Now that I have reached half of my assignment period, I think it is a good time to stop for a moment and review what I have achieved and experienced so far. For sure, I learned about different cultures. Having used to communicate openly with people in Indonesia (sometimes might be too open as some people could pretend they know you and start saying hello.. that kind of stuff), the “calmness” and “politeness” of Swiss people made me a bit speechless in the beginning. Though inside the office this is not necessarily applicable as it is international environment, and you can meet lot of people coming from different countries.
Particularly in working area, I learnt that in the environment where I am now, I need to think twice before saying or writing anything to anyone. Not that I did not do that before, but the awareness and the risk felt higher here. It pretty much makes sense, as I am in the center of organization, which means I am a bit closer to the higher management, and reporting something stupid or unexplainable could have significant impact to my team and my colleagues.
In other hand, I also learnt bunch of new knowledge; things that I have never done before in Jakarta. It might be difficult in the beginning, but I liked the challenge, and I am glad I managed to start owning (at least) some of the new processes. I can’t thank my boss enough for her support and guidance along the way (a story about her will come later).
But of course, this assignment is not all about working. I can feel I am growing into a new person; a person who is (hopefully) better in self management and self confidence. You might realize that I posted some stories on my trips to other countries in the last five months (Italy, France, Greece, etc.). Now, do you know how many places I visited during the twenty something years I have lived in Indonesia? Less than ten. It’s amazing to see how I started to take some risks in doing what I want; something I never considered before. I am glad I have been releasing myself from my comfort zone to do something really new, such as traveling by myself to new places.
However, in every story, you will have two sides. If in other side I am improving myself as a person in regards to self confidence, in other hand, I feel lack of religious touch inside. Differs from environment which I usually had in Indonesia, where lot of people do Ramadhan or celebrate Idul Adha together, here I could only celebrate with some of my Indonesian colleagues. I know it is better than nothing, but still…. there is an “if only” statement that flying around in my head, wishing the situation would be a bit different. I guess in the end, it will come back to me on the best way I will handle it.