Monday, August 25, 2014

Day 46 - Playing catch-up

This is Saturday's post. Which I'm writing on Sunday.
When I've finished this post, I'm going to write last Saturday's post.
I'll write tonight's post, and last Sunday's post tomorrow, before I write tomorrow's post.
Basically I'm playing catch-up.
That I've chosen to do this in this particular way for this blog has more to do with satisfying my own need for order and stability rather than anything externally imposed. It won't matter if I don't keep up with this blog, but it gives me a sense of satisfaction to do so.

But it's made me think about how much of my work in academic terms feels like I play catch-up all of the time. I've said this before, but it seems like every day I am doing things that should have been done yesterday. Part of this is (no doubt) down to a failure on my part to plan for the future, but I also think that there's an element of communication that often gets forgotten in (especially) universities. How best to communicate deadlines and expectations so that the information is available is not a priority with which many institutions are very familiar. As someone who occasionally has cause to impose deadlines for information, I'm aware that it can feel frustrating when I do not get a response to my questions by the deadline I have set - after all, it can't be that hard, can it? On the other hand, as someone who receives (as do all academics) a lot of requests for information with their own deadlines, I have to understand that everyone else is juggling deadlines that they can't possibly remember.

What can we do then? As someone who sets deadlines, I feel like I want to seek out technological solutions that make it easier for those that I'm communicating with to access this information in advance.
For myself, I need to start taking better notes of what I need to do when. I need to start dealing with email as they come in, and I need to start planning when I have time to do these tasks, rather than leaving the task for when I have time. Because this time doesn't naturally appear spontaneously. It has to be carved out, and that generally means that some other task is delayed as a result.

And then I'm playing catch up again.

Labels: , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home