Author Topic: Overheard at Work  (Read 4939486 times)

frugalnacho

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2687
  • Age: 34
  • Location: Madison Heights, Michigan
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14750 on: August 23, 2016, 12:25:04 PM »
a "training opportunity"?

SoccerLounge

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 255
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14751 on: August 23, 2016, 12:31:07 PM »
http://www.unnecessaryquotes.com

That's a neat find! One I missed from the late-2000s era of If You Had An Even Slightly Popular Blog, You Probably Made It Into A Book. (As soon as I saw the type of blog it was, I was all, surely the author made a totally niche printed book of this - aaaahhhhh and there it is!)

TheGrimSqueaker

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1317
  • Location: A desert wasteland, where none but the weird survive
  • www.theliveinlandlord.com
    • The Live-In Landlord
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14752 on: August 23, 2016, 01:52:07 PM »
A new training opportunity at work:

Do you feel as though you are living
payday to payday?  This seminar will discuss the different types of debt and
how we can work toward a "debt free" lifestyle.  Topics include the
difference between good debt and bad debt, the impact of interest charges,
managing your spending habits and creating good saving habits. 

Sponsored by Rich Dad.
I squeak softly, but carry a big schtick.

marcela

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14753 on: August 23, 2016, 02:00:47 PM »
We're working on putting together some type of seminar on structuring philanthropy into sales of businesses. My coworker comes in with the slides from a presentation  she said at a conference. She is shocked by what they are espousing.

CW: This is crazy. Look here, this graph is based on someone saving $10,000 a year starting at age 30.
Me: (Thinking she might be thinking it's too low) Well...yeah, I mean the target audience here has...
CW: No one can save that much! I mean geez!
Me: Oh! um...

I didn't know how to mention that even though I make 25K less than her, I've been saving at least that much since I was 26.

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1148
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14754 on: August 23, 2016, 02:49:28 PM »
We're working on putting together some type of seminar on structuring philanthropy into sales of businesses. My coworker comes in with the slides from a presentation  she said at a conference. She is shocked by what they are espousing.

CW: This is crazy. Look here, this graph is based on someone saving $10,000 a year starting at age 30.
Me: (Thinking she might be thinking it's too low) Well...yeah, I mean the target audience here has...
CW: No one can save that much! I mean geez!
Me: Oh! um...

I didn't know how to mention that even though I make 25K less than her, I've been saving at least that much since I was 26.

Wow. This made me look it up, since I've never quite been exactly sure of the numbers. So I did: When I was 23 in 2013, making $35,000, I saved $10,000 to my 401k, The next year (2014), making maybe $37k, I saved almost $14,000 and early in 2015 fully funded my 2014 IRA. In fact, that first year was the least that I have ever saved out of college on a full  year (although last year was a close second, between getting married and buying a "new" car).

This year I'm already at $11k, and that is after greatly reducing my contributions over the past few months since we're trying to buy a house.

Who can't save even $10k a year? Wow. Even my wife is doing that, and she's aggresively paying off student loans.

 

marcela

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 307
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14755 on: August 23, 2016, 03:00:10 PM »
We're working on putting together some type of seminar on structuring philanthropy into sales of businesses. My coworker comes in with the slides from a presentation  she said at a conference. She is shocked by what they are espousing.

CW: This is crazy. Look here, this graph is based on someone saving $10,000 a year starting at age 30.
Me: (Thinking she might be thinking it's too low) Well...yeah, I mean the target audience here has...
CW: No one can save that much! I mean geez!
Me: Oh! um...

I didn't know how to mention that even though I make 25K less than her, I've been saving at least that much since I was 26.

Wow. This made me look it up, since I've never quite been exactly sure of the numbers. So I did: When I was 23 in 2013, making $35,000, I saved $10,000 to my 401k, The next year (2014), making maybe $37k, I saved almost $14,000 and early in 2015 fully funded my 2014 IRA. In fact, that first year was the least that I have ever saved out of college on a full  year (although last year was a close second, between getting married and buying a "new" car).

This year I'm already at $11k, and that is after greatly reducing my contributions over the past few months since we're trying to buy a house.

Who can't save even $10k a year? Wow. Even my wife is doing that, and she's aggresively paying off student loans.

It's even worse considering we're talking here about an audience made up of professionals with $87k median pay. 
I ran my numbers and I'm already at 18k for the year. I make 55k and am 28.

esq

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 241
  • Location: Humble, TX: World's Biggest Oxymoron
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14756 on: August 23, 2016, 07:00:08 PM »
http://www.unnecessaryquotes.com

That's a neat find! One I missed from the late-2000s era of If You Had An Even Slightly Popular Blog, You Probably Made It Into A Book. (As soon as I saw the type of blog it was, I was all, surely the author made a totally niche printed book of this - aaaahhhhh and there it is!)

Only one of my mostest favoritest websites ever!  Haven't visited in awhile, although I was just thinking about it the other day.
****Sent from my Pink Princess Rotary Phone.****

horsepoor

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2540
  • Location: Boise, ID
  • Growing a Pony 'Stache
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14757 on: August 23, 2016, 09:28:07 PM »
Well, I have two for today:

1.  Co-worker is getting the payout from VW for her beetle, and trying to decide what to buy.  She wants to retire in three years, and will get net ~$11K after VW retires her outstanding loan on the beetle.  This afternoon she was looking at some $52K BMW diesel SUV thing "because it gets good gas mileage."  I tried to at least steer her down to a Mazda CX-5 that would get equal mileage, and cost over $20K less.

