Sunday 7-7-13, In it to Win IT.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”  ~ Mark Twain

Happy Sunday!

I have been pondering since late Thursday what I should write about this week.  I have been trying to sense what might be my lesson for the week.  My spirit has been peaceful when I am at home.  My body is busy with getting ready for the graduation party next week but that is going well.  My reading and lessons are all fine – no big ‘aha’s this week, so I was struggling for ideas.  I would think of an idea to write about, filter it through my feelings, and not be happy with it.  I do get nervous when I leave starting my writing until Sunday to be inspired, which is silly as what day is better for being ‘in spirit’?  Joel Osteen gave me the inspiration this morning to write about that part of my life that I feel I leave behind me each workday at 4:30 pm.
Where things are turbulent right now and where I find my self needing to evaluate my role is at work.  Due to four recent retirements, people are switching positions in every work team.  The boss that I have directly answered to for many years is one of those who has just retired.  He was the last of those people that I thought of mentors in my own development as an engineer.  Additionally, my team of four has been down to two since last fall so I have been relying heavily on one of our field personnel to monitor my projects at the project sites.  He has just taken a position with another group and I am shaken, realizing things can’t continue as they have been.
There will be a new person hired for my team in the next few weeks; working on job descriptions has caused me to reflect on how I have managed my group in the past and what I need to do differently now.  I have realized from reviewing the job descriptions that I have not been a ‘team player’ and have not promoted that in my staff.  Before I was the manager I did most of the work on the design of projects, I still have that role in addition I have taken on the project management as well.  I have always worked independently not needing direction to plan the upcoming tasks;  I see now that I have isolated my self from the team in my expectation that they will self motivate as I had done.
I am implementing change.  I am envisioning the roles that my two assistants will have to assist in design and management.  I now recognize that my behavior of holding on to all the responsibility has caused my staff to be stagnant and to not develop their own skills.
I have to be a teacher.  This statement surprising flows easily from my mind as I can recall many times in my life stating that “I’m not a teacher”.  This role seems right for me now; I am ready as my ‘wise woman’ self to nurture the next generation.  Perhaps this is as my perspective has changed. I no longer feel competitive; concerned that someone will take something from me and gain the edge over me.  I want to help to ready the next generation.  I said to my boss the other day that I may be hiring the person who will take over from me in 5-10 years.
Obvious change will be that I am giving up my office to move back into my team’s work area.
Uncomfortable change will be getting others to share my vision. I have ideas to discuss this week about re-defining the tasks of my office team with the construction group who monitor field activities.  I am somewhat fearful of presenting these ideas with that group’s manager as I am now trying to change what is not under my supervision.
I was beginning to have those doubtful thoughts about my vision last night, questions weighing whether I was acting boldly and wise or was I just being controlling?  Joel’s sermon this morning gave me clarity and the inspiration to write about this.
Joel talked about ‘staying in the game’ by telling stories to explain his point:  an injured player who said he would rather play in pain then sit on the bench, an ill parishioner who said “I’m hurting, but I am here.”  I am fearful of the changes that are occuring but I am going to trust my instincts to take action to step up my game rather than be overwhelmed by the workload.
I am uncertain what these changes will blossom into.  I am building the planter and sowing the seeds.  I will do my work to become a good nurturer and, with God’s grace, will hopefully see the fruits of my labor before I get to move on.
My new job description that I hold in my mind and heart now reads: project manager, designer, and teacher.
“He is able who thinks he is able.” ~ Buddha

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