Monday, December 8, 2008
The Secret Is Out!
So after much emphasis was placed on maintaining confidentiality, my secret was shared with the masses, without me, on Friday. Ha! But first, I need to tell you about my job. I am a Purchasing Manager. I work for a company that was recently acquired by 3M. In my daily duties, I manage relationships with packaging suppliers (plastic bags, paperboard cartons, blister cards, etc). I work with a lot of our commercial packaging and some industrial sales packaging. That is supposed to be the main part of my job but it is often the lesser part of it. I also manage the relationship between us and a company in Canada that provides very specialized hearing protection product as well as specialized on site training to our customers. I am the planner (I place the orders) to bring in product from our facility in Sweden. I also manage the company cell phones (this will soon be taken over by 3M). I facilitated the transition of our fleet of sales vehicles over to 3M. I verify invoices for payment. I cut contracts and purchase orders. I answer questions, push suppliers, calm marketing guys. It's a pretty boring job. I started with this company as a temp in 2000. I was in the secondary administrative job in our department- providing support to the managers. Within 3 months, they promoted my counter-part and moved me to her job as a permanent hire. I was now the admin to the Director (soon to be VP). I was in that role for almost 3 years. I was then a Purchasing Specialist, then an Agent (but doing the full job of a Manager) and am now a Manager. I've been in my current role for... I don't remember how long. A few years. And now it is all going to change. The office politics and corporate mumbo jumbo isn't so important, is it? Nothing is completely firmed up yet. But my job will apparently be changing completely. I will still have the same boss and be in the same office and department. At 3M, there are employees whose sole purpose is to manage government contracts and verify that 3M is meeting all requirements of the contract. We have no such function at my company. Until now. Hoopidee-doopidee! I'm going to be managing government contracts and making sure that all requirements of the contract are met! Doesn't that sound exciting?? I am sad that I will not be managing my packaging suppliers and commodities anymore. I did like having a small finger in the production of our products. I loved my relationships with my suppliers. Hopefully the boss picks a good replacement for me in our department... From what I've been told, I won't be doing anything that I am currently doing. But that isn't firm just yet. Given the current economy, given all the companies having to do lay offs... given that 3M is cutting head count, in a hiring freeze... this is good news for me on a personal and selfish level because it means job security. I will be the ONLY person in my company doing this function. On the other hand... There is still a huge part of me that wants to be the one to volunteer to take a severance package if head count needs to be reduced further. Because then we would be forced to consider me staying at home. But going back to the other hand... Given these hard times, given the uncertainty, given the fear of the unknown. I have to admit to being pretty darn thankful for an opportunity like this. Because it makes me feel more financially secure at a time when I really need to feel it. Because financial security is hugely important to me... I don't want my children to ever know true hunger. I don't want my children to ever know the fear of not being sure you will have a place to live or warm clothes or clothes that fit. I don't want my children to rely on charity and the kindness of others. So. I will review government contracts with my company. And I will work to ensure that my company is meeting all requirements. Ta-da!