Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Losing the Plot

if you're running your own business and the people working for you put in a full 8 hour day, no coffee breaks, no newspaper reading, no buggering off to the Shell Select for chilli crisps...i dont but thats besides the point...consider yourself very unlucky because sooner rather than later, those (seriously) overworked employees are gonna realise that they do not need your shit and they're gonna leave, most likely leaving you in a lurch.

so the really daft people who run this company decided in all of their wisdom to, among other cost and time saving measures, restrict acess to the internet to a grand total of 150 staggered minutes during the working day. that's 30 in the morning, 60 during lunch and 30 before close of business. after 5pm we can surf to our heart's delight, good stuff that; if i just want to google South Africa's Branding Campaign, i can either do it on my lunch break (ha!!) or wait till after 5pm (like i dont have a life!). this is really taking the piss.

i put my soul into this company, as does everyone seating around me and looking over my shoulder while i'm typing this. i expect as compensation, in lieu of the pittance someone in finance regards a salary - more like a wage it is, to be allowed my indulgence of a few pleasant pastimes, such as unfettered access to the internet. now that that's gonna be cut off at the knees, i'm going to engage in some civil disobedience.

the next time someone calls me on a Sunday or a public holiday (easter cometh), i will demand overtime before i deign to uncoil myself from the couch onto which i will have become grafted. the next time i get asked to play social host to one of our innumerable bazungu guests (where muzungu generally refers to people from outside countries) i will request an allowance that i am even now making up. and the next time i get asked to clear my desk and cover for someone who has a monday deadline and has chosen to go upcountry on Friday, meaning i'll be behind on my own stuff coz i worked through the weekend for them....i'll say no. nicely. if i'm gonna be behind on my work, let it be because i was a lazy so-n-so not because i was holding the fort for someone else. do not mention the words "teamwork" to me because i am seating out this one.

as a matter of fact, today i will break with habit and go home early, soon as i finish posting this. chicks to bench, books to read, babies to play with. sunsets to watch, gin to throw back.

you know what really shook me though? the people i work with are a fairly outspoken lot, so outspoken sometimes i think they speak if only to be heard to say something...anything at all really. now while this news was being shared during the staff meeting, i wasnt present - didnt feel like it so i slept in, no one spoke up or asked a question or made a wiseass crack. everyone just listened and when whoever spoke was done, they all just got up and left the boardroom.

i find that worrying. very worrying indeed. i wont be surpsised if one fine morning i come in to work and find that half the staff has buggered off to Saatchi & Saatchi.

17 Comments:

Blogger savage said...

Sorry bro.About your co-workers who wouldn't raise a finger when the man was making the announcement,I guess unrestricted internet access doesn't mean the same to them as it does to you.
Like you said you are gonna engage in some civil disobedience, go right ahead.There is gotta be a way of sticking it to the man.

Wed Apr 12, 09:29:00 pm  
Blogger Iwaya said...

they finally got you too! yes, it seems the point of human resource at any workplace is to spot the things that make employers happy and ruthlessly prune them out, so that YOU WORK without a smirk or a smile.

Fri Apr 14, 02:40:00 pm  
Blogger savage said...

There is this false belief that when someone looks happy at work then he/she is not working hard.

Fri Apr 14, 11:11:00 pm  
Blogger Degstar said...

moot point Savage, i'm at the point where i just wanna do my stuff and get out, 8 - 5 strictly. maybe its a phase i'm going thru, or maybe its not

Sat Apr 15, 10:17:00 am  
Blogger jkb said...

OMG! Beep...pigtail of fury? U folks must be the only ones out there that sulk when asked (by the hand that feeds you) to do some work!!

Think about it people, a galaxy of slackers will gladly swap their jobs for yours any time, any day... just for that limited surfing benefit.

Sun Apr 16, 02:15:00 am  
Blogger savage said...

It's one thing not to have something-Surely you can't miss what you don't have that much-and quite another to take away what you had.
Once you get used to having a certain benefit, it becomes an entitlement.So bro fight for what you are entitled to.

Mon Apr 17, 03:59:00 am  
Blogger Jay said...

JKB, I don't think its about whinning for being told to work. I Think it is the fact that one actually puts in a lot of work and cannot even enjoy the small things that would make a workplace better and a terrible employer tolerable. There will always be people who are willing to do what one does for less pay and benefits, that doesnt mean we should always bend over backwards every time we feel denied.

But then, I am just making assumptions, since I dont know where degstar works.

Tue Apr 18, 12:15:00 pm  
Blogger Degstar said...

u tell 'em Jay!
and no, i wont tell where i toil! i still like the people i spend my days with, esp the chick who seats next to me, and i do have a couple projects to bring to fruition...so this saltmine is still my home.

