fredag 14. mai 2010

Cracking the Code

Once when I worked at a large US based corporate I took it upon myself to socialise with other departments at a christmas doo. It didn't take me long to appreciate that they were a bunch of trogs. However one informed me it was worth cracking the code, breaking into the group becuase once you were in there.....I nodded politely.

Now I am new boy, bad smell, needy baby. two areas.

Firstly of course as this is a Norway rant, the local yocal and general work life code to crack. This involves a long period of stalking, being mild, keeping quiet and trying to be alone somehow so people think you should get invited to social events. Impossible if you are not single.

You have to learn to be small and use just a little charm to squeeze your way in. Once you are in and Godkjent, then everyone is suddenly there: and not worth it. Conversation is often dull as ditchwater and revolves around false modesty and sly boasting: keeping up with the jones in legnth of yacht and improvements to the cabin.

The other area I am only a little bit more successful in is Social Media.

The key here in fact is NOT actually creating a social network on line: it is to snowball out of one you have in REAL, or to ride the back of an established (or many established) groups and fanpages.

Both of which I am very bored with trying and just can't be bothered. Usually when things hitrock bottom a little angel gets sent on some kind of probatory duty to help me out. "oh god, not another undeserving type looking for a nano miracle to steer them away from the dark....well, here goes.....ding....someone asks him to socialise, or he will get a job interview..."

Angel times? Plenty...getting the motivation to do my best at my degree. Bumping into Wallace and then dave...Getting the flash motor and pleasent job at leo. Getting my fifth year of uni fiunded. Getting called up to go on the smeg. Bumping into GLX reno 5 driver Gill. Getting called up for the km job. Striking in first time at mccanns. getting a job , with more pay, quickly after HCC fell through. Jim liking my CV.

Since then though I have made my own luck and had to work at it. Now I give up. If I beleive in angel , delinquent one , then I must let it fall on me soon.

A man in free fall again.

lørdag 1. mai 2010

Peed off with Norwegian Employers and "Pals"

This week I am been mostly pist off with norwegians

My issue is that I have not cracked the code apparently, and well, do I actually want to?

I lived in aberdeen/ and shire a couple of years and by the time I found out there was a code to break and time to be spent making social networks I wasn't frikkin at all interested in the inward, inbred, boring and rather naval gasing aberdonians.

I did note you got about 5 mins respect and politeness as a guest, the rest was a brush off. So you get a bit more pushy maybe on trying to make pals. WRONG! you have got to go the other way and be invited to be a potential booking for an interview to discuss the possibility of getting a qeue ticket number to start maybe being on a list of potential people to be acquantances with.....or not if you decide on that day to cold shoulder the pushy outside away.

Well, same here, but the "guest" period lasts longer particularily if you move around a bit like I have: each place and work environment affords you a little honey moon period before it is back to head down, hope you maybe make a pal but don't expect too much.

It is of course partly a function of my age and having family, but it sucks. It is alien for me to have to ask some people so softly-softly-catch-a-monkey for a pint: this is seen as a bit pushy.

In norway, once your guest 5mins of welcome is up, you have to shut up and let and get on with doing menial, quiet things before they maybe will deem you to be worthy of a socialising bone. Try just a little too hard, and they back off. TOo hard can mean ONE single text message too many out of three per annum.

Huts, boats, holdiays, lobsters etc : if you are in the guest phase you get some of this, but it is abruptly OUT OF BOUNDS for you to ask when you are between valued guest and new friend.

New friend status, that still nervous phase before fast cameraderie, may take several YEARS to attain.

And, you know what, it isn't worth it.

søndag 25. april 2010

Getting Norwegian Wood over the women

Well Norwegian women are better looking, long-term thinner and more game for outdoor pursuits than most any other country I have been in.

There is a steady stream of Brits and Yanks who get struck by the boy-meets-viking-jente and land up here, convinced to move and start a family on the oil fired paradise.

You should be sceptical ! Economically it can be a catastrophe, I heard more stories about budding middle managers getting stuck in mid rank consultants and delivery bitches here from a guy in Oslo this week.

Here are some questions:

1) does your prospective bi-acch own a house?

2) do her or her family own a cabin ? (hytte say hutte, they will know what you mean)

3) does other half to be earn more than 420 000 NOK?

4) Can her family or close friends help you get a job in a comnpany which you may actually be able to do in english first?

5) Could you work for either a) a company with offices in norway before you come 2)a norwegian company in your home land before you come?

6) are you proffessionally a : oil industry engineer/geologist/HSE expert etc ie "OIL worker" , electronic engineer, joiner, painter, burning successful entrepreneur, tiler or Java programmer?

7) can you speak german with also either chinese, japanese, spanish & italient or russian?

If you have answered 'no' to more than two of these you will really, really struggle in Norway

For instance, during the recession companies in my "state" have just whacked a lot of people: unemployment rose by 22% , but unemployment amongst immigrants rose 49%!!!!

Even a senior business consultant who has worked for most of the big 5, says you are a second class citizen here and you should behave like a guest at the party.

Be humble and extrememly grateful for what chances you get in work life.

Lacking the economic cushions I ask you to consider above in the questions, life will be an uphill struggle outside the oil industry. You will get contract work, dressed up sometimes as leading to a firm position, you will be first to get "whacked" and you will be often marginalised in your authority by longer established coworkers who are not actually as important as your position should be. Also you will be overlooked for real career opportunity jobs, and like me, quite possible pushed out of jobs in favour of the group of bosses and their pals offspring.

To share in the high standard of living you have to get the lead-start by marrying the right viking! One with a well earning family wwith the free time life on offer, and also contacts who can get you a job.