The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!

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Drumstick
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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Drumstick » Sun Jun 21, 2020 11:09 am

That's not a growth wrote:It's in an early planning phase.

It would be my department running it, and I would likely be involved, potentially heavily.

I see. That along with the attitudes you've previously described in your company, makes it very tricky.

The two things you originally mentioned - are they entirely separate or part of the same issue?

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by That's not a growth » Sun Jun 21, 2020 11:14 am

Drumstick wrote:
That's not a growth wrote:It's in an early planning phase.

It would be my department running it, and I would likely be involved, potentially heavily.

I see. That along with the attitudes you've previously described in your company, makes it very tricky.

The two things you originally mentioned - are they entirely separate or part of the same issue?


They're connected.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Green Gecko » Sun Jun 21, 2020 2:54 pm

I got called into a disciplinary of sorts after being asked to install pirated software, and as I know the law there allows for the IT manager or whoever to be complicit in corporate piracy I wasn't comfortable doing this. They felt this behaviour was "threatening" which was absurd as I just wasn't comfortable doing it when the company could probably have paid for it or used some alternative software, nonetheless have felt that way before.

I think piracy is cool for people to learn software etc in their own time for their betterment, especially at school as I see this doing no harm in real terms and actually making money in the long run (companies like Autodesk realise this now as you can sign up for a free Autodesk Education account even as a private individual without an education program and just download anything for free with minor limitations), and I've since spent hundreds and hundreds of pounds on legit subscriptions I.e. Adobe but when companies do it that's just taking the piss.

Need to handle that sort of thing really carefully because it can very easily be seen as being uncompromising or difficult when ultimately it's the companies decision to decide if something is ethical or not, perhaps try to focus on demonstrating how a corporate culture that trusts its employees can work better in the long run although obviously they're unlikely to agree.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by That's not a growth » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:06 pm

Errkal wrote:
That's not a growth wrote:It's in an early planning phase.

It would be my department running it, and I would likely be involved, potentially heavily.


It depends, tracking movement etc. isn’t inherently bad so it isn’t really issue “unless” bad gooseberry fool is being done with the result of the data if that makes sense.


See, I swing the other way - it feels inherently bad, but could have a few positives in the right hands. But I don't think 'the right hands' would ever exist.

The idea of tracking everyone's movements in a building all day feels like a massive breach of privacy and demotes people into statistics devoid of context for minimal benefit. All it takes is one brown-nosing ambitious psychopath to start using the data to "boost efficiency" - perhaps at the simplistic level making the tracking device alert you if you've been still too long, with little thought of employee morale or actual working patterns. It encourages the idea that individuality and personal responsibility are second to 'looking busy', and discourages creative problem solving in the workplace.

Data like this can easily be misused. How would you feel if they showed you clear statistics of every bathroom break you had during your next performance review, and they asked if they were all necessary? Told you you're in the top 5 people for spending time around the vending machine, which indicates you talk a lot when you're there. Statistics are already rampant in jobs like contact centres and warehouses, how many calls/picks you can do, average time, error statistics and so on. While these also have their problems, at least they measure output and tangible statics of tasks the employee is doing.

When you agree to do a job for someone all that should matter is if you do the job well. Knowing how many times they got out of the chair doesn't matter if the results are there.

I've worked somewhere before that got rid of someone during their 6 month probation period because the company found out she was pregnant due to having time off after having a miscarriage. Her manager was worried the employee would try to get pregnant again within the next few years and cost the company in maternity leave, and let her go. The world is full of banana splits.

Think of the stories people have shared about companies taking the Bradford factor beyond it's original intention. This would be like that on steroids.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Dual » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:09 pm

Not your problem how it ends up being used.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by That's not a growth » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:12 pm

Green Gecko wrote:Need to handle that sort of thing really carefully because it can very easily be seen as being uncompromising or difficult when ultimately it's the companies decision to decide if something is ethical or not, perhaps try to focus on demonstrating how a corporate culture that trusts its employees can work better in the long run although obviously they're unlikely to agree.


It's more a case that we're essentially unwilling to say no to anything. Customer comes with an idea? We'll try to do it. The idea of saying 'no' to the prospect of money only happens if we physically can't do the request in the time required, but even so we would need to prove that we at least tried. The idea of not doing something due to ethics is not something I've ever heard anyone talk about, and can see it being met with hostility at all levels.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Qikz » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:12 pm

Green Gecko wrote:I got called into a disciplinary of sorts after being asked to install pirated software, and as I know the law there allows for the IT manager or whoever to be complicit in corporate piracy I wasn't comfortable doing this. They felt this behaviour was "threatening" which was absurd as I just wasn't comfortable doing it when the company could probably have paid for it or used some alternative software, nonetheless have felt that way before.

