direction: January 2005 Archives

1 week down, infinity to go

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Yeah, yeah, I know.

But this is actually a brief post of semi-serious reflection. This is not the first time I've been called upon to do a little administration--in Virginia, I was the coordinator for the Professional Writing part of our MA program. This involved a little bit of curriculum design/revision, a little bit of scheduling, a little bit of advising, and, in my recollection at least, was largely informal.

But this is the first time where I've occupied a more formal position, one that carries its own office, and one where I actually rate assistance. M is not an "assistant" or "secretary" per se--her official title is Graduate Program Coordinator. I'm tempted to observe that M in fact does the "real work" while I strut around singing the praises of J. J. Abrams, Tony Shalhoub, and Junior Mints. It's not quite that bad, though--take a look at my schedule for next week if you don't believe me. Programs of all sizes and inclinations need both direction and coordination.

But see, one of the things that she coordinates is my calendar, which is both odd and tremendously liberating. It's odd, because I'm pretty self-sufficient as far as my professional life goes. I generally prefer to make my own copies, run my own errands--I don't like to make work for other people. And yet, there's a real luxury in allowing someone else to manage my calendar. In my first week, it's the biggest felt change in my life. I don't have to worry about setting up appointments, juggling demands, etc. They just talk to M, and I show up when I'm supposed to.

I could get used to that. I know that pretty much everyone from middle management on up in pretty much every industry already takes this for granted, and maybe someday I will too. But not for a while yet. Right now, I'm deeply appreciative, for something as silly as a printout of my weekly calendar that someone else has generated for me.

That is all.



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This page is a archive of entries in the direction category from January 2005.

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