Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Work vs Life

Ya know...you'd think that I would have a lot of time to google stuff and to blog now that no one is sharing a room with me ...but....I feel guilty if I don't do work so as long as I am in my room, I'm actually being a good girl (ok its now off office time) . ..and I suppose I will stop going to bother my colleagues soon.....well,I'm just stopping and chatting on the way to my room..I'm a very friendly person, waaaaaaaaaaat..

Hmm..hubby is as jakun as me and is now getting me a kettle lah, mini bar lah, big plant la etc . Hello, if the room is too fancy they'll tell me I do not need to go home lah, and there goes my plan to get a couple of days working from home. This firm is small enough to not throw that idea back to my face - it is not an original idea after all...apparently my colleagues here have been asking..but this year things are slowly moving. So who knows? Again, I seem to be the only one with more than 2 children - maybe the rest are the sane ones?? WHAT do I get out of practice anyway?

Yesterday got meeting and have discovered that our group target (ie fees which should be collected) is in the region of "impossible" or rather, "possible if I kiss a lot of - you know what". I'm going to turn into a competitive, fee earner, work grabber, etc woman I just know it, so today I have decided that I am just going to do my best, work as I always work, take home the salary (mine and my husband hee hee) and forget about the target looming over my head.

Let me share with you this email I got (er, very hardworking we are) :

An interesting reflection : Slow Down Culture It's been 18 years since I joined Volvo, a Swedish company. Working for them has proven to be an interesting experience. Any project here takes 2 years to be finalized, even if the idea is simple and brilliant. It's a rule. Globalize processes have caused in us (all over the world) a general sense of searching for immediate results. Therefore, we have come to possess a need to see immediate results. This contrasts greatly with the slow movements of the Swedish. They, on the other hand, debate, debate, debate, hold x quantity of meetings and work with a slowdown scheme. At the end, this always yields better results. Said in another words: 1. Sweden is about the size of San Pablo, a state in Brazil. 2. Sweden has 2 million inhabitants. 3. Stockholm, has 500,000 people. 4. Volvo, Escania, Ericsson, Electrolux, Nokia are some of its renowned companies. Volvo supplies the NASA. The first time I was in Sweden, one of my colleagues picked me up at the hotel every morning. It was September, bit cold and snowy. We would arrive early at the company and he would park far away from the entrance (2000 employees drive their car to work). The first day, I didn't say anything, either the second or third. One morning I asked, "Do you have a fixed parking space? I've noticed we park far from the entrance even when there are no other cars in the lot." To which he replied, "Since we're here early we'll have time to walk, and whoever gets in late will be late and need a place closer to the door. Don't you think?" Imagine my face. Nowadays, there's a movement in Europe name Slow Food. This movement establishes that people should eat and drink slowly, with enough time to taste their food, spend time with the family, friends, without rushing. Slow Food is against its counterpart: the spirit of Fast Food and what it stands for as a lifestyle. Slow Food is the basis for a bigger movement called Slow Europe, as mentioned by Business Week. Basically, the movement questions the sense of "hurry" and "craziness" generated by globalization, fueled by the desire of "having in quantity" (life status) versus "having with quality", "life quality" or the "quality of being". French people, even though they work 35 hours per week, are more productive than Americans or British. Germans have established 28.8 hour workweeks and have seen their productivity been driven up by 20%. This slow attitude has brought forth the US's attention, pupils of the fast and the "do it now!". This no-rush attitude doesn't represent doing less or having a lower productivity. It means working and doing things with greater quality, productivity, perfection, with attention to detail and less stress. It means reestablishing family values, friends, free and leisure time. Taking the "now", present and concrete, versus the "global", undefined and anonymous. It means taking humans' essential values, the simplicity of living. It stands for a less coercive work environment, more happy, lighter and more productive where humans enjoy doing what they know best how to do. It's time to stop and think on how companies need to develop serious quality with no-rush that will increase productivity and the quality of products and services, without losing the essence of spirit. In the movie, Scent of a Woman, there's a scene where Al Pacino asks a girl to dance and she replies, "I can't, my boyfriend will be here any minute now". To which Al responds, "A life is lived in an instant". Then they dance to a tango. Many of us live our lives running behind time, but we only reach it when we die of a heart attack or in a car accident rushing to be on time. Others are so anxious of living the future that they forget to live the present, which is the only time that truly exists. We all have equal time throughout the world. No one has more or less. The difference lies in how each one of us does with our time. We need to live each moment. As John Lennon said, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans". Congratulations for reading till the end of this message. There are many who will have stopped in the middle so as not to waste time in this globalized world.

I have no idea who is the original author. But so true kan? Life is too crazy. She says, while her 4 kids are frolicking in the nearby KL Plaza pool with the father . They are all coming in a minute to get me. Sophia is alone at home as she just came back from afternoon school. I just got an irate call from her asking me where did everyone go? Did not dare tell her the exact location of her siblings. So asked her to call DAD. Hee hee

My parents are going off tomorrow...sob sob...mom sounds harrassed...she gets like that and every little detail is going to get to her. Maybe its not such a good idea to go visit her with the kids eh....


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