Friday, April 9, 2010

Friday Frustrations

Writing a blog is supposed to be cathartic, right? Well, let's give it a shot and see if I feel any better after I lay my current woes out on the blog-o-sphere, shall we?

Work is kicking my ass right now. It's a combination of things but mostly that I'm dealing with an unreasonable set of people that delight in micromanaging and belittling me. Sounds like fun, doesn't it? I routinely walk away from meetings with metaphorical bruises. I can't say I enjoy listening to the diatribes of people who don't understand the processes that BigFinance Technology has in place. They want what they want, and they want it now. And if I say even one thing that doesn't kowtow to their expectations then I get to listen to f-bombs being dropped left and right. Should I read something into it that most of these people are New Yorkers? No one I work with in Charlotte swears like a truck driver. And of course, if it isn't obvious, they are all men.

In general I like my job but lately I am feeling completely worn down and demoralized. I can't fall asleep at night. I lie awake thinking about the shit I'm going to have to deal with the next day and the day after that. I'm fairly low level in BigFinance. How can I not be with 250,000 other associates? I know that there is crap going on at a much higher level than me that I'm not clued in on. But I'm the "face" of this portion of the project. I know it more intimately than anyone else. But when I go to senior management for direction it is of no help. I'm also struggling because I'm a bit of a poseur. I'm not a technologist. I'm not a network engineer. There are a lot of smart people I work with but I never claim I'm a subject matter expert. I've picked up a fair bit but I pull in the engineers when I need to validate or justify a technology decision. I'm excellent at program management and problem resolution. But somehow with this project I feel like I don't have a leg to stand on because I'm not an engineer. The clients that I'm working with are bullies and I'm struggling with how to tame them.

I've been actively looking for a new position but given some major organizational changes there haven't been many openings. I guess I just have to suck it up for a couple of more months. There is always the weekend, right?

Last week a house went up for sale on my street. It's the first time a sale has happened since we bought our house 3 years ago. At the peak of the market. This house is fairly comparable to ours. Same number of bedrooms, baths, and about the same square feet. Unlike our house it doesn't have a garage, it's landscaping sucks and it is much closer to the end of the street, hence close to the busy crossroad. I haven't been inside yet (waiting to be a looky-loo at the open house) but according to the listing it needs TLC. Read: carpets over hardwoods and no updates.

The problem? It is listed for 33% less than what we bought our house for. 33% is such a big number. Even if you account for the factors I listed above, there is no way that we will see an appreciation for our house in the next 10+ years. It's not that we plan on moving anytime soon. It's just that so much of our income goes into the house. I guess we are living the new American dream of an over/under real estate situation. And my dream of house in a few years with an open floor plan is on hold. Can anyone else commiserate?

OK, I do feel a bit better after writing all that. But warm and fuzzy thoughts from my readers would still help!

9 comments:

Amanda said...

we have a comp in our neighborhood at 30K a foreclosure of course but it needs to be resold so our neighborhood comps aren't in the toilet anymore.

Anonymous said...

OK, here's a warm and fuzzy hug from me! :) don't see how any company could possibly fail to appreciate the girl-wonder that we know! (did that help?) Love, Mimi

LauraC said...

I work with all software people and all tech people so I KNOW how unprofessional, rough, and intolerant to technical expertise they can be! I definitely sympathize. I think I am just toughened to it after going to a mostly male college filled with engineers. It's been 18 years dealing with this crazy sort of people.

And the house thing... my best friend lives in Concord and they moved in three years ago. They did a refi (I have no idea why, don't get me started on that one!) and their appraisal came back at $50K less than they bought the house. And they have twins on the way.

House prices have stayed stable in Cary and I think it is the only place in NC where that is true!

Mommy, Esq. said...

This is why owning a home is NOT the American Dream. It limits career opportunities, etc. Yes, there are tradeoffs for a sense of community but you could find that renting too. I wish I had never bought.

Stephanie said...

(((HUGS)))! Not in your line of work, but I totally know how it is when the [much] higher ups don't know what the heck it is you do and expect stuff to just happen when they want it to. I've pulled more metaphorical rabbits out of hats than I know what to do with. Unfortunately, that doesn't really translate well to a resume. Maybe it would read like this: Able to produce results from thin air! Good luck!

Donna said...

About the house thing, I can totally commiserate. I am living in a house I do not like and I think is UGLY! We are in it for the long run and I sometimes feel totally overwhelmed by it. As for work, I guess one of the things I do is vent (to your sister). It makes it somewhat easier. Remember fools are fools no matter how many f-bombs they drop. Just image every F-bomb as them saying "I'm a fool"

Working Mom said...

The house thing? In your boat - we're trying to refi to a better rate, but with the market the way it is, it's coming in low (the burned out piece of ___ next door doesn't help!). Just keep in mind that over the long term, real estate is almost always a good investment.

The work thing? First thing with guys like that is, when they swear, to look them dead in the eye and say "Excuse me?!?". If they have a problem with that, laugh at the situation and say, "Gee, let's hope you don't talk like that to Client X... they might take it the wrong way!" They may not get it, but someone in the room will.

So far as the projects, might this work for you? Put together a flow list with who you need what from. Then send an email to all parties involved, starting off with "I'd confirming the details of this project to clarify our message and vision". List what you need from others and when, even the higher ups. It may not give you the direction you need, but it's a CYA exercise.

susanne13 said...

sometimes you just need to vent and this is def the right place to do it :) if you need any career "help" let me know! there is a good book about whether to stay or leave...

Gretchen said...

That definitely stinks about work - and how you can't stop thinking about it on your off time :( I'll keep my fingers crossed that you can find a new spot soon that doesn't drive you crazy.

And think about all the fun stuff you've been doing in your house - renovating and landscaping - that you couldn't do as a renter. I'm jealous :)