Friday in the Life of a Happiness Engineer

This post is part of a series of posts describing what we do on a daily basis at Automattic. If you’re interested in reading more you can follow the tag #a8cday

This week, while writing these day in a life posts I realized that my favorite day of the work week is Monday. Upside down, isn’t it? I know! But seriously. It is.

I had this draft up all day Friday to log what I was working on and the pace of the day was just so slow. Maybe it was just this particular Friday, and to be fair to Friday, I did start my day at 5:30 am. But when I looked at the clock and saw it was 1 o’clock I thought, surely not, it must be more like 4 in the afternoon.

Mondays on the other hand fly by, my energy is high, there’s a list of tasks to run through, I’m refreshed from a Sunday off.

For a month or two I experimented with a new schedule idea that I borrowed from one of my coworkers. I worked 2 days and was off 1 day, rinse and repeat. It was fun, but the pace of 2 day on and 1 off got kind of hectic. Especially working with the hiring team, we have so many trials, applications, and other tasks to work through. This week of scrutinizing my workflow made me realize it’s time to do that again.

I have the freedom to organize my own work schedule, I do not have the traditional kids-go-to-school/spouse-goes-to-work thing going on every day, so it’s time. Based on this week, I will be doing 3 days on and 1 off. Quite possibly I will report back to let you know how it went.

So here’s a quick view of my day:

  • Coffee, duh.
  • Egg and quinoa, sorry no pics, but super yum.
  • Check hiring team scrollback in Slack, the tool we use for much of our internal communication, from overnight and earlier. I was waiting on a reply to a question from my teammate from Budapest. It’s still funny to me to think of someone working through their day while I am sleeping through my night. I know. it’s the simple things that amuse me.
  • Hour long feedback chat with a trial.
  • Quick chat with a coworker to sort out some accounts that need to be created for a trial.
  • Checked in on a couple other trials to see how things are going.
  • Posted congrats to 2 coworkers celebrating their 3rd anniversary at a8c. This is one of my favorite things to do.
  • Read internal news and updates.
  • Moar coffee break.
  • Had an impromptu checkin with the buddy of on of our HE trials.
  • Took another break to work on my personal blog. We took a long road trip a couple of weeks ago and I’m still catching up.
  • Had lunch and took time to work on travel prep for an upcoming trip.
  • Chatted with coworkers about organizational details re: travel plans for an upcoming conference in Buenos Aires.
  • Supervised lunch plans, I have 10 kids in my house today. Thank goodness for big kids who can wrangle littler siblings
  • Read through correspondence with trials, made notes for future feedback sessions.
  • Another break to boot kids out of our house into the arms of their mother 🙂
  • Played a little more with application tracking software options, we’re trying to find a tool that we like
  • Gave feedback to a coworker who was writing up workflow tips for the Happiness teams

Sometimes I have moments where work is just not happening. I might be distracted or just can’t really get in the mode for getting anything done. What’s great is I can take the time to do other things. Today I packed for a trip, caught up on some reading, blogging, etc. When I can be productive again then I can look at work again.

Here is one of my favorite things to do when I’m not working:

photo (26)

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