I think piracy is cool for people to learn software etc in their own time for their betterment, especially at school as I see this doing no harm in real terms and actually making money in the long run (companies like Autodesk realise this now as you can sign up for a free Autodesk Education account even as a private individual without an education program and just download anything for free with minor limitations), and I've since spent hundreds and hundreds of pounds on legit subscriptions I.e. Adobe but when companies do it that's just taking the piss.

Need to handle that sort of thing really carefully because it can very easily be seen as being uncompromising or difficult when ultimately it's the companies decision to decide if something is ethical or not, perhaps try to focus on demonstrating how a corporate culture that trusts its employees can work better in the long run although obviously they're unlikely to agree.


If they want proof as to why company piracy is bad one of our clients were fined 10s of thousands of pounds because they didn't buy anything themselves and pirated it all. It all came out in an audit and they got strawberry floated. We warned them when we took over their support that it'd happen but they refused to listen.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by That's not a growth » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:21 pm

Dual wrote:Not your problem how it ends up being used.


Well lets all go make guns and sell them to the Saudis then. I hear that's quite profitable these days.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Dual » Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:38 pm

That's not a growth wrote:
Dual wrote:Not your problem how it ends up being used.


Well lets all go make guns and sell them to the Saudis then. I hear that's quite profitable these days.


You're just worker drone #45321 trying to pay the bills.

If it's really troubling you start looking for other employment. I wouldn't share my concerns with the higher ups tbh.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Drumstick » Sun Jun 21, 2020 5:33 pm

The 'surveillance' route TNAG's company is looking to go down strikes me as something that would likely be used by his company to justify contract terminations.

I agree with everything else you said, TNAG.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Green Gecko » Sun Jun 21, 2020 6:06 pm

Qikz wrote:
Green Gecko wrote:I got called into a disciplinary of sorts after being asked to install pirated software, and as I know the law there allows for the IT manager or whoever to be complicit in corporate piracy I wasn't comfortable doing this. They felt this behaviour was "threatening" which was absurd as I just wasn't comfortable doing it when the company could probably have paid for it or used some alternative software, nonetheless have felt that way before.

I think piracy is cool for people to learn software etc in their own time for their betterment, especially at school as I see this doing no harm in real terms and actually making money in the long run (companies like Autodesk realise this now as you can sign up for a free Autodesk Education account even as a private individual without an education program and just download anything for free with minor limitations), and I've since spent hundreds and hundreds of pounds on legit subscriptions I.e. Adobe but when companies do it that's just taking the piss.

Need to handle that sort of thing really carefully because it can very easily be seen as being uncompromising or difficult when ultimately it's the companies decision to decide if something is ethical or not, perhaps try to focus on demonstrating how a corporate culture that trusts its employees can work better in the long run although obviously they're unlikely to agree.


If they want proof as to why company piracy is bad one of our clients were fined 10s of thousands of pounds because they didn't buy anything themselves and pirated it all. It all came out in an audit and they got strawberry floated. We warned them when we took over their support that it'd happen but they refused to listen.

Well that's basically what I said as the IT manager at the time, they might force me to do something illegal on their time but that doesn't mean I am comfortable doing it. They took this as a threat because they thought surely the only way anyone could find out was if I reported them which was just stupid, why would I want to risk my own job reporting a company for something as petty as piracy, it was just ridiculously paranoid and I didn't feel trusted at all. It took a long time for me in that job to explain that if you want me to process your data and manage your systems effectively you need to trust me not lock me out. Anyway I was only there for just over a year and a half in the end, the management constantly bounced around giving me responsibilities that were completely ridiculous like setting prices for a marketing product when I was only responsible for the UX and internal processes, how much they wanted to charge was totally out of scope of my contract, and asking me to design things that they then turned out wanted done completely differently or suddenly realised asking things to be done bespoke from scratch took time and thus cost them money, it was just silly. I left of my own accord.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Memento Mori » Mon Jun 22, 2020 12:59 pm

A client who terminated with us at the beginning of the month has just asked to come back after one of our competitors announced last week they were shutting down.

:lol: 8-)

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Zilnad » Mon Jun 22, 2020 1:06 pm

Director has somehow corrupted his Sage data and needs to revert to an old backup. Can he use my uncorrupted backup from this morning? Oh no, that would be too easy. He needs to use a backup from a week ago because that's what Sage customer services told him to do. Don't you even want to try using my backup first? No, okay then.

So all that urgent work that I'm behind on now needs to be put aside so I can reinput a week's worth of accounting transactions.

I'm strawberry floating sick of it.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Victor Mildew » Mon Jun 22, 2020 1:20 pm

Zilnad wrote:Director has somehow corrupted his Sage data and needs to revert to an old backup. Can he use my uncorrupted backup from this morning? Oh no, that would be too easy. He needs to use a backup from a week ago because that's what Sage customer services told him to do. Don't you even want to try using my backup first? No, okay then.

So all that urgent work that I'm behind on now needs to be put aside so I can reinput a week's worth of accounting transactions.

I'm strawberry floating sick of it.


Sounds like he should listen to your.......

.....

