Saturday, February 04, 2012

I hope I am not going to be bored - the past week at work


I was at my desk early - I am always one of the first to arrive.

When Campaign Manager Keith Chandler arrive there was a sudden demand to produce some factsheets which took up most of the morning.

In the afternoon I worked on the communication plan for individuals.  This meant going down to the archive on the ground floor, a big windowless room with racking that contains every report ever produced by the Institute, including all the contents of the old library which were just dumped in the room when the move out of London took place about ten years previously.  The archive has a staff of three, but the only person down there was Gary, aged about twenty, not terribly bright, slim build, jeans and white shirt (no tie), amiable disposition, fair hair thinning and combed over a small patch (which he is very sensitive about).

I sat at the reading table and asked for various items which Gary fetched for me.


I spent the morning in the archive.  Yesterday evening Gary had had his hair completely cut off but you could still tell where the bald patch was.  The accounts staff laughed at him over this.

Half-way through the morning there was a visitor from the Institute's "sister organisation".  Apparently there are lots of these visitors who just go to the archive and then go back to London without ever going upstairs to the offices.  This visitor was a typical researcher, black trousers and houndstooth jacket, barking out commands to Gary.

Meetings cancelled because of "sickness" - I am inclined to think the Institute's staff are lazy.


All the morning taken up with discussing a new brochure with Campaign Manager Callum Smith.

A meeting with the Manger of the Telephone Surveys section - she was excited about some research she had done.


All of the day I worked on the communication plan for private individuals.  Progress was slow, mainly because my mind kept wandering.  I hope I am not going to be bored in this new job.

I asked admin assistant what happened to the previous Director of the Institute.  She launched into a bitter account of the office politics that drove her out.  The offices may seem enervated, but they obviously house deep passions.

In the afternoon I joined the Telephone Survey team for a couple of hours.  There are three permanent staff (including Manager  Abi Reed) supplemented by part-time staff.  They all work in a tiny room on the ground floor, just big enough for a table and six chairs (once everyone is sat down you can't move without considerable disruption).  You have a choice of using headphones or a handset.  All calls are recorded.  I listened in to the calls as they were made - very interesting.

The last hour of the afternoon spent sorting out print quotes.

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