Sunday, December 16, 2007

Is this the new chapter I've been waiting for?

New Day

I took this pic last Monday... almost prophetically... to represent the light of a new day > never realising that Monday would be the start of something new for me.

I tend not to talk about my work... partly because I have had issues in the past with what my calling is... and partly because of a misguided feeling that my job wasn't "hip enough" > I am inspired by artists, musicians, moviemakers and the selfless "saints" who put the last, lost and least before themselves. Banking isn't really up there as a personal inspiration for me > at least, until now.

I have been struggling with uncertainty for a while now... its a long story but I was employed by the project I was working on and not by an "engineering room" [a term for a team of technology "specialists"]. In essence, I was a statistical anomaly > one that meant I would be displaced/redundant when the project finished > one that meant I would not receive training or mentoring support. I never did get the PRINCE2 training promised to me.

Anyway... on Monday I was offered a place within the "Business Analysis" Engineering Room > I have made a good impression within the project team... and my line manager within the project pulled out the stops to get me into the BA ER.

The pluses well outweighed the minuses:
  • support
  • training including national accreditation
  • guidance
  • being part of a team
  • overtime entitlement
The only thing I had to give up was my "grade" and "title" aka my ego > my pay, benefits and holiday entitlement are protected.

My role is pretty much the exact same as it was... I am a "Business Analyst"... but the opportunity that has been given to me far outshines where I was. I am not solely tied to my project > I could move on to other projects > expand my knowledge and exposure within the Bank. I will be able to train to become a recognised professional instead of an enthusiastic amateur.

Monday, as you can gather, was an important day for me > I was grinning like the Cheshire Cat on Upper.


Crazy thing is... it gets better > On Thursday I was part of a "Corporate Social Responsibility" event organised in partnership between my employer (the people), Business in the Community (the fixer) and Neilston Primary School in Glasgow.

I was there because I joined the team on Monday > this was an experience I would never have had if I remained a "lone wolf" on the project.

I had a great time... helping to prune and reshape a living willow structure that kids will play in. Others tidied flower beds, planted trees, built a mosaic, built a compost container and reclaimed overgrown spaces. I enjoyed doing something different, being outdoors (it was freezing) and, most importantly, getting to meet my new team members.

The wider team (Business Analysis is one of 5 ERs within "Business Change") are a diverse bunch of people > wide variety of ages and experiences. Scots... Irish... English... some with Asian descent. One chap is blind and his guidedog is really cute... as most Labs are.

For once, in a long time, I felt at home > welcomed in as part of the team... equal and yet unique.

I had the opportunity to go out for dinner and a pub quiz that evening... but I had tickets for Dayna and Miriam's Christmas Play and I wasn't for missing that.

But that's not all > On Friday, I was approached by the Programme Director of my project and presented with a "special recognition award" for work undertaken a few months back on risk management. I was blown away by this... getting noticed and recognised for putting in a ton of effort to meet a deadline. I'll post about what I bought with the vouchers another time.

I thank God for this > for giving me this opportunity... and for opening this door. I can see, with hindsight, that this is where I was meant to end up... all those abortive attempts to leave the project... and the solution... the way forward... was waiting for me, all this time.

I have a wider area of influence and testimony... which is very important as I bed down and get known. I have to opportunity to shine... and be good at something for once... to specialise in an area within the Bank... and develop a set of transferable skills.

What's more... I have more security > I can stop worrying... and get on with getting good.

The thing is... we all have our role to play. We all contribute to God's Kingdom and this world > we are all Tent Makers, so to speak. We need to be the best we can be for God... shining our lights through our example... tangibly demonstrating a new and better way > one where the Peacemaker is blessed.

So here's to you... to the artists, musicians, moviemakers and the selfless "saints" who put the last, lost and least before themselves; to the stay-at-home mums, the teachers and lecturers, AND the business folk who do what they do for Him... and do it well. You inspire me.
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