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What do you do during 'no work' office time

 
Ranch Hand
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I had almost spent this week idle doing things like learning PHP etc.
Still got plenty of time, don't know what to do? Really tired of learning...

Just wondring what others do?
 
Rancher
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If this were to happen to me (especially in the current economy), I'd make sure to get busy on something that creates value for the company, before someone with the authority to lay off people noticed it.
 
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For this it is nice to have a goal while you're studying. That why I like certifications, it gives you something to work trhough.

By the way I once had a team lead who promoted certs. God bless his soul. Then the manager of the team lead got angry, since we first have to check if there really really was not anything to do for the company. We said we actually already did that, but the manager said, well I cannot see it in the hour planning, then I said, well I am not gonna push my stopwatch everytime I do something for a colleage to help him. That's more administration then it's worse.

Then we got a list from dear *****:

- First ask if you can help a collegue
- Then ask if you can help customers support
- Then ask office management if you can do shopping
- Then start cleaning your desk.
- Then start cleaning the closest in your room
- Then start cleaning the toilet
- Then put all time spend in fractions of 15 minutes in your hour planning board, to proove you not have been delibrately idle!
- Then say I have created a unique company in which you have lots of freedom.


- If above eight do not apply, then you can study a bit for yourself, may-be. But it would be appreaciated if you would just took a holiday.

Meanwhile the guy thought we all loved him. And I left this company after one and a half year.

Oh yes boss if you read this, yes it's about you!
 
Bartender
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Usually I would spend my time as you have, learning something that interests me.
As Ulf says, right now is the time to get busy on something of value. Do you have a recent project which could use some code cleanup, documentation or refactoring? I always find, when I look back on my code, that there's always something I could have done better. Making existing code easier to read and easier to maintain is a good way to add value to the company. And documentation, who ever has time for that?
 
author and iconoclast
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I have never not been busy at work. Seriously.
 
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This sounds like a serious question - moving to job discussion.
 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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I haven't had this problem in over five years. (I've been at my job for 6.5). When I was new, there was some time when I was finished with my tasks and nobody was around to ask for more. This would be a couple hours of extra time (or maybe a day if people were out/traveling) - never a week. I used that time to learn the system and tools we use better. Now I have enough experience to know what needs doing so I never have "no work." Now too much work is a problem that is more common .

Back to your problem: do others at your job have extra work? Maybe you can help them. Are you a contractor between contracts? If you know what the next one is about, you could start honing those skills. Does your manager know you are idle? Maybe he/she has work?
 
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Actually i didn't have office, because i am student right now so i have all time 'no work' office time" !
My definition of free time is when i am not using computer, so all daily work count as time pass work!
i get bore when i am doing daily work like taking bath, do the worship of god, go shopping with parents, helping mother in cooking, cleaning home etc.(i like to help mother, but she wants only help in cooking,cleaning home only! She never ask related to computer!)
Many times, i write post reply's to meaningless drivel!
 
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I reccomend you play minesweeper, solataire, or some other video game. It will look like your working if no one can see your monitor.

 
Bartender
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Ah the 'no work' concept. I used to be very free in my old job. I'm currently in-between jobs. And at times it can be OT overloaded with work, especially when deadlines close in.

Studying or learning new stuff is what I usually do at least at work during free time. If I'm not studying, I tend to brainstorm something entrepreneurial like what is there to develop that people would like to use bla bla. And of course by that time really comes, I try build (program) it.

And when that product gets done, you may say, this idea isnt that good after all. And the cycle repeats.
 
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On this market if you find yourself with free time at work you may want to spend it updating your resume since it suggests that you might be expendable in the next layoff.

More seriously, you should find projects to do at work, if you're not contributing to your company you are a prime candidate for a layoff which is likely in this environment.

--Mark
 
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