fredag 24. oktober 2008

another vacancy bites the dust....

Well dear graduate and would be master of science marketing.....

I fell into my own trap once again!

Ok, so I did enough to get a first interview-ringing in forhand, following up my application thereafter and finding out the key facts on the client.

BUT where did I go wrong`?

Full CV -kiss of death

On line application with this -even worse- typos in it!!

did not find out enough about the job in forhand- the focus and challenges and the deliverables- could have matched my IVGN work more to it and generally sounded more "senior strategic" as a guy.

Thereafter it was easy for me to fall into the 'chain of job explanations' rather than focus on matching my skills to their actual needs.

I took no control of the interview when I could have "cut to the quick" it being a frdiay afternoon. In fact I was TOO RELAXED and:

rambled on, job excuse to excuse. Too much one way. not selling.

I'm left feeling bruised and rejected of course as one is...I feel like this will be the only opportnuity in the next year here and so on. Immature! There will be other opportunities! It's just stupid to put a whole load of expectations postivitly on that job while ignoring the general advertised market, the open applications market, new shaping and networking possibilities.

SO I need to pick myself up tmw!!

onsdag 15. oktober 2008


Si Litt om deg selv.

Jeg kommer fra skottland opprinelig, og har to barn sammen med min norsk kjæreste.

Som mennesker er jeg drivende og liker jeg utfordringer alt fra min først bachelor til norsk kurs, salg resultat og nye analyse som er brukbar.

Jeg er utadvent, blander meg lett i nye lag i arbeidsliv og fritid.

Sterke sider:

Som mennesker er jeg også nysgjerrig – jeg er engasjert i kundevirksomhet og markedet og liker å komme til bunnes kan med problem og muligheter for bedrifter og kunder.

Også jeg er ganske sterk og drivende men veldig medmenneskelig- det vil si at jeg er jo målrettet men liker å ta laget med ….

Det er litt over ti år siden jeg begynte å ta management ansvar- med å styre prosjekt og interne ressur ofte selvstendig mot nye salg og levering av prosjekt innenfor reklame, brosjyre, direkte markedsføring og web. Jeg fortsatt med det under både prosjekt arbeid (McCanns og Union) og for eksempel hadde jeg til og med 12 mennesker i et lag som jeg styrte.

Tekniske diverse utstyr salg/markedsføring innen medinsk og elektroniske produksjon. ISO miljø- dokumentasjon og prosess mot lansering av nye produkter under ISO9000 / 1 og relevante ISO for produkt sektor.

Svak sider: jeg har vært veldig utalmodig innenfor karrieren og i fritid også med kappseiling/. Jeg ville at lønnsnivå, ansvar, resultat i salg og prosjekt skulle gå veldig sjappe og kunne bli upopulær i laget og på båten!!!

Det påvirker meg nå at jeg er ikke særlig glad i å samarbeide med innadvent mennesker. Også en annen svakhet er jeg passer dårlig i et lag eller firma med en veldig domminerende type. Jeg hater det og blir demotiverte.


Budskap, fordeler til kunden

Stillinger(positioning) i marked- de fem p-enne

Styring prosjekter- motivering og oppmuntring samt kritikk og peker til området for forbedring blant laget.

Produksjon av interne og markedsdata og report / statistikk.

tirsdag 12. august 2008

A lot like leaving Birmingham

Oslo is a big stress factory in a little land. What's ironic is there is no need whatsoever for it to be such.

Like a run away lawn mower with a broken cable there is no hand to make it less noisy and less run away. It just roars on with out intervention.

In principle Oslo should be a place with a very high quality of life and actually be a laid back, low stress city. Compared to places like London or even Amsterdam. But it ain't and I can only point to my own experiences.

Oslo suffers from both big-city-syndrome, despite being a relative pin prick, and at the same time the norwegian nature. As Dawkins postulated positive encounters outweigh negative but if the animal puts their neck out only to be repeatedly burnt or robbed by the stranger then the animal assumes a similar retributional behaviour pattern in new encounters. Oslo people are bloody unfriendly in the younger generations. It is more than just stand offish. It is a culture for punishing the outsider.