2.  Received an email about a TSP workshop.  One of the bullets is "Why you should never save more than 5% in your TSP!!"  Bio on the instructor said he started a federal career in 1973, and here he is, 43 years later and still working.  I think I'll skip that workshop.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2676
  • Location: Emmaus, PA
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14758 on: August 24, 2016, 05:21:47 AM »
a phone conversation I've had *countless* times:
 *phone rings*
 Me: ZEPHYR SPEAKING
 Overpaid Co-Worker On Phone: HELLO?
 Me: This is Zephyr, how can I help you?
 OCWOP: OMG I CAN'T FIND [old file] IN YOUR SHAREPOINT LIBRARY, WHY DID YOU DELETE IT?
 Me: Are you on the page now?
 OCWOP: YES THERE IS ONLY THIS WEEK'S FILE I NEED THE ONE FROM [date]
 Me: Do you see about ten pixels above that, where it says "Click Here to View Archives"?
 OCWOP: YES
 Me: Have you tried clicking to view the archives?
 OCWOP: ...
 Me: ...
 *click*
 Me: *checks investment accounts*

Oh god. We just got Sharepoint. I expect this will start becoming way too common ...

I'm getting decent at adding JQuery to SharePoint webpart pages to make them more useful - fancy buttons and filters and stuff. Next week I have to go to a large bureaucratic client's location to look at their SharePoint site because they have "big problems". I am so very afraid.

MonkeyJenga

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5565
  • Location: NYC
  • Cake or Death?
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14759 on: August 24, 2016, 06:17:53 AM »

Do you have any experience with Knowledge Repository and its associated issues? My team is having a hell of time with that thing.

Sadly, no. And now, all I can think of is you, on your quitting day, making this into a suppository joke...

That day cannot come soon enough. Thank you for the eloquent sendoff idea.
MJ Is A GD Ray of Sunshine

Small Daily Acts of Political Resistance

For one simple action a day texted to you: https://dailyaction.org - text DAILY to 228466 (ACTION)

Indivisible Guide for local groups taking action: https://www.indivisibleguide.com

novynova

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 2
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14760 on: August 24, 2016, 07:01:28 AM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY

Me: i just increased my 401K above the company match (from 5% to 8%) hope i made the right decision instead of putting more towards other savings
her: i've been meaning to look into that
Me: look into which part, above the match? other savings? 8%?
Her: No, the 401K. I would like to but i just don't make enough
Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1148
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14761 on: August 24, 2016, 07:45:56 AM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY

Me: i just increased my 401K above the company match (from 5% to 8%) hope i made the right decision instead of putting more towards other savings
her: i've been meaning to look into that
Me: look into which part, above the match? other savings? 8%?
Her: No, the 401K. I would like to but i just don't make enough
Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

Don't let me be seen eating English muffins. The struggle is real.

Kitsune

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14762 on: August 24, 2016, 08:06:02 AM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY

Me: i just increased my 401K above the company match (from 5% to 8%) hope i made the right decision instead of putting more towards other savings
her: i've been meaning to look into that
Me: look into which part, above the match? other savings? 8%?
Her: No, the 401K. I would like to but i just don't make enough
Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

... Struggle?

We must have different interpretations of the word. Having tea and English muffins provided is lovely.

Making Cookies

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1652
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14763 on: August 24, 2016, 08:11:25 AM »
How about what I SAW while at work?

Was coming back from looking at a CNC machine yesterday that I hope to buy for my workplace.

Cop from another county (no jurisdiction outside of his county in this state) slides past me in the left lane (4-lane rural highway).

I catch up with him at a crossroads/red light in a small town. Pickup next to him (my lane) rolls his window down and says something to him.

Light turns green, and we all set off at a reasonable pace. A mile down the road (beyond the small town city limits) the pickup truck floors it. Over 100 mph easily as I lose sight of him. 

Around the bend going the other direction comes a state trooper who quickly swings through the grassy median and gives chase. Truck gets off at the next exit and tries to hide but the cop catches him.

Karma is served.

All I could think of was the cost of this bit of showboating. Ticket, possibly bail, truck being towed, higher insurance premiums, etc. And if he's done something stupid before then multiply all that by some factor...
« Last Edit: August 24, 2016, 08:13:06 AM by Joe Lucky »

merula

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 715
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14764 on: August 24, 2016, 08:14:22 AM »
Oh no; the struggle is REAL - she would have to choose between Earl Grey, Orange Pekoe, and herbal tea. EVERY DAMNED DAY!!! How can you condemn someone to living like that!

(I just learned that I am not sure if the tea is an 'ey' grey, or an 'ay' gray. Also, what the heck is a Pekoe, and did I spell it right? Tea is confusing.)

The color is "grEy" in England (and the rest of the Commonwealth) and "grAy" in America. It's always Earl Grey, though, because that's the peerage title.

Pekoe: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea_leaf_grading

UKMustache

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 108
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14765 on: August 24, 2016, 08:19:28 AM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY

Me: i just increased my 401K above the company match (from 5% to 8%) hope i made the right decision instead of putting more towards other savings
her: i've been meaning to look into that
Me: look into which part, above the match? other savings? 8%?
Her: No, the 401K. I would like to but i just don't make enough
Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

... Struggle?

We must have different interpretations of the word. Having tea and English muffins provided is lovely.

Oh no; the struggle is REAL - she would have to choose between Earl Grey, Orange Pekoe, and herbal tea. EVERY DAMNED DAY!!! How can you condemn someone to living like that!

(I just learned that I am not sure if the tea is an 'ey' grey, or an 'ay' gray. Also, what the heck is a Pekoe, and did I spell it right? Tea is confusing.)

It's grey.

Also, I'm English but don't know what you mean by English muffin...

Paul der Krake

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3121
  • Age: 9
  • Location: WA
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14766 on: August 24, 2016, 08:33:50 AM »
Also, I'm English but don't know what you mean by English muffin...
It's just a muffin. Usually found by the crumpets.

Kitsune

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14767 on: August 24, 2016, 08:36:36 AM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY

Me: i just increased my 401K above the company match (from 5% to 8%) hope i made the right decision instead of putting more towards other savings
her: i've been meaning to look into that
Me: look into which part, above the match? other savings? 8%?
Her: No, the 401K. I would like to but i just don't make enough
Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

... Struggle?

