Today marks the end of my first full week in my new job at the BBC. As you may know, my role is Portfolio Executive, Social Media – BBC Vision. I’m not going to explain it fully yet (I’ll talk more about what that means and what I’m doing soon, for now I just wanted to let you know I’ve started) but I will say that I report to the lovely Dan Taylor, with the even more impressive job title of Senior Portfolio Executive, Internet – BBC Vision and his recently explanation of his title should get you most of the way there.
Although my first day at Television Centre was predictably filled with first-day at school feelings, walking around the building fills me with something close to awe. Television gets made here, and in addition to things I watch now on iPlayer, triggers for childhood memories abound. If I strain my ear I can almost hear the echoes of Philip Schofield, Sarah Green, Trevor and Simon and Gordon the Gopher. There are Daleks in the Foyer cafe, and a near constant stream of tours of the building.
I was very pleased to arrive at my new desk in Television Centre on day 1 and discover that I already had
- A badge (temporary pass. I get my RFID badge next week)
- A telephone, configured with my office number
- A desktop computer
- A BBC username with which to access the intranet
- A laptop (with which I am particularly happy)
- 3G USB dongle for being productive (or at least as productive as possible) on the train
- An RSA dongle (for internal webmail access via the internet. Handy)
I must say I’m impressed. Of course, I was slightly less impressed to open my brand new inbox and find 115 emails waiting for me, but that’s what mail filtering rules are for.
The commute to Wood Lane isn’t as bad as it probably sounds. In the morning, I take the first direct train from Southampton Airport Parkway to Clapham (8:08am), the overground to Kensington Olympia and from there the BBC shuttle bus to White City. (I have many people who left comments on this blog and messages on Twitter to thank for that excellent tip.) It’s just over 2 hours door-to-door, and I’m learning about timing my departure time for the return journey correctly in order to avoid making it an unnecessary and painful 3 hours. I am looking forward to the overground line to Shepherd’s Bush opening up later this year too.
For my first week I got a one-week season ticket, which turns out to be impressively good value. It costs less to travel for a whole week (£109) than it would for even two individual daily tickets (at £55 a pop). I also picked up a form for an annual season ticket too, which is an even bigger saving.
I quite like commuting. The 3G card gets me online so I can clear my inbox and get my brain in gear before I arrive at the office, and even offline the uninterrupted time gives me a chance to read, think and write while listening to podcasts.
In fact, I think I’m going to need to subscribe to a lot more podcasts. A lot more.
My current list is pretty short:
- Stephen Fry’s Podgrams
- Jordan Jesse Go (which I talked about here)
- You Look Nice Today
- Tech Weekly from the lovely people at the Guardian
- Occasional dips into Dogear Nation
- Mark Kermode’s film reviews
- Speechification (of course)
What else should I be listening to?