Financial Freedom Sloth

achieving financial freedom one lazy step at a time

The job situation

Back in July last year I posted a status update of my job situation. For those of you tl;dr people (no need to hide your laziness here, actually I encourage it! Consider this a safe space for all you lazy buggers out there!) I’ll give you a short recap:

  • The job is near Leuven.
  • My net wage is a bit higher than before (long live the Belgian Bicycle to work compensation! Tax free compensation is the best kind of compensation!).
  • I now work in the Fintech sector, combining Finance and IT
  • Part time not possible in my current job. But things are moving and changing fast here so who knows in a few more years?
  • And then the most important part: I like the new job!
  • The company is in the scale up phase at the moment. So insanely busy on all accounts. Part of me doing less posts here is because I am tired in the evening folks. And I really do not want to sit any more time behind the PC in the evening. But it is a good kind of tired. And the atmosphere is very much still start up rock and roll.

The present

Has anything changed since last July? Well, the last point in July already mentionned it was insanely busy. Management also knew this so we got two new hires!

Unfortunately, they are not really working out all that well. Sigh.

We are supposed to do about 50 tickets a day. My other co-worker more or less gets those done. One of the new hires is only now (after quiet a bit of help from me) getting there. And the other one sat arond 25 tickets. Have one guess who picked up the slack? Yep, me!

But we are also a fintech company in a scale up fase, so we are growing about 25% a year (or more, because we have a diabolicaly great marketing guy). Have another guess who absorbed all those extra tickets our growth brought with them? Yep, me again!

I sit around 70 to 80 tickets a day, some days topping the 100.

My own worst enemy

I achive this insane number by sprinting out of the gates first thing in the morning and then keeping that tempo up until the very last minute of my working day. Very often running two things at the same time.

It is working very vast and very concentrated for the entiry day.

Now I have always worked this way because I am an all or nothing type of guy (I really should do something about that!). I either work very hard or not at all. Well actually, I work very hard because I want to be able to be lazy as quickly as possible. It is an approach that worked well at all my previous jobs because I just finished my work in about 6,5 hours and had 4 x 15 minutes of very lazy internet time build into my work day, Random internet time relaxes me. On occasion I even wrote a draft of a blog post at work! Ah, happy days …

But it is an apporach that is not working in an environment where there is an insane amount of work to be done. Because when there is still a lot of work to be done I do not allow myself those little breaks during the day. For a couple of weeks this is ok, but it has been over 4 months now and repercussions are starting to show:

  • I am as stress eater so enter the sandwishes during work days and exit the diet …
  • sport helped to relax up to a certain point. Beyond that point I am so tired I don’t even have enough mental energy to get to the swimming pool. So my exercising suffered …
  • In the evening I just want to zombie out and watch some random crap on tv. So my posting on the blog suffers. Hell, even my relationship suffers as the mental energy for the girlfriend is also all used up at work…

Overworked and annoyed

Management is aware. My evaluation was stellar! And there should even be a raise in my near future.

There should also be a new hire coming. The bad one has been moved to other duties. This has off course caused an even bigger flood of work at the moment. And working very hard and just about keeping up is one thing. Working very hard and falling more and more behind every day is another thing. I hate falling behind. Our customers and our company deserve better. So now I am overworked and annoyed, and being annoyed also costs me mental energy, grrr.

I have been here before when I worked support for the trading room of a big bank. I know I can handle it. And I am trying to protect me from myself. Communication with my boss in this regard is really good.

But it is a great example on how even one thing can seriously impact your work situation and sometimes that one thing can be out of your control.

Hope for the future

I know that this too will pass. And if I am completely honest part of me is getting some perverse sense of satisfaction out of the fact I can still do it! After the two years at the big bank keeping 4 different derivates products afloat during a major restructuration (and as a thank you losing that job once the restructuration was done) I was very much spend. The first year after those two years of ‘work hell’ I definitely reached my ‘red line’ a lot faster. I was convinced that work wise my ‘best’ years were behind me. The tank being so banged up it wasn’t big enough anymore for prolonged, hard runs. I had made my peace with that. Even looked for ‘easier’ ‘low-stress’ jobs. But hey, three years of easy jobs intersected by months of unemployement apparently got me right back into shape!

I am really happy to know this because even post fire I might have a project or two where I would need to put the pedal to the metal and just floor it. But at the moment I just hope the current insane workload would just light up a little bit.

8 Comments

  1. Good luck my lazy friend!

  2. and you are saying you are lazy.

    You have to raise the problem asap and to have a less number of tasks.The overwork is the main cause of people starting to hate their job, to make mistakes, to go sick, to leave the job. There is no extra salary to cover the everyday overload issue.

    (I am good at theory, but I have no idea how to speak about these…)

    • finan112_wp

      March 5, 2019 at 2:50 pm

      Boss is aware of it and also that form time to time I would like to do a ‘fun’ project and she is totally onboard with it because the ‘fun’ project is also something that should be done but hasn’t been done because nodbody has the time for it. I had a stellar evaluation and she totaly understands that some variety in the work would make me a lot happier. She used to do my job so she knows huge amounts off tickets every day gets annoying so she is totally unboard. Hell, one of the new guys was supposed to be my back up so I could now and then do something different. But as said, the new guy wans’t up to the task so now they are looking for somebody new…

  3. What really could set you apart is if you find ways to deal with higher volumes in a more efficient way. Being the best hamster in the wheel is not the way to get ahead. Try to think about the bigger picture, suggest solutions such as splitting the workload into simple and complex and leverage less experienced folks for less complex work.

    I have experience both in the Belgian workforce as well as in a different culture and looking back I would have done so many things differently. Think outside the box, be part of the solution vs complaining about having too many widgets to produce. I’m not saying you’re necessarily complaining at work but if you carved out 1hr of time each week to strategically think about ways to make processes more efficient it would certainly pay off.

    • finan112_wp

      March 5, 2019 at 2:45 pm

      O, I have made suggestions to improve our workflow. That is when I discovered that besides the huge amount of work we need to be doing my boss has an even longer list of work she would like to do but just doesn’t has the time for it. Hell, since I no longer have a back up she sometimes has to do part of my work because it needs to be done and there just isn’t anybody else. So I need to get the work done so she has more time to set in motion a few projects that can help us reduce the work time we need to handle our current volume and then when we finally have some free time (and I once again have a back up) I can be put on some ‘fun’ projects as well … Off course by that time we probably will have doubled in business and will encounter a whole slew of other problems to deal with … Fun times!

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