Sunday, May 28, 2006

To go out, or to not go out...

Lately, I just have no motivation to leave the house. I kinda worry about it, because I don't want to become a shut-in. I don't know if its because I'm tired and trying to recover from the expenditure of energy that is everyday life, if its just 'cause there ain't nowhere as nice as my house, or if I'm becoming anti-social. I don't think its the latter, but I give that equal consideration. For some reason, I have no motivation to actually go to any DMC events, even though when I hear about them, I think they sound like fun.... just when it gets to be time to go... I just can't do it. This happened last week with Flamenco and the gym too. I just couldn't push myself to get in the car and go.... Granted, last week was an energy SUCK and we had some surprise visitors (Martin's best friend Julia and her boyfriend Joost) on Tues who stayed later than I expected anyway.

So, I should be contemplating getting in the car in an hour and driving to a memorial day BBQ with the DMC to wash my car. I think I can do it.


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Wireless-Phone-Carrier Management Philosophy

This is seriously a new form of management style/philosophy, that I am hereby claiming responsibility for coining/defining/describing.

This is what wireless phone carriers do... you know, Sprint, Verizon, Cingular, T-mobile...

Switch to us! We will give you this feature for free, we will give you boatloads of minutes, we will charge you nothing, etc. etc.

"Wow", you think, and make the switch... happily you enjoy your new service until you catch the new ad for your carrier
"switch to us! we'll give you SHIPloads of minutes, and a free phone every month"

So you call up customer service "excuse me, I already have this plan with boatloads, how do I take advantage of the SHIPloads... and free phone?"
"I'm sorry, that's for new customers only, not existing customers"

You have 3 options:
1. suck it up.
2. Wine, Yell, Moan, and Write a letter complaining saying that you're going to switch carriers
3. switch carriers

Here are the results:
1. nothing changes
2. "please don't leave us" and they offer you a way to take advantage of the new promotions
3. after a couple months... you switch back, and get all the new promotions.

I'm sure by now, you're wondering how this applies as a management philosophy.
Here goes:

you take a job with a company, at a good rate, with nice benefits
you happily work away doing all the things that are expected of you.

Along comes another worker, and they are offered a job doing the same thing as you...
for a higher pay rate, and with better benefits - they are the new customer !!

You have 3 options:
1. suck it up
2. write a letter to your boss, HR, and your bosses boss (you have now become a "squeaky wheel")
3. get a job somewhere else

Here are the results:
1. nothing changes
2. "please don't leave us" and they offer you a new promotion
3. after a couple months... you switch back, and get a new promotion

I hereby declare this to be "The Wireless-Phone-Carrier Management Philosophy"

Please note that the squeaky wheel and the one who switched are the two options that are rewareded, thereby perpetuating the system.

Also note that the person just doing their job, paying their phone bill and using their minutes, gets nothing.

Any questions?

Thursday, May 04, 2006

ANYTHING to see outside!

so, in my next iteration to see outside (you can see the first efforts here) I thought that if I put up mirrors, they might reflect the sky from through my rectangle window on the opposite wall to where I face. I made DeAnn sit in my chair and tell me when I had the right angles, and then I propped the mirrors. The symmetry of my office is now all off; but who cares - at least I can tell when its dark!

...and I'm back

so.... I've been wondering lately about the realities of being a woman in business. When I was younger, I didn't want to believe that there were any differences in the way that people were treated - and I'm not talking about opportunities and pay rates; I'm talking about what people expect of you, and how they interpret your actions.

Let me back up.
When I was younger, I really didn't care what people thought of me. I didn't care if they liked me or if they didn't. I knew I was right, I knew I had the correct perspective, I knew that I knew best - and if people didn't want to come along on my train, then screw them.

As I have gained experience in the workforce, been "evaluated" by different managers and employees, and had discussions about ambition and future with collegues, I've begun to think that there are realities you have to accept in order to be effective in a business setting.

1. I think that women expect women to behave a certain way, and when you don't you get judged
2. I think that men are threatened by women in positions that are hierarchical above them (perhaps there is an exception if the woman is visibly old)
3. I think that men on your level have issues buying what you say
4. I think that your supervisor has issues buying what you say

Now, the topic dejour is as follows: is these observations about being a woman in business, or are these realities for be because of who I am?

so the not caring about what people think thing is still true in that I don't care emotionally, it doesn't affect how I feel about myself, however, I have begun to think that you do have to "act", "perform", "behave", "pretend", in a certain way in order to play the game of business.

The problem is that the majority of our role models are men - and you CANNOT behave the same as a man; it doesn't work! There IS a double standard.
Or our role models are women who's position is the result of specific circumstances.... so you cannot generalize to the whole, or general.

I'm reading this book right now that's billed basically as "how to be a boss without being a bitch" and I'm very disappointed. I assumed that it would give me insight into how you can be hard, demanding, direct, and to the point without it being construed as "bitch".... but instead it is about the reasons why you should delegate (duh!), don't worry, its ok not to be friends with all of your employees (duh!), and here is your pep talk on being pushy in a meeting (whatever!!).

I have all of that!!! what I want to know is how to navigate the behavior line between people expecting you to be touchy-feely, emotional, couching everything in rose petals, and the hard, direct, bottom-line position.

Where are you ?!

I was beginning to take your absence personally!