My first job out of college was working for the World Bank in DC, the sister organization of the IMF so much in the news these days. I was a temp living with my parents who were in DC at the time. I was basically just doing Word documents, organizing supply rooms and running errands at an hourly rate for about three months. I remember though the offices being very subdued, beige, and heavily carpeted. The main activity would be the occasional meetings when dignitaries would arrive in which case things would temporarily spring to life. Without summits meetings there would be very little to do there.

One anecdote: I was helping an official who had a very thick accent. He handed my some papers and said what I thought was "..two coffees please". I brought this right up but what he actually he wanted was "two copies". I slinked out of the office, but my level of performance in this case was not at all unusual there.

My second job was working as a scheduler for a manufacturing plant that ran three productions lines 24/7. My office was the nerve center, phones never stopped, people coming and going constantly. JIT was new then and the theme of the day. I started getting line production updates calls at 6am from my apartment and it never stopped all day. Quite a contrast.


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