Thursday, October 26, 2006


Yesterday I spent all morning in a "Respectful Workplace" seminar.
"What makes you feel respected at work?" was the initial question.
I answered that I'd been at a job with no funding where we had to rob homeless people for office supplies and that my half of a box of mechanical pencils ( 0.5mm) made me feel pretty good about coming in everyday. People laughed.
Sadly, I wasn't kidding. Mechanical pencils just make me happy.
So we learned about the various forms of harassment and prejudice and discrimination. We learned the difference between behaviour that is "Unprofessional", "Prohibited" and "Illegal".
When we were divided into groups, I was in the "Unprofessional" group. Neat!
We watched a movie detailing the evils of forwarding joke emails, hating on foreign programmers and discriminating against people based on gender, age, national origin, religion, and sexual orientation.
And then, right after training, the tests began. We are expanding the server room and the new racks arrived from Dell. The racks are very nice.
A co-worker was playing with his hardware under his desk.
A new user account set up was ordered for Mohammad A****akar.
What am I supposed to do with that?
How can I implement a respectful workplace when they throw material at me?
I got a call from someone who had been in class with me and, after trying to troubleshoot over the phone, I said, "Are you in your cube? I'll be right there."
I hung up without saying goodbye!
I officially suck at the whole "Respectful Workplace" concept.
From the film, I did learn some new and exciting ways to annoy my co-workers and what the limits are on unprofessional behaviour. Apparently, you can jump all over unprofessional behaviour as long as you don't cross the line into prohibited or illegal behaviour. Game on!


Shana said...

And yet you giggle when things are measured in units or someone invites you to be a member of their organization. Years of training won't fix the part of you that thinks the term 'bottom water' is the most clever thing you've created. Or that you spank the cat, telling her "You are so bad, Nissa. Happy Spanksgiving!" And she likes it.

Garrick said...

Heheh . . . Bottom water.