Sunday, October 12, 2008

The joys of technology



I love where we have come with technology for a lot of different reasons. But the main reason right now that I love technology is because it is making it possible for me to work from home. Yes, you heard me. Starting this week, I will be working from home one day a week. I carpool with two guys that also telecommute, so one day a week I have been having to drive into work by myself. Now, I will be telecommuting on the same day. There are a number of reasons that I am going to be doing this. The main reason is that at work I am never able to get certain things on my task list done because I am almost constantly bombarded with doing tasks for the many people around me both in my office and other offices around the US and world that rely on me for things through out the day. Though I love being busy and being able to help people whenever they need something from me, I often never get to the things that I need to. Basically I have the horrible problem of never being able to say the word "no".

So my main tasks while I work from home will be the 12 newsletters (one for each of the countries we do Child Sponsorship minus India) that are put out twice a year. I write these newsletters using reports and information/pictures that I receive from our field staff. Often times they are not written in very clear English and most of the time need significant editing/re-writing. The point of these newsletters though is that all of the information comes straight from the field. I just make it all make sense. So much of my time is trying to decipher what they are trying to say in broken English which is often very difficult and takes much focus. I also work on getting pictures and other stories that come through our office into these newsletters so that sponsors can be kept aware of what is happening in the country where their sponsored child lives.

Another task that I will have is that I will be able to spend more time answering e-mails and doing what I call number crunching. Right now we have 27,000 children around the world that are in our sponsorship program, though this number is constantly growing. At this moment 19,000 of these children are sponsored. I basically keep track of the other 8,o00 and do my best to get their packets out to events and churches to have an opportunity to get sponsored. I am basically the middle man between the field staff and our advocates who work with churches and bands that are trying to get these kids sponsored. It is pretty complicated so I will not go into great detail. But basically, this is a task that is important but often overlooked at the office because I am so busy answering phones, setting up new sponsorships and making packets to be sent out to events in hopes of getting children sponsored.

I am excited to work from home this week and to be able to focus on the things that need my complete attention. I have to admit I am also not sad about being able to wear sweats if I want to. I do not think I will be like the woman in the picture above wearing a collared shirt, but I probably will be sitting at the dining room table and will almost certainly be holding a cup of coffee....

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