We must have different interpretations of the word. Having tea and English muffins provided is lovely.

Oh no; the struggle is REAL - she would have to choose between Earl Grey, Orange Pekoe, and herbal tea. EVERY DAMNED DAY!!! How can you condemn someone to living like that!

(I just learned that I am not sure if the tea is an 'ey' grey, or an 'ay' gray. Also, what the heck is a Pekoe, and did I spell it right? Tea is confusing.)

It's grey.

Also, I'm English but don't know what you mean by English muffin...

Small flat round bread that usually gets spread open, toasted, and served with butter and jam. Kinda like a double-layered and softer crumpet. Seriously yummy. (I believe what McDonald's uses on those breakfast sandwiches, based on ad pictures, but I've never had one).

Orange pekoe is a black tea. For good-quality tea, it usually indicates leaf grade; in North America, it's kind of the standard term for generic black tea. (No oranges in it; I think it was originally named after the house of Orange. Yay history of food classes.)

I like my tea and my food. Toasted buttered english muffins and black tea count as an excellent morning.

Winston

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 185
  • Age: 39
  • Location: Houston, TX
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14768 on: August 24, 2016, 08:51:10 AM »
Quote
The color is "grEy" in England (and the rest of the Commonwealth) and "grAy" in America. It's always Earl Grey, though, because that's the peerage title.

Even as an American, I typically write it as "grey" (consciously). The Hobbit had a profound effect on me. Plus, the word is just more aesthetically pleasing when written with that spelling.

mm1970

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4158
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14769 on: August 24, 2016, 09:16:53 AM »
Our condo building manager sends me Word doc reports where at the end of each line, she presses enter and then tabs in for the next line, so if you need to make any edits, then you have to re-do the f-ed up formatting.  She also has no idea how to use Excel, despite having had to use it for 5 years, so she prints out the spreadsheets and then complains that the typing is too small to read on paper.  I blew her mind the other day when I pointed out that the spreadsheet had two tabs of information, not just one.

Update:  Since I posted that, she sent me back a revised version of her report, as I had sent her my changes in "tracked changes."  She did not know you could "accept" the changes, so she printed out my version and spent an hour trying to type all my changes into her document, which obviously was less than accurate, not to mention inefficient.
I once asked a boss to use track changes. He didn't actually use Track Changes in the doc he sent me; he'd manually colored and underlined his additions and manually colored and struck through his deletions.

Ok, that is really funny!
Learn something new every day. I've never heard of track changes. 

I'm not even sure we do much of that at all...our schedules change almost daily.

mm1970

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4158
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14770 on: August 24, 2016, 09:22:29 AM »
Our condo building manager sends me Word doc reports where at the end of each line, she presses enter and then tabs in for the next line, so if you need to make any edits, then you have to re-do the f-ed up formatting.  She also has no idea how to use Excel, despite having had to use it for 5 years, so she prints out the spreadsheets and then complains that the typing is too small to read on paper.  I blew her mind the other day when I pointed out that the spreadsheet had two tabs of information, not just one.

Update:  Since I posted that, she sent me back a revised version of her report, as I had sent her my changes in "tracked changes."  She did not know you could "accept" the changes, so she printed out my version and spent an hour trying to type all my changes into her document, which obviously was less than accurate, not to mention inefficient.
I once asked a boss to use track changes. He didn't actually use Track Changes in the doc he sent me; he'd manually colored and underlined his additions and manually colored and struck through his deletions.

In my job I often dealt with the converse of this - someone wants a report or spreadsheet that summarizes a lot of information from various sources, and they want it on short notice. "Oh, by the way, I am giving a presentation to Group X, could you pull together an overview summary of Y?" 

I was so sick of this at the end, I actually said "do you know how long that will take?"
Them: "Oh, can't you just run a report?"
Me: "No, information a is in database a, information b us in database b which is not connected to a, etc. and I have to redact irrelevant records and reformat the output and add information that is not in any of the databases"
Them: "Oh" <blank stare>

These are all databases the fuckers were supposed to be using themselves, and information they were supposed to know, and they all had administrative assistants to run auto reports from the software they were supposed to know how to use anyway.

If it was 'just running a report' they should have known how to do it themselves, and even if they didn't, their admins knew how to run it. Glad I am out of there!
I just want to say PREACH IT.  When I need to review problems at work, I literally have to pull info from 3 separate and unlinked databases.  Reviewing the history on a bad device can take several hours.

The big boss "doesn't think we have a problem with our databases" (which were all home-built by two people we hired to work part time, each, one of whom who has a FT job elsewhere).  Why doesn't he think we have a problem?  Because, whenever he needs info, Jim or Bob (*not their real names) can give him a summary the next day!  Not realizing that they spent a couple of hours at night doing it.

Ugh.  We youngsters are trying to fix that.  I'm sort of joking.  The guy we put in charge of the databases to merge them is 28.  I'm 46, and I just want to be able to get my data faster.  The unfortunate thing is that I've had *some* success building queries in either sql or jmp scripts to search and merge data.  But I'm not very good at it.  I  simply have too much else to do to get better at it.  If I pull in data on one bad part, it's 4-5 hours.  Building and testing the scripts would take me longer.  And then other stuff would not get done.

Oh well we are getting there.

