Thursday, August 27, 2009

Responding to two comments...

Two comments from yesterday's post, I feel that I should respond to both. Anonymous

Anonymous said...

I just realized that my husband should start writing a blog so he can vent...he could be the Venting IT Guy... and I believe many of his stories could compare in ways to yours! Does it help? Or after blogging do you still hate your job and the idiots you have to deal with so much you want to punch someone in the throat??

August 27, 2009 2:24 PM

Anonymous Michelle said...

VHRG - I often read your posts with a sense of nostalgia. I've been where you are. As a younger HR pro I was often frustrated by many of the things that seem to drive you crazy. Over the years I have changed companies (and that helped) and grown up a lot. I now find I am much more tolerant and empathetic than I was in my youth. It seems like you are in a bad place right now, but I hope you someday realize it isn't all because of Delta House and the characters you have there. The reality is even in the best organizations you will experience these types of people. Over time I really do hope you learn how to effectively manage how you respond to incompetence because no matter where you go or what you do, their will be incompetent people. Your job is to help them and help your company. Good luck.

August 27, 2009 4:47 PM

To the anonymous poster, yes it helps. It helps make light of the situations. It helps you exercise your creativity. It helps you complain, poke fun, mock, question, and vent about things that you have no control/ability/chance to do otherwise. I have no one to complain to at work. I have no one that I can use as a sounding board. Hence, the blog. If I had a department of people (or even one or two) that I could just say, "Hey, Kooky gave me his daily health update today. Turns out it's gout." And they would laugh, or sigh, or commiserate with me, I wouldn't feel the need to do this.
To Michelle, here's hoping. I had an interview today with a company, and I thought it went well. However, after learning about the job, I decided that I don't want it. It'd be more of the same, just a little different. And I need a mentor and/or an HR friend/co-worker in my next job (hopefully both). I'll do manufacturing, but I've got to feel like I have support.

I've heard what you've said many times. Venting HR Mom and Venting HR Dad (who aren't really in HR, but still... go with me here on the name thing), said the empathy line to me a few times too. I say that my employees are too dumb to function. They say, "Now VHRG, you are supposed to help them." I say that the help they want is because of dumb life choices that they made. They say, "VHRG, do you really think they either knew better or had options?" I walk around silently hating my employees because I'm so frustrated that this is the best they can do. Really? This is the best person you can be? This is the best you can give to the company?

My hope, Michelle is something that Venting HR Dad said that makes sense when you take it in context. He said he was an angry young man clear until he was 35 or 38 (Hell, I remember that phase well, not really fondly). And I think I'm going through that right now. I look at employees and see their shortcomings (life and professionally) and I don't understand how they can be OK with it. Don't they want more for themselves? Don't they want better?

I want more. I want better for myself. Is it possible that I don't like people who lack drive?

It could be.

I have a friend, Stepford, who is the definition of "driven." He always wants better for himself, the next promotion/raise/assignment... gimme, gimme, gimme. I want to just be in a situation where I can out-work someone for something. Instead, I'm working at a place where I get yelled at because obese employees are angry that our insurance premiums are high, and they don't get it. And I don't know how to say, "Our insurance rates are high because I can think of ten people at DeltaHouse who are over 300 pounds. And one of them is stealing oxygen from me right now," in a way that will make a point that they understand, and sound kind and tactful.

And before you say, "then HR isn't for you." It is. I love the technical problems. I love the people issues. I love the large-scale stuff. I love the laws. I love planning. I love being sought out for answers. I hate, "is payroll here yet?" I hate conversational turds. I hate people acting overly nice to me when they are about to ask something that's going to make me cringe. I hate being handed paper and being told the phrase, "Got this in the mail, don't know what it is."

(wait, I'm rambling... back to Stepford)

Stepford has drive. I have drive (not quite even anywhere near close to anything like Stepford). I have friends (who I won't give fun nicknames to so as my friends who DO know who I am, and read might go, "HEY!") who don't have that drive. Who would be fine working where they are for the next thirty years doing the same stuff. They don't want more. Sometimes I'm jealous for the simplicity of the life they are choosing for themselves. Sometimes I want to grab them and shake them and yell, "THIS IS ALL YOU CAN DO?!?!?! You are too smart, too talented, too good of a person to be happy where you are!!!! BE MORE!!!!!!!!!! WANT MORE!!!!!!!!! WANT BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

I guess from what I read of your comment, I truly, sincerely hope and look forward to the day that comes where I look at the less-than-intelligent, or incompetent, or the employee who only has a job by grace of TheBoss, and see them for what they are and empathize. But for right now, I just want slam their head into a wall.


Michelle said...

VHRG - I really do hear what you are saying. I hope you find that new opportunity. Sounds like you need to be in a bigger organization. One with fellow HR pros (because venting about the stupid employees with a colleague really does help) and one that will challenge you professionally.

Don't get discouraged about HR. In my experience, people who say you have to be a "people person" to work in HR will never actually be successful. HR is not about pleasing people. It is not about throwing parties and celebrating birthdays. HR is about problem solving - sometimes big problems (health care plans) and sometimes small ones (the guy in the next cube smells). If this is what you are passionate about, stick with it. Just don't expect the company or the job to fix all of your frustrations. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

He needs a blog or prozac. The blog sounds like it has less side effects.


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