June 23, 2005

Why I Hate my Job

One of the main reasons that I hate my job is because everything is so wildly inconsistent. When I point out inconsistencies to some of my coworkers or even my boss, they fail to see the point. They rationalize around it and say that my way of dealing with the situation is incorrect.

Meanwhile, their responses cost the company money and result in compromised service for the clients. Why? Because they do not want to confront the unhappy reality of their own actions.

Here's an example:

Client X has been with my company for years. I've never spoken with them once. Suddenly, I was asked to help the sales team on a deal with this client. I delivered ahead of schedule the usual battery of information and recommendations.

The client came back and wanted some clarification and before I could give them that, someone else stepped in and took over. I was copied on all of the email exchanges, but I was no longer the point person on the deal. That's fine by me. I have plenty of other clients to support.

So, lots of phone and email conversations are going on. Suddenly, the client emails me and only me asking for information on the last email, which was directed to the person who took over.

I wrote:

It looks like there are still outstanding issues. The last update we had was the note that JOHN DOE sent out back to JANE VENDOR.

SUZY ACCOUNTMANAGER is really your contact for these things. I don't want to confuse things further by adding another chain of communication to the line, so I recommend that you continue to look to SUZY for information and follow up.

And then the shit hit the fan.

Apparently, the client was extremely displeased by this response. They went to my boss and my boss' boss complaining about it.

When I spoke with JOHN DOE, he said that I should consider the context and look at my response that way, although he agreed that my response was very professional.

Let me recap: my response is professional both in content and tone, but some how it is still unsatisfactory. You might think I'm blowing things out of proportion, but I really might be fired for this.

All because I didn't want to further dilute the chain of communication and chose to steer the client back into the channels they had been using up to this point.

JOHN DOE said that this client has caused problems like this in the past. Bear in mind that I don't know this client and I've never worked with them before, so I had no idea. JOHN DOE said that I should have realized from the numerous emails that were exchanged. Bear in mind that I was not the author of those emails and they did not contain any heated language and did not communicate any sense of urgency beyond what was already present in the project.

So, I had no way to know... but I might be fired for it.

And my boss doesn't know why I don't trust him.

To close, JOHN DOE recommended that I consider my email from the perspective of how I would like people to communicate with me. I think he meant to imply that promptly, professionally, and efficiently are the wrong answers. The problem is that I don't know any other way to get the job done.

I need to be adopted by Martha Stewart. Martha, if you're reading, I'll even call you mommy if you'd like. Just give me an $85K per annum allowance.

Posted by Flibbertigibbet at June 23, 2005 12:26 PM
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