One of my all-time favorite quotes is:
“The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity. But not in that order.”
That nifty little quote pretty much sums up the way I feel about the majority of idiots I’ve encountered lately. From customer service representatives to bureaucrats to crazy drivers on the road, I feel like the walls of stupidity are rapidly closing in, suffocating me in a slow and painful death.
What worries me most in corporate America is the lack of useful intelligence (street / business smarts, if you will), consideration for others, and the prevalence of idiots in upper management. It really makes me marvel at how certain companies got to where they are today with such dingbats in charge. Perhaps this is how the economy found itself in such a nasty quagmire. Keep flailing without direction from above, and you are guaranteed to sink deeper and deeper into crap.
Whatever happened to employees taking pride in their work, wanting to do their job well, making customers happy, and helping grow the business? Whatever happened to bosses who kept their eye out for emerging talent, promoted from within, and rewarded those who produce superior work? If you’re doing it right, you should be rewarded, not held back with all the other inept fools who can’t seem to figure it out. This isn’t kindergarten, people – if you’re a screw-up, you shouldn’t be coddled or given a pat on the back – you should be joining many of the quality workers whose oft-misguided managers sent them to the unemployment line.
Too many promotions today are based on brown-nosing instead of ability. Recognize achievement, not lip service. Let those who stand above the crowd shine, or you’ll snuff out their light by pushing them back down to the other average joes. Once the light is out, they too will become part of the masses. Promote someone when they’ve proven they can do their job better than anyone else in the position, not when it’s the entire group’s one year review. Buck the ‘standard’ promotions – leave behind underperformers and reward achievers. Worried that the underperformers will be offended? They should be; you are doing them a favor by letting them know that their work is sub-par. Eventually, they’ll either raise their work standards or they’ll get frustrated and leave. Either way, you’ve just strengthened the team.
Rant, much? Yes, perhaps. But had I not vented about the pathetic excuse for workers I see everywhere, I would have been driven to pulling my craft glue gun on the local USPS workers. I’m a quick draw, and the entire postal counter would have been instantly covered in sticky, hot globs of Michael’s brand glue. I’d imagine the scene would resemble the mentally-challenged lovechild of Martha Stewart and Stephen King, and it would not have been pretty. Plus, the glue surely would have destroyed at least a few kids’ Letters to Santa, and then I would have ruined little Johnny and Jenny’s Christmas on top of scalding the postal workers with cheap glue. Bah Humbug, bitches.