Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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become a manager


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Black 5 months ago

Stubborn DreamerLong Illness

Burning the candle from both ends, and I eventually fell ill with an awful tonsillitis for a week and a half.
Tomorrow back to the fray…

3 more people were meanwhile promoted to Heads, one our engineer moved to Networks, but I’m at the same old place… 5 months ago

davidwhitehouse 5 months ago

great_expectations 5 months ago

hebawomBad news

I’ve been told that I’m going from special projects back to officer level in a few weeks, that is a step in the wrong direction. May have to start looking outside my own company. 6 months ago


My boss has been hinting that there may be a job coming up for me with some elevated responsibilities. I’m not going to hold my breath as things tend to change at my place of work, but what it does mean is I’m being held in high esteem! 6 months ago


I was given an opportunity at work to manage the sheltered housing team for 6 months, managing 11 members of staff. I really enjoyed it, but unfortunately didn’t lead to anything permanent. This is still an unresolved goal, but at least I have some more experience now 6 months ago

Stubborn DreamerFormal meeting

With all the sweet pills, it was – as expected – a polite “request declined”, but I heard lots of words about my “potential”, how I will “supervise” the SD group (thought the Manager does the “supervising” part?). Looks like the HR lady really doesn’t know the Boss’s idea.
Must think if the Boss will actually keep his word now. Everyone can say about my “potential” (WTF is that, I’ve been doing this more than 10 years!), but whether this “potential” ever realises, remains to be seen. 6 months ago

Stubborn DreamerThe boss said...

in our talk today, that I’m “moving in the right direction”, and he plans to deal with remaining issues re: org structure, and I’ll move ahead end of this year – or beginning of next.
I would like to believe this! :) Who knows. 7 months ago

Stubborn DreamerInterview —

Went along. I did my best as if I were hired for real. Interestingly enough, after answering tricky questions, the boss suddenly said: “oh, I think I know what I must do”. Sounded like he’s got an excellent idea about how to apply my vast and varying skill in a better way. He said though he’ll need to ponder on it. Well, if so, not bad for what was supposed to be a formal, rubbish pretence for a job interview.
We’ll see. 7 months ago

Stubborn DreamerFormal process goes ahead

Despite nearly hopeless enterprise, I still went through the steps to apply for this position. 7/05 at 3pm I have an interview with CTO, a girl from HR and myself.
Even if I am bound to be rejected in favour of this guy from Moscow, I still will have applied, and not sit idly on my arse. 7 months ago

Stubborn DreamerManager Internal Vacancy... NOT FOR ME.

Today I’ve read my email, and there it was, Internal Vacancy Announcement from HR.
“IT Service Delivery Manager”. Please apply if you want.

Told to myself, if that’s for me, why did it even have to be announced? Nobody told me a thing.

I asked the Boss for comments. Showed him my application for this role and asked to sign.

He was frank. “It’s not for you, man. It’s for A.”
A. lives in Moscow but comes over here, and needs a work visa. For that his position has to be announced and he has to be selected in a competition.
Which he’s bound to win and I’m bound to lose.
I will provide the crowd for the competition and will get a rejected application for manager position in my record.
He will get correctly supported winning application.

To my legitimate question “you don’t have a Head of our department, can’t you just make him a Head?” he said: “we have to not rush on this, you guys with all due respect are very precise and do extra high quality work, but you are also slower than A2.”

So there goes.
I used to report to the CTO.
Now I’m used as a crowd member to support this guy, he becomes a manager and gets ME as employee (top quality, no supervision required).
I get another level of hierarchy over me, a meddling “manager”, and an application rejection on my history.


I still will fight. I have nothing else to do. 8 months ago

user1397607360 8 months ago

Stubborn DreamerFirst Week

... saw first half done and everything working well.
The second week should now sort out the remaining second half.

Meanwhile, I found out about hierarchy working here.
1) “Individual contributor”.
2) “Team Lead” (not a people manager, just senior contributor). This is where I am at moment, I guess.
3) “Assistant Head”. Either heading small department, or vice-Head for a bigger one. Could be same as Team Lead.
4) “Head”. A first people manager position. Heads a department. Benefits start here, including free health insurance for members of family.
5) “Global Head”. A head of a big department, which could have partitions and other heads reporting to them. Could be “division head” where division comprises separate departments.
6) “Director”. Member of Board of Directors, one Director heads a division of disparate departments. Usually “Director” is a CxO.
7) “CEO”. Supervises all directors and is responsible for functioning of entire company to…
8) “Shareholder”. Rare position, Czar and God in best Russian tradition, they own everything, perform strategical management and direction setting. I know three only.

Found out that the new transferee from Russia got an Assistant Head of TSE position. Why don’t we in IT have neither a Head nor Assistant Heads? All we have is a Support Manager (Level 2, “Team Lead” position). Will have to figure out what are the plans. 8 months ago

Stubborn DreamerOpportunity comes

... to finish one of the most odious, long overdue, server decommissioning project. Normally it would take two-three weeks; but it’s been 7 months it’s been on & off. I managed a major step forward and singlehandedly moved away the most important service somewhere around New Year. Now there’s another one, and this task has become a “rattler”, it just wouldn’t die.

So Boss got pissed off and ordered “this server’s scalp on my desk in a week, or I give this project to .” While I can understand his frustration, this server really needs not attract such strong emotions.

So this is my opportunity to deal away with it swiftly and ahead of schedule. And finally earn myself some big points. And move ahead to much more interesting projects which are currently locked away because of this god damn old server.

First day of this week has been quite productive.
Onwards! Coffee and croissant await. 8 months ago

neverlank 8 months ago

Stubborn DreamerRumour comes

... that Trade Systems Engineering which was previously split from IT, to care just about Trading servers, may be next year rejoined into IT.

