Saturday, June 04, 2005

Hit the ground running

I've never been so happy with a job that I've done. My work at The Wichita Eagle as the Celebrations Coordinator is really very enjoyable. I get to do everything: work with the customers, edit the photos, write the copy, layout the pages and print them, make slicks... I do it all. In reality, I kind of feel like I do the job of two people. I mean, I work all day five days a week now (well, starting on Monday, I will).

I start the job at 8:30 in the morning and hit the ground running. I start two computers (one a Mac and the other a PC) and check my mail and voicemail. Depending on the day, I either start out by bundling newspapers and making slicks or dealing with customers and typing announcements and arranging pages. Slicks and papers are done on Mondays and Tuesdays, usually Mondays, if I don't have too many customers to interrupt me. The rest of the time, I prepare my pages, and lately have been three pages for each Sunday edition.

I'm supposed to be finished with the day at 4:30 p.m., but oftentimes, I end up staying at least 15 minutes late. Sometimes, if I've really had a busy week dealing with customers, I end up staying really late on Fridays, which are my publication days. last night, I was at work until 9:15. I went in at 8:15 that morning. A four-day week made my job just a little more compressed.

I still don't get any breaks, either, including lunch. I eat in my office, and if the phone rings or someone comes to my window to place an announcement, I'm the only one who can help the customer, so I do. I have to. It's my job. And if my lunch gets interrupted, so be it. I can't leave the office because no one else knows how to do my job except the lady who used to work with me, who's now moved on to another department.

Apparently, in about another month or so, I should be training a lady who just started about a week ago at the front counter. She's supposed to take over for me during actual lunch breaks and whenever I might have a doctor's appointment or something. It'll be a while before I run up enough vacation time to actually go anywhere, so I should have time to train her before I would want to go anywhere. Theoretically speaking, of course.

Mostly, I'm just looking forward to getting to take a break once in a while. Working part-time was okay because, even though I worked full days, I only worked two to three a week, max. Now I'm working every day and still getting no breaks until I'm able to train someone else to take over for me. My boss said to give this new lady about another month to really fully learn her job before I start training her to do mine so she can cover for me. It's difficult work to train someone. Putting out three pages all by myself and training someone at the same time is going to be extra work and extra time after hours. I just hope I don't get burned out on this work before I have someone to give me breaks!

Ron calls me sometimes when I'm at work. He says, "Are you busy?" It's kind of funny for me to hear that when I'm at work, because there's never a time when I don't have something, something to do. So I tell him, "Yeah, I'm always busy." Then he says, "I like it when you're busy. That means you're not being lazy." How am I suppose to be lazy at work when I know that I'm going to have at least an hour or more in post-work-time hours every week than I would if I wasn't fully responsible for an entire three-page spread? I can't afford to slack off. Actually, I'm afraid that taking on the training of someone else, especially during a time of the year when we've got more customers than at any other is really going to make me work a lot of overtime hours.

Good thing I get paid by the hour!

1 comment:

Elle said...

There have been days like that at my job, but for the most part lately I do about an hour of actual office work, then sit around waiting for the phone to ring.

It's not terribly rewarding. I rarely end a day with the feeling of having accomplished a lot (or anything). I only have four more days of this torture before I can move on to a (hopefully) more rewarding job!