Re: seating arrangements

Subject: Re: seating arrangements
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 11 Jul 2002 10:07:08 -0700

Humphries, Ola wrote:

Now instead of working from home four days a week and taking a short bus
ride to a downtown office, I must commute 1.5 hours by bus or buy a car. (I
hate cars.) I also must report to work at the site all days of the week, as
this division does not allow home workers.

First, some perspective:1.5 hours is not an unusual commute. Thousands - maybe millions - do it for years on end.You were very lucky in your previous arrangements, and I imagine that you and your family have grown accustomed to life built around them, but your new commute is far from a hardship case.

Second,some advice: learn to use your commute constructively. If you can't avoid the commute, try to look at it as an opportunity to do some reading. Buy a discman - it's much cheaper than a car. Or simply use the commute as a chance to unkink before you come home.

I spent two years commuting three hours a day to university, and did most of my course reading on the bus. At first, I had to learn to overcome the nausea I got from reading on the bus, but it couldn't have hurt me that much, since I had a nearly perfect grade point average.

But the main kicker is the seating arrangment. The new location sits its
lone techwriter at a long table among the programmers. No cubicle and small
desk space. Possibly a file drawer, but no bookcases. Just the same amount
of work area that the programmers have. I find these accommodations
unpalatable. I'm wondering if having a bit of privacy (in the way of a
cubicle) is generally a job requirement for most of you.

A preference? Yes. But a requirement? No.

Maybe I'm a bit of a stoic, or maybe I'm just accustomed to the rough and ready world of contracting, but I've always felt that part of being a professional was getting the job done under whatever circumstances I'm offered.When I've had to, I've worked in open office floor plans. I've even learned to endure office mates with a penchant for soft rock channels, gritting my teeth as I hear Elton John for the fortieth time in the day. It's hard sometimes, but usually I adjust.

The only exceptions are when conditions are completely unsuitable, such as being expected to run Windows ME on a 386 with four megabytes of RAM - and I'm afraid that the conditions you describe fall somewhat short of that extreme.They aren't ideal, but they aren't unusual, either.

Should I just thank my lucky stars for even having a job in Houston's
downsized energy market and just gwichurgriping? I do know that my resume
has now hit the streets.

This seems sensible. While your working conditions aren't especially harsh, you're obviously unhappy with them, so looking around seems the best alternative.

To your credit, you're not just quitting. But it does sound as if you'd be happier elsewhere.

Bruce Byfield bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com 604.421.7177

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seating arrangements: From: Humphries, Ola

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