But in this case, IT becomes big. Who will head it?

I mentioned to the Boss today that two people have applied to me for potential move into Delivery. He listens. I slowly train him to the fact that I will be deciding who I want in Delivery.

In case of TSE joining us, there will be quite a big Delivery group, as excellent Admins are so far only using their skills at 1/4. It could become mine. 8 months ago

Stubborn DreamerChanges...

The only other guy in Delivery has left the company. There was nothing left for him and this Wednesday he came last time for work.
He used to be a loose cannon, doing stuff without discussing it with anyone else, and such sloppy were his standards, almost everything after him needed to be re-done.

Now with him left, I am undisputedly the most senior person in IT UK. Also I’m the only delivery in UK. The bosses’ vice will not be working in UK in the foreseeable future. So?

I tried to hint to the boss at potential pay raise and promotion. Right now the point is weak, the company just had really shitty Q4’13, significantly in the Red, and IT budgets were cut to the bone. BUT, I can save money to IT by optimisation, not stinginess.

I will probably be allowed to recruit the guys from Support; what are their skills – remains to be seen. One is younger and cleverer, but very slow. Another is more efficient, has certificates but seems not so bright and is doing purchases now.

What I really need now is to implement Kaizen, small increments every day. I found myself entangled in a huge monolith project which gives no visible results to the bosses. And I see that if I ever to become a good boss in this company, one must demonstrate RESULTS under his/her leadership. EVEN if they are not optimal. Shitty results are better than good work in progress.

See if I can handle the Kaizen now. Must learn to if I ever want to be promoted.

Meanwhile, the tax year ends, and this year the full income tax kicks in, so my take-home pay will suffer a significant cut now. If I would want to add pension contribution, it’ll take more.
On the good side, I repay my 0% annual ticket loan monthly (at 1/12 annual ticket!) instead of a killing (monthly ticket + station car park) combination, difference is nearly £180 in my favour!

I need a promotion and a definite Pay Raise. And I’ll get these. 8 months ago

Stubborn DreamerAll Work and No Fun...

I have moved into a separate room. It’s quiet over there, and the situation causes me to work hard.
Worrying signs are, I no longer go for a walk, chat to people in the kitchen, or stretch. I’m too concentrated on work. This is dangerous, because those who do their work best, are never promoted—what manager would want to lose a valuable resource doing all the job?

But the goal is for ME to become a manager!

I so far work under bosses’ second in command. He’s a good Admin, and we’ve done lots of work. He leaves back for Moscow on Saturday.
I must seize more local, UK managing responsibility now, to clearly be a candidate for promotion when it’s necessary.
On the lookout! 9 months ago

Stubborn DreamerNothing so far

Despite suggestive talks, I “sleepwalked” into the end of my probation period, but haven’t even received the (formal) letter about probation end. I knew I passed because the guy who recommended me has received his Referral Bonus :)

So far: no pay increase, no hints of bonus, no hints of promotion, lots of work to do.

Where am I going? 10 months ago

frizzypixie 11 months ago

Stubborn DreamerTry to Manage

The boss said today that, once my holiday is now over, I should become a “senior” Delivery, so should try to ask Support Manager to deal with me instead of the other.
He seems to have understood my place in the hierarchy now. It will be under another person who will have top over both Support and Delivery, but above other Delivery guys.
However that another person has mediocre English and I am truly bilingual, so who knows. ;-) 12 months ago

Stubborn DreamerIndications

... continue. The boss said he’s going to put me above another IT Delivery guy. And might think about adding a junior to IT Delivery department.
On 12th November, my 3 months in the company elapse and I will become eligible for company benefits.

Will I become a manager? Don’t know, but so far I can see I’m clearly treated as a very senior rank. Even business cards have been ordered, as they say. 13 months ago

Stubborn DreamerNovember is coming

In November, as far my memory not fails me, the restrictions for my boss not to create an elaborated org-chart will be over.
There were numerous indications that he prefers me over other Delivery people, so who knows what is in store.
I am trying not to think often about career & promotions, probably because I seriously love the job I am doing. Lots of freedom and possibility for innovation make it really interesting, you are able to make a difference. 14 months ago

Stubborn DreamerLeading by example

I am taking challenges and solving them. (None of them seem to come easy, probably because the existing state of the IT in this company is broken.)
That’s the way I work.
Must be careful not to become indispensable, as they never get promoted—too risky to move them, lest you want problems. 14 months ago

Stubborn DreamerLittle Steps

A friend who recommended me here has told me that my boss spoke positively about me. Hey, it’s good, it probably means I’m doing things right. I really enjoy working well by myself, but honestly, if it’s noticed and recognised—it’s an incentive to work even better.

“Team building” restaurant go—great to know my new colleagues, so far I quite like my new Department. Most people are of Indian subcontinent origins (Pakistani, Hindu and Sikh), they know the true value of mutual respect and are hiding less behind political correctness, speaking more openly if something needs to be said. I spent a great time, talked to my new boss a lot, and came home nearly at midnight. 15 months ago

Stubborn DreamerBecome a Manager

Long time I always have been a top specialist, but so far, here in UK, managerial work wasn’t selecting me. In Russia I did work as a manager, and quite successful, but in my previous company, another person was promoted over my head, may be due to me appearing in wrong place when new manager had to be selected, and may be due to me not inspiring the powers that be as a good manager.

This new job of mine has potential for me to become a manager, while remaining still a good specialist.
And I think, why not? However high you be on an individual contributor track, you still remain within that scale and are unable to get higher salaries, bonuses and perks.
Plus, many of my ideas, can only be realised with a certain degree of independence, which a manager post can give.

So let’s become a manager! 16 months ago

Stubborn Dreamer 16 months ago

Alisa16255 18 months ago

kbutler321 2 years ago

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