:::: MENU ::::

How’s the New Job Going?

by

I’ve now been at my new job an entire month. And as I mentioned previously, the transition back into corporate life has been a bit rough. But 4 weeks in and I am genuinely loving the work I get to do and the team I work with, like truly loving. I wake up in the mornings excited to tackle the challenges of the day.

The work is varied, it’s challenging and I feel a bit more in control than I did when I first started…a bit. Still have a ways to go in that regard. But I feel truly blessed to get to make good money doing something that I truly enjoy doing. I know that’s not the case for everyone.

The Importance of Boundaries and Scheduling

I have come to appreciate the power of boundaries and scheduling. And I also recognize how hard it is to set those up. But I KNOW how crucial they are to my success and more importantly my mental health.

I’ve begun blocking time for specific projects. I’m learning to say “No” and more importantly, “Yes, but not now”. The juggling has taken a toll – family time, personal time (yeah, I don’t really have that right now,) personal business time and work time. It’s not only affecting me, but also the kids.

Now I’m blocking a couple of hours during the day so that I can just spend time with the kids when they get home from school. After hearing “when are you going to be done with work?” a couple dozen times, I finally realized that I needed to make some fact time with them a priority.

I am protecting my morning hours. My most productive hours are the time between going to the gym (before the sun gets up) and 10am. I am no longer letting myself get pulled into frantic phone calls and meetings. If I don’t get things done then, it messes up my whole day.

And I am now also blocking time for my personal work. Granted, that is typically on the weekends. But if I sit down and focus and get it done during the time allotted, it gives me a sense of freedom and time to breathe before I hit the ground running on Monday morning again. And gives the kids an idea on when I’ll be available.

This transition is still a work in progress. But I am focusing on balancing the needs of my new job, my personal needs and the needs of my family. Yes, I feel like a professional juggler some days. But overall, I am enjoying life more than I have in a long, long time. And the financial peace I get from steady income and a solid savings account is a big part of that.


15 Comments

  • Reply shanna |

    While boundaries are important, I am curious as to how you can not be available before 10 and after 3 in a corporate job? Especially as the new girl. Your children are not small, they are old enough to understand that you are unavailable and working until 5 or 6. I think asserting yourself to the point that I understand from reading this (and I could be reading it wrong) is going to paint you as difficult and not willing to put in the time. I don’t think that is your intention but that is my take on how you presented it in the post. This gig has the potential to put you in really good stead financially and for your future, I would put everything else on the back burner (including me time and family time) as you get your feet wet and make your mark and your first impressions for a few months at least. Then you can see where you can carve out spots of time and create a better balance.

    • Reply Walnut |

      My understanding is that Hope is using some of the blocked time to deliver on her action items. From years of working for very large companies, this is very common amongst the best producers. It’s so easy for your day to get sucked away in meetings, so blocking off time for your to dos means when people check your schedule, they’ll move a meeting out a bit further. I use tentative blocks frequently for this as well as hard blocks.

      My manager has more visibility into my calendar, so she knows what she can book over.

      • Reply Cheryl |

        How does the company know she is a good producer, she has only been there for a month. I realise she worked with the woman that hired her but in this job she isn’t the boss or am I really confused.

        • Reply Lisa |

          She’s also not blocking off the afternoon hours to work, she’s blocking them off to spend time with her kids, after stating in the past they expect her to work bankers hours. I’m confused too. I’m sure Hope is a good worker, but there are differences between being self employed and working for someone else.

        • Reply Walnut |

          I wasn’t totally clear, but adding blocks to the calendar is what enables high producers to be effective. If Hope gives her boss full view access to her calendar, then her boss will know when Hope has work blocks versus meeting blocks rather than just busy/free summaries.

          Hope will observe best practices in her group, but reserving working time to deliver on action items is key to success in many roles.

