Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Carrots and Sticks.

Yesterday, we received a message that an Auditor from the Corporate Overlords was in the office and we were not to be doing anything not project related. That is; no surfing the web, no reading books, stuff like that. Well, he was still around today. At one point my Team Lead came into my cube and said that when I was done with the call I was on I was to go into the training room for a meeting with the Auditor.

"Are you sure you want me to do that?" I asked.

The Auditor wanted to speak with one Analyst from each of the three teams and my Team Lead had chosen me because he knew I had opinions and wasn't afraid to voice them.


So, in this meeting I went over many of the things I had gone over last week with the Site Manager. I toned down some things but I didn't mince too many words.

There has been a drop in performance by the help desk as a whole. Much of it has to do with the huge influx on new analysts but a significant and surprising amount come from experienced analysts who aren't acting with due diligence. They are making more mistakes. Careless mistakes. Why?

Well, we have no incentive to do better or work harder. No bonuses. No pay raises. Why work harder if we aren't going to be rewarded for our work.

There is also no dis-incentive to working poorly. There really is no punishment that can be inflicted on us for poor performance. A stern talking to or a threat of being fired isn't going to do it because we have learned from experience that it take a spectacular fuck up to get fired. Just being piss-poor, lazy or mediocre isn't going to do it.

So, we have neither carrot or stick. No reason to work better. No fear of consequences for working poorly. Just a huge, apathetic center.

The Auditor took all this in over 45 minutes and three pages of notes. I even had some suggestions. The spin he put on it was that he was there to learn how things work so that what works for us can be taken to other sites and what works there might be brought here. It all sounded so promising but I've heard this song and dance before. The cynical voice says that he's her to see where the fat can be squeezed. The company stock is still in the toilet and while they have avoided being de-listed from NASDAQ, they are still under scrutiny and probable pressure from their shareholders.

I have no reason to believe anything good will come of this. In the final analysis, I expect more of the same. No carrots. No sticks.

No comments: