Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Shit My Job Says, Part 2: More Rules for Employers

A few months ago, I posted a list of totally random, off-the-top-of-my-head guidelines for employers. It contained such helpful suggestions as "When a customer opens a service ticket on a product damaged during shipping, the first-line response from customer support should not be 'Wait, are we selling those now?'" and "Try to avoid giving diametrically opposed pieces of information to employees who work in the same office on the same day." You can see the entire list here.

A few of you might have detected a note of frustration or cynicism in that post. If I gave the impression that I believed I was working for the mutant offspring of developmentally challenged gibbons and Dilbert's pointy-haired boss, I wish to correct that misapprehension right now.

This is a much better analogy.
Actually, I had no intention of singling out the company I work for as inept, irrational, or prone to making decisions that were cut from "The Office" for being incredibly ridiculous. Every company I've ever worked for has been like that, to a lesser or greater degree. I was just commenting on the fact that, damn, it was happening again. With love. Always with love.

And now, in the interest of being a productive, engaged employee, I've jotted down a few additional business rules. These purely hypothetical observations may be worthwhile perusing for entrepreneurs, managers, business analysts, or non-developmentally challenged gibbons who are one lab experiment away from the ape uprising that will take out humans and middle management for good.

Rule #21: Consider placing supervisors in the same time zone as their direct reports. If this is not possible, supervisors should consider contacting their direct reports by phone at least once every six months.

Rule #22: E-mails addressed to "All Employees" should pertain to all employees, or at least to more than 10 employees, all of whose desks are within shouting distance of the sender's office.

Rule #23: If management insists on receiving a hard copy original of a document rather than a scanned version, care should be taken to not immediately lose the original upon receipt.

Rule #24: Wide-area networks are a thing. They work particularly well for companies that operate over a wide area.

Rule #25: Replacing one employee who doesn't communicate well with three employees who don't communicate well does not necessarily improve communication by a factor of three.

Rule #26: While most employees agree that controlling overhead costs is admirable, many would also agree that an admin assistant's salary in exchange for just once receiving a timely response from an executive is a justifiable investment.

Rule #27: If an organization's e-mail program has the ability to share people's calendars, people's calendars should be shared. This is especially true if the organization's conference call service can only handle one call at a time.

Rule #28: A week is defined as "seven consecutive days." Thus the phrase "the contracts will be signed next week," first uttered in January, becomes problematic when still being repeated in June.

Rule #29: In a paperless company, purchasing a printer can be rejected as an unnecessary expense. Please see Rule #23.

Rule #30: HR's difficulty in keeping a constantly changing org chart updated is directly proportional to the frustration of employees who never have an updated org chart in their possession.

Rule #31:  Companies can't control what their employees say about their jobs, but they can influence what employees are inclined to say. And how funny it is.

1 comment:

You're thinking it, you may as well type it. The only comments you'll regret are the ones you don't leave. Also, replies to threads make puppies grow big and strong.