      • Reply jj |

        walnut this is how i read it as well. her AM hours are used to deliver on work stuff, and she is setting up in work boundaries as well.

        she has worked with this company for a while, them as her customer, now she is their employee. i am sure she is familiar with her team, etc/

      • Reply MBA |

        She’s not blocking off time to produce work. She’s blocking off the afternoon to spend time with her kids.

        I give this job another few months before she quits or is fired.

        • Reply Walnut |

          Many companies have moved beyond clock watching to task tracking. If the work gets done, then all is well. With covid especially, many people work flexible hours. Establishing healthy boundaries is something I encourage as a manager.

  • Reply Cheryl |

    Like Shanna I’m confused. You have been at this job for one month and you’re telling them when you will work? Thought your kids have activities and jobs how much time are they spending with you. Hope I’m wrong, but if you were my employee you’d be looking for a new job if you set these limitations after only a month.

  • Reply Deb |

    Kids are able to adjust even if they are teenagers and young 20 somethings. I have explained to my kids many times when they were younger that while I would love to spend more time with them that I do have to work in order to keep our home, food, and pay the bills. Now that they are older I basically tell them if they feel that they are missing out on something just let me know and we can always work something out. It may not be happening in that moment and may have to wait a day or two, but that’s life and the hard part of growing up is understanding that things have to wait at times.

    When my kids ask if I am working I tell them yes because we have to do things as adults that sometimes we don’t want to do and it’s the same for children, teenagers, and 20 somethings. I have been known to ask them what they are willing to give up (activities, cell phones, going out to eat) in order for me to be home with them more often. The answers are not surprising and they undertand that if they don’t want to give something up then I do have to go to work.

  • Reply Drmaddog |

    Hopefully, the boss has approved of the absences at meetings/phone calls. If not, it might help to view these things as opportunities to establish yourself as a valuable team member who can offer creative solutions to challenging problems. It also can keep others familiar with you which would be important when layoffs occur since it is often easier to get rid of the people who aren’t right in front of you daily. Lastly, I haven’t met anyone in any job that didn’t have to take part in meetings that they thought were soul-sucking and a waste of time. It comes with the territory.

    • Reply Ellen |

      I have to agree. I am currently putting together my employees’ yearly reviews. My team is very forward facing with our clients and they have no issues letting me know who is dodging their meetings. We have a full workload and a lot of my staff works hard to get all of the work required of us done to meet government deadlines. My staff has complained about the amount of meetings. I have noticed that the two that are notorious for skipping out on meetings that they thought were not important, are also the ones that are scrambling to meet deadlines due to errors in their work. We have all been to meetings that didn’t mean anything to us or our job function. I tell my team that if they find themselves in a meeting where they don’t belong, kindly bow out. but at least show up! If they are part of the agenda but the rest of the meeting doesn’t pertain to them, request that they present early in the meeting so that they can get back to their work. We all are crazy busy, but one is not more important than the other. If you have blocked yourself off for a few hours to dive into your work, fantastic. But if I see the same hours everyday, I’m going to ask you what exactly you are doing; especially working from home. Being at home does not mean you get to play with company time and do as you please. I had one employee try that. She got let go because she was shopping, having 3 hour lunches with her mom, etc. She would boast about it to her coworkers! but HR wanted solid proof. I finally caught her. I had tried to IM her and was not getting any response. I called her and could hear her Doordash app in the background. She was working her side gig while she was supposed to be working! How sad is it to lose a 6 figure job for an $8 delivery?!

  • Reply Den |

    I’m glad you are enjoying the work now and getting settled into a routine. Just stay flexible and it will all work out!

  • Reply csdx |

    I’m largely the opposite with work productivity, my best time is in the afternoon, so even though I’m working from home and the kids are around, they know that I’m ‘at work’ until 5. Kids can be impatient but it’s no more time lost than when I would be at the office (and still better due to lack of commute time), and hopefully it’s modelling some kind of work ethic for them.

So, what do you think ?