Why the problem? My thoughts- On the one side you have a city obsessed with wealth and one that has been through hard times before. Capitalists here are "flinke" to turn a dollar and a dime out of an Øre and a spot of land. Materialism is almost as rife as London. There is a monied snobbism. Couple to this the way norwegians operate in social circles. These are not loose collections with fluid relationships like say a squash ladder in the UK. They are iron rings of relationship forged by commonality which has managed to last. They have common experiences and feel very safe with this. Safe enough to bore each other senseless with Hytte (cabin/cottage) chat and endless confirmations, 17th may etc.

In oslo you feel the rush throug the different pauses in the year more than in most other cities, although first week July in Bergen or easter week is comical for it's lack of norwegians! Like Big Ben the hands of the clock tick methodically and heavily rather than the smooth inexorable motion of a rolex. Suddenly work begins jan 4. Dong goes the clock hand for one. Then it is winter break and the preparation for skiing. DOng again. Then more skis and hytte with a crime novel at easter. Like a starters pistol for that one! Just at the point some work is actually being achieved the clock strikes in succession for 17th of may (national day like july 4th) , confirmation and then wedding. Now it isn't just cabin fever that makes the nordmann scurry around the land like a fechless lemming. The fact is that today the majority of norwegians in Oslo are from long outside Oslo and wandered in themselves. So 17th may etc involve travelling. Internally to Norway they are as nomadic as the Irish, as wanderlust as the kiwis an as lazy as the arabs. Blue eyed arabs them.

And the summer of arabian nights. Almost two months of little if any activity and for lacidasical performance for those of us who cover. I am never doing a bloody mid july stint again which involves trying to get in touch with either norsk suppliers or customers.

The two over riding principles of norwegian psyche both regn and are flagrantly ignored leading to frustration. jantas lov - presbytryism self denial and head-bowing- is deeply ingrained in many but has it's modern expression in " you are getting something I am not" jealousy and this motivates a lot of rigteousness. The other rule is not sticking your head out to look silly before someone else does- wait for a foriegner! this is expressed in flocking behaviour with fashions establishing themselves reapidly and being very even. People break the rules and are exceptions which prove the rule, but they are either the sharks on this reef r

Back to social circles - these are tight and thick but in fact contradictory. It is all about being seen to belong and feeling you are part of it. But in fact all that skiing over the land and sports clubs and sail tours amount to very individual behviour just that it is seen to be conforming and perfoming the norsk thang! There is also the will to make the other guy the loser which is part of "your getting something I'm not" in that it is revenge for all the people who HAVE.

People drive badly here and this means that with much of the sheep behaviour the roads are unnecessarily jammed. The wolves are out too, rushing into the jams. Driving is appalling despite the mass of traffic behaving itself you ae left with a sense of stress without need.

Wolves, sharks you call them what you want. Above all the academics, the offentlig sektor workers and the busy little siviløkonoms, inginør and marketing managers swim the big fish. Like we being ants, it is difficult to percieve them unless you live in west-kant. There the ants are in the minority.

So it's a stress machine of noise, But everyone refers to it's saving graces. The culture, the fjord, the islands and Nordmarka ( the virtual wilderness which begins a stone throw from the centre) Hold on a minute here, for those of us who don't do theatre what is there? Fjords and walks in the woods ? HELLO like this is anything unique in a norway.

I came hear with my head down a bit but leave with my chin up.

fredag 8. august 2008

Moving on...

Moving out ..playing the games again .

I came into Oslo under a cloud and was not impressed with the welcome apart from at the Uncles which was a nice escape from the daily. Most of august was monsoon after my first week of dry evenings on the bikes. It felt good to have some time alone on a bike but I missed my family.

I was reluctant-- I wanted to work out my trial period before we committed. Late october I started to get bored and felt marginalised. I found it hard to get in and was getting BS management and BS cooperation. The expectation for me to sit down, somehow fit in quietly went astray with the Kari K's dislike for me. It was fairly immedieate in my 'meet the boss' interview. I waffled. I struggled a bit with concentration on detail but struggled more with bending myself to work with marianne. I knew it was up in my review which I seem to remember not being such a shock more a confrontation. Oh- you- tea OUT.

