The Lot of the QA Road Warrior

Over the last few years, I’ve been a lot of really neat places for work: Singapore, London, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Canada, and countless domestic (US) locales….and the travel destinations of my auditor colleagues would likely make up the difference for the rest of the world. This all sounds very exciting, very jet set, very sexy.

But the truth of the matter is that a little travel goes a long way. When we go, we sit in a conference room…..a conference room that looks like most other conference rooms….and read documents, interview people, make quick notes on legal pads as the auditees look on nervously. Usually, there’s no need for them to worry…we auditors are just making notes so that we can somehow distinguish their conference room (and the work presented there) from so many others we’ve sat in during the course of our careers.

There are many downsides to my chosen profession: justifying expenses to “Corporate Expense Processors” who may or may not know what we do (usually not), waiting to get our money back, sitting in airports, sitting on planes…sitting on planes on the tarmac….waiting. Actually, there’s a lot of waiting and a lot of time away from our families….this last part is hardest.

Don’t get me wrong, there are upsides as well. We do exercise a fair amount of autonomy and have the opportunity to really make a difference with our specific expertise and skill sets. That makes for a very satisfying career, but tonight, I’m in a mood to lament the woes of life on the road. I’m not one to drone on about the hardness of my lot, especially since I’m very pleased with my recent job change, but I think that it is important to mention the downsides to even the best of situations…..I’m an auditor; they pay me to look for the ugly underbelly. And its hard to turn that off.

Well, I’m on the West Coast, but I’m still on East Coast time….so I’ll be going to bed soon. I wish a good night to all.





  1. The biggest downside I can think of would be constantly changing time zones. Conference rooms may look the same all over the world, but if you work in one place, the conference room is the same. I guess the second downside would come from the lack of continuity. It’s comforting to come in everyday knowing everyone and almost everything that’s going to happen. For me it is.



  2. Thanks for your comments Spastikcomma. You are right, those things can be big issues. However,to my mind, the toughest part is time away from my family. We have small children…and it just sucks missing stuff with them.





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