Tribal Workers – Am I one?


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Those two people who follow my blog have probably given up on following it since I haven’t posted in ages.  The caltrain love poem didn’t happen and instead I’ve been having a very time consuming relationship with my work now that I am responsible for the applications, user experience and server components (metadata mostly) for Microsoft’s IPTV and cable products.  The good news is that I really enjoy my work, the people I work with and many of those extra things that don’t fall cleanly into either of those.  The bad news is that the long hours have come at the expense of many other non-work things in my life. 

In catching up with my blog feeds today I came across a FT article about “tribal workers.”  I think this article describes many things I identify with (beyond just my age).  While I don’t believe that the number of hours worked alone is a sign of “success” I do feel the challenge of having too many options and the focus on my career.  I’ve got the Georgetown undergraduate degree (double major in Econ and English with honors) and the UC Berkeley MBA not to mention some good career experience.  I’ve worked in DC and Silicon Valley, live in San Francisco and have had some great travel through my job at Microsoft.

I have to think some more about whether or not I fall in this new “class.”  I probably do — I had a pretty good streak of 80-90 hour work weeks in the past few months and I just got off the phone (via my parents’ VOIP service) with my relatives in Italy who were watching the World Cup game at the same time I was.

Italy won and I think I probably felt like more of an Italy fan than a US fan as far as the world cup goes.  Don’t tell that to the Germans I work with on IPTV. 🙂


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