Life went on. Spring came late. I did some career coaching and it used up my spirit to break out and move on. In fact the whole thing only confirmed that I could be an inspirational product manager with leadership abilities. Good at delegating, spinning plates, challenging people. I felt more mature than I had for a long time. A relaxation set in and after the very wet summer was survived by me and the kose klump, I had a sweet little autumn out on my bike and then at the syslab- on the wee city bikes.

Time was running out. I needed a local job and they needed me. I bent myself over. Ouch! But the pain is all theirs now with three sales people to feed and my summer hols and risør trips mostly paid for.

I feel nervous now. Having been chilled after the signing of the new lease, i was then panicing with the move. Dreading it all. Dreading giving up the job, or worse keeoping it going.

I feel like I am giving up security again but we are actually moving to a little society and gonna become part of it. In bergen we had the offentlig sector mentality and a town anonymous enough. Moving to Oschloo was a step further into anonymity and distance, we are also pretty good at isolating ourselves.

Now like the disorganised bits of lego on the floor, the pieced get turned in the fingers and then stuck hard on the base board of the gods. They fall into place, click click. Holiday one, delivered. Chilling out, mission successful. Getting house to solve moving twice- jobs a good one. Holiday 2, 40th celebration - done and dusted. All too fast. Working away, not possible- confirmed. Resignation, written. Removal van , booked.

In some ways I feel like it will be the little town at the end of the world with a bleak winter. But I can't let myself go under a cloud. Nerves over jobs just make we the worry rabit. I'm putting my chin out, walking down there, not scurrying around with my tail in my legs or like my last move with my chin down and teeth ready to bite as I lashed out like a dog in a cage.

I need to let the positivity flow and stop hanging on to stress and misery and anger - it's an addition to some form of normality and status quo that has to be torn apart.

torsdag 24. juli 2008

more on bloody nordmen..and in the mirror on me.

I get a little bit pissed every so often and feel almost vicitimised.

Foreigners living and working- or not gainfully employed as the case may be- are the scapegoat for both national woes and private inadequacies.

The problem is Norwegians are smart alecs. They have to be, or rather had to be before Oil because it was pretty hard to scrape a living and to become rich you had to actually be incredibly astute. With a small population and wide geography they look for short cuts, quick wins, low hanging fruits and generally want "show me the money" before they do anything for you in a business sense.

Blamestorming- they like to blame foriegners for crime and degeneration is society. But also they are quick to blame or scape goat on an office level. It is kind of a presumption of rights over "innvandere"- even the word sounds like you either invaded their cosey privacy or wandered over some unknown border to be shouted down by the land owner. So I get the blame for various shit about my own career and out-of-lease situation and also the blame today for the following.

All offices have coffee machines and no one I know is really keen on powder type. Consequently the coffee machine is well used and coincidentally norwegians are lazy bastards who don't like shitty jobs. So once it reached a bacertiological risk II level I decied to 'steep' glass and the lid over night. The next day I GET THE BLAME for breaking the glass because the fuck-wit TOM had some spastication trying to extract it. Don't put the top up in the can! (IKKE used a lot) Don't be a dick with glass ware is more like it.

I feel a little victimised here but that is just the way the disfunctional idiots are. My new boss is great, never really sees her kids which she likes. But she is also seemingly moving on at some point and this is just a comfy parking zone before the plan unfolds for her in the parting clouds one day.

In my last job I was pretty much descriminated against. I tried too hard in some ways, language wise and 'dumping' work on admin people instead of spoon feeding, whilst in other areas I didn't try hard enough. In fact if I had kept my head down, as I often thought I shouuld, I would probably still be there and still moving to ris. I'd have two years under my belt and maybe earn 500K without shit to say for it. Maybe a snipe. Biach would be pissing around instead of having a great bit of experience. Family intake would probably be not much more....

i'm at yet another company which is personality driven and not systems orientated. The latter style pick up on my cavalier attitude-- they as bosses are either concerned I will fit in and work detail oriented or actualy are cavalier fucks like me anyway looking for people to do the dïrty details. I see it in my own attitude to people on boats.

