work!

The Downside(s)

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In general, working from home is so very awesome (tell us something new, LG). There are however a few downsides (are you whining about work again LG?).

No, just the facts…

Working at home involves a lot of email. Like, a lot.

Without any exaggeration (you gotta love that preface…) I have only met with my one client once in 2 years and spoken to them on the phone 3 times, (and one was a crank call, okay, just kidding) Oh, and FYI, he’s my favourite client. And because (I know, don’t start a sentence with a conjunction, duh) I’m fairly autonomous in what I do (because, like who cares about social media, right?) I don’t often have a lot of ‘in real life’ (IRL) communication with my clients.

And that’s cool, (more poor grammar; please excuse! I’m not on the clock, it’s my blog gall darnit!)

However, at times, there’s things I need to know, ask or request.

Like for instance (wow, I’m on a poor grammar roll!)…

Subject: 1 question

LG: Hi Greg,

I hope everything is going well with you, I have 1 question…

I understand Lionel is starting July 1st. Could you possibly send me his biography within the first few days of July? I will use this as a blog article, on the ‘about us page’ and in the next eNewsletter.

Thanks so much,

LG

Greg’s response

(no greeting or hello… that’s cool…)

Lionel does not start until July 1st. So it only makes sense to send you his bio within the first week of July. I think this would be great to include this in the July eNewsletter.

LG (in my head)

You’re frickin brilliant. Yes! Perfect. Wow. I gotta write that shit down, as it’s such a unique and original concept to grasp. Where oh where did you come up with that idea? 

LG’s Response

Hi Greg,

That sounds great! I look forward to receiving his bio in the first week of July.

Have a great day!

LG

——-

Or this:

Subject: 3 things

Hi Mackie,

1) I’m available for a meeting online on Tuesday at 3pm as previously discussed. Are you still available to meet at that time?

2) I have prepared the report for the next steps of the marketing plan. Please review the attached document ‘Next Steps: Marketing Plan’. If you have any questions or comments, please let me know before our meeting.

3) Did you happen to attain the Giant Panda from China? If so, I’ll like to name in James in honour of my grandfather. Please let me know – thanks!

Have a great day, I look forward to hearing back from you.

LG

Mackie’s Response

(No greeting or salutation, please note the grammatical errors.)

I tart work a 10 on Mondays,

LG (in my head)

Wow, that is so informative and helpful. Let me mark that on my calendar under the the heading ‘WTF Are You Talking About? Have You Had Your ADD Tested Lately?’ (Just a joke, I fully understand that ADD is a real medical problem for millions of people.)

LG’s Real Response

Hi Mackie,

Thanks for your reply. In regards to my last email, I have 3 questions… please send me your response as soon as convenient. Thanks so much for your time.

1) I’m available for a meeting on Tuesday at 3pm. Are you available to meet at that time online as previously discussed?

2) I have prepared the report for the next steps of the marketing plan. Please review the attached document ‘Next Steps: Marketing Plan’ If you have any questions or comments, please let me know before our meeting.

3) Did you happen to attain the Giant Panda from China? If so, I’ll like to name in James in honour of my grandfather. Please let me know if this works for you. Thanks so much!

I look forward to your response. Talk to you soon,

LG

Mackie’s response:

Hi LG,

Its been a crasy week hear wow really so busy thanks for you’re email ive only just red it and so important yes the proposal Tues at 6pm is perfect and the jaguar isn’t ready for pick up although I mind some sliver and thas was awsom.

LG (in my head)

Dear Moron,

Are you frickin drunk? It’s 9am on a Monday, so wow, good for you. I sent you 3 questions nearly a week ago. My uber sneaky, ninja email software tells me you opened it 4 days ago in Delaware. Delaware? If you went to Delaware, this is something I should know. Howabout my 3 very direct, hard to misunderstand questions? Can you focus for 8 seconds and answer me so I can do my job… y’know… the thing you pay me for? 

