New Chapter

Over the past few months, I had been contemplating about whether I should leave my current role or not. I wasn’t sure where I would go after I left, but I knew that this role wasn’t for me. I did have a look at roles available within the industry, but found that they weren’t quite what I was looking for. This meant that actually leaving could mean that I wouldn’t really have a place to go to, or I could end up in another role that didn’t really give me what I wanted. But after talking to my friends and family (with the odd complaints), I found the courage to talk to my manager.

There were a few reasons why it took me a while to decide to leave. One was that I am in a two person team. Leaving would mean that my manager would be left alone, which made me feel uncomfortable. Another reason was that my current role is pretty comfortable. I work 7 hours a day, no weekends, on a good salary. I have my own desk, I can go for a walk at lunch and the clients are mostly really really nice. In addition, the requests can be varied, which adds dimension to the role.

However, there was something that was always bugging me and it took me a while to figure it out. I kept thinking about how I felt at the places I had at worked before; what the environment, culture, work and people were like. About how I fitted in at those places and how I fit in at the place I work at now.

I came to the conclusion that I wasn’t happy, and that I wanted something more and different. I didn’t feel happy coming to work, I didn’t look forward to meeting new people and I didn’t want to participate. I had become disengaged.

Disengagement is a real issue, as it means that I won’t do my best work and go out of my way to do things. For example, when I first started, I developed the SharePoint site, wrote a couple of blog posts and actively looked out for any interesting articles and reports that would be of interest to my clients. Now, I have become lazy and disinterested, which is not someone I want to be.

So I made a decision. Despite all the monetary and skill benefits that I would gain here, I knew that I wouldn’t fully take advantage of them and needed to figure out what I wanted to do. I needed to this whilst I had no responsibilities and no one relying on me.

When I found the courage to tell my manager that I was leaving something amazing happened. My brain started firing with all these possibilities. I suddenly had an idea of where I wanted to take my career and I felt excited.

I started thinking about starting my own business, which was something I had never really wanted to do. I had always thought I’d work for someone else, in a company or a university, but now I was thinking that I want to work for myself and for my own reasons. I also started thinking about temping, so I could work in different environments and with different people. This way I could figure out what path I wanted to travel.

After speaking with my friends about my business idea, things started becoming a little clearer and I even asked them to help me out, by giving me topics to research. This way I would be able to figure out where I could possibly to take my career.

Using Microsoft Excel as an Information Professional

Microsoft Excel is really a wonderful tool. It can be used for all kinds of things and I have found it extremely useful to use as an Information Professional.

For example, I have used it to keep track of all the subscriptions we have, including having a spreadsheet dedicated to subscriptions, users and costs and have a separate spreadsheet dedicated to descriptions of the subscriptions and what category it belongs to.

I have also used it to organise what I would like our SharePoint site to look like, having a separate tab for each page on the site, which makes it easier to update as we would just need to copy and paste, since SharePoint can be limited in what it can do.

In addition, I have used Excel to keep track of important information, which has, in a way, become a guide. For example, I have used it to record the different searches we perform (including what database to use and what to look for), who our suppliers and account managers are and the different company registries.

Most importantly, it is being used to keep track of our requests so that we have an idea of who is asking for what, what kind of information they are asking for and how long each type of request takes.

I find Excel useful because it allows me to have a number of sheets in one document and I can filter, alphabetise, calculate and update information really quickly and easily.