For what I am sure is some logical and well-thought-out reason, my company's fiscal year begins on the first of May. It's odd to be doing end-of-year-type stuff only four months into the year. At least it coincides pretty closely with the school year. Still, fiscal year 2010 begins in two days.
Anyway, the end of the fiscal year means our annual fingernails-on-the-chalkboard marathon of employee evaluations for the previous year and personal objectives for the next year. Regardless of how well or badly the previous 12 months went, this is always the time of year that I consider quitting my job. Filling out my annual evaluation form is the single worst part of the job, and that's no exaggeration. Someone once said that "opera is where people get stabbed and, instead of dying, sing about it." What opera is to death, yearly evaluations are to work, only I always seem to have misplaced my libretto.
Maybe I just don't have the right organizational mechanism to keep track of what I've done over the last year, or I'm just so damned disorganized and apathetic most of the year that the sins of my past return each April to fiddle with my brain, but this process always gets me feeling the way I felt so often in high school: That everyone else is privy to some basic information that I have somehow overlooked or not been told.
In high school, I remember feeling like everyone but me had been given a copy of Life: A Handbook. Everyone else seemed so much less lost and confused. And now, here again, I feel like this evaluation stuff shouldn't be as difficult, time-consuming, confusing, and frustrating as I'm making it. As if there's some handbook that everyone else uses (and it isn't the employee handbook — I've looked) to guide them safely and sanely through this messy mass of paperwork and data.
Man, do I hate it.