Back from Paris, and I have some insights…

I’ve just landed this morning in our too-big-too-much-to-walk Ben-Gurion airport from my one week vacation at the beautiful Paris. To be honest, I really needed this vacation, I had too much on my mind during the last couple of months – University planning, work (and lots of it) and some universal (we called it “in-romo-shel-olam” in Hebrew) decisions to think about like my near future goals which I love to think about every new year. Meeting my great family, having some 20 folks dinner with amazing food and lots of good wine can do wonders to your mind and body so I come back with some new powers which I’m sure I’ll need in order to progress during this new year.

I picked some insights during this week, some of them I would like to share with you –

Controlling the arm rest in the airplane as a life story.
On my way back, I flew with Arkia Boeing 757, meaning 3 seats in each side of the airplane; Guess what, I had to sit in the middle, between my father and another problematic guy. Why problematic ? I knew you’ll ask it, well that’s because he always tried to take over my arm rest and kept me awake for 4 damn hours and 5 minutes ! You can’t blame me that I haven’t tried, I tried to push, to take only the bottom side of the arm rest, only the upper side of the arm rest, to stretch while trying to take over, EVERYTHING ! this guy was persistent ! Well, I’m sometimes more stubborn than necessary, but I saw that this battle wasn’t for me to win so I took the battle into a field I knew I can win – the arm rest near my dad. Don’t give me that poor smile and nodding, if you try to move the man while he’s a sleep, you must come with some heavy armor. The problem was that he was sleeping(\reading, he turned the pages in his book every 2-10 minutes) and I didn’t want to move his hand. But… every child knows his parents’ weak points and in my father’s case it’s me. Moving a little bit in my chair and showing him I’m a little bit tired (=unhappy) gave us both a great idea. In a sweep move, my father asked the fellow beside me to get up as he needed to go to the toilet. I had to get up too, but it’s LIFO(last in, first out) style, so I had the position before him; Man, I love good tactics. So after 4 hours and 5 minutes, we had left only 10 minutes in the air so my trick was a little bit useless and I couldn’t sleep at all, but I think I’ve learned a lot from it, don’t you ?

Arm rests should come in couples for the chair in the middle in 3 sits airplanes.
See the section above. I think I should write a patent on this one, this is gold.

Take yourself some time to think about your goals in the near future, new year holiday is good time IMHO.
This year will be an important year for me, like any other year in our short life but maybe just a little bit more. This year I hope to start on the right foot (and hand, for that manner) my academic course and to step up in my work. In addition I’m planing to release a mini “product” out to the world and to see(and learn) how it goes. Well, you’re all familiar with those subjects (work, studies) but they are too big to think over without decomposing them into more feasible tasks. I started my thinking during the vacation and I promised myself to finish up (and “refactor”) during the next week.  So, I tried to decompose my “I want to improve at my work” task into smaller tasks like (just a small part from my tasks list):

  1. I want to improve my management skills

    1. I want to learn some time-management tools (so I’ll be able to complete the next section).
    2. I want to build my teammates schedules.
    3. I want to follow it with them so I would be able to understand better where do they “waste” time so I can avoid it or think about ways to improve it. I want to be able to detect good progress and good work so I could praise them and make sure that this good phases(\methods) will be longer on their next assignments.
    4. I want to be able to teach my teammates – I really believe that good workers(and human beings for that manner) are those that aren’t afraid to say that they want to learn new things every day even if that means they’ll have to change their work every X years. I want to be able to teach my teammates a thing or two, direct them to other resources so they’ll be able to learn, or any other media so they’ll be happy to come to work every morning.

  2. I want to be taught – I’m trying to be a good worker, so section 1.4 must apply to me also. In order to do that I must think about ways to learn and set my mind about the subjects that interesting me; Finally, I have to sit with the people in my company(or surroundings) which I think has the capabilities to teach me and think how can I convince them that teaching me will be beneficial for them as well.
  3. I want to improve my software analyzing capabilities – I want to think and participate in the design of 2 huge softwares we’re about the develop.
  4. I want to improve my selling skills – I’m thinking about releasing a small software with a friend of mine and in the last couple of days I’m thinking more and more if to release it as open-source or maybe trying to sell it as a product. I want to insert new technologies(.net 2, sql server 2005 and more) to my company, I must figure a good plan in order to do this smoothly and to justify any changes in our development phases so the management could be relaxed and fully understand why this changes will result “win-win” situation.
  5. I want to finish this year university courses with good success (85+ avg.) – The degree is important and I don’t want to let it go just because I’m working, and I can plan my time better so I would be able to work and study at the same time without neglected any one of them, it’s up to me, like always.

This is just the tip of the iceberg from my original list, but I think you get the idea. I’m planing to build this kind of list in my office so my teammates would be able to tell me their work expectations for this year and I would be able to think about ways which I can help them to achieve it.

Don’t be afraid to let the world know – “I want” to do this, this and that !
Almost all the people I know want to be rich for many well known reasons. The problem in my opinion is not the “rich dad, poor dad” issues of “we’re been taught to be humble about our desires, to be satisfied with our average paycheck” etc. It’s the lack of preparation from our side that keeps us from being successful. One of the biggest sections in my list is how to learn more about the subjects which will able me to add just a little bit to my regular work paycheck and how can I use the industry I understand the “best” (computers) for making me more money. Being “rich” can be comprehend also as being smarter or becoming a better person, It’s all depends on the list you’re making. Keep this list updated, this is the hard trick you’ll have to master; This will able you to monitor your progression and find new dreams. I have an uncle that good planing and a lot of self confidence got him the job of the president of a universal company and a lot of wealth for his good investments. He was never sorry for demanding more, and this is a lesson I will not forget. The bottom line is, be the best you can be, just be smart about it as we’re not living alone and I DO think that being a good person is much more important than being successful, I just say you CAN be BOTH.

I would finish with happy new (Hebrew) year to all of you, may you get a little closer to fulfilling your dreams.


Oren Ellenbogen


2 thoughts on “Back from Paris, and I have some insights…

  1. i’m reading this post in the third time.
    each time i read it , i felt like i get some power from your words
    i waiting to see the list in the office .

    happy holiday

  2. Yo,
    (1) Listen, there are reasons why there are no double arm-rests in the plane. That’s because of the chip-ass airline companies. They’re out there to squeeze the last cantimeter of that plane to sell more seats. My ass gets just a bit bigger I won’t be able to pass the aisle to the toilet.
    You’re lucky you didn’t have a bunch of deported illegal workers sitting *on* your armrest, by way of the "arkia-super-discount" tickets.
    (2) Good luck with all your great plans man. Just pay attention to this – don’t set the goals to high. A small steady progress is better than an attempted but not successfull huge leap.
    (3) Like the post, want more of this kind.
    Yours truly.

    What is "prevents robots"? Why I don’t have "prevets robots" on my site? I want too.

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