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Friday, October 08, 2010

DEATH, TAXES AND CHANGES

There are few things in this life here on Earth that are absolute. One simply cannot bank on much to be guaranteed. The fact is true that we are all only here for a relatively short time frame in the Big Scheme Of Things. But besides the fact that we WILL be taxed up the bunyakas for everything except maybe our thought processes (shhh don't give 'em any ideas), the only other thing we really can take to the bank is knowing there will always be changes in our lives.

Ah yes.

And in my little life comes another.

I have worked for the past dozen years at the Alberta Motor Association. That is CAA, or for you folks in the U.S., AAA. We are all affiliated. Same same.

A few of you may remember about 5 or 6 years ago when my job position changed. A whole LOT. Our department "integrated" with another, which basically meant that we lost 3/4 of what we did to our Travel Department, leaving us with a small group that we have built into what is Member Services. We specialize in memberships, Advocacy, Driver Education etc. We have taken our membership to over 900,000 in the province of Alberta and we are on our way to 1 million members.

Hmmm.

Well we have been informed that we are now "Blending" with our Registries Department, which would be DMV for my friends in the U.S. There will be 4 "pilot centers" in Alberta (and thankfully ours is not one of them) who, beginning in January of 2011 will start the process of changing over and ironing out the bugs for the rest of us.

What does this change all mean?

In a nutshell, in our 2 departments we will have to be trained to do each others' jobs. That doesn't perhaps sound too huge. You might be thinking, "yeah AND, Jude?" Just for starters, what happens if some staff are just NOT interested in the type of work the other department does? They have a choice to stay and do it, or find another job, basically. And, before writing exams for Registries alone, the training for ONE person takes months of working in that department daily, forget about working back in your own Member Services Department. And that's for a full time employee. For someone like myself who works a few days a week I'm wondering how long this will take. Not to mention our Auxilliary staff who only work one day a week. How many years will it take to train them? Okay so there must be a simpler take on this than a lot of us are seeing so far, I'm sure there is really. Perhaps the actual "Blend" will just be a gradual thing even though we will have had renovations so that we can all be in one spot together.

We will all be blended into one department which by the way we have to think up a name for. ("Megistries"?) And we will all be working side by side. We will have 2 computers each, one for Registries Services and one for Member Services, as obviously they are 2 different systems with Registries being a Provincial Government thing.

Life does guarantee one other thing.... Shit happens! And so do Changes.

We all pretty much felt panic and depression, worry and disbelief in the first days after being told about this. I think most of us are resigned to it now, and even though our centre won't be blended for at least another year or so we are looking for positives in the situation to grab on to. Me for instance. I just want to work out my last few years before retirement there, working for my fabulous boss and my co-workers and not have to look for another job somewhere else where I have to start all over as an old bat at almost-60-years-old. So I will do what I have to do, and keep trying to bolster up the emotions of some of the staff there who are still really upset.

The change will definitely be huge in one respect. In our department it's all smiles and the best "customer service" we can muster up for everyone who walks in the front door. It's a mind-set. In Registries, it's all "business". You know, you-need-this-form-and-that-form-before-we-can-issue-a-death-certiciate-sir-we-cannot-register-your-vehicle-until-you-show-us-proof-of-insurance-ma'am-NEXT PLEASE!

So the mind-set of this new "blend" could very well blow our brains. I laugh when I think of it as how we will have to constantly interchange these:



It's been 8 days since I found out just what is coming down for us, and I'm starting to feel ready to "take it on man!" and get it the hell over with. After all, with every change that's hit me in the face so far this lifetime, I've managed to make the most of it. So I can do it again.

OH! There IS one other thing that is guaranteed.....

Once a month we'll have our Photo Contest over at Stardom Awaits! If you haven't already voted for "Scenic", head on over! There is still a week left to place your vote.

**I almost forgot!! HAPPY THANKSGIVING to my Canadian friends!** :-)

Take good care of each other, and if YOU are going through a big ol' change in your life right now, take heart that it will all work out in the end. I promise.

PEACE!
Love Jude

8 Comments:

Blogger Bobbie said...

It sounds like you're ready to adapt to the changes.

Wishing you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving. Have a good weekend.

10:20 AM, October 09, 2010  
Blogger Jude said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family too Bobbie!

10:33 AM, October 09, 2010  
Blogger Jeremy Ryan said...

I see by the comments it must be Thanksgiving time in Canada. So, Happy Thanksgiving!

Changes in life are going to happen like you said. It's all how you deal with the changes that makes the difference. This too shall pass and all will be okay.

I like your thought up name for the new department. Why not just call it Customer Service or Client Services.

Since this is a year away, no sense in worrying about it now. I'm glad that they told you so far in advance. Most places don't announce changes in advance, you come in one day and poof - today is change day.

I hope that you have a great weekend and take care.

7:35 PM, October 09, 2010  
Blogger Jude said...

Yes, and we have a year or so to start getting trained up, which may help with the transition when it happens too.

Have a great weekend Jer! :-)

7:42 PM, October 09, 2010  
Anonymous Vickytoria said...

ok...i want to be positive for ya jude but having worked there I will say that seriously sucks!!! One benefit lots of staff.. Have a great thanksgiving my friend and see you soon

11:53 AM, October 10, 2010  
Blogger Jude said...

Thank you my dear friend, I knew you would completely understand the sheer horror of this one, LOL .... as always we'll get through it I guess. Can you imagine how much I do NOT want to do Registries?

I hope your Thanksgiving is super! Love you xoxoxox

12:56 PM, October 10, 2010  
Blogger sydwynd said...

You need to read the book Who Moved My Cheese. My department was assigned it as required reading when we integreated the two IT organizations into one. It's a great book on change and an easy read.

Good luck with the new organziation and hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

8:29 PM, October 13, 2010  
Blogger Jude said...

Thanks for this Vince, I just read the synopsis on it and it was great. I just emailed it to my boss to read.

Thanksgiving was good, in another month I'll be wishing the same for you! Hugs!

9:17 PM, October 13, 2010  

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