Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Speaking of harsh

I spent much of the day preparing distribution lists for an end-of-year report. Sometimes people don't want to get reports any more. Which is more than fair, The hard copy report cost money to send out (printing and postage) so for each report that's not needed then the tax payer saves money.

However some people are c___ about it. They don't just so no thanks ... they say it rudely. 

We had a calendar of expected events in a previous report. Unfortunately we missed a big one. 

So as part of a no thanks email .. the no thanks person mentioned we'd forgotten said 'big one' and that we were idiots for doing so.

Oversights happen. The report in question had 26 000 words of content in it. We missed one date. Admittedly an important one but still. In the broad scheme of things it's not that big a failure.

Old Mikey would have fired off a passive aggressive 'we thank you for your feedback and are gratified you took the time to inform of us of our error. It's a shame you no longer want the report because we could have used your excellent product vetting skills to help us improve for next time.'

But I didn't. I simply deleted the person from the distribution list because I can't be fucked being aggressive and rude to people, passively or not, because life is too short. 

If it's one thing I've learned in life from theWife, if you have to tell people off ... then be constructive in your criticism (1). Or if you have to give negative feedback don't load it with abuse or rudeness. All it does is make the recipient annoyed and they're more likely not to correct things out of spite or find fault in you back. 

Anyway, as for Mr No Thanks (slash) You're Idiots ... I declare him to be a total Stampy.

Marge: (Talking about Stampy) Gosh, I thought he'd be happier in his true habitat.
Warden: Oh, I think he is.
Marge: Then why is he attacking all those other elephants?
Warden: Well, animals are not like people, Mrs. Simpson. Some of them act badly because they've had a hard life, or have been mistreated. But, like people, some of them are just jerks--Stop that, Mr. Simpson.

(1) theWife once hit a bad patch in her workplace when a stats snapshot showed her meeting outcomes on standard tasks was lacking. She got counselled for it and told she would be performance managed. The reason why the stats showed her outcomes were lacking is because she'd been taken off normal duties to assist with an IT roll-out. Despite this obvious pointing out of why this was the case ... her fuckwit supervisor continued the process. Instead of kicking up a screaming fit about it she went through the full process... then gave them feedback; a detailed account of where they'd gone wrong, how the process affected her, and more importantly the way forward to fix it so others wouldn't needlessly suffer.  It was a splendid piece of counter-bureaucracy and she later heard that senior people had remarked how she should never have been put through it in the first place given the reason, the stats snapshot, failed to take into account her multiple tasking. It was a work of beauty. Performance management is an incredibly upsetting thing to be told you need to do. But she held her head up high, grinned and bore it, then turned the tables on everyone with her devastating critique. Wins like that are rare in the public service. And I couldn't be more proud of her for doing that. Her supervisor later left under a cloud, just ahead of being formerly investigated for misconduct towards female staff. If I ever see that skeevy fuck-hole I may consider doing something unpleasant to him out of spite. But then ... I don't really have to. If you're an arsehole in life then it will likely come back to bite you at some point.The universe has a way of self-correcting.

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