I had a Project Manager’s Meeting yesterday afternoon. They started 1/2 hour early – that should have been the warning clue that it would go on forever. There was a lot of discussion as to which direction our company will be taking in the next few months. Construction companies are getting hit hard all over the country because of the recession. So we’re going to be actively bidding for a lot of public work (schools, hospitals, etc.) because they are funded and we have a decent chance of getting paid. Unfortunately, we’re not the only ones out there with this information so we are bidding against 40 or 50 different companies for every job.

As the work slows down, we find that we have too many carpenters/laborers and not enough work for them. The PM’s have already made the first few rounds of cuts – laying guys off that just weren’t making the grade. Now we’re at the time where they have to decide which of the really good guys to lay off. Not an easy decision and it’s at times like this that I’m glad I’m an Assistant Project Manager and I don’t have to make that kind of call.

In the office, the work is slowing down as well. Well, not the work that I do because regardless of the fact that people all around me seem to have tons of time on their hands, my desk never gets any clearer. In fact, the piles seem to multiply at night and just get bigger. There is an upside (no one can accuse me of just coming in, putting in my time, and going home early) and a downside (MB can handle it – give her the project.)

Yesterday at the meeting, one of the items being discussed was getting old jobs burned permanently to discs to clear off the server. I was responsible for the Project Management side of the project, which was a colossal pain in the butt, but which I managed to get done over the past two weeks. Someone else from the estimating department is supposedly in charge of burning the drawings to discs, however, that part is not getting done. The boss mentioned that he would be sitting down with the Assistant VP to rearrange people’s responsibilities next week and my first reaction was “am I going to get saddled with her job again?” Because it’s not the first time I’ve had to drop what I was doing to pick up part of her work, and I’m getting sick of it. And then I think that I’m glad that I HAVE a job and I shouldn’t complain too much, especially since they’re all gung-ho about everyone helping share the load here. I just don’t see anyone jumping to help me with my load.

But I was wrong. The boss then mentioned that I might be pulled from Project Management for a bit to learn to estimate ceilings for jobs. That would mean I would work on deciding how many ceiling tiles and associated materials we’d need for a job and then present the monetary figure to the estimator to include in his bid. It would be a huge responsibility because jobs have been lost over a ceiling that cost to much to put in. I keep thinking the boss has me pigeonholed due to being female(having me order lunch for a big meeting, get plane tickets for a business trip) and then he pulls one of these and shocks the hell out of me.

This was just casually mentioned at a meeting so I don’t know how it’s going to turn out in the end, but even considering me for that kind of job is a good start.

4 Responses to “WHAT COMES NEXT?”

  1. sheoflittlebrain Says:

    Congratulations Mary Beth! It sounds as though someone has been noticing your contentious hard work! I hope many good things come of it:)

  2. amanda Says:

    Yeah!!!! You Go Girl…

  3. Helen/Dudley Says:

    Whether or not it happens, bask in the glow now that they recognize your gifts.

  4. ewe are here Says:


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