Thursday, October 2, 2014

Your Failure to Plan

The last two days at work, and now today, the modern adage "Your failure to plan is not my emergency" reared up in the office. Tuesday they (i.e. someone with the emergency) and said they needed my help urgently on a somewhat large and very complex project designed in our Dallas office. Actually, the man may have come by my desk Monday evening late and made the request. Tuesday I started on it, working more of the day. It turned out to be the need for a end of the project quality control check. The project manager had quit, the department head was taking on that role, and it had to go out. There was some confusion about what the deadlines were, and a few hours were lost therefore.

I spent all day Tuesday and Wednesday working on the project check, including some overtime (unpaid, of course) on Tuesday. I did my check, though to be honest the complexity of the project required I spend at least 4, maybe 8 hours I didn't have on it. I met with those producing the work, and all's right with the world. Today I've had three minor questions about it, all easily dispatched.

So today, the VP of Production comes to my office around 8:30 a.m. He said another department, one here in Bentonville, was in a jam, and they needed my help urgently. They needed a construction specification put together for a street project in nearby Rogers. The project is being advertised Sunday, and they are still working on the drawings and haven't started the spec. But, this one was extremely simple, as it's really just to do some of the preliminary right-of-way clearing, not construct the street; that will come later. So I asked for a set of the drawings so that I'd know what I was specifying. It's now 1:00 p.m. I still don't have the drawings. I have been able to do a lot of work on the spec, however, just based on the description of the work included. If I get the drawings in the next hour, I should be able to complete the project without staying much past my normal quitting time.

That's important, because, I'm on a vacation tomorrow (Friday) and Monday. I'll be in Branson, with Lynda, meeting my half-sister, who I just learned about in the last 45 days. Our rooms are already booked and paid for, as is her flight. This is a vacation I can't give up for the company.

So all the work I had planned on doing this week has not happened. I'm speaking at a class at the University of Arkansas on Tuesday afternoon, and figured I'd put my presentation together today. Alas, I don't think that will happen. I did manage to find the time to do some scheduling of some training sessions. Perhaps I'll find a little time to work on that presentation.

So, here I am, under the gun, as always seems to happen when I announce vacation time. Next time I should just not show up on those days and call in. If I do that, most likely no one will miss me.

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