I don’t know if I had a good day anymore

Just over a month ago I started a new job. After over a decade as a programmer, I’m now managing programmers at Bugaboo.

And now I don’t know if I had a good day anymore.

I first verbalized this in a discussion last week with my wife.

Me: How was your day?
Her: Busy, but I made progress with [something related to opening a new South American bank account].
Her: How was your day?
Me: … I don’t know.

I used to gauge my day by my productivity. “I fixed three bugs” or “I wrote a new logging module.” Or some other quasi-tangible measure of productivity.

Now my job is talking to people, and thinking.

Any output I produce happens on the scale of weeks or months (“I re-organized the department to improve efficiency”), not hours or days.

The transition is a challenge for me. That’s not to say a negative one, but it’s one I hadn’t thought of before starting the position.

It makes me wonder how others gauge productivity on a day-to-day basis. How do writers, doctors, or teachers know if they had a productive day? And if productivity isn’t objective (perhaps in the case of a university professor), or clearly positive (perhaps a failed experiment), how does one determine if they had a “good” day, objective productivity not withstanding?

How do you know if you had a good day in your work? I’d love to read your comments.

One Comment

  1. Interesting read. I have found myself judging my day by my productivity…how much I accomplished or how little in some cases. Lately, I judge it by who I work with…sometimes pre-judging how may day will go based on that. I think the only time I didn’t judge how my day went was when I worked for the library. I loved working there so much, that even the few irritations I had or what I did or didn’t do didn’t really effect how my day went much. Just wee observations of my job days!

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