Inaya

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 913
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Chicago, IL
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14771 on: August 24, 2016, 10:19:30 AM »
Oh, and the various errors or missing records in various databases makes life fun! There were times I had to search 3 databases just to get a complete set of relevant records. I could do this because I bothered to learn where the information was, and where the gaps in information were, and of course learned wgphat other databases had information, and how to use them. Because I cared about learning to do my job well.
Of course, the higher ups never thought this was a problem because no consequences to them, and "well, money and resources are tight". They consistently thought it was better to let all of us have to work inefficiently than to just try to fix these problems. And - the middle and higher ups wouldn't know if the report was incomplete or just wrong, because they never looked at or understood the underlying work or records, just the little summaries they wanted, no matter how inaccurate they may be.
God save the person who provided an accurate report with a trend line pointing in the opposite direction from what they wanted. The person had to have done it all wrong.
We've had tons of data quality issues we're working through and making progress on. But what bothers me is:

"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.
My Cleverly Titled Journal: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/cleverly-titled-journal/
My Cat's Facebook Page (yes, really, and I'm not above begging for likes): www.facebook.com/chicagotau
Tau now has an Instagram: www.instagram.com/chicagotau or #chicagotau
Ting referral ($25 credit!): https://zds8505smfe.ting.com/

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1148
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14772 on: August 24, 2016, 10:29:07 AM »
Oh, and the various errors or missing records in various databases makes life fun! There were times I had to search 3 databases just to get a complete set of relevant records. I could do this because I bothered to learn where the information was, and where the gaps in information were, and of course learned wgphat other databases had information, and how to use them. Because I cared about learning to do my job well.
Of course, the higher ups never thought this was a problem because no consequences to them, and "well, money and resources are tight". They consistently thought it was better to let all of us have to work inefficiently than to just try to fix these problems. And - the middle and higher ups wouldn't know if the report was incomplete or just wrong, because they never looked at or understood the underlying work or records, just the little summaries they wanted, no matter how inaccurate they may be.
God save the person who provided an accurate report with a trend line pointing in the opposite direction from what they wanted. The person had to have done it all wrong.
We've had tons of data quality issues we're working through and making progress on. But what bothers me is:

"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.

Sibley

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1748
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Chicago, IL
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14773 on: August 24, 2016, 11:17:43 AM »
Oh, and the various errors or missing records in various databases makes life fun! There were times I had to search 3 databases just to get a complete set of relevant records. I could do this because I bothered to learn where the information was, and where the gaps in information were, and of course learned wgphat other databases had information, and how to use them. Because I cared about learning to do my job well.
Of course, the higher ups never thought this was a problem because no consequences to them, and "well, money and resources are tight". They consistently thought it was better to let all of us have to work inefficiently than to just try to fix these problems. And - the middle and higher ups wouldn't know if the report was incomplete or just wrong, because they never looked at or understood the underlying work or records, just the little summaries they wanted, no matter how inaccurate they may be.
God save the person who provided an accurate report with a trend line pointing in the opposite direction from what they wanted. The person had to have done it all wrong.
We've had tons of data quality issues we're working through and making progress on. But what bothers me is:

"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.

So, that works until something actually goes wrong and someone who can pound you catches it. I work somewhere that had that happen, a long time ago. It still (15+ years later) influences things, for the better.

dragoncar

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6982
  • Registered member
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14774 on: August 24, 2016, 12:42:06 PM »
Oh, and the various errors or missing records in various databases makes life fun! There were times I had to search 3 databases just to get a complete set of relevant records. I could do this because I bothered to learn where the information was, and where the gaps in information were, and of course learned wgphat other databases had information, and how to use them. Because I cared about learning to do my job well.
Of course, the higher ups never thought this was a problem because no consequences to them, and "well, money and resources are tight". They consistently thought it was better to let all of us have to work inefficiently than to just try to fix these problems. And - the middle and higher ups wouldn't know if the report was incomplete or just wrong, because they never looked at or understood the underlying work or records, just the little summaries they wanted, no matter how inaccurate they may be.
God save the person who provided an accurate report with a trend line pointing in the opposite direction from what they wanted. The person had to have done it all wrong.
We've had tons of data quality issues we're working through and making progress on. But what bothers me is:

"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.

I'm not sure either of those terms are defined well enough but if his point is that the risk to acceptable risk ratio is going down, he's right (presumably you can accept more risk if you offset it with more profits)

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1148
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14775 on: August 24, 2016, 12:59:36 PM »
Oh, and the various errors or missing records in various databases makes life fun! There were times I had to search 3 databases just to get a complete set of relevant records. I could do this because I bothered to learn where the information was, and where the gaps in information were, and of course learned wgphat other databases had information, and how to use them. Because I cared about learning to do my job well.
Of course, the higher ups never thought this was a problem because no consequences to them, and "well, money and resources are tight". They consistently thought it was better to let all of us have to work inefficiently than to just try to fix these problems. And - the middle and higher ups wouldn't know if the report was incomplete or just wrong, because they never looked at or understood the underlying work or records, just the little summaries they wanted, no matter how inaccurate they may be.
God save the person who provided an accurate report with a trend line pointing in the opposite direction from what they wanted. The person had to have done it all wrong.
We've had tons of data quality issues we're working through and making progress on. But what bothers me is:

"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.

I'm not sure either of those terms are defined well enough but if his point is that the risk to acceptable risk ratio is going down, he's right (presumably you can accept more risk if you offset it with more profits)

See, I don't disagree--but we don't have that definition in place. We should, and we're working on getting there, but until everything is rated the same way, I don't agree with rating this one thing that way.

Tjat

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 560
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14776 on: August 24, 2016, 01:49:33 PM »

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.

It sounds like you work in some form of insurance. In insurance-speak, exposure can be defined as one unit of risk. In this very narrow perspective, you are correct. However, most businesses don't judge things by one unit of risk... I also disagree that your "chances of something happening stays the same." If you have 4 policies and one has a claim, your frequency is 25%. If you increase to 10 policies and that same policy had a claim, your frequency would drop to 10%. Further, you can spread the claim costs to a larger number of policies, equating to less risk to the company's health from one claim. Hence, I think under most interpretations, your boss was correct.

zephyr911

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3496
  • Age: 38
  • Location: Northern Alabama
  • I'm just happy to be here. \m/ ^_^ \m/
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14777 on: August 24, 2016, 02:40:33 PM »

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.
Emphasis added for the sake of discussion.

