Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Life, In General

Returning to work after a long weekend or a week off is always an interesting experience. I felt rather busy today, but it was a good day. I feel like I walked in the door and never stopped until the calls stopped rolling into our call center.

My day, well, my work day, started with a meeting with my peers and boss. We have a specific meeting agenda once a year where we analyze the results of a survey conducted each fall, focusing on an area of strength and an area for improvement. I enjoy these meetings because great ideas are generated to help improve our already great environment. It just makes me happy.

The best part of my day, even though most was pretty good, was being able to see the expression on a banker's face. She is a banker on my team who is just plain awesome. I've nicknamed her "Smiley," because she always greets each day with a positive attitude. It is absolutely contagious. She tends to get a lot of recognition (most of the bankers do) because she is a top performer, but also because she is just so positive. We like to have her represent our call center at job fairs and I enjoy working with her quite a bit. Last year, 2007, she performed very well, but never knew quite how high she ranked in comparison to other bankers. She figured she was in the top 25-30, but she was actually #3 in our entire center (out of 170 bankers or so). I've known for about a month how well she performed, but kept it a secret. Why? Because we award a trip to the top performing bankers each year. At the end of April and beginning of May, she will be going to Florida/Disney World for 5 days, all expenses paid and will get to bring a guest. This is a nice trip that the company awards to select individuals (about 1% of the organization) and I'm thrilled for her. She beamed all night long and kept saying, "Did I tell you how much I love my job?" and "I still can't believe it!" Days like today make my job meaningful.

My team also had a meeting tonight where we celebrated our successes in January (more recognition!) and we also had our annual meeting to go over our survey results. There is always room for improvement in our environment, yet I was pretty pleased with the results of our survey. It asked 12 questions (well, 12 major questions) and we scored "Agree" to "Strongly Agree" in every single one of them. It was a fun meeting and there were some terrific ideas presented. I know that implementing the ideas will help us achieve even more.

Work was good. Home wasn't so good. I was awakened at a quarter to 9 am by my upstairs neighbor screaming at the top of his lungs. He has extreme anger management issues. I didn't have time to stop by the office on my way out the door, but tomorrow I am going to complain. This is not the first time he's been beligerant to the point where I worried about his safety or the safety of others and it is quite bothersome. I think he was on the phone this time, screaming obsenities and using threatening language. After giving a big "F*** you" to the person on the other end of the phone, he must have disconnected the call and then decided to file away something in his bathroom. There was this awful scrapping noise coming from upstairs. The more I live below this person the more and more I want a house. I'm sick of his actions and it worries me to be living close to a person who acts as he does. I'm going to talk to the office in the afternoon and see what can be done.

On one hand, I want to complain about his actions, and on the other, I'm a bit afraid. I know that sounds a bit ridiculous. Here's the thing. I've worked in a call center for eight years now. Customers tend to be calling from a comfort zone when they reach us (calling from home). One thing I've learned about human nature is that people can become much more aggitated and use extreme language/behavior when on the phone versus in person. Not that people don't get out of hand in person, but I remember only 2 people upset enough to a point where other customers could see the problem when I was at the branch and I compare those experiences to the 50-100 escalated/upset customers we speak with each day. When I took escalated calls as a primary function of my job, I remember at least once every couple of weeks having someone who was out of control.

I think of all the out of control customers I've spoken to in the past. Not one compares to the extreme behavior this man living above me exhibits on a fairly regular basis. His behavior seems to be escalating to a point beyond recourse. If he hasn't hurt himself or someone else, he's going to soon. So, while I want to say something to reduce the problem, I am also afraid that he might want to lash out at me. Not that I know who he is or think I'm in any danger right now. But when I say something, I don't want him to know it was me. I trust the police not to give away my identity to him if I report him (as I did one time that I think he was abusing a girlfriend). I guess I don't trust the apartment complex staff to protect my identity. That's sad, but true.

I tried to complain at the office about him once before and was completely brushed off by the woman working there. She wasn't one of the regular women in the office, but she was an employee of the complex. So, this discourages me. I guess I'll see what type of response I get tomorrow.

On a much more positive note, I received my final grade for the class I was just in. My dad will comment and ask what happened to my grade, but all-in-all, I'm proud of the 98.45% I received. It's hard to get 100% in a class where the majority of your grade comes from group assignments.

Two more classes, I'll be graduating. My next class starts on March 11, which happens to be DM's birthday. I have a week off before the class starts and hopefully DM and I will have fun adventures that week. I am looking forward to it.

There it is. Simple post, nothing profound, but an update on my work life, my home life, my school life, and my plans for next month. Life is pretty good right now, minor problems, but nothing to get me down.

(Spell check isn't working tonight, so I apologize if I have a couple of words incorrect.)