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Afternoon with the Boss

February 13, 2012

About 15 minutes before I leave work I need to start planning how I’m going to get out of there. Start closing up whatever it is my brain was working away at. Finish up all the little things that needed to be done before leaving. (All images today, like most of my Powerpoint presentations, courtesy Microsoft Clipart). Then just when you think you are getting out of there in comes the boss.

Don’t worry, it’s not an Office Space style request to start working weekends. But the conversation goes something like this.

“Hey Frau, I need you to give me a list of all the parts that we’re behind on for Project Space Invasion.”

“So you need a list of all the rockets, spacecraft, and missiles that are currently projected to not arrive by the July due date of the project?”

“Yes. I also want to know what food and medical supplies we’ll be behind on and the space guidance computers.”

“Oh, but those are the Logistics and Electronics departments, do you want all the other department’s tracking? Like the Little Green Men Cosmetics line?”

“Oh, yeah yeah, that too. I need everything. I also need to know what it’s going to take to pull those dates in. Whether we’re missing material, or labor, or priority, or who’s responsible.”

“But the other departments should be tracking their stuff for themselves right-“

“And then I need you to call the other department heads and get them to pull back those dates. We really need all this stuff to arrive on time.”

“But-“

“Oh and the ship design for the transports is unacceptable. Right now they’re using ion solar sails but that’s going to take too long. They need to be upgraded to warp drives. You should call the transport propulsion design chief and get him to overhaul is design. We really need that to be in by July.”

“Um-“

“I’m also going to need the ships staffed with genetically enhanced cyborg teddy bears that can recite the constitution from memory and produce rainbows as biowaste.”

Me: “So…you want me to come up with a list of everything from our department, and everything from every other department, that’s not going to come in on time for Project Space Invasion, a reason why. Then you want me to call all the department heads and convince them to get their stuff in on time. Then you want me to completely redesign the transport ships. And then you want me to design a cyborg race of teddy bears that are capable of flying our ships.”

“Yes. Ugh. I can’t believe it took that long to explain all this to you. It’s so simple. So I’m holding you responsible for all this. No excuses.”

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. Dave Vandenbout permalink
    February 13, 2012 7:46 am

    From the tenor of your recent blog posts, I get the feeling you’re not going to be at this job in a year.

    If you do find those teddy bears, I’ll take a couple. I need something that can poop a rainbow.

  2. February 13, 2012 8:02 am

    @Dave,

    I don’t think he should… You can no longer treat your employees as slaves in this day and age…

    By the way, one of my past jobs was like this, and I ended up quitting with 3 months when they changed the boss to someone like his…

  3. February 13, 2012 9:07 am

    “ships staffed with genetically enhanced cyborg teddy bears ”

    I so want one of those. could you please add one for me, shipping whenever before New Years Eve 2012? ^^

    Joke aside, sounds like things are not so great at times at work. I hope it gets better or you get a better place. Best of luck for improvements!

  4. February 13, 2012 10:18 am

    You have my sympathies. As hilarious as I find this Star wars/space opera theme project analogies, I hope to see them stop soon.

  5. frautech permalink*
    February 14, 2012 7:13 pm

    Rainbow pooping cyborg teddy bears for everyone!

    I’ll still be there in a year. Unless they find a way to let me go for my cynicism and dark humor that I use as a coping mechanism…

  6. ferd permalink
    February 18, 2012 12:05 pm

    You sound like a project manager / lead engineer. Isn’t it great to already work at two jobs, then have your boss assign you his? :>)

    At least he hasn’t requested a list of future problems, with solutions. Yet.

    When I get nebulous request like this, I try to avoid asking for too much clarification. It just causes his list to grow longer and more unwieldy. Chances are he won’t recognize if this task is complete, or know what to do with the data. So I’m not saying to lie to him, but I wouldn’t waste a lot of time on it either. References to other departments’ reports should get you off the hook for their responsibilities.

    Before he leaves, divert his attention by asking him for information and commitments that he’s responsible for. Such as interfacing with other department management on the project’s behalf. Don’t expect useful cooperation… you just want him uncomfortable enough to reconsider doing this to you at the end of the day again.

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