we all set it up through the school email system, since they attended the same grad school I had attended, and I still had an active school email account.  To help us determine when to meet, the student managing the project set up notes in the calendar of when I had regularly scheduled meetings.  So we would get notices saying, 'so-and-so NOT available on September 23,' etc.  It was quite handy at the time, but unfortunately, after the project was over, the notices kept coming.  I've made several attempts to turn off the notification system, but I cannot figure it out.  So every month or so, I get another message telling me I am NOT available because I have a regularly scheduled meeting that I already know to factor into my schedule planning because it is a regularly scheduled meeting, and I have had the same dadgum meetings twice a month for four years, so I know not to schedule anything else for that time.

That is all for now.