10 things I have learned at work

  1. How to make tea without a teaspoon. There are never enough bloody teaspoons.
  2. Always make friends with security, the post room and the PAs. They are where the true power to make your life hard really resides.
  3. Lots of smart people together can make a whole lot of spectacularly dumb ass decisions; individually, they’ll all know it’s stupid but the Combined Stupidity Factor will out.
  4. In any shared space, standards will fall to the lowest common denominator. Thus, if you don’t have cleaners who clean bathrooms or kitchens on a regular basis, it will be like living back in halls of residence, only worse.
  5. The first 10 minutes of any conference or video call will be spent sorting out the technical issues and then waiting for the people who are late.
  6. Meetings that don’t have an agenda or minutes are a waste of everyone’s time.
  7. Buy your own stationery/as much kit as you can get away with. At least then you’ll have a good pen and a decent notebook, maybe even a workable phone and (holy grail) laptop.
  8. There is always more work. Put a hard stop in your calendar, go home and don’t check email.
  9. Play nice. Then grit your teeth and still play nice. If you really have to, remind people that you are, in fact, playing nice, and things could get a whole lot worse than this if they want? Then go home and pour a big glass of wine.
  10. This too shall pass.
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2 thoughts on “10 things I have learned at work

  1. litlove

    This made me laugh! Particularly the one about the Combined Stupidity Factor. You should see academics making decision at meetings…. The more theoretically smart, the more combined stupidity you get. But I liked all of your points. They are all just too true. Oh and I also wanted to say I’m currently listening to Bring Up The Bodies and loving it. It’s brilliant on audio book, so thank you for the suggestion!

  2. musingsfromthesofa Post author

    Litlove – Oh goodness, I can imagine academics, OUP was pretty close… So glad you are enjoying Bring up the Bodies, I can’t wait for vol 3 to come out.

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