I have realised some time ago that place is about people and that I only really get along with some types, yet have landed up with shitty jobs often with the wrong types. I challenge authority and establishment too much instead of just going with the flow and this has nearly always been a struggle with the world and myself. Just dopign what I had to even if I didn't want to. BSC final year was my watershed - but it was motivating to study and work in interesting subjects. And I got to knock kenny off his pedestal with a 2i. I scraped it on personal recommendation.

Where does a driven, challenging, attention deficit guy thrive in this world?

I feel I am starting a big dose of chill and getting on the right boat.

onsdag 27. februar 2008

A Lot Like Birmingham

This is a rant but merely a breif moan.

I took a tour up to Montebello/husebybakken tonight and looked out over the city. Once again I thought, a lot like birmingham witha a sea front. It can be nice out on the harbour or on the islands or 'half islands' but the climate has been a bit of a let down outside spring and autumn, which were pretty good.

Now house prices shake and the snow is goign going gone from the long runs into nature, leaving unbikeworthy ice patches for months to come unless we either get serious mild rain or loads of snow graces us for more skiing. There must now be a lot of Oslot-ites who are shaking their heads - stuck in a 80 m2 appartment with decreasing value, in a boring service industry job or banking or public bodies. Now deprived of skiing x coutnry, they are probably like me, the short term migrant bird who happened to land on Birmianias "fjord" shores.

Moan over.

Well where else to live in norway? Not west land - too much rain and not enough snow or moutnain bike opportunitiies.

Not too far north - two months of dark mornings and drives home is enough. SO I guess maybe a littel north of Trysil and maybe Ålesund. GO south? Well the ski season will be even shorter, it will get wetter and there may not be great mountain biking.

Inland poses problems because of access to summer sailing venues. Osloo is quite good in that respect. South norway is also great. West land is too wet and too cruisy racerish.

SO I guess I coudl compromise with either somewhere with Fægerness or another lake here or over the border! The one thing we can actually compromise on is skiing. In south norway it is goign to become ever longer to commute to an ever shorter season. So practically it will be ski maskin training and seldom local days with long weekends and holidays being the key thing. Long term this will put a premium on 800m + cabins , like Myrland or Hemsedal, so buying in an economic slump could be wise, wise long term money.

Also houses- we don't ask for much- 3 and one half bedrooms, a work room/basement, garage or possibility for that a shed and a summer play house. We wanna pay less than 2.5 and be sure that there will be some growth drivers in the area. ie. private industry not public service, better transport, more retiral buying, decentralisation of quangos to this mythical area, some attraction to cyber yuppies to live there in the first place. Striking distance to Oslo hospitals for when we are decrepit.

I guess that opens things right up. Given ski from the door and an hour to Fægernes YC, that would be a safe bet. SOuth east coaaast also, with torp within an hour.

fredag 22. februar 2008

Norway Without Oil?

Norway without oil eh?

Well it's just supposing, but it does come to bear on what Norge AS will be like after oil. So it's an interesting sideshow to discuss.

It would of course be a matter of "fish n' ships".

Firstly Norway's fisheries would have been far more important to sustain and to retain in norwegian ownership. Given a prevailing leftist political climate, licensing and quotas could have been a matter for state control and even ownership with a levvy being taken on (short term) licensing. Relative to Scotland for example, Norway has far larger stock areas but with a similar population.

The salmon farming industry would have no doubt taken off, and more investment may have been made into farming other species, and 'reef farming' or stocking identifiable nursery sea areas with larvæ or fry. Salmon and sea trout would no doubt be somewhat different than it is today. Starved of oil money as a source of mass investment, salmon would have developed in a more fragmented way and be more open to foriegn investment. This would mean that the product would most likely not be the commodity item it is today, being cheaper than many palageants and trawled fish. A more fragmented industry would have resulted in more product differentiation and sales to niche markets. It would no doubt be easier to buy local salmon, organic salmon, eik/einebær smoked salmon. Also perhaps "wild finished" salmon where it is exposed to natural conditions in lochans or some mini migratory pathways to be netted. The scots and irish industry could have taken the place as the budget commodity producer, driven by the EU's CAP. The national colour of ownership situation would perhaps be reversed! Certainly the price of salmon would be higher and quite likely norwegian production would be a fraction of it's 600Ktonnes per annum today.

