Work life goes on

Not happy. Not sleeping. Not focused. Had to leave a project earlier than I had planned. Still working through the reasons. Thank goodness for a fantastic family, brilliant friends and some fantastic colleagues.

I was bullied a lot when I was at school, and in my head I am still that small, weak, unimpressive little boy. In reality, I am now this tall, overweight, middle-aged bloke who learnt martial arts, spent time in hostile parts of the world, and built up a great career around IT. I apparently have a lot of presence and can be very intimidating. I don’t mean to be. I don’t always see it. I have always used the word “frustrated” to describe how I feel about tasks that are not getting done as quickly or as well as I expect and need them done. Rarely am I angry. I do raise my voice, I do swear, I do show my frustration. One of the striking things about working in many different companies and industries (as my consulting role calls on me to do) is that you get to work with a very wide range of people in different company cultures. Over the last couple of years, I have switched from one culture that was extremely aggressive, rude, and picky to one that was in many ways very relaxed, passive and polite. I leave readers to guess why I had to leave my last project early.

Feedback from many colleagues tell me that whilst I am largely well respected, and often proved to be right, and generally get the job done, the ride involved is not an especially pleasant one for all involved. To some extent, I have become the bully I once hated. I guess I do bulldoze through things and do not appear to listen to others at all times (in fact, I over analyse what most people say but do not show this). I have been told that my mood changes a lot, that I “blow hot and cold” and it is not always easy to tell what mood I am in. I tend to wear my heart-on-my-sleeve and as I get very passionate about what I do, my emotions tend to be close to the surface and rather raw and sensitive. As a counter to this, I tend to shield myself at times and give very little away, especially with people I do not really know. A confusing picture. I am arranging some training and also some mentor/coaching support to help me change my ways for the better. I can see increasingly clearly how I have developed some really bad work behaviours that I need to fix. As for alcoholics, recognising there is a problem is a key first step.

I am just getting into some bid work between projects. This will make for a nice change. It will see me spending a few weeks in London, which is usually fun in the summer, although I doubt I shall get much chance to enjoy it.

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