Earnest’s Outlook

August 13, 2010

Go E-Z there, O’Nest. When I said ‘PoMo’, I also said ‘Un PoCo’. You’re scaring people, not the least of which am I.

So let’s talk about e-mail: the status of my Outlook has been particularly piss poor lately – it was in fact so piss poor that I felt compelled to start twittering on our behalf (find us here!). When I say piss poor I mean I had so little incoming e-mail that I seriously had to consider cleaning up my InBox. Not even did I get one of those regular mails in which one is warned about not sending too much e-mails because it will impact efficiency; yes, the sort of e-mail that probably has a reference to ‘Tips & Tricks’ in it and that motivates its warning with a call to respect one’s co-worker.

Let me tell you the Shakespearian truth about e-mail (&, as a bonus, about co-workers responsible for sending e-mails warning about e-mails):

The more, the merrier! (not necessarily the co-workers, but the mails)

Only when you receive gazillions of e-mails is there a remote chance you actually mean something to someone (in the work context, it is vice versa in the non-work context but more on that later, maybe). Be that as it may, only when you receive gazillions of e-mails can you actually get through a working day without realizing you’re a fucking nitwit who is expected to go through working days after working days for another couple of decades before you retire an impotent grumpy old (wo)man.

There is luckily a simple way to ensure you receive gazillions of e-mails: it is to send gazillions of e-mails, copying many an innocent bystander (I am after all not wholly immune to the argument from respect for one’s co-workers) that will – soon enough – realize that when she or he accidentally ‘replies all’ to some of them this will be to her or his credit (they will be noticed and being noticed if everything in any corporate culture).

Sure, some people will complain but all of that is just part of the game, you see.

Because there are always a number of do-gooders in the company that want others to go through change processes and stuff. You know them, they are the bloody annoying crew that creates and then wants you to attend social events which consist of awkward moments with colleagues that you always liked until they tell you, at length, what kind of stuff they get up to in their private lifes (as there are probably not more than 3 or 4 really different private lifes for most people it means that every third or fourth conversation is a repetition in which you get a head ache trying to remember whether it was this guy or the previous girl who had the kid that could read before she could walk). Well, these people don’t just annoy you and me; they annoy our managers who obviously have to indulge all that shit because it is a company value but who would much rather spend all of that time golfing or whatnot.

So what happens is that our managers invent some kind of transformation project thingy where mindsets and such are going to be changed. The bloody annoying people obviously flock to that as bees to honey &, once a sufficient number is so caught in a meeting room, our managers give them a mission knowing that these people are so uninspired that it is quasi-certain that they will wind up proposing measures around e-mail etiquette or the distribution of coffee mugs with worker’s names on them or whatnot.

Do you have suggestions for corporate practices in urgent need for analysis? Feel free to ask Earnest to do the job. You can even mail me on it.



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