Monday, February 15, 2010

Management by Humiliation!

There are a few departments that basically touch on everyone in the company, whichever position you have, the IT department which I have previously discussed is one, and the General Affairs department is another.

General affairs usually handle all administrative stuff going on and even though the stuff that they do might not be too exciting it makes the wheels turn inside the company. I get a long well with the GA dep. most of the time, but on the other hand I don't usually throw them particularly bizarre requests for office supplies, shipping services and stuff like that. Since a few months back, a very ambitious temp staff (one of those disposable employees) joined the department to support the manager. With an enthusiasm I've never previously seen of from a temp staff, he threw himself into the task and proactively started to waddle around the office (a characteristic of this guy is a waddling walk with a permanent smile plastered on his face, with short stature and a bit of overweight it also empasize the waddle) asking people what they need and then setting out to actively support people.This continued for a few months, but it seems like his proactiveness was a bit too much for the manager (possibly procuring things outside his authority as a temp staff and putting in overtime the company wasn’t ready to pay etc.) and now on an almost weekly basis e-mails has been coming out from the temp staff.

The content of the e-mails are usually of the type of "for procurement of supplies, please direct your requests directly to the manager and not me" or "since I no longer have access to the key to the X cabinet, please ask the manager when you need access to the contents in there". After a few weeks of this he basically no longer has any authority above taking copies and that permanent smile has now started to fade.

This is basically the corporate version of the Nazis forcing you to execute your own family to break you down and humiliate you completely before killing you. Management by humiliation, maybe this is the management method of the future?

6 comments:

RMilner said...

Of course it also means the manager will have to field all the requests for replacement staples, spare rolls of sellotape and so on.

Taarne said...

That comic is truly hilarious. Especially when I imagine the poor soul as a chinese woman :P

Thank you.

Corinne said...

They should make him dress up as a tea lady or impose a "no trousers in the office" rule for him, then he might actually quit rather than just plodding along with slight hope for the future.

Mr. Salaryman said...

Rmilner - Well... yeah... or not... Things just stop happening instead...

Taarne - And yeah, it illustrate the post perfectly too!

Corinne - Well, he`s still waddling around so it sounds like a logical step if the manager thinks of it...

Andy K said...

Yikes. No clearer example of "the post that sticks up...". I've seen that kind of thing, too: I dunno if I'd call it "humiliation", more like "work enthusiasm vampirism": Take a dude (working at a temp staff at middle age? so he was probably let go from another job, overjoyed that he could even find temp work, and thus engaged in that thing that the Japanese tend to do, "Being the best X (item procurement guy/data entry specialist/7-11 regi worker) I can be"), see that he's doing a better job than you with far more enthusiasm than you ever displayed, and then do whatever you can to make sure he understands that it's not his place to "achieve" and "do more for the company" if that means making full-timers looks bad.

Seen it once or twice myself, I tended to leave those gigs fast...

tokyobling said...

Few positions can be as painful as the one assumed by young tempstaff at any position in this wonderful country. I feel his pain. Ambition comes to naught when confronted by the flame breathing acid spitting rotten sheep of conformity. Perhaps now he will get back earlier at night, spend the extra time helping his kids get higher score on their exams thus sparing them a life like his.

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