Author Topic: I have too much free time during work  (Read 4524 times)

kaposzta

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I have too much free time during work
« on: June 07, 2015, 02:16:21 PM »
I have a weird problem during work. I'm an accountant at a huge multionational company, and I need to work only 3-4 hours a day. I visit a few sites (including this forum :) ), but I get bored after an hour or so. I'm writing macros in Excel (just to do something) to improve/speed up our processes, but the outcome is that I have less and less work owing to these smart programs :)

My question is: what should I do in my spare time? (My ideas: improving my language skills, learning new programming languages, brainstorming about my work - but these activities require only a few hours per week.)

Please help me :) I don't want to leave (to find a more challenging job), because I have great teammates, and I'm quite happy with my salary. I just want to do something meaningful or useful during the boring hours.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2015, 02:20:04 PM by kaposzta »

kpd905

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2015, 02:29:14 PM »
In to follow, I also have a ton of free time.

I think the language thing might be a good idea with Duolingo or Memrise.

For coding you could look into Code Academy or get a copy of "Learn Python the Hard Way" and follow along.

Maybe take a course on Coursera or Edx.org.

I usually end up researching trips that I want to take.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2015, 02:31:48 PM by kpd905 »

MDM

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2015, 03:13:52 PM »
Ask your boss for more interesting things to do?

mozar

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2015, 07:52:42 PM »
Can you get a certification or more certifications?

zolotiyeruki

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2015, 07:57:35 PM »
Been there.  I complained regularly to my brother about it.  His advice?  "Invest in yourself!"  Use that time to increase your value to your current or future employer, by acquiring new skills, learning a foreign language, etc.

Before doing that, however, make sure you are meeting or exceeding your employer's expectations NOW.

Dee

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2015, 08:31:04 PM »
From where I'm sitting this seems to be a really good problem to have, btw!

One of the things you could do is read the classics (or anything else that is of interest to you). Presumably, if you can check out the MMM forums, you can check out any public site on which novels are available once they are no longer copyrighted. Or any e-book you've checked out from a public library.

I only ever had one job where I was in a similar circumstance but I felt that passersby could easily see my computer screen. I didn't want to be seen not working so one thing I did was write long-hand journal entries for myself.  I like to think it looked like I was hard at work. I guess you could do something like this within an email application, to send to your personal address, and it would not appear to anyone as anything other than work. Occasionally, I would do free typing tests on-line to increase my keyboarding skills.

You could also take some time to just wander around your workplace and get a modicum of activity in your day, particularly if you are in a multiple-story building, by climbing a few flights of stairs at various intervals.

That's what comes to mind with little thought... but, hey, it sounds like you have the benefit of enough time at work to give it more thought there ; )

okits

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firewalker

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2015, 08:36:22 PM »
Search for a thread called "the art of not working at work" or something similar. You are not alone.

marty998

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2015, 09:58:14 PM »
I've been in this position a few times. Work tends to go in cycles - every 2-3 years a gigantic project gets thrown my way and I'm thankful for the times in-between that are relatively light.

Use the down times to reinvent your tasks (as you seem to be doing). Champion workplace culture /diversity/ inclusion initiatives. Bosses love it whenever you can do anything to lift the motivation of the team...it means they don't have to :)

Kiwi Mustache

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2015, 10:30:24 PM »
I pretty much self taught myself a business degree in 2-3 years in jobs where I finished the work in half the time.

I read all I could on valuation methods, investing, loans, tax, accounting, economics, etc. I know more about this stuff that my friends who actually studied that at university.

This has really helped me in my personal finance.

I've also learnt all about nutrition, exercise science, psychology, etc from doing the same thing.

Melody

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2015, 12:00:00 AM »
Can you volunteer to do something like run the work social club. It would make you really popular at work and give you something to do that helps other people. If you don't already have your cpa make sure you get it. You could also consider doing something like cfa (certified financial analyst)... The gravy train will almost certainly not last forever so the more you can increase your skills/qualifications now the better. Other things you can do... Plan a teambuilding or volunteering day for your team. Ask to be included on a project that interests you. Volunteer to conduct a supplier audit ... These are pretty fun as you get out of the office for 1 -2 weeks and can make anything from a few thousand to a few hundred thousand for your company :-) and all companies love people who can find them free money!!!

Melody

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2015, 12:02:02 AM »
Also research companies and use the research to do stock trading (don't trade at work though because you could break it policies about using company assets for personal gain. But researching companies and industries will generally help you with accounting so could even be related to your role.

kaposzta

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2015, 01:35:20 AM »
So many great ideas! :) Thank you so much!

Trifele

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2015, 05:11:52 AM »
Same situation here -- cyclical work, slow at times.  I also try to invest in myself, learning something that will benefit me whether I stay or go.  I'm currently pursuing a certification that will benefit me if I stay or go.  And I am a travel hound, so have done my share of trip planning at work too.   :)   Good luck!

araminty

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Re: I have too much free time during work
« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2015, 04:05:07 PM »
Check out volunteermatch.com. You can search by volunteer tasks which can be performed remotely, and which may fit your skills and interests.