Given the prominence of the fishing industry, and decline in stocks in oter EU waters prior to the oil period anyway, Norway would have kept itself out of the EU as at that time sweden was too. EAFTA ( EØS) would have sufficed to provide local markets for fish. With this in mind then norwegian farming would have quite possibly been similar to todays, but with fewer individual producers. Without oil subsidies, farms would need to be bigger and those in inaccessable areas would probably be muc the poorer for the lack of tunnels that seem to have been such a ready cremator for oil cash! There would probably be more regional producers or cooperatives and possibly more than the few brands that are to be found today. With poorer transport connections, regional production would be more important and be organised around an economically viable size, or at least "subsidy sustainable" structure which enjoyed at least some economies of scale in dairy, slaughter and up-working product. Once again more value added, regional or independent produce could become premium brands and the cosey tine/gilde -rema/rimi set up could be very different.

Engineering and Technology

Engineering based upon hydro power, shipping, bridging/tunneling and related design and construction would have a prominent role, relative to the smaller, non oil economy, and be largely taken up wit supplying norwegian owned shipping lines as well as globalising earlier. Welders' Wages in norway could well rival those in the far east and the paternal nature of norwegian capital may have come to the forefront and actually encouraged a supply chain with virtually gauranteed orders.

Technology would be focused into other marine and biological areas and those chemical production areas where, as today, supply of cheap electricity and water is determinant. These would however probably be areas far more open to either nationalisation or foriegn investment. The state may be far more interested in owning power and Hydro production whilst other technology areas would have to realistically go to international capital earlier- a situation which today "little norway" avoids with no good reason other than national pride and soft-capital handcuffing job numbers to development. The shipping line "old money" may or may not take a risk view on spread betting their investment versus minimal possible risk. Shipping is a risk business whatever.

Service & Tourism

In a non-oil economy, these two would be somewhat inseperable. Tourism would be a far more prominent part of the economy, if not potentially the largest service sector. It probably would in real terms or prescence be a larger industry than it is now. This would be because of the undoubted attractions coupled to: flights an ageing EU and US population, richer neighboring lands and an expanding middle class in EU. But above all, Norway would be more competitive on price in terms of hotels, eating out, experience-services, entertainment and trinkets.

Rather than being, as in scotland in the 80s and 90s, considered a second class industry, Norwegians would in the regions such as Hardanger, got their service act together and be far more motivated to be in this industry. In scotland there seems to be enough english house inflation money redirected into tourism and enough of an entrepreneurial economy to actually have made a visit to the highlands at least a rewarding cullinary and accomodatory experience if not as cheap as torremolenos!

Norway has a big advantage as with Sveits, Austria and n. Italy, it does have actually offer two tourist seasons with year round city break potential. Given the current global warming ( more oil found elswhere!) situation the ski tourism industry would be set to boom right now in fact! Brits, swedes and danes would have long been the target market and with less local interest/money for hytte complexes, the immediate to-piste locales would have probably sprouted hotels and self catering accomocdaton of varying grades. Hytteliv would be a langrenn oriented thing, not centred on the resorts. Infact the whole down hill thing may even be out of reach of most norwegians who today would enjoy two weeks in the winter/spring at such resorts.

Stavanger for example, may have become the key tourist arrival city for summer tours. Given the sea faring traditions in norway, and the 'redderi' i.e. shipping lines, like Fred Olsen, may well have invested in this type of fly-sail holiday. Norway would be a big retirement cruiser destination given more tourist support along the coast, at better prices, for those who do visit today (germans, dutch, danes, swedes, brits a plenty and lately poles and russians.)

Given the high value destination Norway has to offer, and i't current premium position for line like Cunard, giving a damn about tourism would be a recipie for success which the current wage and labour environment just doesn't really afford.

Immigration and Emmigration

Like Ireland, during the "fish famines" of the 19th and early 20th centuries drove norwegians to America. Norway had no empire other than antartica and spitzbergen, so emmigration was largely to the land of the free. This was quite a two way affair and persisted up and until oil time on grounds of poverty and of course thereafter on grounds of actually working in the oil industry.