What's not growing? The number of customers subject to the risky manual process, or the percentage?
I am not a cog. I am an organizational lubricant.

mtn

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1148
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14778 on: August 24, 2016, 03:24:00 PM »

Reminds me of an "argument" I had with my boss. He was arguing that exposure!=risk, though they are closely corrolated. We have a process for a small percentage of our customers that is very manual and pretty risky. He is saying that since the number isn't growing, but our overall number of customers is, the risk is going down. I told him, the exposure stays the same, the chances of something happening stay the same, the risk stays the same. Sure, our risk tolerance goes up, but that risk doesn't change and we need to reflect that correctly.

He won the argument, because he is the boss--but I still disagree with it.
Emphasis added for the sake of discussion.

What's not growing? The number of customers subject to the risky manual process, or the percentage?

The number is staying the same. The percentage is decreasing.

Thing is, one event could be catastrophic. Just one is all it takes. I definitely understand both sides, but the way we have our [internal rating] processes right now the risk is not decreasing, even though we can take on more risk every day.

Tjat

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 560
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14779 on: August 24, 2016, 04:40:43 PM »
Does your company have reinsurance? If so, I'd bet the person setting your reinsurance rates is disagreeing with you.

LeRainDrop

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1769
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14780 on: August 24, 2016, 08:13:55 PM »
had a convo with my coworker who constantly complains that her husband needs a better job ALSO orders breakfast AND lunch at work EVERYDAY
. . . Me: you could bag your lunch or eat breakfast before you get here OR EAT THE FREE FOOD WE HAVE IN THE KITCHEN (english muffins, coffee, tea, soda, snacks, granola, etc.)
Her: I'm not going to struggle just to save a few dollars
Me: -___-

... Struggle?

We must have different interpretations of the word. Having tea and English muffins provided is lovely.

. . . Also, I'm English but don't know what you mean by English muffin...

Small flat round bread that usually gets spread open, toasted, and served with butter and jam. Kinda like a double-layered and softer crumpet. Seriously yummy. (I believe what McDonald's uses on those breakfast sandwiches, based on ad pictures, but I've never had one). . . .

Don't forget the nooks and crannies!  Nooks and crannies are the most important parts of the English muffin!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17zvthaTiw4

BeautifulDay

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 164
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14781 on: August 24, 2016, 08:43:12 PM »
Talking with a couple co-workers today about changes at work. I'm at least 20 yrs younger than two coworkers that I'm talking with. 

CW1: talks about the changes and how the changes will effect certain employees we supervise who are nearing retirement.
CW 2: "I'll be retiring in about 5 yrs too" looks at me "Not like the young ones like 'BeautifulDay' who have another 30 or even 35 years till retirement"
Me: no comment. didn't know what to say since if I stay on my path I'll retire within 10 yrs.  no way I'll be here another 30-35 yrs!

mustachepungoeshere

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1342
  • Location: Sydney, Oz
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14782 on: August 25, 2016, 04:39:14 AM »
Not sure if this is anti-Mustachian or shameful, but definitely comedic.

My husband's colleague called his internet provider after moving house and receiving a bill for a call-out fee.

"Why is there a call-out fee? All you did was flip a switch at your end! No-one came to my house.
You can't just bill people for no reason! I'm sick of you trying to rip me off." Etc, etc, etc.

Customer service rep agreed to refund the charge. Colleague resumed work, grumbling to himself/the office.

"I don't know how they think they can get away with it, they didn't send a tech out, the only person who has come out was some guy who looked at the phone line... Shit!"

My husband said you could see clouds part as this realisation dawned.

But hey, he got the refund...

boarder42

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4834
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14783 on: August 25, 2016, 05:31:02 AM »
Not sure if this is anti-Mustachian or shameful, but definitely comedic.

My husband's colleague called his internet provider after moving house and receiving a bill for a call-out fee.

"Why is there a call-out fee? All you did was flip a switch at your end! No-one came to my house.
You can't just bill people for no reason! I'm sick of you trying to rip me off." Etc, etc, etc.

Customer service rep agreed to refund the charge. Colleague resumed work, grumbling to himself/the office.

"I don't know how they think they can get away with it, they didn't send a tech out, the only person who has come out was some guy who looked at the phone line... Shit!"

My husband said you could see clouds part as this realisation dawned.

But hey, he got the refund...

thats a completely mustachian thing to do.  reduce stupid fees like that. i aplaud him .
PM me about how to save 6% on your annual grocery Bill!

There is a 35k starwood bonus right now as well. PM me for the info.

RWD

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1274
  • Location: Mississippi
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14784 on: August 25, 2016, 06:30:27 AM »
A company e-mail implied we should feel envious that an employee announced his retirement at age ~58...

Mississippi Mudstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1439
  • Age: 33
  • Location: Fernandina Beach, FL
    • A Riving Home - Ramblings of a Recusant Woodworker
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14785 on: August 25, 2016, 07:50:51 AM »
Quote
The color is "grEy" in England (and the rest of the Commonwealth) and "grAy" in America. It's always Earl Grey, though, because that's the peerage title.

Even as an American, I typically write it as "grey" (consciously). The Hobbit had a profound effect on me. Plus, the word is just more aesthetically pleasing when written with that spelling.

Yes! I've always preferred the English spelling. Never read The Hobbit, but it just looks better.
“There is scarcely anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse, and sell a little more cheaply. The person who buys on price alone is this man's lawful prey.” -John Ruskin

My Woodworking Blog

zephyr911

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3496
  • Age: 38
  • Location: Northern Alabama
  • I'm just happy to be here. \m/ ^_^ \m/
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14786 on: August 25, 2016, 09:25:51 AM »
Talking with a couple co-workers today about changes at work. I'm at least 20 yrs younger than two coworkers that I'm talking with. 

