Monday, December 21, 2009

Radio Silence for a Month - A Sad (but final) Goodbye

Friends --

A few people have been wondering about my whereabouts. So here I am, to say good bye.

I started this blog to get loose and give my take on HR and DeltaHouse. And how I would relish a chance at a new job. Well friends, I'm happy to report I landed a new job that has literally everything I wanted: an HR department, a more professional group, leadership, and HR is revered there too!!!!!

I can't wait to start working at the new place! When I got the offer, I almost ran to the new place to start work. I almost grew wings and flew. I jumped for joy (literally)! I laughed my ass off!

And I realized this: I can't do this blog and work at the new job. It won't work. I'd have to assume that I would freaking hate the new place. And I don't want to hate it. I want to thrive. I want to out-work my co-workers.

So with that, I bid you all farewell. I loved every second of going undercover and doing this. I even made some friends (well, y'know... anonymously). I'll miss the posts, the tweets, and the feedback. But most of all the friends along the way.

To those who read this because you can relate to my plight I will say this: there is hope. Never lose sight of that. I did for a long time (hence, the blog). Never lose hope.

Best Wishes,
The Venting HR Guy

Thursday, November 19, 2009

OK, need some help here...

... I'm burned out on writing. So I'm going to let you, my loyal readers help me out.

I'm looking for guest writers.

Want to vent? Want to firebomb on your boss/company/life anonymously? Hit me up. Send me an email with your rant and I'll post it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Just a character flaw

I've been thinking about character flaws a lot lately. I have many (but the fact that I realize them is probably a good thing right? RIGHT?).

Some of mine:
I need praise/feedback - if I receive none, I get paranoid (hence today TheBoss asked me a question out of the blue and I freaked out, "TheBoss knows I'm alive! Uh oh, I don't have the answer to his question in front of me... THIS ISN'T GOOD!")

I also have a strong opinion about someone, or no opinion about someone. Meaning, I'm either completely biased, or not even a little biased in employee relations situations.

I take everything personally. I want you to like me even if I'm telling you that "we are freeing you up to look for better professional opportunities." I've gotten over that by a lot, but it's still there.

I get very annoyed when I'm working on something and someone interrupts with a question that doesn't involve life-or-death.

I get very annoyed when someone asks me a question that I feel that they should either know the answer to themselves because they asked me already, or could easily find out, but choose to be lazy.

The point is that I know what my flaws are. I try to deal with them as best as I can. A lot of HR is dealing with other people's intellectual and behavioral shortcomings and helping others to do so as well. (WOW! That sounded zen-like!) I know who isn't going to smile ever, who hates everyone, who isn't aware of how they look to other people, who's shy...

... who's shy. I get very annoyed with shy people.

TheBoss is shy. Someone told me this recently. And I never thought about that. But it's 100% true. That's why the DeltaHouse-saving leadership moment is never coming. TheBoss is too shy to give it. But he'll tell other people to have other people relay that message. And I was thinking about a lot of times where TheBoss being shy was the reason behind either A) really bizarre situations, or B) really bizarre behavior is deemed OK by TheBoss.

TheBoss cowers at the chance to make an address to the employees, or even write a quick note to the employee base (I do those). TheBoss doesn't walk around and ask people how they are doing (TheBoss asks me what I know about them). TheBoss doesn't tell people that they are doing good or bad work (he just asks me to can people who he's decided that doesn't like for zero discernable reason, fortunately I can stop that when it happens).

Here's why I get annoyed with shy people. Throughout my life as a child, I was shy (most children are, it's probably a natural defense mechanism). My parents refused to allow this. They taught me to shake hands with adults, look them in the eye, and greet them like a adult. And even engage them in brief conversation. This served me very well, and it helped shed shyness. But I've been constantly around people in my life that I never understood, then someone finally said, "They're shy! That's why they don't talk that much. You just have to get to know them."


I have to work to get to know the shy person? Really? Why? Can't the shy person practice not being shy by stepping out of his shell and speaking to me? I'm pretty easy to talk to (I've checked). No one has to work to get to know me. Why do I need to work to get to know someone who'd rather be hidden in a hole somewhere rather than have to talk to other people.

DISCLAIMER: I have no point with this, I'm just venting. And I'm not talking about people with autism, or people with severe emotional disorders than prevent them from leaving the house. I'm talking about people who can work, but can't talk to co-workers.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Two More Characters at Work

Every company has the same people as if the president went to Wal-Mart and picked up the religious zealot, the weekend warrior, the strict vegetarian, the problem drinker, the unimportant-important guy, the guy who no one knows what they're job is, and the HR person. Here are a few more...

"In my previous company." -- This person has a job at DeltaHouse. However, for reasons passing totally understanding, the company they came from did everything else better than DeltaHouse does. Which is fine in the cases where the new way is better. But I don't need to know when OldPlace had lunch, or how the offices were laid out, or that the receptionist was nicer, or that they had bagels on Fridays. If OldPlace was so f-ing great, why are you cursing us with your presence... you were fired, weren't you?

