Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Office - My Arrival At GSE

I started work at GSE on Sunday. I arrived at 8 am, not wanting to show up late. When I got there, the receptionist and partner that was speaking to her both knew who I was… the guy from Duff. The receptionist called my boss to be, Udi, and informed me that he’d be in in about an hour. In the mean time, per partner suggestion, she showed me around the office. We wend down the hall where I was shown my seat – a pseudo desk at the end of a real desk.
I'm on the left

Living the Dream
 I dropped my stuff and we continued the tour. It consisted of “here is where we get coffee, milk and eat lunch… and here is the mens room.” The tour finished with “let me know if you need anything.” That’s Israel nice and blunt.
 An hour later, Udi arrived and I spoke with him about what I did at Duff and what he does ad GSE. He has a very impressive background and I am sure I will learn a lot from him. When I got back to my seat – in the office directly across the hall from Udi’s, I realized immediately that my new boss can see me at all times from his seat with both out office doors open…  Udi is watching - joking.
The view when I swivel around... that's Udi's seat.

I got back to my seat and to met my office mate Uri… yes I sit next to Uri and report to Udi, as does Uri. Uri is the sweetest, nicest guy a newcomer to an office could ask to sit next to. In my three days here, he has already given me a ton of helpful insight and advice into the workplace and Israel as a whole. He is by no means a pushy guy, but he keeps telling me “In Israel if you want something you have to take it.” I have not been here long, but I can tell that its the truth. Uri just joined GSE a about two months ago, and was previously an accountant at BDO Seidman in Israel. He is also a really smart guy and in addition to working as an accountant, Uri has been teaching auditing at several universities for the past few years.

As the day progressed, people from the office came by to speak with Udi or Uri and I was introduced to a lot of people in the office. The most Israeli moment of the day came when I stood up to shake a guys hand and he said to me while sizing me up and down “wow, you are a lot taller than you looked sitting down. You must have odd proportions.” I was kind of shocked and didn't know what to say. I just looked at him for a minute, kind of laughed it off and said “haha maybe.”

I spent my first three days in the office working on projects and assignments that I had been working on in New York. So far, I described it to my old roommate, Michael Shiner, that it’s like I’m working in New York, only I get in very early, people don't respond to emails till the afternoon and I get emails all night long. Obviously there are many differences, but thankfully so far the work has transitioned well.

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