Penguin Flies to Bologna Italy ?!

Hey How’s it going?

Currently this post is being written was being written whilst awaiting take off. Where was I going? I was actually on the way to Italy more specifically Bologna. I’m fortunate enough to have been given the chance to provide tech support for my colleagues in Penguin, Random House and DK at the annual Children’s book fair. Have to admit though it’s the first time I’ve ever flown for business so naturally I was pretty excited but I knew it’s going to be a highly charged few days, but I hoped to compensate for our hard work and enjoy what Italy had to offer.

Where to find Bologna

So the plane was currently taxing down the run away and we were told that the flight would take roughly about two hours, potentially it take me longer than that to get from work from one side of London to another on the odd occasion, definitely food for thought there.. Have you been abroad for business before, is it something you’ve grown to enjoy or even look forward to? I can definitely answer those questions now that I am back in Blighty but more on that later.. We finally had lift off ✈✈ and I managed to get a cheeky nap in on the plane 😴. I didn’t think I would have much time to explore on my own though, though I did manage to get a snap a few pics of the town.

BookFair finished and on the flight back home

Week is over and I am happy to say that my job was successfully completed with loads of positive feedback from my customers. At times I was at a bit of a loss as to how to occupy my time as the IT systems which I set up pretty much worked without a hitch. Bad for me but great for my customers.. Probably the highlight of the whole book fair was being being invited into the DC comics stand by one of the directors (All thanks to my colleague in DK Books) on the last day and be given the chance to take some free comics. It was a strange moment being ushered in past the crowd of people waiting to get their chance to get some freebies, I could sense some of the negative vibes being sent our way as we casually browsed through the shelves of comics… I got some interesting comics which have a bit more of an asian theme.

DC Comics Freebies
DC Comics Freebies

Things to take away from Bologna

  • Good place for foodies
  • Brilliant Wine
  • University Town so you’ll find very familiar brands and shops
  • Teeming with life even late at night, families especially
  • Dogs are very much loved
  • Probably not a first choice for Tourists but nice to stop by

All in all it was a great experience as I was made more aware of the importance of the various book fairs and how integral they can be to helping our respective brands grow in different markets around the globe. On a personal level I was curious as to how I would respond to the responsibility such as settings up, maintaining and helping with general IT issues and queries as the only representative from my team at the Stand. I soon realised though thanks to my prep before hand the systems just ticked along nicely and me just being there on made people a little bit more at ease. In turn though I have to say that my colleagues looked after me very well especially when it came to dinner in the evenings 😉

Here are a few snaps from the Fair itself (Should have taken more..) otherwise till the next time!


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Back to Square one

Hey how’s it going?

Sorry it’s been a while, hope you’ve been well! So what’s the latest you may be saying? Well I’ve finally started my new role At Penguin Random House as a Technology Support Analyst and coming to the end of week 2. It’s pretty surprising that most people I have mentioned the name penguin books to instantly know the name, gosh even my folks who are 60+ know the name as they had penguin books in their childhood! Either way it’s a huge publishing company which is a first for me. I’ve never worked for this sort of creative industry so I was always quite intrigued to find out how they worked and function from an IT perspective.

Safe to say it’s worlds apart from my last role in so many different ways. The organisation, the infrastructure, the IT systems, the protocols and procedures (from what I’ve seen). 500+ users across three floors, that’s mind boggling numbers, now I am no stranger to getting to know people but my word that’s going to take some time to get to know each and every face. Luckily for me people tend to make the effort to get to know the people that can get things done (cough, cough…)

Keep calm i'm in IT

I do feel somewhat useless to a certain degree at the moment, not because I can’t do anything, it’s more of a case of learning the in’s and outs of all the different systems in place, the way in which things need to be done and proving I am in fact capable of what I said I was in my interview. Let me put this into perspective. In my last role I was thrown in the deep end and had to work 2-3 months supporting users whilst learning the ropes. Effectively I was given all the responsibility, powers to administer what ever I liked but at the same time doing things with limited resources and time. In this role I am pretty much exclusively 2nd line support with a sprinkle of 1st line on the odd occasion and I have a team from the get go to assist me and guide me. A far cry from what I started with in my last role. Admittedly things are quiet at the moment but by the end of this year I am sure I will be eating those words.

The work load slowly is trickling through but it is really difficult at the moment to adjust to not having much to do, but again I know it will get busier…. fortunately I am surrounded by people who have oodles of experience so I have the opportunity to learn, plus the team is really nice but again I think it will take a while for me to really come out of my shell hahahaha. All in all square one, it’s an odd place to be, some would even say uncomfortable. It’s just the start, that’s what I have to remember, expectations aside I can see the challenge ahead. I look forward to seeing what the next few months have in store for me and I am sure my colleagues are eager to see if I really was worth hiring as well (Not in a bad way but more out of curiosity)

So as the week draws to an end, I am sure I’ll have plenty to reflect on going into the weekend. Otherwise hopefully I shall post again soon, till then take care and speak with you soon!