Emmigration, as with Ireland, Scotland and Portugal would be a bigger state of affairs with economic to-and-froing as with the extended irish families being common.

Immigration on the other hand would be far rarer affair. It would be driven largely by academia and be miniscule. "Norway for norwegians" would permiate taxi driving and cleaning. Trades people would probably be a net export for the country!

Norway, basically would not have the resources, paternal ambition or goodwill amongst the public to take the world's refugees without them filling some labour or regional repopulation need.


Well this is the biggy as far as much of the economic speculation would consider. Road transport would be far less prominent than it is today. Norway as invested hugely in tunneling to secure year round connections between main cities and regions and to shorten or make practical thousands of journeys.

Coastal shipping would play more of a role, as indeed passenger and private traffic. A 20knt boat is today a leisure item which allows for progress between disparate tour destinations. Without all the tunneling, such boats would be as common as cars in some coastal areas and used as a serious form of transport. South of Stadt there are plenty of journeys accomplisable faster by light displacement boat than by car, even WITH nordhordalands bridge and various tunnels.

Rail would have been a bigger focus for what lesser national investment there would have been. A far north route, possible through or in cooperation with Sweden, would have probably been mooted and the main routes would I have no doubt be as fast as they are today. Electrification would probably have been even more comprehensive.

Air transport would have equally an important role as today, but perhaps with fewer runways and smaller planes. Cities with jet-strips would probably become more nodal to the expense of population outwith these such economic hubs.


This would have probably followed the post war scandinavian model and be at a higher level, more akin to sweden. The proportion of the population in public employ or subsidised would no doubt be even higher than it is today. I see no reason, short of economic collapse, that a non-oil Norway would opt for newzealand style free-marketism. The demands would be opposite, with socialist sweden's undoubted higher living standard being the benchmark and not the UK with the evident strife to modernise post industrial Britain ( which, along with the Falklands War, Trident, Canary wharf, gulf wars and the channel tunnel could not have been achieved without oil money in the UK)

Industrialists and capital would however have a very prominent lobbying position with both unions and politicians. In the abscence of STATOIL, they would control far more of the economic engine and despite a partisan public, would be able to secure a fairly liberal tax regime for both investment and profitability. The situation would be more akin to Ireland, where the brunt of taxation is taken by the employee whilst in the 80s and early 90s, investors enjoyed tax holidays and pund for pund investment matching.

Life Style and Standard of Living

For me, this is what would be quintisentially norwegian. It's my opinion that there would be very little difference in the norwegian lifestyle.

Nordmenn would still have their winter and easter Holidays up in the hills, and continue this spartan cabin life in the summers down by the sea in the other family or trade union cabin. They would still have rather bad choice in the supermarkets and expensive alcohol driven by the christian democracy and ytax thirsty leftist governments.

People would earn less, so houses and cabins would be cheaper. That a 60kvd meter house in stavanger centre is about 6 times average salary is a situation which would however be somewhat different. House prices would falter despite the post 80s low interest concensus. People would maybe rent longer and pay down more, I don't know but with no stream of oil a less certain economy with a constrained and contracting public sector ( as per other countries in the area) then people would not be so confident about house-price-growth earnings as a means of funding life! In fact people would live in exactly the same fabric standards of houses as they do today.In areas such as askøy or nøtterøy, now popular for even commuters, the small hytte would reign wit cheap land prices and marginal farmers forced to sell up.

True these houses would not be adorned with the latest flat screen but life would get along materialistically as it does in Ireland and portugal.

With cars and that great other norsk vehicle, the sail boat or motorlaunch? Cars would be much cheaper- the public wouldn't stand for such taxation on new cars. And it wouldn't be audis and mercedes it would be nissans and kias. Families would probably have fewer cars, maybe on average one per family. boat wise instead of 40 feet being the average in the larger marinas, 27 foot would maybe be the average and probably owned more by whole families- and actually get some even use in the season instead of the one week.

Foriegn holidays may be limited more but then again, perhaps skiing and frying on beaches and the associated beer drinking would still be cheaper than staying at karegrø and drinking Rignes.