"Yeah, that's right guys." -- This person is the person who the one person who doesn't do the weekly report, or who leaves the coffeemaker on 24/7, or who leaves lights on all the time. Basically the one person in the group that hasn't figured out that they have to what everyone else is doing. So finally, the boss makes the speech to the entire group of employees saying that all weekly reports are due Wednesday at 10am. This person will look at the group like, "what's your problem?!?!" When we're talking about THEM!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Face-punchable offenses

So I had an angry employee email me and copy TheBoss about an issue. Here's the sh!tty part, the person sending me the email never even came to me first in order to solve the problem. They just sent the email and copied TheBoss, forcing me to quickly solve the problem - dropping everything in the process.

This such crime should be punishable by a punch in the face. The person who the email is intended for such be able to either a) slam the sender's head into a doorframe, or b) ball up the fist and blow up the sender's face.

Other crimes that deserve a face-punch/head-slam...

* Re-copying TheBoss when I reply to just you to answer your question. I tried to act like an adult and emailed you back directly, and you opted to re-copy TheBoss in your email reply when this has nothing to do with him, you are just choosing to be an ass. This is more of a head-slam offense.

* The call-no-voice-mail-call-back-repeat. This person calls you. You have no time to pick up, or don't want to pick up. So you flush it to voice mail, you'll deal with it later. Instead the caller, calls you back five minutes later. Then four minutes later. Then three minutes later. Until you pick up. This happens to me once a week by a steady rotation of former employees who are calling me to see if we are hiring again yet. This is a face-punch offense.

* The a$$hole voice mail message. You've gotten this one, "VHRG, this is Whoever. Please call me back." Whoever won't tell you why they are calling, or even what it pertains to (are they a spy? do they need the antidote? are they in jail? were they abducted by aliens? did they lose their TV remote?). They just want a call back. And your curiousity forces you to call them back. And generally the topic is something that wasn't worth the mystery in the first place. Face-punch offense.

* The illogical timetable request. This is someone that wants you to find out something for then. However the person you need to work with is in another time zone, and odds are that person is still in the shower because they just woke up. Meanwhile, six minutes after the request is made, the follow up has already happened. The second follow up is ten minutes after that. The third is four minutes after that. The fourth is them plopping down in your office until their issue is solved. This requires a head-slam.

Got others?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I Hate Nepotism... er... Corporate Inbreeding

I mentioned this in a tweet. I pure, straight, hate nepotism. I hate it for several reasons.

1) At VentingHRUncle's company, I'd dominate in HR there. I know the company well enough that I would have totally excelled there. But, they have a hard and fast anti-nepotism policy. And I really don't like the idea of hearing/over-hearing the idea of people bashing my family, and believing that this is a face-punching offense. Nor would I like to feel people go, "the VHRG is only here because VentingHRUncle is a VIP." It also has to cheapen the overall employment experience. You didn't get the job on your own laurels.

2) I have yet to see a case where this actually worked out well for all involved. At DeltaHouse, it happens a lot (though I've tried to stop it). At HRUtopia is happened a little bit (the biggest case was a person who went to the Vegas office a lot, however the Vegas office only had seven people and he really didn't need to go out there six times a year). The original employee feels like they are responsible for themself and the relative. If the relative doesn't work out, then the original employee is less engaged. And if the original employee has real nerve, they'll talk to the VHRG about the relative's performance.

3) The death of the original idea. If I hire nothing but friends and relatives, then I get nothing but the same damn ideas over and over again. I get the same attitudes, the same perspectives, and no clean slate. The relative has an opinion about the company courtesy of the orignal employee. And because of all of this zero new leadership or original ideas occur.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Why I Blog

I tried to declare today Why Do You Blog Day. However, I was told it has already been done here and here. For me, at work, I have to pretend that I've never heard of blogging (even though I check out virtually all of my blog-amigos. Blamigos? I think I invented a word). So I missed Why Do I Blog day.

Originally, I blogged because exactly zero people at work cared about me. And I wanted to share these ridiculous stories (that I was convinced only happened to me, until Dan Johnson, Ben Eubanks, and several others told me that I am truly not alone). And... well... vent. (hence the name).

Now, I blog as a severe cautionary tale about the angst that your workforce might be experiencing. Because I'm generally someone with a good work attitude (and I fake it pretty well at work), who wants to out-work people, who can out-think the room, who knows the conversation before it happens, who thinks on his feet better than most people he knows, and who can get anyone want to join a company (even DeltaHouse).

But I'm also the result of zero mentoring (like for a his entire career), zero encouragement, absentee bosses, reversed decisions, irrational expectations, zero leadership, zero people getting my back, who doesn't get checked on (yet has to check on others - side note: BigCheese has been checking on me, kinda, but I don't trust being able to go, "I possess a strong desire to scream at so-and-so" without consequence), and who sees the ridiculousness of work and workers and bosses and wants to change it.

But my folks ain't fer fancified changes. Just ask the employee who asked if a doctor was covered in our insurance network. When I answered yes, I also included the link for being able to find physicians online (without asking me). Give a person a fish, you feed them for a day... However, the employee replied by informing my that it's my job to cheerfully find this information out. Teach a person to fish... and get yelled at.

I blog because I feel like I have to. It's therapeutic for me. Which also makes me wonder if I continue this blog when I exit DeltaHouse (what's getting weird is that several people I know via networking, etc. and they are following me as VHRG - high comedy/eerie). As important a thought, I have to warn you that your organizations have these managers and employees, and your job is to stop it.

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner