I had the recent misfortune to finish reading the three books in the Hunger Games Series. Before reading further, if you have not read them and you plan to stop reading now. Final warning.
How many of us have worked hard, REALLY hard, to get to some point, achieve some goal only to actually make it? We find ourselves at the end of the long road of single minded devotion faced with a very large open field that spans in all directions as far as the eye can see. There might be a lot of trails, but no defined roads. Mostly likely the road you were just on is gone, since there is no going back.
That is how I felt upon hearing my predecessor was finally retiring and I was given the accounting department. I have two people working for me and a lot of expectations to live up to. Until now, I was a task guy. Each day I had a stack of tasks to do and I’d get them done. I am very good at making things more efficient, making daily tasks quick and easy to finish. Now I am expected to take those tasks and delegate. At the moment, I can just teach the task and work out future procedures to pass on. However, at some point I will need to teach others to work out the problem. This is not something I have done a lot of, but it looks like my new challenge.
It seems like the old way of doing things was to learn a job and make yourself invaluable my making sure no one else could do your job. That way, no matter how incompetent you were, it would still trump other peoples’ ignorance. My philosophy is to see just how much I can get off my plate and into the hands of others. I think it would be very hard to teach my way out of a job, and I am still very good at problem solving, so the end result should be a group that just gets better. I suppose we’ll see what kind of teacher I am.
So, here I am in the middle of a wide open field. I think I’ll head left for a while and see where that goes.