Saturday, March 3, 2012

Rip off the band-aid already

I prefer to work alone... and not just because I'm an introvert.

Today's a great example of why I dislike working in groups. Right now I have exactly 63 open items on my to-do list at work. Sixty-three.

Right now, each and every one of those 63 open items is waiting for someone else to act before I can do my job.

I have actually finally managed to complete everything I need to do... except for sixty-three items that are waiting for someone else to do their job first.

Which means right now I'm trying to look productive.

Which means that whenever those other folks decide to get on the ball & do their part of the work, I'll be flooded. Again.

Because experience tells me it'll come in at the same time.

Sixty three.

The really frustrating part? The majority of it I can do on my own. As in, I'm perfectly capable, I've done it before, I have experience, etc.

But... some of the items are waiting for management to "officially" approve my suggestions before I can act on them.

Some of the items management is making me wait for input from different groups to be all sensitive to the current tense environment in our office (from the recent org changes).

And the rest of the items are part of various working groups they made me head up, instead of doing things myself (like I have successfully done for the past 7 years), in order to help people feel more involved and included.

Now, I'm know I'm a girl, and so people expect me to have feelings and be all sensitive and junk, but... when it comes to work... it's work.

I expect the focus to be on productivity and getting the job done, and I have little tolerance for making up bull-crap committees just so little Janie can feel like a part of the team. Or catering to other groups because they're ticked off about an org change. It happened. I don't like it either, but the decision was made at levels way above yours or mine, so... deal with it and move on.

Wanna feel like a part of the team? Do your job. Doing your job means you're contributing to the success of the company, and that is what makes you part of the team. Period.

And no, I'm not upset just because it's directly affecting my productivity, but because it's affecting the productivity of everyone around me.

Management is tip-toeing around, cow-towing to overly sensitive crybabies, afraid to upset people who are already upset and who aren't going to be happy no matter how many gestures you offer them.

People are ticked off about this change. People are stressed and anxious about what this change means for their jobs (myself included). Slowing productivity so that you can put on a face and try to get everyone to play nice by forcing them to be part of working groups and work processes that they have no interest in isn't doing anyone any favors.

Wanna get this change over with more quickly and get things settled into the new normal as quickly as possible?

Get your act together as a management team. Make decisions at your level, then tell your employees what needs to be done, and trust them to do it. Then keep your eyes & your ears open. Stop going into closed door meetings, and start being accessible to your employees again.

When Sally gets mad and throws her binders down on her desk and throws her papers on the floor because she's frustrated (true story), take her into a meeting room and ream her a** out.

When Billy is treating Carl badly just because Carl came from the "other" group (also true story), pull Billy into a meeting room, and ream his a** out.

The reason the tension is dragging on, is because you're not forcing your employees to face reality. This is the new reality, like it or not. Tip-toeing around, trying to keep everyone happy, trying to make everyone feel included won't work. All you're gonna do is create the expectation that things will always be that way. And they won't. So disappointment, frustration, and anger will resurface later when you finally find your backbone.

You're intentions are good, but you are drawing this out longer than it needs to be.

Rip off the band-aid already.

Your employees need a reality check, and you have to give it to them.

And once it finally sinks in, each one of us has one of two choices:
    1) stay    or    2) go

It really is that simple.

So, since I'm sitting here waiting for other people to check in with their progress, and I've already cleaned my desk, scheduled my doctor's appointments, and read my blogs...

Can I please go home? Paid?

It's not my fault I can't do my job. I'm just doing what you told me to.



I totally didn't mean for that to turn into a vent about how management was handling things. It just came out. But it's true, so... I'm leaving it.

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