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If you have a manage your own workload type job?

(22 Posts)
OpenMe Mon 04-Apr-16 13:14:23

I probably mean an office job. How "hard" do you work? What % of your day are you actually working at full capacity?

Because of trying to manage work and family, I've worked at various levels on the seniority scale in recent years.

Initially I had a managerial job in commercial banking. It was hard work and there was a lot of pressure but I never worked more than 9-5 whereas my (mostly male) colleagues were working (or at least at work) very long hours. They didn't seem to get any more done than I did and my appraisals etc were always excellent.

Then I worked in a lowly clerical job in the public sector where all my colleagues seemed to think they were massively over worked and I was thinking "you don't know you're born". Struggling to find enough to do to fill my days at the same time as being complimented by bosses for the amount and quality of work I was doing.

Now I'm a school business manager, my predesseor and those I know at other schools think they have the world's busiest job,that there aren't enough hours etc. It's true it's very varied with lots of balls to juggle and deadlines to meet but I find I can manage the workload fairly easily, with plenty of time for a chat and a bit of Internet during the day.

Am I some sort of super efficient wonder woman grin or do most people have periods during the day when they're not actually working that hard?

OpenMe Mon 04-Apr-16 17:20:32

I see, no one wants to admit it grin

Gizlotsmum Mon 04-Apr-16 17:23:41

It depends on my day ;) I can have days when I am working 100% from 7 till 4 and other days when it is mostly 70-80% full on and the rest a bit slower ( chatting/ admin stuff ) but that can soon ramp up again if something unexpected happens

barkinginessex Mon 04-Apr-16 17:24:44

I'm the same as you OP, I've worked in very busy roles where I occasionally worked overtime and now work in a role that has a fair bit of down time. I think it all comes down to being organised and self motivated. My colleagues are always complaining there's too much work but having worked in much busier roles this job seems like a breeze! I just get on and do the work rather than procrastinating and complaining.

MrsBertMacklin Mon 04-Apr-16 17:26:09

60% capacity Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 75% Monday, 130% Thursdays, 90% Fridays.

I.e. I partly make up for any procrastination with a panicky late night after realising how close my deadlines and milestones are.

poocatcherchampion Mon 04-Apr-16 17:26:34

I'm always bust but manage it to be manageable.

Some of my colleagues are work shy arses

Dungandbother Mon 04-Apr-16 17:28:06

Ha ha

Private sector. Been doing my (full
time) managerial admin role 12 odd years. I now do even more work due to cut backs (ie given more tasks) on a 3 day week.

I'm highly efficient. I meet all deadlines. It's only busy and stressful when I get constantly interrupted to fix things which are broken business processes which shouldn't be broken in the first place if everyone was as efficient as me.

I can well believe your experiences. I have temped in the past and everyone wanted me to go perm. And I've helped out in family offices when not working, where I've been shocked at the work the older generation don't do.
And I've worked in school. Similar story to you.

Here's to the highly efficient and underpaid work force. wine

LBOCS2 Mon 04-Apr-16 17:31:07

Between 50-90%, if I'm honest - with very occasional emergencies which involve dropping everything and doing extended hours/weekends.

I always feel like I'm much more productive than my colleagues, I actually don't know what they spend their time doing half of the time.

OpenMe Mon 04-Apr-16 17:41:42

That's exactly where I am LBOC. My new colleague keep commenting on how calm I am. I'm really not a calm person and am prone to an outburst under pressure but I've never experienced that kind of pressure in this job. The only minor stress had been because as it's a new role I don't always know what to do, but even that's passed now I've been there a year. My predessor was at pains to tell me what a busy job it is and she'd been there 15 years.

daisychain01 Tue 05-Apr-16 05:29:50

I can honestly say the role I'm in now is the busiest I've ever been - private sector blue-chip pharmaco. I'm at 110% capacity all the time. So are all my colleagues. I don't remember when I last had a lunch 'hour' 15 mins maybe. I possible could whittle it down to 95% but there is just so much needed to be done. Love my job though. I make a lot of decisions about my work load so I could be my own worst enemy smile I just love the people they all do the same as me and the team spirit and morale is high. Last position not so hectic but less job satisfaction

PennyHasNoSurname Tue 05-Apr-16 06:17:37

I work in admin within a hotel. I created a checklist of jobs that need doing every day, in addition to whatever calls (internal and external) come in and emails/faxes.

Weve refined the checklist so every day we do a small amount of each task, rather than leaving it til one day a week and then that falling on a manic day. As such some days everything on the list is done within two hours, other days you are moping up the last few tasks when the late shift come in.

There is "downtime" but we operate 16 hours a day which for an admin dept is ridiculously long.

I much prefer days we are kept very busy - the time flies!

insancerre Tue 05-Apr-16 06:46:42

I manage a nursery
There are not enough hours in my working day to do everything i am expected to do because I am covering for a member of staff who is off sick and another who is on holiday
It means I work more than my contracted hours, which I don't get paid for
I also spent all weekend doing paperwork and shopping for the nursery
I can't get in cover staff in as we can't afford to pay an agency and we don't have bank staff
We don't have bank staff as it is impossible to find a suitably qualified and experienced person to do ad hoc hours and we don't do zero hours contracts ( its hard enough to find good quality staff to fill a contracted vacancy)
I have just got an admin Lady to help but she is still learning the ropes and has increased my workload at the moment
Sometimes I wish I was still a practitioner and 100% hands on with the children
And the pay is rubbish, I don't even get 20k

Shakey15000 Tue 05-Apr-16 07:15:16

I've also done a high pressure/full on role then moved to a different company where it was half the work but according to my colleagues they were flat out, overworked and whinged a lot. The way they had management believing they were snowed under was, frankly, Oscar worthy. They certainly didn't like me. Especially when I'd got the measure of them and proved that it could be done in half the time. Sadly management were shit, didn't react so I left as I just couldn't stand the colleagues for it.