Sage advice.

YEEEAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Jenuall » Mon Jun 22, 2020 1:23 pm

Victor Mildew wrote:
Zilnad wrote:Director has somehow corrupted his Sage data and needs to revert to an old backup. Can he use my uncorrupted backup from this morning? Oh no, that would be too easy. He needs to use a backup from a week ago because that's what Sage customer services told him to do. Don't you even want to try using my backup first? No, okay then.

So all that urgent work that I'm behind on now needs to be put aside so I can reinput a week's worth of accounting transactions.

I'm strawberry floating sick of it.


Sounds like he should listen to your.......

.....

Sage advice.

YEEEAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH

Man. All these problems you are having with sage, sounds like it's going to take a lot of thyme to sort out. ;)

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Zilnad » Mon Jun 22, 2020 2:40 pm

I love you guys.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by That's not a growth » Mon Jun 22, 2020 8:29 pm

My manager went strawberry floating ballistic this morning at me on a team call (not about anything I've mentioned in here).

I tried to type it up, but it takes strawberry floating ages to give all the context without giving away too many details.

Essentially, we need to set up 30 of some things for the website. We've been working on it for weeks, learning the products, going through the documentation and breaking things down into customer friendly ways. Figuring out the most 'adaptive' and useful options and configurations, so will limit the amount we need to set up (30 wasn't a solid number we had to stick to)- since we'll maximise their use-cases and not making them too specific for one type of customer.

On Thursday, despite not been given any idea on a deadline of any kind and making steady progress, my manager was complaining it was taking too long and we weren't taking it seriously. He said it was easy. You just do x, y, then z. There should be more progress. We should be almost done by now. I explained that perhaps x, y and z might be simple things by themselves, but together and multiplied by 30 - and balancing all the other requirements that are thrown our way for other projects for customers - is not an easy thing. I explained the amount of work we had achieved the last few weeks, and explained our path - which would mean everything would be completed at around the same time, as this was the most efficient way to do this. He got angry at this and demanded we got 1 done before the end of Friday. We said it wasn't possible. He got angry again, and eventually it was agree we would do a stripped down version, without rich content, or any explanation pages that gives further info on the products that would bring them all together.

They guys managed this single page with about half an hour to spare.

This morning we had another team call. A discussion this project came up again. He asked how long we thought it would be to get the 30 done (completely). I said perhaps a few weeks, if we were lucky. He strawberry floating snapped. Like properly yelling and screaming, like a flip of a switch. He wants the whole thing done in the next few days, by the end of the week at the latest. Again, we have essentially the same conversation, he thinks it a simple thing, we explain all the different parts it is comprised of and the scale of the thing as a whole.

In the heat of the moment we completely forget about last week, how it took us 2 days to get 1 done about 60%, so don't mention this. Stress is an amazing thing. But again he eventually decides upon a stripped down version of only 4 pages by the end of the week, so he can feel like there's something 'live' - probably to show an exec. I mention how my estimate was based on him asking about the whole project, he never explained that he has a deadline in mind or was willing to compromise on the amount or detail done to hit it, and that I found this difficult. As usual in situations that require humility or introspection, he brushes straight past it not even acknowledging it. We even shared a phone call, just the two of us about an hour later quickly about something else and he didn't bring the situation up at all.

I then spend about 4 hours today stuck on various phone calls to customers or vendors with him, which was fantastic.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Zilnad » Tue Jun 23, 2020 2:45 pm

Been in touch with an agency today about getting a new job. Things came to a head with my director today and I just have to get out before it gets worse.

It's an awful time for change but sometimes you just have to.

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Drumstick » Tue Jun 23, 2020 3:18 pm

Zilnad wrote:Been in touch with an agency today about getting a new job. Things came to a head with my director today and I just have to get out before it gets worse.

It's an awful time for change but sometimes you just have to.

What happened?

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PostRe: The Work Thread 2 - Get back to work!
by Jenuall » Tue Jun 23, 2020 3:19 pm

TNAG that sounds like a really gooseberry fool situation, but a familiar one. Countless hours of my working life to date have been spent explaining in increasing levels of detail why something which an uninformed manager/client/idiot thinks is trivial is actually really strawberry floating hard and it is rarely appreciated. :roll:

The lack of transparency around key information that would make this process much easier for everyone is also really strawberry floating annoying. What their actual requirements from you are, whether they have specific deadlines in mind, which audience (user/client/supplier/director etc.) they are needing this for and therefore how best to tailor the response etc.

Trust is a huge thing in these situations, so often the manager seems to operate from a position of "everyone under me is trying to take the piss and get away with slacking off" so they just view any plans or estimates that they put together as bullshit, despite the fact that they generally lack the expertise to genuinely critique them in any valid way.


Zilnad, it is a tough time to find something new but it does sound like you haven't got much choice. Your current place does not sound like the best for you at all. Just make sure you have something solid lined up before telling them to strawberry float off!

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