Hey, did I ever tell you about my wife? She is an excellent cook. When she’s in the kitchen she is a tyrant, (that’s right, my lovely wife becomes a control freak!) because this is her work area. I know a lot of people get like this at home and at work. She cooks almost every night. We hardly ever go out to eat. She will run the kitchen like a job site. Everything in there is a tool that she will use. Each tool must be used properly. Now, when I say tool, I am not talking about the stove, ovens (Yes, we have 2), and the knives. Each bowl, Wisk, spoon, fork is set out for a reason. She has a plan for everything she uses, right down to the specific hot pad. Pretty crazy to me but if we were on a job site, or if I was working on a house, car, tower, transmitter, any system, and then I would do the same thing. She is actually very organized in her approach to the meal. She starts with how the end result should look and taste then forms a plan to get there using all the right tools.
So why did I tell you all of this? Because this is how we should approach every job (not the tyrant part). If possible we should think about exactly what we are going to do, what the end result is, and all of the steps to get there. Then we can layout all of the tools prior to doing the job. The more experience you have, the better you will be at planning out the next similar job. Don’t get me wrong, there are usually surprises or unexpected problems. So be prepared, adapt, improvise, and overcome. When I did field work people made fun of me because I carried a lot of parts and tools. Then when they would need something they would come to me and thank me for being prepared. Of course a week later they were making fun of me again, but I knew they would always come back to me when they needed help. Being smart really helps but being prepared is doing your job.
So let’s go back to the control freak remark. When you are on the job site you have a team and each of you should know what it should take. If there is a new guy on the team, explain what the plan is to them. Someone should be the boss for the final say even though the team discusses the project. I worked all kinds of jobs in the field. This work had one thing in common; it had to have some sort of plan. Even if you were going out for a survey you need a plan to come up with a plan. If you are on an emergency call, on your way there you should be planning, even before you left you should have an idea of what the problems is and prepare for it. The plan is to look at the end result and work backwards mentally of how to get there. Then layout all the proper tools to make it happen. Think about each phase of the job to complete it. Once you do enough of these you will not have to put so much work into it. However, this is field work so there is always something that you miss, at least I did. Sure, you get angry but really it’s a challenge.
Listen, be prepared, make a plan, and be safe! Work smart, don’t be stupid!
Remember to support http://www.hubble.org today!