Wednesday Jan 21, 2009

Sun Door Closes, Barn Door Opens

And so it will be told, that after 19.62 years with Sun Microsystems, Kimberley left the room.

Yup.   I am outahere.   Hasta la vista!   Sayonara.   Au revoir et salut.   Phir Milenge.   Ciào.   Tschüss.

And what next?   Well, as one sage person reminded me, as one door closes, another opens.   For me, it's a huge barn door.   I have decided to focus on my number two passion in life.   (Number one is my husband and fellow Sun employee, Georg Edelmann).   Yes, it is time to do what some thought I was doing already...   :-)   ...Play with horses all day!

And so, as CEO, CFO, President, Marketing Director, HR Director, and Chief Learning Officer of Kearsarge Meadows in Warner, New Hampshire, I am going to focus on the horse business, at least for a while.   After 32 years in the Computer Industry, I think it's time for a little break.

FY09 Goals will include getting to the US Dressage Federation Championships again.   And WITHOUT a broken toe this time!   Great goal and good fun!

(That's me with a happy face of deep concentration and bright sunshine.)   I'll be spending more time training, teaching, and competing with my favorite KWPN Dutch Warmblood and top dressage partner, Jeddien (by Bustron).   While we are both getting long in the tooth, she continues to enjoy her work, competing, and teaching my dressage students "the moves".

My husband's pet, Piper Warrior (by Ferro), will also get more of my time this year.   His first full year of competition came late in life and is chronicled in my blog Dressage-Queen.blogspot.com.   2009 is going to be a great year for the handsome, lovable boy!

Our two little ones who were born in 2006 will be learning how to carry a rider very soon.   Exciting times ahead for the little critters who have really done nothing much more than.... well, horse around really!

As Jeddien's only offspring, little Bea Yewtee (left) already has a special place in our hearts.   But with her sassy attitude and flashy four white socks, she is destined to follow in Jeddien's hoofprints as a diva in the dressage arena.

Big Ben (right), who had no problem growing into his name, is my big Teddy Bear.   His education is well underway and I'm really looking forward to his future.

For me, the adventure at Sun comes to an end.   International travel.   Great coworkers.   SUNW lows, highs, "retirement prices", and whoops.   Tons of great customer interactions.   Sigma.   Metrics.   Director at last!   (Thank you Diann Olden & Rich Green)   Technology galore.   Dragons.   Scorpions.   Planets.   Two international moves.   British Citizenship!   (Thank you again, Ian White & John Sanders)   Doughnuts.   Beer busts with Scott McNealy in El Segundo.   Town Halls.   PANIC!   (Thank you again, Chris Drake!)   Cooking lessons, including how to convert Thanksgiving turkey leftovers into a fabulous curry!   (Thanks to all my friends & colleagues in Bangalore India!)   And so much more.   But, now, a great new adventure begins.

And so with that, I'd just like to finish by saying "Thank you all for a most exhilarating ride!"

Kimberley Brown
aka Frau Edelmann

Friday Jun 20, 2008

Managing Work Life Balance

Work Life Balance.   A popular buzz phrase in corporate life.   Casually mentioned in conversations by managers and engineers alike.   Used lots in presentations and websites.   And HR friendly.

But how does it happen?   And how does it feel?

Over the past couple weeks, I've seen several examples of where WLB had not just happened.   Instead, it had to be managed, consciously.   It involved individuals looking to their team for support.   It included sharing and managing ownership of job responsibilities across teams.   It meant open communication, partnering, and trusting in others.

I think most people will agree work often gets in the way of life.   :-)

But there are also times when "life" simply gets in the way of work.   Things happen.   Family takes priority.   Health gets priority.   Life changes get priority.   That's life!

What I have seen is that it is easy for people to deal with work taking priority.   But when life needs to be given priority, maybe the fact that a paycheck is attached to work, or project deadlines are looming in the distance, or teams are understaffed, or any number of other concerns can result in feelings of guilt when one turns their focus away from work for the moment.

This is just one example of when MANAGING work life balance becomes critical.   Helping employees recognise that it's OK to focus on life and defocus on work.   That it's OK to take care of non-work priorities.   That sitting at work worrying about "real life" is not accomplishing anything.

Work Life Balance.   Cool catchy phrase.   However, it's not always as easy as it sounds.   Sometimes, just sometimes, the balancing act has to be worked to give it true life.

Wednesday Mar 05, 2008

WFH & The Warner Office

This week, we've been hosting the visit of a fellow Sun employee, a German who is based out of the Geneva Switzerland office and resides in Lyon France.   The primary purpose of his trip involves meeting with an important ISV in this area.   And, as is customary at Sun, since he is "in the area", he's also meeting with colleagues at the Sun campus 70 miles south of here.

Over the past (nearly) 3 years since we moved from the United Kingdom to the USA, we've had well over 20 Sun employees visit our home.   Quite a few of them flew in from outside of the area from as far away as Bangalore India and were welcomed guests staying at our home instead of a hotel.

Working From Home sounds to many like working in isolation.   However, we've found that with both of us being long time Sun employees, we talk shop a lot at home.   (We do try to limit shop talk to "office hours", however, in order to preserve & respect the HOME part of WFH.)

But when we have Sun guests, then it starts to feel like maybe it's time to campaign for official Sun office status.

Sun's Warner Office.   I think it has a nice ring to it.     :-)

About

Kimberley

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