JKB,
hi
listen Luvvie, that whole "eat your veggies coz kids in Somalia are starving" line, is so old school i cant believe you even thought it to start with.
so i forgive you. now you dont have to apologise because after all you may express yourself freely right here - thats the point of my blog.

Tue Apr 18, 06:44:00 pm  
Blogger jkb said...

Ok people, trust my guts I can take a beating or two...but seriously, unless you toil for an NGO, why would you blame a corporation for trying to maximize the productivity of its resources at hand?!

Can it be that your productivity suffered every after a break? In this competitive world of business, survival is at the hands of the most 'shrewdest.' Mmmh, Surfing wasn't thrown out, but rather affected by a mere change of time, a small irritation. Right?

The power struggles between employees and employers are well documented, but your struggles should be in the best interest of the corporation you serve and thats why u were hired (your potential to further the goals of the corporation).

Thats my objective opinion and I am sticking to it. By the way I am old school and I am sticking with that too. Ha, ha...

Wed Apr 19, 08:17:00 pm  
Blogger Lovely Amphibian said...

Dude, this is not even connected to the post. im here about that comment you made on my blog, how can you say i remind you of Seth Cohen? you want to take this outside? i know where you live.

Fri Apr 21, 11:27:00 am  
Blogger Degstar said...

u water dwelling person, i will be a Ryan Atwood to your Seth Cohen.

JKB,
the greatest asset of any company, esp. one in the private sector, is its people. period. treat them well (e.g. by indulging their individual foibles whether it be flavoured tea bags or unlimited internet access) and they'll break their backs 4 you, in our case frequently working late into the night and over the weekends - incl. sunday, with nary a thought of overtime pay.

ask my girlfrend, she's got a few choice epithets she wouldnt mind sharing on this particular issue.

now that i feel my needs are not being met i'll do exactly what is asked of me, not an iota more. basically if i was paid according to the hours i've been putting in, these Boers wouldn't be able to afford me. now they'll get exactly what they pay for.

what say you?

Fri Apr 21, 07:00:00 pm  
Anonymous baz said...

why are people jumping on jkb? is it because she is siding with The Man instead of The People?

Sun Apr 23, 01:24:00 pm  
Anonymous baz said...

i still have four minutes; Jkb, what The Man doesnt understand is that Creative employees (and we can assume from Degstars posts that he is one) need to be stimulated to work. Unlike clerks, accountants and soldiers, creative people actually work better if they have music, jokes, cartoons, and the opportunity to change their wallpaper four times a day available to them. You lock your artists in a box, they dry up.
If you restrict access to the net, that means the only source of inspiration is real life. In Uganda. Which is very very drab and dull and often stupid. If you want good work, Degstars employees, let the man surf. Free the net, and you free the mind!

Two minutes left...

Sun Apr 23, 01:31:00 pm  
Blogger savage said...

I guess this photo slide of the Googleplex should drive the point home that play also does wonders for productivity.Yes employees of Google; work out, swim,shoot pool,get hair cuts,play volleyball, get massages and all that jazz on the job.That's what makes them dominate the world. Though it doesn't say in the photo essay,I am assuming they have unlimited access to the Internets.

http://www.time.com/time/photoessays/2006/inside_google/1.html

Keep hitting the next button.

Sun Apr 23, 06:46:00 pm  
Blogger Degstar said...

thank you my creative peoples,
gwe Baz, i guess you've earned the Springsteen collection, u still want ko?

Mon Apr 24, 01:49:00 pm  
Blogger baz said...

degstar, OF COURSE!! I was about to send my bayaye to break into your house. Man, I will kill for the Boss collection.

Tue Apr 25, 07:42:00 pm  
Blogger jkb said...

OK folks I take a break from Degstar's blog to seriously wallop my exams, only to be torn down to threads in absentia.

Most employers agree with u all, they would like you to surf the net despite obvious indicators of the cost in lost productivity. However, they would like you to do so under flexible policies that would not create the attittude of distrust in your working environment and lowering of your morale.

Business Week (06/12/00) No. 3685 quotes Websense and Charles Schwab that 40% of lost employee productivity is attributed to personal use of the internet (on porn sites and online trading et. al). Cyberslacking alone has cost the Canadian economy for instance $57 billions a year!! That is a fortune, people.

Degstar's employer is only asking him to surf endlessly commencing at 5:00 pm and beyond, is that too much to ask? Sorry for turning this into a forum, but...

Wed Apr 26, 10:32:00 pm  

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