Monday, November 29, 2004

Day One

The last second thought before starting my new job flashed through my mind toward the end of my commute, which is almost exactly the same as it was for my last job, as the two facilities are only maybe five miles apart. As I got close, I realized that I could just continue on to my old job if I so desired, and carry on as if I had never left. It wasn't a serious thought, though--just a realization that I could do it, and not a desire to actually go through with it.

The first omen of the day was a good one. As soon as I got there, I realized that I'll be working directly across the street from a high school football stadium. I don't know exactly how I missed that when I interviewed a couple of weeks ago, but I caught it right away this morning.

New hires, regardless of the position they've been hired into, are generally required to work in the warehouse for the first two weeks of their employment. That way everyone gets to learn the operation from the ground up, which seems like a good idea to me--one problem I had at my old job is that I never felt like I knew enough about what we were doing there. At any rate, I went in this morning prepared to work in the warehouse, only to be told that the Marketing department (which I'll be working in) was coming up on some significant deadlines and they needed me to jump right in. They said they can't spare me for warehouse work until mid-January. Maybe.

So I jumped right into the proofreading, which is just fine with me. I found out quickly that the relative lack of practice hasn't really hurt me at all. I'm still very good at it, with an almost uncanny eye for small details that elude others. The person "training" me just showed me the basics and let me roll with it on my own, which I did for nearly the whole day. I'm glad to be given the full immersion treatment. I was told by the end of the day that I was working too quickly, which is somewhat amusing since I felt like I was taking a desperately long time. I have a feeling they're going to be quite happy with my work as these deadlines approach, because I know I'll get even faster as I get used to what I'm doing and develop a system.

I'm still feeling out some of the small details of the job and the workplace, and I probably will be for a while. It may be because it's such a crunch time right now, but I didn't meet very many people. A lot of people work there, but no one really introduced me around, and no one went out of their way to meet me. I did get to meet the owner/president of the company, but he was the only one not closely and directly related to my job that I met. I'm okay with that, though. Quite a few people work there, and I'll eventually meet the people I need to know. It would be nice if someone would show me around a little bit and point out people, things, and places I might need to know about, but I can figure that stuff out on my own as well.

The work itself is okay. There isn't a lot of prose to go over, which I would prefer. Mostly it's titles and names, with some short descriptions thrown in. A lot of it involves checking prices and code numbers to make sure they've been printed correctly, which is almost literally mind-numbing. I can do it, though, and I know I'm good at it. I don't want to get too confident too quickly, but if the opportunities they promised are truly there, then I don't think I'll be the low man on the totem pole for a terribly long time.

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