Friday, May 22, 2015

Depth and breadth of work

I've been working really hard for the last couple of months. Honestly, it feels a little too much like the home stretch of finishing my dissertation! Not that bad, but similar. Definitely unsustainable for much longer. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel now.

Due to a few different factors (all out of my control), everyone who works most closely with me has also had major demands on their time for other more important organizational projects. It's left me as the sole person holding down the fort during the most stressful time and meant that I couldn't delegate nearly as much as I would have liked to. As a result, I've not only been doing an incredible quantity of work, it has also been of tremendous breadth, and I think I've (for the most part) really been rocking it on all fronts.

Things I am doing:
-Writing for broad consumption/distribution
-Writing for social media
-Copyediting other people's writing
-Graphic design
-Stakeholder outreach and management
-Website management (& programming/development in a hacky kind of way)
-Troubleshooting bugs, testing, and managing our web developer
-Data manipulation, summation, and visualization

I feel like a real Jill-of-all-trades here, but I'm not supposed to be. Ideally, I'd delegate a big chunk of the writing, nearly all of the graphic design (and most importantly, management of the graphic design), most of the stakeholder management, copyediting, and social media. Aside from the sheer quantity of stuff I'm trying to do (which means some pieces are left undone), I feel like I'm doing a damn good job on all of these different tasks, and that feels good.

What doesn't feel good is seeing how little attention my project is getting internally. It's a big organization, and I think they'll come around, but it's almost laughable in the context of what else is going on. It's definitely not getting the attention it deserves. This is part of the reason I've been working so hard over the last couple of months. We also had the misfortunate of scheduling two events for internal promotion that totally conflicted with other higher-profile events, to the point where we just didn't stand a chance at getting significant attention.


Still, we managed to get some key ancillary support that could help elevate the program, and I doubt this perception of low internal support is widespread beyond the closest core team, and probably wouldn't be suspected by anyone externally. My boss knows I'm doing an awesome job despite difficult circumstances and she's trying to advocate for us too.

I know I'm doing the best I can, it's pretty damn good, and that feels great.