Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Job two

My wife agreed to move with me again, only a few months after the last move, and with our first child in tow.

I remember being very excited about being part of a new startup. I had the freedom to work, from the quality side, in the complete manufacturing process. I loved taking new people on a plant tour when they started, and being able to describe the individual production steps and quality issues throughout the complete production process.

I showed a knack for dealing with computers, and when the computer support person in the main office went on maternity leave, I filled in. I picked up a project for purchasing and tool crib inventory while I was at it, and stuck with that for the duration. It was coded in (raise your hands if you've ever heard of this); Advanced Revelation. [wow - side note; I just went to their web site and it's done in Domino - cool coincidence]
The consultant helping me with the implementation said one day that he could create an email function in AR, he just didn't have a client willing to pay for it. Well, if it could be done, then .... I was going to try. A while later, we had a rudimentary email application. I loved being able to go to someone's desk, make the changes they requested, and leave their desk knowing that I had helped to make them more productive.

I learned that I enjoyed making someone else's day easier and more productive, more than I enjoyed making my own day easier.

I stopped being involved in the manufacturing side of the business, and had many days go by where I didn't even touch or see the product we made. I remember walking in to the office and asking the receptionist; "we make wheels here, right?". The information age was starting for me.

The town we were living in was wonderful, my commute was only 3 km (many days I even walked to work, left a car at the plant, and drove home for lunch with my wife). I enjoyed my work, and ... I got the feeling that I needed to move on before I started 'settling' and getting too comfortable. We had been there for seven years, and I felt that if I stayed any longer, I would start making excuses about why I could never leave. In hindsight, it was a very good move; the company was sold a few years later and every one of the remaining original employees was invited to find other employment. Hearing that news, it felt like I had dodged another bullet.

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