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Posts Tagged ‘fast-track’

A day in Denver

September 16, 2012 Leave a comment

06:00 am: The alarm rings, but I hit the snooze button. A couple of more snoozes later, I’m up

06:10 am: Charge the french press, and pick up the toothbrush

06:20 am: Coffee is ready! Open the blinds, and sip coffee while soaking in the fresh air on the patio

06:30 am: Off to the shower – need to start getting ready!

06:55 am: Verify the checklist. Keys – check. Wallet – check. Cellphone – check. Backpack – check. Access card – check. Off to the bus stop!

07:00 am: Step into the bus, and call one of my three offshore teams

07:15 am: Realize that I was so busy talking, I didn’t notice that the train’s approaching. Now I need to wait 5 min. longer

07:20 am: Take the F Line. Offshore call is over, so call up home and talk for some time

07:40 am: Call up the burrito guy and place your order – veggie, no cheese, double-extra-spicy

07:45 am: Text-chat with my manager, and setup a meeting at Starbucks

07:55 am: Get off the train at 16th & California and walk to Glenarm Plaza – the burrito is ready and waiting

08:00 am: Gobble the burrito and head down to Starbucks. Chit-chat over coffee for half an hour – I get a better hang of things this way, and so does my boss

08:30 am – 12:00 pm: Lots of conflicting meetings! Flit through them, and wing it when it comes to deciding which ones to skip entirely

12:00 pm: Time for Chinja!

12:30 pm – 3:30 pm: More meetings!

3:30 pm: Head down to Starbucks with the notebook and figure out the pending tasks for the day

3:45 pm: Back to the cube. Complete a few pending tasks, chat with a few managers and walk the floor speaking to my people.

5:00 pm: Time to wrap up. Clean the desk, reconcile the day’s notes with the lists in the notepad

5:30 pm: Off to the train station for the H Line back to home

6:30 pm: Shower, and then off to the racquetball court

8:00 pm: Back home, cook a quick dinner and eat

9:00 pm: Join the first conference call with an offshore team

10:30 pm: 1st conference call is over. Have some time on hand, so call up home and chat for some time

11:00 pm: Back to conference calls. Consult the notepad and ensure that you cover everything that you intended to

12:30 am: Declare end of the day’s play. Text my wife “Good night” and get into bed.

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Where is my career headed to?

July 1, 2011 5 comments

On most mornings, I don’t get a seat on the Light Rail – I have to stand at the door. At each station, I have to shuffle around to make room for passengers to get off and on. But today, I left from home earlier than usual and found a spot in the middle of the car. Standing at one place with nothing to do goes hand-in-hand with quality thinking time, and that’s what I ended up doing too.

After a long time, I gave some serious thought to my career. As of now, I am comfortably placed – I’m a senior project manager, and over the past six years I have graduated from managing single small projects to managing larger projects, to managing multiple small and large projects together. Considering my experience and expertise (I’m PMI certified since 2007), I can expect to grow into a Program Manager in the next two-three years. Another three years of experience there should qualify me for entry-level delivery management.

But what after that? If I want to grow beyond (and even within) delivery management, my skill set is woefully lacking. Here’s what I will have to cover in the next five years:

  • Understanding Finance (I’ve learnt this before, but the sword is rusty due to lack of use, so to speak – need to polish it up)
  • Macroeconomics (I love Economics, so this should not be a pain)
  • Strategy (never read this, but I know that it’s an essential weapon in any Senior Manager’s personal armory)
  • One European Language (my personal inclination is towards German)
Well – I do have about five years to get these under my belt, but considering my habit of procrastination, I’m not too sure when I’ll work through these.

Finding Middle Ground

June 15, 2011 1 comment
  • Last week, I was told (by the client) that they want me here for as long as possible – at the very least a year more
  • An hour ago, I was told (by my company’s Service Delivery Manager) that our management wants me to replace him next year – to stay in Denver for as long as my visa permits
  • Me and my wife want to go back to India as soon as possible

Between these, how (and where) do I strike a balance? Each of these scenarios has pros and cons. Evaluating them is the problem – for that’s when practicality fights emotions; that’s when career duels with family.

I have a few months to announce my thoughts on this; I think me and my wife are going to have many a discussion before old man winter returns.

Of Opportunities and Opportunists

June 2, 2011 1 comment

If you were given an opportunity, does it mean that the one who gave it to you feels that you are the only person who can deliver on that opportunity?

Or could it be that that person had an opportunity himself, which required handing an opportunity to you?

The dream is still alive

September 6, 2010 3 comments

Last night, I saw “3 Idiots” (for the first time – and please wipe that smirk from your face).

Me & my wife both enjoyed the movie thoroughly, and she even commented on the coincidence – yesterday was September 5. Personally, I don’t know whether to term it coincidence or anything else, but it did leave me thinking. I do have my dream, dreams if I may. But when I lay awake in the night, thinking of them again, I realized that what I was terming my dreams were not my dreams after all – they were just two means I had discovered that would lead me to my one dream. Two things that I will enjoy from the depths of my heart.

One of them, of course, is writing. Being a published author; something on which I am working. I am making slow progress, but yes, I am not stagnant.

The second one… No, it’s too nascent right now (and will take at least a couple of years to bear fruit). What I need to figure out right now is a means to achieve that means. And I think I may have an answer. But for now, dear reader, it’ll all stay in the dark. Tomorrow, I take the first step in this direction.

Wish me luck; with your wishes and blessings, you might find some good news posted here in a few days time.

A Question of Value – yet again

August 10, 2010 1 comment

The last few weeks have seen me very frustrated, to the point of irritation. Usually I have a series of bad days every month or two, when I realize that I am right in the middle of a mid-career crisis situation. Usually I get over it in a day or two, the hangover lasts another couple of days.

Not so this time. I have been in low spirits for over a week now. At work, I am working just for the sake of it, not enjoying it as I used to until last month. Back at home, my wife is thankfully very understanding, and does her best to cheer me up.

Last weekend we went for a picnic, and the drive & the getaway in general helped clear some cobwebs in my brain. On the way back, I finally managed to do some clear-headed thinking on what’s happening to me.

Distilled summary: I don’t see any kind of value in the work that I do here. The only iota of satisfaction is when I solve people’s problems and when they thank me from the heart. But that’s just once in a while. The rest of the time, I do the menial labor that my bosses don’t like to do themselves. But yes, the day I agreed to do it, I knew why did so. And at least that reason still applies today.

Prescription:

1. Try and keep searching for value (whether tangible or otherwise) in whatever I do

2. Maintain sanity at all costs

The former… It’s tricky, but I’ll do it.

The latter part is easy. Today I thanked God for Iron Maiden. Did you?

Thought For The Day

July 27, 2010 Leave a comment

“Don’t take yourself too seriously. Self-importance isn’t real. On the contrary, it’s completely subjective, by definition. Never forget that you’re just a man or woman, no more, no less. You bleed and cry, just like everyone else. And what goes up, all too often, comes down in a hurry. The higher the pedestal you set yourself up on, the bigger the fall.”

Originally found here on The Corner Office.