Thursday, October 8, 2009

Jack of all trades

I am being tasked with writing my own job description and having a difficult time not writing Jack of All Trades being poorly paid (well, maybe not poorly paid). My father's advice is to write it so no one else seems qualified to do my duties, but honestly, a chimp can do this job. Ok, ok - I know I'm putting down my job and I shouldn't - especially in this economy and when jobs are so difficult to come by. But there are times when I feel that anyone can sit at my desk and perform my duties - how difficult is it to answer the telephone (the one duty I despise)? I do pride myself on organization (although the current state of desk does not attest to my organizing skills) and the fact that I can multi-task and put out fires.

Prime Fire Extinguishing example: boss arrives at airport today, experiences major computer malfunctions and glitches, gets semi-checked in only to be told he has to pay for his ticket - WTH? I booked this trip over a month ago in order to get the steeply discounted fare. Through his numerous calls, I am on the line with the travel agent, get ticket number, call him back, explain to counter agent and alas - all is well. I have had previous bosses act like 3-year old babies over travel agent ticketing glitches, so I am glad my current office hubby was calm and collected and let me handle the pending disaster - like a shipper's bs slogan - when it absolutely has to be there overnight (what a joke) - he will get there on time!

I have decided the best course of action is to start by listing my various projects together and making a semi-detailed list of what's needed to complete these duties. I did not think this would be difficult, but to think of what is needed to complete a few tasks on my list is taxing. Thank goodness for checklists.

Do you take the time to reflect on your previous, current and possibly future job duties or just go with the flow with what seems to be second-nature daily tasks? How would you develop your job description if required to do so?


Savvy Gal said...

I would start to make a list of what i do daily, weekly and monthly to find a common theme.

Struggler said...

It sounds like you have the kind of job where if you do it well, nobody really notices, but if you do it badly, all chaos breaks loose.
You could probably build in some language like 'broad knowledge of the organization', 'proactively resolve problems' and 'ensure smooth running' of whatever.
You might also want to think about the benefits the company/organization gets from your role - whether it's happier customers, or less stressed execs, or whatever.
Hopefully you'll enjoy being able to state things as you see them, even if you do have to put a positive spin on it!