LG’s Real Response

Hi Mackie, 

Wow, that sounds exciting! I didn’t realize you were out of town. With regard to the 3 questions I asked you last Tuesday, if you could get back to me as soon as possible? I’d really appreciate it. Thanks so much.

LG

Like, really? Could you imagine walking into someone’s office, and asking them, “What time is the meeting today?” and them replying, “Monkey jackass sausage brains light switch leg twitch!”

Why is email communication so lost in translation? Seriously? I’m gonna estimate I waste 10 hours a week trying to:

  • Decipher poor grammar and spelling.
  • Receive an answer to an email that I sent.
  • Receive an answer to an email that I sent.
  • Receive an answer to an email that I sent.

Of course I receive daily the ‘random thought’ emails… one of my life’s true joys. These people will send 8 emails within 4 minutes in reply to one email… each email featuring a poorly written random thought. With my super sneaky ninja email program, I can seriously see that they have not even finished reading the email completely before replying! Seriously?

Here’s my advice.

  • Receive the email
  • Read the email
  • Take a breath if necessary
  • Re-read the email if necessary
  • Reply thoroughly to said email
  • Get on with life
  • Then drink alcohol
  • Enjoy! Now knowing you have the love and etiquette email approval of LG! (Wow, 2012? Time flies.)

Oh, and of course there’s the people that just don’t bother to check their email anymore… because there’s too many of them…

It’s all just entertainment now. Like seriously…  so… If someone who pays me can’t be bothered to properly reply… why should I care?

Right?

(Thing is though… I do)

HENCE!

(…end scene… fade to black)

Random picture:
432William and my nephew Myles… whose college graduation is tomorrow. I’m so proud of him! Oh, and he’s valedictorian of his class! Amazing.

My recent obsession is getting out of hand

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I should first say that I’ve been working a lot lately. Like a whole lot more than normal. Big things going on with my main contract, the usual with my other contracts, one random quickie contract, cleaning up some stuff for an older temporary contract and a bit of volunteer type stuff. Ack. The timing of said work is acceptable as it’s not golf season and I’m pushing hard for an easier April (vacation!).

Anyway…

I’ve been obsessed with email!

Aside from having one email account open at all times when I’m online, I probably check into my email accounts more than 20 times a day. Insane. Encouraging/supporting this obsession is that fact that I can just grab my phone and view all the accounts at once without having to log in and out.

I also feel (more obsessive behavior) that I have to reply immediately. Even if it’s just to say, ‘I’ll look into this later today and get back to you by this morning.’

Why this obsession? I guess it’s coming from a  place of politeness. One of my biggest pet peeves is not receiving a timely response to an email I’ve sent. So many times I send documents – no thank -yous. I ask questions – no answers. I go over and above, do favours and extras… <insert cricket sound here> I send out well thought out and polite emails – and I receive one word replies. I even schedule emails to be sent (yay Boomerang for gmail) to be sent when they’re most likely to be read (or not wake up the recipient in case they are pushed emails on their phone and sleep with it nearby).

Poor email etiquette Drives Me CrazyThis too.

Of course I’m not perfect. Of course there are emails I don’t reply to in an appropriate or timely fashion. Of course. I send and receive up to a 100 emails a day – can’t be perfect all the time – but I try… I really try.

I think because other people drive me nuts my obsession is getting a bit out of hand. Email interactions are honestly the only way I communicate with some clients. Like seriously I’ve worked with this awesome client since November and I have never seen or spoken to him. I have a couple of clients that are super good with getting back to me, and I know if I haven’t heard back from them within a few hours that something went awry. Honest – it happened twice yesterday alone.

When other contacts don’t reply to me appropriately, or especially timely, I often (and perhaps wrongly… or not…) translate that into ‘you’re not important. I don’t care what you’re saying’, etc.

I know I need to ease up for my own sanity – perhaps when I’m over this huge hump I’ll return to my normal near obsessives self as opposed to this constant phone in hand email Nazi I’ve become. Ahhh. Wish me luck.

