Friday, October 31, 2014

Still here

I'm still here. Having an almost calm work semester. Particularly compared to previous deadline ridden ones, this one is easy piecy. My personal life is complicated to say the least but it's nothing I can blog about. Some things I can't even tell my best friends about. So let me get to the most juicy things I can possibly write semi-publicly about without hurting anyone or get fired. Actually my job is very safe and Sweden is liberal, I could probably even sleep with my students and still be okay. But I try not to do that anymore. Not that I didn't have someone just yesterday who made it quite clear that if he got just a hint of a chance he would take it.

I wish I could fire people though. The job security in Swedish governmental institutions (universities go under this category) makes it completely impossible, in fact after several meetings about a particularly difficult case, it turns out that because we are such large employer, we have to try to find another role to the person first, even if that is in a completely different department. So we are stuck with a person who cannot perform their duties. At all. Then we are also stuck with a person who makes other people's life miserable. Anyone around him gets a nasty comment and he has no lid whatsoever to put on his negativity. I have others threatening me they will leave if he stays and I can't get rid of him. I had a good chat with one of the people affected yesterday and he said some interesting things about the situation, which helped. I got a plan now and it's not pretty. Luckily I have no sense of closeness to this place, I'm an outsider and I don't plan on sticking around. My weakness is that I care about people, particularly when I get to know them. Even Swedes. Then I just want to go and hug them and tell them to take a day off and be good to themselves. Tell them not to worry. I'll wave a magic wand and make their problems go away. Except I can't do that and when I go home I don't care anymore.

I'm a bad boss because I do people favors. I twist and turn the truth and make sure I can keep the people I like and let the ones go that I don't like. Without looking at the bigger picture because I don't care about the bigger picture. I'm sure a lot of old white men in CEO positions do the same but it doesn't make it better. Right now my one consolation of a boss is leaving and a new one is entering. Someone I don't trust the least. Again I have to play a game and do people favors such as manipulating work tasks and cover up the truth. And it turns out I have a lot more power than what I initially thought and I am of the 'its easier to ask for forgiveness than for permission' type person, so at least I do things. And I have no patience with people who do not do things, which unfortunately there are many of here. Or complain about working more than their allotted 37 hours.

Yeah, my work is dull and full of a lot of listening to people I couldn't care less about but at least I have my tiny research group and 1-2 days of research fun per week. I long towards each Friday which is research day and I get to work from a cafe and home. Today was one and i got one page on a paper written. At least that's something.

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