October 14, 2010

Work and more work...

Last week at this time, I was in Vegas. I was just starting what proved to be 6 hours of edits and revisions to get a final version of a Keynote presentation ready for the clients. At 4:30 AM I emailed the final PDF to our team so they could review when they woke up.

As a designer, I was sick of being on the receiving end of last minute deliverables. When I was invited to participate as an organizer in what proved to be a 2-month process, I welcomed the chance to be part of the solution. Getting files to the designer AHEAD of the deadline was my goal.

I didn’t succeed.

It was so much harder than I anticipated to get the whole team to commit to decisions, to revise the writing, to just MOVE quickly. For the first phase I was able to pass all the assets to another designer. I worked alongside him to create charts and tables and help him get a 60 page book finished in 48 hours.

Then I was the one on the line to get the standup presentation organized and designed. I did everything I could to show the document ahead of time, to get the team to agree to the storyboard, but it’s hard to get an executive to focus before things are truly ‘hot’. It all got done, the presentation went well (haven’t heard the decision yet, but we heard that they’re leaning in our direction), but that last night was painful.

Now I’m suffering from more of the same. I’m back in my normal seat as a graphic designer, but I’m waiting for the discussion with our GM and KBig. It’s been rescheduled and reshuffled too many times to count. At the moment, its on the calendar for the end of October.

Quite honestly, our GM is in over her head. She’s a micromanager who has now been thrust into a larger office than she’s run before. Her management style doesn’t work for our office. She’s from the British Isles and used to a hierarchical system, protocol and all that good stuff. Our office is THE most collaborative and the most technologically savvy of all our global offices. People have been quitting almost every other week. And she’s so overwhelmed by details that she doesn’t have time to replace them.

Quite honestly, if I didn’t know we’d be moving (according to Jrex, not until July) and if I didn’t have the carrot of a possible new position, I’d be another one of those fleeing the ship. I don’t even know if I can make it until July, but I guess that’s not up to me.

On the Jrex job front, he’s heard from UMich that they don’t have room for him (he thinks the real answer is that he doesn’t have his own funding). Next week is the first round at Southw3stern. He has a second round coming up at Mt. S1nai and we have a round in Portland in November.

I guess my question is, should I be looking for a new job, knowing I might only be there eight months?


Anonymous said...

Other alternatives:

What's the possibility that the front office will correctly size up the situation in your office, and

- Fire the GM, or
- Demote the GM, or
- Transfer the GM to a less-demanding job?

Would you be a candidate for the GM job?

Suppose you got the GM job, and then in six to nine months, you and Jrex moved, would you want to stay with the Company?

If you were already in an executive position, you'd
have a dynamite resume for getting your next

OTRgirl said...

Given the fact that I campaigned for a 'Director' level job and was told that would be a jump of three levels and they wouldn't do that, I don't think anyone (including me) would see me as a GM. I know nothing about the business/money side. Frankly, I don't want to know about it either. I'd like to learn to manage designers and be set up to apply as an art director after we move.

They aren't going to move her or fire her (she's known for turning our L0ndon office around). She's profitable. And in this company, that's the language of value.

Mizasiwa said...

Hi couldnt you freelance for that period?? I dont think your the type to start at a company to only leave after that short a period. Good luck though sounds hardcore. I work in a similar type of position and its very straining!!