Wednesday, March 10, 2010


There was major change at the office yesterday. One of us was let go. It was not me. Thankfully, I am still fully employed. But, we did have a frank discussion of the fact that the office continues to lose money, even as we try, very hard, to tighten our belts. Another of us could be let go, although the boss is trying not to do that.

We are down to the 5 most productive people. The stress level today is almost non-existent. While I do not wish for anyone to lose their job in this economic climate, the fact remains that the person we let go dug his own grave. Yesterday, when informed of the decision, his action was to blame everyone else and not himself for the loss.

Just a few suggestions to workers out there:
  • If you are tired, go to be earlier. Openly sleeping in your office does not endear you to your office mates.
  • When given a task that requires you to be out of the office doing something, go do it and come back. Don't stop at Starbucks for coffee and to read your newspaper. Worst of all, don't stop for coffee, then drive to a semi-secluded spot, recline your front seat and sleep.
  • Don't come in 15-20 minutes late, check on what's going on in the office, take a nap and then tell me "I'm stepping out for a bit" and be gone for another 45 minutes.
  • Find something on the Internet that holds your attention or read everything on your industry you can get your hands on. Your desk can be completely clear and clean and dusted but you should look busy.
  • Find more than one thing to discuss with your office workers. We quickly tired of sports talk all the time. We all have varied interests and if all you talk about is one topic, when our knowledge is exhausted, we don't care to listen to you prattle on, whether that's sports, cats, WOW, car repairs, etc.
  • And don't blame us if you get reprimanded. Even if you think it's unfair, look for any kernel of truth in the comment and work to get better. For years, we've been complaining about the same things. If it's the same comment and it's coming from more than just me, maybe there's something to it.
What we also discussed is how the boss is not averse to us putting our resumes out there. I've sent mine out sporadically, generally when I'm really frustrated with my job. The boss said we could use him as a reference and he said it did not bother him at all if we were looking and could find something better. "That's the reality of the work place now," he said. So we have his blessing to use office time when we're not working, to network and hunt the job sites.

I went home last night and hugged my girls. I generally scratch ears in the morning before going out the door and say, "Well, I'm off to keep my girls in cat food and kitty litter." I still have a job. I like my job. I feel, sort of, for the guy we let go. It's tough out there. I've had to take what is, essentially, a pay cut by not going into the field and staying in the office. But you do what you need to do.

This is an opportunity for the 5 of us left to look at other ways of streamlining costs. It could become very good for us.

Beverage: English Teatime tea


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