Ok – I was at lunch the other day at my job in Google, and my supervisor asked me to grade my work. I shyly suggested a “C, C-“. He respectfully disagreed and gave me a “B” for my efforts. I respectfully have to say “Screw that!”
Quantifying my work these last few months is a very strange evaluation for me. On the one hand, I have been working about 65 hours a week (both on site and self study at home) trying to master the skills necessary to survive in my new profession. For this, I give myself an A+++ for effort. On the other hand…..I’m not that good yet. If I am a natural at anything, I am an artist, a writer, somewhat of a musician, and a historian. But Audio Video Technician is not amongst the abilities I would rate as taking like a fish to water. Everything I have learned so far has been gained from an incredible Herculean effort on my part. It has been study, study, study. Sadly, I forget 70% of what I have learned. Then go back and study, study until I learn it. I hate being crappy at anything. Just hate it. On the other hand, I truthfully evaluate my skills compared to my compatriots as a C-. C- means to me I understand what they are saying. I can troubleshoot low-level problems (and perhaps now a few mid-level ones). I also have, in the last month finally reached the point where someone can show me something, and it sticks in my mind with much more ease, as I have absorbed the first 2 to 3 months of on the job knowledge and the amount I need to study is diminished somewhat.
Or at least I thought so. I have been given another set of related (though) new responsibilities to learn. This excites me. But I wanted to fine tune my present set of skills. This however is the life I should and want to lead at Google though. I always like not knowing everything, having another set of hurdles. I feel comfortable knowing about 85%-90% of my skill set and having another endless set of hurdles to jump.
Right now I am still uncomfortable though. I know I estimate about 65-70% of what I would like to know in my first set of skills, and maybe 25-30% of the second set of skills I just got handed. So that is where my self-evaluation comes from. That, and even if I felt I was doing great work, I have been brought up to be modest. I’d hate to tell people I was doing “A+” work even if I felt I was. This is something I have to be careful about at Google. Google is full of Alpha male/females. They aren’t shy about anything. They go for the jugular. Privately, I do too. I just prefer to be more genteel and quiet about it. I confess, I like people to underestimate me a bit. That way if (and hopefully when) I succeed, it makes my private “I told you so” more sweet. So yes, I do have some hubris and pride inside me.
That is why, when I was given a “B” by my supervisor, part of me was inside saying “B?????” Well Screw That!!!! I’m going for an A+++! I want to become so good at what I do here that people respect what I do. That is what I strive for every day.
That is my dream. My reality is that in about 3 and a half months, I have clawed tenaciously my way from zero knowledge to sub-par mediocrity. I loathe this fact. That’s why I study when I get home and keep trying to learn from my peers as much as I can. I do this for myself, and I study so that faith placed in me is well-deserved.
A+++ all the way.