CW1: talks about the changes and how the changes will effect certain employees we supervise who are nearing retirement.
CW 2: "I'll be retiring in about 5 yrs too" looks at me "Not like the young ones like 'BeautifulDay' who have another 30 or even 35 years till retirement"
Me: no comment. didn't know what to say since if I stay on my path I'll retire within 10 yrs.  no way I'll be here another 30-35 yrs!
How about "my goal is 10... *smile*"
Just because it might blow their minds, doesn't mean you can't say it. MMM didn't set out to preach to a choir, he started this to win hearts and minds that previously had no clue you could consume less worthless shit and radically alter your life trajectory, or lacked the knowledge or willpower to do it even if they had a clue, etc... you never know for sure which one you're talking to.
I am not a cog. I am an organizational lubricant.

runningthroughFIRE

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 314
  • Age: 23
  • Location: Northwest Indiana
  • Ask for broader shoulders.
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14787 on: August 25, 2016, 10:10:13 AM »
Talking with a couple co-workers today about changes at work. I'm at least 20 yrs younger than two coworkers that I'm talking with. 

CW1: talks about the changes and how the changes will effect certain employees we supervise who are nearing retirement.
CW 2: "I'll be retiring in about 5 yrs too" looks at me "Not like the young ones like 'BeautifulDay' who have another 30 or even 35 years till retirement"
Me: no comment. didn't know what to say since if I stay on my path I'll retire within 10 yrs.  no way I'll be here another 30-35 yrs!
How about "my goal is 10... *smile*"
Just because it might blow their minds, doesn't mean you can't say it. MMM didn't set out to preach to a choir, he started this to win hearts and minds that previously had no clue you could consume less worthless shit and radically alter your life trajectory, or lacked the knowledge or willpower to do it even if they had a clue, etc... you never know for sure which one you're talking to.
I'd be hesitant to do this 10 years out to coworkers.  I tell everyone who brings it up in my personal life, but I keep my mouth shut in my professional life unless someone I work with becomes a close friend and isn't going to gossip.  I'll "retire" whenever I feel like I'd rather do something else after FI, but at an at-will job I don't want my employers knowing that.  I do fantasize about it, though.

Sawedoff

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 13
  • Location: VA
    • Revenue Herald
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14788 on: August 25, 2016, 10:16:04 AM »
"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.
!@#$%!!!! This is the bane of my existence.

1: Why are we red on the brief?
Me: Because we're a few issues short of being compliant. We're working on it and should be green by tomorrow.
1: Well, we need to be green, so submit this paperwork to say we're going to be green by so and so time.
Me: Pointless, but ok, paper drill done (hour later).
Reviewer: Paperwork isn't clear enough, correct this and resubmit.
Me: Resubmit.
Reviewer: Nitpicking something else, rejected.
1: Why are we not green yet?
Me: Paperwork to say why we're not green.
Leadership: We're still red!? Fix yourselves!!!
1: Resubmit the paperwork.
Me: Can I just fix the problem!?
1: No, we need paperwork to document why we're red.
Me: We're red because you're an idiot and won't let me just work on the problem.

This repeats itself every week...

canuck_24

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 40
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14789 on: August 25, 2016, 12:19:52 PM »
Talking with a couple co-workers today about changes at work. I'm at least 20 yrs younger than two coworkers that I'm talking with. 

CW1: talks about the changes and how the changes will effect certain employees we supervise who are nearing retirement.
CW 2: "I'll be retiring in about 5 yrs too" looks at me "Not like the young ones like 'BeautifulDay' who have another 30 or even 35 years till retirement"
Me: no comment. didn't know what to say since if I stay on my path I'll retire within 10 yrs.  no way I'll be here another 30-35 yrs!
How about "my goal is 10... *smile*"
Just because it might blow their minds, doesn't mean you can't say it. MMM didn't set out to preach to a choir, he started this to win hearts and minds that previously had no clue you could consume less worthless shit and radically alter your life trajectory, or lacked the knowledge or willpower to do it even if they had a clue, etc... you never know for sure which one you're talking to.

I personally don't think your employer would fault you for having life goals.  "10 years" is still quite a distance in the future, and it would seem rather unreasonable (to me) that you would lose out on training or promotions because you have a plan to retire a decade from now.  I plan to retire 8 years from now and I think I mentioned that in my first review (6 months after hiring), in response to the question "Where do you see yourself in the long term?" 
I said "Retired." 
My supervisor "Okay, well, in the next 5 - 10 years then?"
I said "5 years from now I see myself in your job. 10 years from now I'll be retired, barring any major changes in my life."

There was no averse reaction to that.  He of course had a few curiosity based questions, but that was all.  I don't see any reason to hide that.  If it was a shorter time frame (less than 5 years maybe?) then I could see potentially losing out on opportunities, but the main reaction I've had from my employer has basically been them chuckling and saying something along the lines of "A lot can change in life in 10 years!"

WerKater

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
  • Location: Germany
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14790 on: August 25, 2016, 12:37:09 PM »
"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.
!@#$%!!!! This is the bane of my existence.

1: Why are we red on the brief?
Me: Because we're a few issues short of being compliant. We're working on it and should be green by tomorrow.
1: Well, we need to be green, so submit this paperwork to say we're going to be green by so and so time.
Me: Pointless, but ok, paper drill done (hour later).
Reviewer: Paperwork isn't clear enough, correct this and resubmit.
Me: Resubmit.
Reviewer: Nitpicking something else, rejected.
1: Why are we not green yet?
Me: Paperwork to say why we're not green.
Leadership: We're still red!? Fix yourselves!!!
1: Resubmit the paperwork.
Me: Can I just fix the problem!?
1: No, we need paperwork to document why we're red.
Me: We're red because you're an idiot and won't let me just work on the problem.

This repeats itself every week...
I currently have a customer (a big company) that seems to work exactly like that. It is irrelevant whether things work, whether you do good work or whether you are not doing anything at all. The only thing that matters to them is that endless amounts of paper about all kinds of useless shit are produced. And even more useless meetings must be held in which we talk about last week's useless paper.