I'm now in a role where it's busy, haven't learnt it fully yet. But colleagues seem reasonable and only one out of a team of 5 seems to be winding down as retirement looms which is understandable.

VinceNoirLovesHowardMoon Tue 05-Apr-16 07:24:16

Public sector, in a job that is renowned for working late, writing reports at home etc. Well I don't. I work effectively while I'm at work and I get my work done, sometimes I can have a chat and a lunch break, other times I can't. I don't kill myself over work though. I don't think I am super efficient but I work very efficiently in small bursts. It was the same when I did my masters - other people were apparently working into the night and all weekend which I just didn't do. Being a single mum does get in the way of working late and staying up all night.
I think a lot of people don't know how to get work done effectively and quickly and they don't know how to prioritise what is necessary and what is not. They also like to make a fuss about being so busy

WhoKnowsWhereTheT1meGoes Tue 05-Apr-16 07:28:52

I also moved from a very full-on, always under pressure job to one where I manage my own workload and find it quite hard to keep myself on task without urgent deadlines and constant emails/phone calls, people coming to speak to me all the time. I'm on my own most of the day and it is so quiet. Also a large part of my job is working out how to solve problems and improve systems, as opposed to actually doing things. On days like these I do end up taking quite a few mini breaks throughout the day, internet, check phone, walk round the building just to gather my thoughts. On days where I have a lot to do as opposed to a lot to think about I do feel more productive, but in the long term the problem solving days have more impact on the way the company runs, so I don't feel too guilty about the mini breaks. I also often do more thsn my contracted (p/t) hours, I love the job and my colleagues.

MewlingQuim Tue 05-Apr-16 07:40:11

It isn't just in 'manage your own workload' type jobs that this happens. My job is an 'x amount of work completed by the team in a day' type job. I work mornings only and still manage to complete the work that others do between 8.00-3.00 plus all the boring bureaucracy paperwork that the full timers claim they don't have any time for hmm

stumblymonkey Tue 12-Apr-16 05:39:33

I believe there's a massive range of efficiency within any team. I always get good appraisals and can be working anything from 40-150% depending on the project.

I'm a project manager so I've taken the approach not to feel guilty when working 40% as it makes up for the busy times!

KeyserSophie Tue 12-Apr-16 05:53:55

Private sector, 21 hr contract, however, my boss and I have come to unwritten agreement that essentially they're paying me to achieve certain results and so long as that and any other specified targets are met, he doesnt really care about hours in a given week/ how it's achieved. I do do 21 hrs average, but not really any overtime, which is unusual, as most people on the standard 37.5 hr contract would be doing 45-50 easily. Plus I get most personal admin done during the working day. I have to say that working as a team of one doing both origination and execution is very efficient. No team meetings :-)

winchester1 Tue 12-Apr-16 07:37:54

I get paid hourly and work from.home I just kind of plod on with my work so.prob around 80%, full time.hours but I'm never really stressed as I have a large and long project and no looming deadlines. I'm also studying so gaps in the work week / day where I'm.waiting for answers I just do school work for a bit. That's more stressful as I've exams soon.

HermioneWeasley Tue 12-Apr-16 21:06:32

No choice but to be full on for 11 hours a day . I could make it easier on myself by giving my team and colleagues from other depts less time, but I see supporting them as an important part of my job. Good thing is it makes the days go quickly! I have had less full on jobs before, and I just got bored.

TeaBelle Tue 12-Apr-16 21:10:19

Usually I work.above capacity ie working through my lunch break and staying late. However we get a lot of work from schools and so during some school holidays I will be 'actively working' below capacity but will use the time to catch up on reading, research and attending training. .

JurgenKlopp Wed 13-Apr-16 20:38:52

I'm a school business manager too and would say that I work 95% capacity every day. I regularly work 10 hour days (8am - 6pm, prob 3 days a week, 8am to 5pm the rest). It's not unusual for me to work from home during the evenings and weekends.

I rarely get chance to break for lunch, usually eat a sandwich as I work at my desk. I never get time to browse the Internet and rarely chit-chat (about personal stuff) to colleagues.

My workload increased considerably in January as a member of my team went off on longterm sick and whilst we have a temporary administrator, I've had to take on so much more.

I'm currently studying for a professional qualification which takes a lot of my personal time and I'm looking forward to completing it in the summer.

You're right, most SBMs bemoan the fact that they are always busy. In my case, I'd certainly say that is true - overworked and, most certainly, underpaid. I'm currently on half term at the moment but have been into work and have checked and responded to emails and texts.

Prior to working in education, I worked in the private sector in a different industry in a middle management role and I can honestly say that I've never felt pressure like it. It's a very rewarding and enjoyable job, though.

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