What I've learned

Or The Pearls of Wisdom I've collected in 10 years

Lost Highway
Bon Jovi  (Lost Highway)

In my rearview mirror
My life is getting clearer
The sunset sighs and slowly disappears
These trinkets once were treasure
Life changes like the weather
You grow up, grow old or you hit the road 'round here
So I drive, watching white lines passing by
With my plastic dashboard Jesus, waiting there to greet us

Hey, hey, I finally found my way
Say goodbye to yesterday
Hit the gas there ain't no brakes on the lost highway
Yeah I'm busting loose, I'm letting go
Out on this open road
It's independence day on this lost highway

I don't know where I'm going
But I know where I've been
Now I'm afraid of going back again
So I drive, years and miles are flying by
And waiting there to great us
Is my plastic dashboard Jesus

Oh patron saint of lonely souls
To tell this boy which way to go
Guide the car, you got the keys
Farewell to mediocrity
Kicking off the cruise-control
And turning up the radio
Got just enough religion
And a half tank of gas come on, let's go

I finally found my way
Say goodbye to yesterday
Hit the gas there ain't no brakes on the lost highway
Yeah I'm busting loose, I'm letting go
Out on this open road

It's independence day on this lost highway

There are a lot of things that I've realized or that I've actually thought outloud and articulated into a coherent statement of what I have learned, what I want and, I think most important, what i don't want from the people I work with and the people I work for.

This is an ongoing post. As I learn more or decide to write more of what I learn down, this post is going to continue to grow. It may be moved to the top

What I want

  • If people say no then try to understand why they are saying no and don't just slam them because they are not doing what you want them to.

  • I want a team where there's open communication, not this sniping and trying to take control situation. Sometimes work calls on you to be an isolated individual and that's fine, but don't let that become the only way you do work

  • I want to foster a team-culture of openness, backing each other up and accountability

  • Openness: It's ok for you to tell a coworker when they made a mistake and hope it'll taken in the constructive spirit it was offered. Egos have a limited role in a team.

  • Corollary 1 to openness: Be sure you offer criticism in a constructive way.

  • Corollary 2 to openness: Accept criticism without being defensive, the SOB is not trying to get you, he's trying to help

  • Corollary 3 to openness: Be available to talk to those around you. If you are seen as approachable it'll be easier to keep lines of communication open

  • Back each other up: If you are a team it should be perfectly ok to look over each other's shoulders and double check each other's work. We are all part of this process and it affects all of us when something doesn't work out the way it should

  • Corollary 1 to back each other up: You have to know enough to back your team mates up

  • Corollary 2 to back each other up: Delegation should not mean that you're not ready and willing to do your part in the team effort 

  • Accountability: If you screw up assume the reasonability for doing so.  A team should be supportive of honest mistakes but not tolerant of lazy mistakes

  • Corollary 1 to accountability: It's ok to screw up, as long as you learn from your mistakes

  • Corollary 2 to accountability: It's starts with you. If people see that you work hard to be and remain accountable they will want to follow you and do the same.

  • Keep communicating with those around you and actually act upon those things that are important to those around you. (Most) People don't bitch just for the hell of it but feel that they have a valid reason to complain so it's your job to, at the very least, investigate their issues are and attempt a resolution

  • Be quick to praise and slow to criticize (see Corollary 1 and 2 to to openness above)

  • Don't expect of others which you're not ready to do yourself

  • Listening is an art. Become a listening artist

  • Compromise is not always bad, just don't make a habit out of it.

    What I don't want

  • If you're working on a team then do so and don't try to take over by stating what you want done and then expecting it to be done

  • I don't want conflict to spiral out like it has this time around.  If I have to become involved in conflict then I have already failed in resolving the issue.

  • Sure as hell I don't want to be the one carrying a team, either technically or in terms of communication. I think that's what I'm most upset about the review for this last period.... I can't care what other people's reviews are, my review was unfair from my perspective as it laid a lot of the weight on me in terms of my ability to communicate.

  • I don't want a position where there is no growth.  I don't want to feel stagnant and have to initiate my own projects to keep myself current in the technology