Secret CIO

Did you know that all but 10 oz of the Secret CIO's over-sized brain is water?

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By  Secret CIO Published  June 1, 2006

My wife loves the Internet. She sits on it just about all day long digging up really interesting facts (?) like the chances of me outliving her are 100 to one. It's got nothing to do with age. It's just that women lead less stressful lives than us guys.

And of course it's also got nothing to with the fact that while my blood pressure levels hit all times high as I'm fighting for my life in Dubai traffic, she's sitting at the pool deck, armed with my laptop, learning about the 10 most popular things beginning with 'M' that men want to do to their wives.

Now if I sound stressed, I truly am. And that's official. A recent report found that a staggering 97% of us suffer from stress. In fact, we IT experts are more likely to suffer from stress than any other professional. According to the survey, we find our lives at work stressful on a daily basis. Now this is very worrying.”

And it's not just work that's doing it. Four out of five IT consultants feel stressed before they even enter the workplace. Now I wonder if this can be put down to crazy Middle East traffic or the thought of my wife discovering that the average person will spend two weeks over their lifetime waiting for the traffic lights to change (obviously regional drivers excluded)?

We also get all het up before work in anticipation of another day juggling complaints, pressure from managers and daily targets. Getting reports like this don't help either.

This stress thing is actually growing to epidemic proportions. A quarter of us are under such huge pressure to perform at work that we've had to take time off to get our stress levels back to normal. I myself was laid low for a while, but I got back to work as quickly as I could. I just couldn't absorb any more interesting facts emanating from wife and the laptop. Great truths included:

• the average woman consumes nearly 3kgs of lipstick in her lifetime (I've seen my wife buy just about that in a single visit to Wafi City);

• airbags explode at 322 km per hour (and we still drive like idiots); and

• the average person makes about 1,140 telephone calls each year (again my wife excluded).

But it's not just wives that are increasing our stress levels. The poll, conducted by SWNS on behalf of online learning provider, SkillSoft, revealed that a third of IT professionals say it is difficult to get the work done when managers are constantly on their backs.

One IT respondent said: “I spend most of my day fielding calls from people who don't even have a basic knowledge of computers and printers.

“It is amazing the amount of time I spend teaching people where the on-off button is. And when I do actually find a technical problem to solve, I have my manager breathing down my neck wondering why I have a backlog of complaints.”

Also, a third of respondents would rather be their own boss, and have complete control over their daily duties. And when I get home, I'm going to tell my wife just that.

Editor's Note:
I've let these sexist and chauvinistic ramblings through unedited. Any female CIO who is outraged by this article can vent her stress by writing to me directly (colin.edwards@itp.com).

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