Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Have you looked down the back of the couch?

How very careless of me, I've lost my assistant at work.

Why do I feel so relieved? I was so excited when I was told that I was getting an assistant at work to alleviate my workload and let me focus on the fun stuff of my job and really grow and learn more in my job.

Honestly, I wasn't that impressed with the hire my manager made to be my assistant. I thought that she was over qualified to do the job, and was just using it as an escape hatch from her previous role within the company which I knew she hated. I much preferred the other candidate.

She started really well, and was bubbling over with enthusiasm, and really eager to learn. After 3 months though, my stress levels were going through the roof. We split the workload so that we each had clear lines and differences in responsibilities, so that there was no confusion. There were constant omissions, no interest in meeting deadlines, and no initiative or willingness to take responsibility for any decisions or actions. I spent a lot of time fixing mistakes, and apologising to frustrated internal and external clients. Not fun. After 5 months - migraines, lack of sleep, and a whole lot of tears.

When she resigned on Monday, I'm sure that my blood pressure dropped and I know that my stress levels did. I've slept better the last 2 nights than I have in weeks, and I'm so much happier.

At the same time, I'm thinking a lot. Am I such a control freak that things have to be my way or not at all? Am I so hypercritical that I always focus on the faults and never on the positive? Could I have done more to keep her motivated and engaged, or did she check out a while ago, and know that I wouldn't let anything go wrong because of my pride in the job being well done... Do I have problems trusting others to do the right thing by myself, themselves, our clients and the business? With the massive expectations I have for myself, do I expect everyone else to live up to them or instantly condemn them or write them off as not as committed as me?

This is really confronting stuff. I don't think that I'm perfect (okay, maybe....) but I'm dealing with issues I've been hiding from for years, even though some of it has been mentioned in previous performance reviews. I think I need to have a pretty long session, either with someone from HR, or my manager. The scary thing is that the more I think about this, the more I suspect it applies in my personal life as well. Ouch.

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