Working hours

I’ve noticed a trend over the past few months – in my team specifically. When 5:30pm comes along, there’s no move to tidy desks, pack bags and put on coats. It’s become the norm to stay at the desk beyond 5:30pm. Most of the team are at the desk before 9:00am. The pressure we all feel from the business to deliver more and more is immense.

It can’t go on.

My worry, as ever, is that people give so much to the business that they become ill, things slip and then they leave because they can’t carry on. The worst fear for me, is actually one of redundancy. Our new CMO started this week and we are all waiting for changes to be announced. I don’t want anyone in my team to be putting  in 120% and giving too much of their personal time to then be faced with ‘your position is no longer needed’. For whatever reason.

Why do we, as professionals, feel the need to give over and above our contracted hours? I’m contracted for 7.5 hrs a day and while I expect a little bit of flexibility to occasionally do 7 hrs (because of a doctor or dentist appointment) I’m finding it more and more incredulous that we’re doing more than 9 hrs a day on a regular basis.

But, does anyone ask us to do this? No. We do it because we feel we have to.

I often ask ‘what would happen if we went home on time’? (As many other people do)? And, I think we’d adjust. The deadlines would be moved to accommodate this, and there’d be less stressed people running around. Well, that’s the theory.

For the past couple of weeks I have been shocked at how much I had under estimated the stress that would be caused by having a new boss on board. Stress in me manifests as health issues and insomnia. I watch and see similar things in my team.

I don’t like it, but feel powerless to do anything other than listen to them, support them where I can and be understanding.



Being objective

Staying objective!

There are times when what we do, in both our personal and work lives, that objectivity is some that is difficult to achieve. There have been times recently where the work life has been rather challenging. Today was no exception. I usually pride myself at being rational and objective. But when faced with constant criticism and scathing remarks it’s hard to stay that way.

So, how do people stay objective? I don’t have the answer. Maybe you do?

Getting rid of mole hills?

My parents live in the wilds of Scotland – it’s the typical Perthshire house that you see as you drive through the Glens. It’s beautiful. Like most houses there, the gardens are enormous. Unfortunately, with both my sister and I living in different countries, my parents are selling the house to move further South. Somewhere that puts them 4-5 hours away from me, rather than 8-9. Sad that they are selling the family home, but I know it’s got to happen.

In the preparations for sale Mum and Dad have spent a lot time getting the gardens perfect and the lawn immaculate. Well, it looked that way until a family of moles moved in. Up popped the first mole hill and it didn’t stop, until now. Apparently, there’s a tried and tested method of getting rid of moles that doesn’t involve calling the ‘mole man’ or using any of the more brutal methods. But, this method involves peeing on the mole hills.

We’ve lived in the same Glen since i was a kid, and it’s the first time I’ve ever heard of this method. My parents have now rid their garden of moles by peeing on the mole hills.  The moles are now attacking the lawn of the nearest neighbour. Apparently the peeing on the garden method of mole removal is not on her agenda.

Would it be on yours?