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Go South Young(ish) Man

June 1, 2018

I’m not here today. I’m not available on email. I won’t answer my phone, so don’t try. In fact, by the time this posts at 7:00am Mountain Time, I hope to be somewhere south of Provo headed for Arizona. We are taking a family vacation to the Grand Canyon.

I travel a fair bit for work. I also, as many of you know, go camping with the boy scouts just about every month. Most times I take my phone with me. It’s the curse of being oncall.

I work with two different oncall groups. The first is my client. Every week they switch to a new oncall person. I have to remember who to call if we have an issue. They tried creating a single phone number to make it easier on me and their other suppliers. The number didn’t always get answered. So, they switched back to a named backup.

There is someone backing me up today. If my call center catches on fire, the client will call my backup. And they’ll fix it.

Most times, I tell my teams to “call me first. If I don’t answer, then call the backup.” Not today. Today, any problems go straight to the backup person. first.

It’s hard for me to let go. I don’t think I’m a controling personality. Maybe I am and just don’t recognize it in myself. I’ve had managers who insisted they weren’t micromanagers. Sadly they were not particularly self-aware.

I think part of my issue is that I enjoy my job. . .a lot. And I’m pretty good at it most of the time. And my backups are not IT people. They are business people. They may be smarter than me, but they cannot do IT work better than me. It’s difficult, I think for me to place our center into the hands of someone else. If something goes wrong, the most important thing is to get up and running as quickly as possible. It’s my most important job and it’s absolutely the reason we have to have a backup for me.

The other worry about letting go, even for a long weekend, is what if I really don’t like my job as much as I think I do? Suppose, it’s simply the constantness of it that keeps me from seeing the truth? That I want to run off and join the circus.

Or, maybe it’s just time for a vacation.

That’s probably it.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren. 

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