Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


Help me cope in a fast paced work environment

16 replies

who123 · 18/04/2021 21:21

I really hope someone can help me. I have been in my job for 19 months now and I’m struggling with the work load. There are other people in my team who manage to get everything done even when it’s busy but I’m struggling to even keep my head above water. It takes me about 1 to 2 hours extra on average a day to get my work done. I’ve been working from home during COVID so so no one notices but I’m panicking because I can’t stay late in the office every night when we return to the office as my managers will know I’m failing. I’ve started making mistakes because I’m rushing so much. some are small ones but some of them could have cost the company a lot of money. Things get worse as I have deadlines all throughout the day but I can’t prepare for them as they just crop up and sometimes I have several all at once so they conflict with each other. I’ve had busy jobs before but I have so much to do I don’t know how to fit it in and prioritise when everything seems so important. Please give me some tips I’m at the end of my tether and want to quit which is something I can’t afford to do. I feel sick with worry each evening wondering what I’ve messed up on next. I’m a conscientious person so these mistake are really getting me down. Please help.

OP posts:

midgedude · 18/04/2021 21:23

Have you actually said you have too much to do? If you keep working late to finish they will think you are fine and coping


IncorrigibleTitmouse · 18/04/2021 21:25

Sorry to hear you’re struggling. Is it more that you don’t think you’re managing your time well? Is the work too challenging or is there just too much of it? If you’re having a series of deadline conflicts I would talk to my line manager, and ask for some help with prioritisation.


LawnFever · 18/04/2021 21:26

You need an honest conversation with your manager, what support are they giving you?


VladmirsPoutine · 18/04/2021 21:27

What sort of line of work?


TillyTopper · 18/04/2021 21:28

What takes the time because the answer to that helps to answer the question about how to handle it.
Is it simply too much work? Keep a log for a bit and speak to your manager
Do you keep double-checking yourself so things take ages? Check less, or only review things at the end rather than going over old ground.
Are you not given everything you need to complete tasks (so have to wait)? Can you align better with those that input into your work?

Above are just some reasons ,but it isn't necessarily your fault. Identify the reason(s) and then tackle them one by one.


who123 · 18/04/2021 21:31

I don’t think it’s the work load as everyone has roughly the same but I am slower to complete my work. I feel like I’m struggling to manage my time to get everything done. The work isn’t challenging, it’s quite straight forward the majority of the time but there’s a lot to do. We can get issues during the day which need to be dealt with straight away but they can be time consuming and can create loads more work.

OP posts:

redcandlelight · 18/04/2021 21:36

do you take more time than your colleagues?
do you know your tools well and know the best short cuts?
what do the colleagues tellwhen you meet up for 'coffee'? maybe they are better at masking than you are?

top tip: take breaks, start end end the working day with a short walk (or other exercise.
and ask colleagues for advice wrt software shortcuts and other things that could help with the work.


IncorrigibleTitmouse · 20/04/2021 03:54

I use a Pomodoro timer to keep me focused on tasks where there’s a lot of thinking and writing to do. I make sure my phone is away and that my email is closed. Apparently emails are a killer of productivity and we should only really be checking them periodically.

Is your particular job dependent on you being reactive? If so, you might talk to your manager about the balance of time and priorities.


Ciaobaby92 · 20/04/2021 04:48

Have you been there less time than your colleagues OP? 19 months is nothing to sneeze at but you won't necessarily be as efficient as someone doing it for say, 5 years. I don't think it sounds like you are failing. I bet you are doing better than you think.

I started a new job and a month in they dumped a ton of work on me in excess of what I'd been told to expect. I did have an honest talk with my manager and they have slowed it down a bit for now.

Everyone has their own pace OP, and I think you are stressing yourself out by comparing yourself to everyone else. You just focus on doing your job as quickly and a accurately as you can. And if it's not good enough then so be it, at least you know you tried your best. I would guess you are not the only one in the dept who feels this way. Some people are very adept at masking their insecurities and short comings, and that makes others believe they are more successful, when it isn't necessarily so.


florababy84 · 20/04/2021 05:15

How do you know the others aren't also working late into the night?

It is hard to give much helpful advice without knowing what sort of work you're doing (though obviously you don't want to say) but what tools or techniques do you already use to manage your tasks through the day?

How would you feel about telling your manager you're not coping?


MakingPlans21 · 20/04/2021 07:00

Speak to your manager. They are taking the proverbial. Everyone could be working unpaid overtime.


MoiraNotRuby · 20/04/2021 07:04

19 months is a little shy of 2 years, when you have more employment protection. So I would not rush to raise this with management yet if you can cope for a bit longer, but in saying that, you must put your health first.


Shehasadiamondinthesky · 20/04/2021 07:14

My son's been doing hours of overtime at home for the same reason, new manager seems to think she can speed people up like a bad 1920's movie.
He ended up having 3 months off with acute stress. It isn't healthy to work like this.
I work in the NHS and have never managed to catch up, we are fire fighting every single day. But then I've done it for 40 years so it doesn't stress me out any more.
I agree with others, see if you can make it to 2 years for better employment rights then approach management and say you can't keep up can they help.


FOJN · 20/04/2021 07:21

Can you keep a record of the tasks you do and how long it takes you to do each one so that you can ask colleagues how long it takes them to do x or if you do decided to go to your managers you have effectively already done your own time and motion study? Is there any adjustment made for dealing with issues which come up and take up time during the day?

Its possible that because you are conscientious you are doing the job properly but your colleagues already know that the work load exceeds what can be achieved in a day and have found ways to cut corners without being found out.

I had a job like this once, I asked the manager if I could sit in with them to observe how they would do the work (this was appropriate because of the nature of the work) within the permitted time, they took as long as I would have done because when observed they did the job according to protocols. There were several of us who started at the same time, many of us could not make the work fit and when we asked those who could they admitted to cutting corners in ways that I would never have considered acceptable, I left.


Mummadeze · 20/04/2021 07:28

Are you able to delegate anything to anyone else? Have you thought long and hard about ways of changing the processes to make them quicker? Are all the tasks absolutely necessary? Do you need to attend all meetings? I would definitely talk to you Manager and be honest. If one of my reports came to me and told me about this I would work with them to find a way to reduce their workload or help them manage it and change the team structure slightly. If you are trying your hardest you have nothing to be ashamed of or to worry about by telling your Manager something isn’t working. I would definitely want to know if you were working for me.


Thisisworsethananticpated · 20/04/2021 07:46

What dept are you in ?
This can happen a lot in finance and project delivery teams I’ve noticed

I’d start by facing the problem a bit

Keep a diary for a week , write what you did every day
What was easy
What was hard
And where your day was thwarted by others

Also can you talk with a trusted colleague who does same role and seems to cope ?

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Sign up to continue reading

Mumsnet's better when you're logged in. You can customise your experience and access way more features like messaging, watch and hide threads, voting and much more.

Already signed up?