This morning

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So lucky me was up at 3:30. That’s only 4.5 hours sleep – ugh.

Here’s my thoughts…

3:30 – ahh, good, I still have an hour and a half left to sleep.

4:00 – I can still get an hour’s sleep, not bad.

4:15 – ugh, stop thinking about all the crap I have to do today, I can still get some sleep!

4:45 – this sucks! Maybe I should skip the gym and sleep to 7.

4:55 – if I would like to eat today (a couple of my girlfriends are coming over tonight to apps, cocktails and hot tub), I better go to the gym.

4:49 – get to the alarm and reset it for William before it goes off.

Ugh.

Not so super awesome things today –

– Eye doctor appointment. I REALLY need glasses. I lost my 3 year old pair in Cleveland, and Shank recently ate my 5 year old pair. I’m spending a lot of time on the computer lately, and my eyes are bugging me. Also, I’m driving to Florida in a couple of weeks, and will certainly need glasses.

– A bunch of work and emailing to do.

– Can’t walk the dogs, as Shank’s foot is still healing (did I blog about that? I don’t think so… another time).

– MomG is in London and my mom is busy all day today, so that means I’m going to have two ornery dogs to deal with.

– I have a headache.

Good things today –

– Girlfriends are coming over tonight

– It’s one day closer to Shank being good to walk (Either Saturday or Tuesday – due to ‘Family Day’ on Monday, the vet is closed – have to make an appointment)

What I would like –

To take a nap, eat something, not have a headache, walk the dogs, skip to about 6pm tonight.

Ah well, if that’s all I have to complain about, I’m not doing so bad.

No excuses!

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Of course I have excuses!

Life is clicking right along, and we’re now more than a solid week into the ‘yawn’. Bah. No football on TV, no golf (watching golf on TV is not as satisfying as playing golf – and I’m getting itchy!). So what to do….

Work.

Bah.

I’ve prioritized (still not having completed a lot on my January to do list – like bills, taxes, etc) and have very nearly completely setting up a friend online and with social media. I’ll tell you, it was a lot of work (it’ll be worth it though!). Creating logos is not my thing – either are websites (although I used WordPress – still, I’m not an advanced user, we use a WordPress.org website for my ‘main’ job, and some of the updates are like, huh?) but I’m pretty much done. I’ve created a blog for him to simply get out some key words to help searchability, (which I write myself, with some guidance from him) so that’s fun as it allows my some creativity.

Here’s the site if you want to know what I’ve been doing – someone told me the page isn’t displaying right on all computers – let me know if you see a problem with the ‘black overlapping with the white’…

http://sunsetmetalfab.com/

I’m feeling a little less overwhelmed, nearly ready to tackle my looming and ever expanding to do list, already looking forward to the week-end, ready to adjust my eating plan, and refocus on upping my exercise program. There! I said it! Now I just have to do it!

Life is good.

This week’s to do list

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Ah, another exciting post by LG. Actually, I thought I would blog it instead of writing it down elsewhere. It’s Sunday evening and I feel I have a lot of odd little things to do this week, so opposed to being in bed thinking about these things, I’d thought it wise write them down and get them out of my head (hopefully). This is in addition to normal stuff (walk the dogs, clean the house, make dinner, laundry, etc. etc. etc.)

– Domain stuff and report.

– Contact dude about transferred domain.

– Meeting with PDF and creation of Power Point slideshow on Monday.

– Meeting with JBF about some computer training (nothing hardcore, just some Gmail and Pinterest stuff).

– Create boards and pins for 2 accounts.

– Consider creating a website (wordpress based of course) for 2 clients – send them an email to see if it could save them some dollars and make me some dollars.

– Speaking of dollars, go to the bank, buy new earbuds that don’t hurt to wear, buy dog food.

– Return chairs to BMW, see how her week up north was.

