Sunday, May 22, 2011

Money money money

For the last few years I've been living off next to nothing. The student allowance in this country is about $160 a week. When you consider that board averages around $100 a week it doesn't leave much left to spend on basics, like food. And you can forget about luxuries like going to the movies. The numbers changed slightly once baby was born, but expenses went up too.

Now I'm finished my degree and working a full time job. My salary is comfortable. Its nice not to worry about money all the time. Sure we still have to keep a budget. But it has a little more wiggle room. Any wiggle room is more wiggle room.

But all of that pales in comparison to the corporate world. One of my roles is a project manager. I wanted some money for an experimental project. Disclosing actual amounts probably violates one of the forms I signed when I started, lets just say it was more then three months of the student allowance.

So I pluck up the courage to ask the capitial coordinator for money. He looks at me blankly. I'm thinking this is bad. I start to back down, remember I'm not even fully convinced this is going to work.

"Chump change," he says.


"Chump change. Two grand will barely show up on the radar. And if it doesn't work it doesn't work."

Puts things in a little bit of perspecitve. But that was just the start.

A few weeks later I'm sitting in a training meeting with the global capital coordinater, a pay grade or two above our local coordinater. He's talking about project methodology for small to medium projects. Because I'm completely lost I interupt him.

"So what exactly do you define as a small to medium project?"

"Its done on the basis of cost"

"So ten thousand would be a small project and a medium project might be one hundered thousand?"

I get that same blank stare again. Turns out it doesn't count as a small project till its more then three hundered thousand. Medium cuts in somewhere between seven and ten million dollars.

Thats some perspective for you.

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