Inaya

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 913
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Chicago, IL
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14791 on: August 25, 2016, 02:12:15 PM »
"Why is this status red?"
"Because it exceeds its high-risk threshold."
"But why hasn't it been fixed?"
"Because we don't have the tools to fix the problem."
"Then increase the threshold so it turns green!"

Because the risk just disappears because its line turns green on a chart.
!@#$%!!!! This is the bane of my existence.

1: Why are we red on the brief?
Me: Because we're a few issues short of being compliant. We're working on it and should be green by tomorrow.
1: Well, we need to be green, so submit this paperwork to say we're going to be green by so and so time.
Me: Pointless, but ok, paper drill done (hour later).
Reviewer: Paperwork isn't clear enough, correct this and resubmit.
Me: Resubmit.
Reviewer: Nitpicking something else, rejected.
1: Why are we not green yet?
Me: Paperwork to say why we're not green.
Leadership: We're still red!? Fix yourselves!!!
1: Resubmit the paperwork.
Me: Can I just fix the problem!?
1: No, we need paperwork to document why we're red.
Me: We're red because you're an idiot and won't let me just work on the problem.

This repeats itself every week...
I currently have a customer (a big company) that seems to work exactly like that. It is irrelevant whether things work, whether you do good work or whether you are not doing anything at all. The only thing that matters to them is that endless amounts of paper about all kinds of useless shit are produced. And even more useless meetings must be held in which we talk about last week's useless paper.

At the end of the meeting, does some manager whose fifedom is under represented in the project pipe up about how he is going to have another meeting next week to discuss his concerns about the project since they weren't discussed here, then walk out in a huff? Thats sortof a tradition in some places I've worked.
"Well we'll just discuss this offline. I'll call you."
Then they never call and spend the next meeting in a huff that it was never discussed with them.

My entire team exists because of a team like WerKater's customer. They spent years not doing anything other than endless committee meetings and status reports. Our team was created to basically do that team's job. We're full of Type As (minus myself; I'm good at faking it though), so we got done in 6 months what they couldn't do in 6 years. Now they're under scrutiny from way high up in the company, and of course they feel hugely threatened by us. And it looks like we might be forced to hand our work over to them to save their jobs.

I understand the reasoning, and I'm not really upset about it--everybody knows which team produced the work. But there's a fairly good chance I'll be sent over to that team to make sure they don't mess it all up moving forward--it's not gonna be pretty for so many reasons. I've already told my boss that I would strongly consider seeking new employment if I ended up on that team--he said he'd do the same in my shoes.
My Cleverly Titled Journal: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/cleverly-titled-journal/
My Cat's Facebook Page (yes, really, and I'm not above begging for likes): www.facebook.com/chicagotau
Tau now has an Instagram: www.instagram.com/chicagotau or #chicagotau
Ting referral ($25 credit!): https://zds8505smfe.ting.com/

PriestTheRunner

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 395
  • Location: Somewhere in Tejas
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14792 on: August 25, 2016, 02:13:53 PM »
Man I hope I'm not investing in your companies.  Sheesh.
"The mathematical formula for the number of motorcycles you need is   x+1, where x is the number of motorcycles you currently have."

nanu

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 343
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Cambridge, MA
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14793 on: August 25, 2016, 07:57:00 PM »
Registered for a "class" today at work that was supposed to explain the details of our stock grants.
Tried listening but zoned out quite quickly as it was being explained as if we're all seven years old (and this is a large, very well known software company, right?).

The person doing the presentation kept going on on how the taxes that we pay for the stock grants aren't too bad, even though you get taxed 42% on the grant in California (FICA + federal supplemental withholding rate + CA tax) because it's just "free money" that you "weren't expecting", and I can't help but think "hell no, I worked for those stocks just like I work for my paycheck. Just because I didn't know how much exactly it'll be [because we get X stocks which vest later] doesn't make it 'free money' or any BS like that"
AirBnb referral code for $25 off first reservation: http://www.airbnb.com/c/nroitman?s=8
TopCashBack referral code (we both earn $10): http://www.topcashback.com/ref/infer73

WerKater

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
  • Location: Germany
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14794 on: August 26, 2016, 01:21:27 AM »
"Well we'll just discuss this offline. I'll call you."
Then they never call and spend the next meeting in a huff that it was never discussed with them.

My entire team exists because of a team like WerKater's customer. They spent years not doing anything other than endless committee meetings and status reports. Our team was created to basically do that team's job. We're full of Type As (minus myself; I'm good at faking it though), so we got done in 6 months what they couldn't do in 6 years. Now they're under scrutiny from way high up in the company, and of course they feel hugely threatened by us. And it looks like we might be forced to hand our work over to them to save their jobs.

I understand the reasoning, and I'm not really upset about it--everybody knows which team produced the work. But there's a fairly good chance I'll be sent over to that team to make sure they don't mess it all up moving forward--it's not gonna be pretty for so many reasons. I've already told my boss that I would strongly consider seeking new employment if I ended up on that team--he said he'd do the same in my shoes.
That's an incredible story. Except, knowing what I know, I find it extremely credible. I am wondering, whether it's the same company as my customer. But probably not; the world is too big and I'm sure there are many companies that (dis-)function like that.

Fortunately, I am very rarely in physical meetings, it's usually just phone/online (advantage of sitting in another country). But I have been chewed out over
- having been on-site at one location, getting lots of work done, but not doing daily status meetings (which had never been requested) with a manager who is also in yet another country
- being unprepared for a meeting (the agenda of which had been sent to me 3 minutes before the meeting and was completely different from what was supposed to be discussed.)
- doing a small piece of work that had not been speficially approved by this one, very special, manager. Of course, I did lots of work, that he had not specifically approved. Because I am not a minimum-wage worker who needs to be told how, when and where to turn which single screw. I am a professional who (usually) knows that the fuck he is doing. I never found out why this one example pissed him off so much (or why he gave a shit at all).

