Wisdom From Elsewhere

From Bob Lewis’s Advice Line column

Thursday, July 24, 2003

Wisdom from elsewhere:

Readers Doug Schulek-Miller and Marilyn Kennedy provide the following
test:

Are the following “true” or “false” with respect to your company?

1. In the past six months, management has made a series of decisions so
inexplicable that most of us have no idea what the organization is
trying to do.

2. My boss often makes a decision and after everyone is working on
implementation, reverses it.

3. In the past year, several top performers have quit without first
getting new jobs.

4. As I look at my co-workers, I see many of them on the verge of
burnout and some are constantly on the edge of hysteria.

5. I have serious doubts that the organization will survive. I can see
it being bought or merged.

6. The grapevine is always active. There are no quiet periods but each
new outrage excites the troops less.

7. If I were asked to explain why we do something in a particular way,
I’d say that I don?t know.

8. Most of the long-time employees in my area would be unemployable
elsewhere.

9. My boss would not be able to get the same kind of job elsewhere.

10. We are sitting on a time bomb. The organization’s most important
product/service is not competitive. Management now puts more emphasis on
individual style.

11. Productivity is gradually declining everywhere. There used to be a
few highly productive areas but they’ve given up.

12. Management has made gurus of its least productive but longest-term
employees.

13. Punishment for asking “why” and “how” questions is swift and
certain.

If you were to answer “True” to 8 or more of these questions, one might
ask why you are still working where you are, or why your company hasn’t
called in outside help.

Bob’s Last Word:

Eight? The economy must really be bad …