Home > Self Help > Those Tire Tracks on my Back…

Those Tire Tracks on my Back…

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for me. Some pretty major upgrades to the production line at my day job required working through the weekend and some off shifts, then dealing with the ongoing problems the rest of the week. It looks like we’ve finally got it smoothed out, but I’m reluctant to say that too loudly!

My job entails being in charge of all IT related systems in the plant. That means computers, databases, production scheduling, communications, data retention, production execution (we call it MES – Manufacturing Execution System), and a few other related topics. So when we do an upgrade, it’s me walking a tight rope over a steaming vat of boiling water. You’d think it would be properly planned out and an easy thing to do – and on paper it is. In reality there’s some jerk named Murphy running around screwing everything up that he can get his hands on.

The tire tracks I mentioned come from being thrown under the bus. I’d identified the ongoing problems as being related to the heart of the changes that were made – a piece of production equipment programmed and controlled by the engineers. They, in turn, talked louder and insisted it had to do with my scheduling system and lousy network. This in front of a room full of people. It’s the closest I’ve come to laying somebody out in a great many years. But I took it (fists and jaw clenched) because I didn’t have the answer, just a hunch.

Later that day, after our vendor made it back in to support us on it and I worked with him for several hours figuring it out I was vindicated. The equipment was programmed improperly and a necessary piece of communication equipment was never provided to us. With those in place things are rolling nice and smooth. That made the tire tracks on my back feel a lot better. It was like coming back from behind to win a sporting event.

And the engineers? They’ve been staying awfully quiet ever since. Go figure.

For everyone who’s ever been tossed under a bus, stay the course and fight back! Not necessarily with a shot to the jaw, but by digging in and working hard to prove you can do what you say you can. Find that inner resolve to show you can do it, whatever ‘it’ is. Sometimes it’s hard work and sometimes it takes a while to get there – I have a friend who has spent years working hard and just last weekend established herself as the world record holder in powerlifting for her weight class (132lbs, I think). I’m happy to say I’ve influenced her over the years, giving her advice and answering questions.

She’s one example of what successful people already know – dedication and discipline is the only thing that works in life. Sure, luck helps, but that will only carry you so far. Hesitation and excuses are the step that immediately precedes failure. Ironically, failure is okay as long as it isn’t followed by more excuses. Learn from it and try again. Being successful, ultimately, is how you view yourself. It’s not what other people think. In fact, once you’ve been through that process and achieved what you worked hard to do nobody can take that away from you.

To learn more about Jason Halstead, visit his website to learn about him, his books, sign up for his newsletter, or check out some free samples of his books at http://www.booksbyjason.com.

  1. November 18, 2011 at 13:43

    I’m a high school teacher during the day, so I know a helluva lot about being thrown under the bus. I get tossed under that big yellow sucker by more people (all of ages and creed) named Murphy than I can count. So I can feel your anger and I honestly commend you for keeping your cool. It’s not easy, is it?

    And if anyone says that vindication is a cheap thrill, then that anyone has never been thrown under the bus.

    Thanks for sharing. And really, I needed that little reminded about dedication and disipline. Been a rough writing day…

  2. November 21, 2011 at 18:40

    I’ve just stuck my face into a hornet’s nest and it’s good to read your words of endurance. Thanks.

    • November 22, 2011 at 11:57

      I hope you don’t mean that literally! I once stuck my hand in a hornet’s nest while on a boat. I ripped it out, thinking a squirrel had bitten me, then realized there was a cloud of bees attacking. Ran to other end of the boat and almost dove into the water…then I remembered my wife (9 mo. pregnant at the time) was sitting at the other end of the boat. I figured if I went in the water they’d go after her instead, so I stuck it out and just started swinging and slapping.

      It was a painful experience AND I lost my wedding ring in the lake, but we replaced that and to this day, several years later, I’m still married. 🙂

  3. November 22, 2011 at 11:48

    This is so true. It takes hard work and long hours to accomplish goals worth achieving~
    Great post!

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