Dear J-

According to some counts yesterday was my one-year anniversary at the company; since then two folks in senior leadership have left for greener pastures so hopefully I get lost in the shuffle and churn: I’m here for a year, hooray. This is how it happens: first one year, then two, then three and more. Before you know it you’re on your way to Michigan for eight weeks (hello, 2004) or desperately trying to avoid that fate (2006, after four years, I applied for a job with Edison) or even moving within (2011, I decided to get out of procurement and into the plant: you see where that led me). Anniversaries are funny things; you can count on their regularity but you’ll never know where you are at the time.

The churn at the top has me wondering (as any kind of change does) both whether or not the career ladder is worth it (on the other hand, there are pretty senior guys in advisory and engineering roles, so there’s no guarantees or promises that’s where I’ll end up) and whether this is the right place for me. It certainly feels stable enough but I also don’t know where I’ll be or what might be right a year from now (see above). At times I think I’m not nearly smart enough to think of new ways to approach old problems, but then I remember (or remind myself) of how I like to be doggedly determined to solve it or get better, and I go ahead and conquer as I can.

The stubborn side of me is something I’m starting to get some value from after all. It locks into my pride which leads to bad situations (I’m right and I KNOW I’M RIGHT) but once you get over that and try to keep a more open mind about things, this can be a pretty useful tool to dig out information (to seek out new life and new civilizations; in my case it’s fresh approaches based on my crude toolsets — to boldly go … okay, let’s not and say we did). Drive along and figure out the right approach to solving your problems, because otherwise there’s no way you can sleep at night.


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