And then there was the case where something was actually broken (with users screaming that they can't do their very urgent work), and I was fixing it. I knew what the problem was, and what to do. It would take about half an hour. I told the customer so (via email). Minutes later, they call me into an emergency meeting. I tried to get out of it, but they were insistent. So I spent a freaking hour discussing with them what went wrong and what I would do.

They then decided that I needed to write a proper action plan which they would approve. And then I could actually fix the problem. So I wrote the action plan and sent it to them. I had sort of expected a reply within minutes -- naive, I know. After 15 minutes, I called my counterpart and asked him when approval would be forthcoming. He would get it to me the next day(!), he said. Of course, he didn't. Suddenly, it was no longer urgent. It took a total of 10 days for the approval.  And then I fixed it in 30 minutes.

These are the moments where I dream the most of being FI already, just saying "do it yourself, then". Hanging up the phone, walking out and going home.

BeautifulDay

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 164
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14795 on: August 26, 2016, 06:01:02 AM »
Talking with a couple co-workers today about changes at work. I'm at least 20 yrs younger than two coworkers that I'm talking with. 

CW1: talks about the changes and how the changes will effect certain employees we supervise who are nearing retirement.
CW 2: "I'll be retiring in about 5 yrs too" looks at me "Not like the young ones like 'BeautifulDay' who have another 30 or even 35 years till retirement"
Me: no comment. didn't know what to say since if I stay on my path I'll retire within 10 yrs.  no way I'll be here another 30-35 yrs!
How about "my goal is 10... *smile*"
Just because it might blow their minds, doesn't mean you can't say it. MMM didn't set out to preach to a choir, he started this to win hearts and minds that previously had no clue you could consume less worthless shit and radically alter your life trajectory, or lacked the knowledge or willpower to do it even if they had a clue, etc... you never know for sure which one you're talking to.
I'd be hesitant to do this 10 years out to coworkers.  I tell everyone who brings it up in my personal life, but I keep my mouth shut in my professional life unless someone I work with becomes a close friend and isn't going to gossip.  I'll "retire" whenever I feel like I'd rather do something else after FI, but at an at-will job I don't want my employers knowing that.  I do fantasize about it, though.
Yes, I do talk to people about my goals, but there is a time and a place.  This was not that time or place.  Honestly, I do know these two well and I have a good idea of what they would think of my plan.  They LOVE their job.  Super dedicated to the organization and our 'cause.' (I work for a nonprofit) I think the cause alone would keep them at work till a normal retirement age.  Not me.  I like the cause and I'm dedicated, but I still want to FIRE.  Me wanting something different (not being willing to dedicate my whole life) would be seen as a negative thing.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2016, 06:04:33 AM by BeautifulDay »

Sawedoff

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 13
  • Location: VA
    • Revenue Herald
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14796 on: August 26, 2016, 07:33:55 AM »
My entire team exists because of a team like WerKater's customer. They spent years not doing anything other than endless committee meetings and status reports. Our team was created to basically do that team's job.

No joke: My last job, I spent 15 hours per week attending meetings and gathering/updating briefings for the customer, out of an allotted 20.5 hours per week to the project.

The meetings would take so long, because they're trying to dig into the reason we're not making progress. The reason: Majority of our time is dedicated to the meetings. They never seemed to get it.

I put a year and a half into it, and in that time every position turned over at least once. At least half of them 3 times. It was insane.

frugalnacho

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2687
  • Age: 34
  • Location: Madison Heights, Michigan
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14797 on: August 26, 2016, 08:10:02 AM »
Man I hope I'm not investing in your companies.  Sheesh.
Well, mine is a Fortune 500 / 100 (depending on the year) - so you probably are if you have index funds. My bet is the same is true for many here.
The level of waste and incompetence in various departments is horrifying. But overall, the Goliath lumbers on.

It's like a metaphor for the average consumer.  Your company should stop being wasteful so it can retire early.

zolotiyeruki

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1947
  • Location: State: Denial
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14798 on: August 26, 2016, 08:28:57 AM »
Man I hope I'm not investing in your companies.  Sheesh.
Well, mine is a Fortune 500 / 100 (depending on the year) - so you probably are if you have index funds. My bet is the same is true for many here.
The level of waste and incompetence in various departments is horrifying. But overall, the Goliath lumbers on.
It's also pretty typical of most big companies.  As the size increases, individual decisions have a smaller impact on the company, so there's less of a feeling of accountability.  Just like a big government.

A startup, on the other hand, can see big impacts from decisions made by individuals, so a lot more care is taken there.

Metta

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 552
Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14799 on: August 26, 2016, 10:05:20 AM »
My entire team exists because of a team like WerKater's customer. They spent years not doing anything other than endless committee meetings and status reports. Our team was created to basically do that team's job.

No joke: My last job, I spent 15 hours per week attending meetings and gathering/updating briefings for the customer, out of an allotted 20.5 hours per week to the project.

The meetings would take so long, because they're trying to dig into the reason we're not making progress. The reason: Majority of our time is dedicated to the meetings. They never seemed to get it.


This is my life. Yesterday I had six meetings and had to do my productive work after hours, which is sadly typical of my work week. Every time someone is not meeting deadlines, my manager assigns me to the case and instructs me to set up additional meetings to improve collaboration and performance. In most cases, they are not meeting deadlines because their time is being eaten up in meetings, so an additional meeting isn't really an effective way of dealing with this.

My latest effort to subvert this is to make this kind of meeting a 10-minute personal progress check at each person's desk. No one is happy about it, but at least I don't have a group of unproductive programmers sitting in a meeting for an additional 50 minutes. Eventually my manager will catch on to the lack of meetings and will demand a meeting to analyze why I am not holding longer meetings. (I kid you not. This happened about six months ago.)  The philosophy is that there is no problem that cannot be solved by adding meetings.