– Send an email out about Googley websmaster tools.

– Conference call about TBT website changes.

– Are you still reading this – boring!

– TRY to actually be under calorie goals this week! Work a little harder on cardio at the gym.

– Do 2012 taxes (simple really, I’m super organized), do last quarter’s HST, submit and pay the piper.

– Compile 2012 house bills – usually I have done this by now!

– Compile 2012 Tennessee house bills. Crap, I just realized I deleted emails that I needed – hope I can still retrieve them, oh, forget it, I can look it up on the online bank we use there, nevermind, no biggie.

– Add some stuff to an analytics report. No big deal.

– Make an invite for SuperBowl party. Nail down menu – lasagna or turkey? I’m leaning towards turkey.

– Hootsuite scheduling, I do this for 2 clients every week. Remember to check out Twitter for missed mentions, and add back followers, etc.

– Post 2 blogs for 2 different clients. Whoopie.

– Be awesome, enjoy life, be creative, have fun, laugh, do something positive and spontaneous, relax, read a book or two, plan for date night, Be Sure to Drink Your Ovalteen.

It should be a pretty good week. There are lots of little odd jobs this week. If I don’t get to HST or my taxes, I’m not worried, not a priority. Life’s good. Let’s have a picture.

Picked at random – creepy window from a creepy building in a creepy abandoned amusement park. You can almost hear Scooby Doo…

IMG_1235

Well that worked out

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Today I was supposed to be at a ‘Business Growth’ workshop/seminar at 9am, (not for me and my personal business growth), as the first speaker is a friend (and guest blogger) of my ‘boss*’ and I wanted to hear her speak, then my ‘boss’ is on at 10 am, and I was to record the session, and look for crowd response and the like.

As it turns out, the first speaker was to be on at 8:20 am – which I discovered (it was my ‘boss’ who told me 9am) at 7:50 am… the workshop is half an hour away and I had wet hair. And apparently my ‘boss’ speaks at 11am.

I had a copy of the event flyer, which I have been passing around in social media for a week now, and I never bothered to really read it myself! Ah well.

So I’m heading there at 10:15 am to arrive during the first break, to set up power point and the flip cam. It worked better for me, as I wasn’t running around the house this morning like a poulet sans tete. (little French lesson for you there)

It’s nice when things work out. Last night things were not working out. After preparing a power point presentation for a couple of hours and waiting for my ‘boss’s’ edits, the power cord for my laptop started to spark, and suddenly the computer screen was dark! Ack! I ran to my ‘boss’s’ office to be sure he didn’t delete the slide show (he didn’t). So instead of having a quick phone chat about a few changes made to the presentation, I’m now in town (didn’t feel well either, just wanted to be on the couch with the computer) on a conference call while my ‘boss’ reviews the show slide by slide with his girlfriend (also involved in the business) via speakerphone! Ack!

It actually all worked out. The show was ‘tweaked’ and I was home in about an hour to find that my awesome husband discovered that the internal power thingy was not fried on the laptop, just the cord, which had suspicious bite marks on it (thanks Shank, dang furry kid!) was done done done. I happened to have in my huge ‘box o’ cords’ (this should strike you as odd, as I don’t keep a lot of stuff, but we do have a big ole box o’ cords for technological emergencies such as this) an old power cord from my laptop purchased in 1997! William checked the power on it (with his handy meter – yes that’s spelled right) and it worked like a charm.

So much has changed in technology since 1997 (my laptop weighed like 30 lbs, had an unheard of 20 GB memory, cost $5,000) who knew the power cord would be exactly the same! Ha!

Yeah, so in the end, it all worked out. I’m happy that it was just the cord that was fried and not my laptop and especially not the puppy!

(*boss* because while yes I do work for him, it is a contract thing, and plus he’s been a friend of mine for 18+ years, so it’s a bit weird for me to call him straight up ‘my boss’)

It wasn’t me. I’m way too cute to do anything like that!