There Are Going To Be Some Pointless Changes Around This OfficeCommentary • workplace • Opinion • office • ISSUE 39•43 • Nov 5, 2003 By Daniel Wyatt Daniel Wyatt All right, everyone, listen up. I have some announcements to make, and they affect all of you. I know that you received the e-mail I sent out, in which I detailed this meeting's agenda. I wanted to meet anyway and go over that e-mail in person, to prevent any misunderstandings. There are going to be some pointless changes around here, folks. The sooner we get used to them, the better off we'll be. First, there will be no more taking pens directly out of the supply closet. This is not to say that you can no longer have pens, but from now on, we're going to keep track of who's taking what, with a register on the supply-closet door. Please list any supplies you remove from the supply closet on the supply-closet register for at least a week or two. The sheet will get old and tattered, and it will eventually fall off the door. After it gathers dust on the floor for a few days, I will pick it up and file it. This largely unnecessary new measure will be enforced rigidly. We will also be keeping track of your e-mail. You will find the spreadsheet I made in your in-boxes—from now on, the spreadsheet should be open on your computer at all times. Whenever you send an e-mail, log it into the spreadsheet. At the end of each week, e-mail the completed log to your supervisor. The last item on your list will always document the e-mail to your supervisor. This will be the only entry your supervisor cares enough to check for, so failure to document this e-mail will cast suspicion on your e-mail-record-keeping abilities in general, and may result in disciplinary action, as outlined in your new employee handbook. Has everyone received the new employee handbook? Good. You should study it thoroughly. In order to drive home the importance of our new rules and guidelines, we will begin a series of personnel orientations this month. The orientations will be conducted by me on a department-by-department basis. That way, the work of an entire department will come to a standstill while I orient it. The orientations will take two full days, so block out your time accordingly. We've also noticed that the sink is often full of dirty dishes. The only fair way to deal with this problem is for everyone to take turns washing a load. Even those who eat their lunch outside of the department will be expected to volunteer for kitchen duty. Check the calendar to see which week you will need to do kitchen duty, and also which week you will be acting as kitchen-duty manager. On a more alarming note, we have reason to believe that there have been some abuses of telephone privileges in the office, particularly long-distance privileges. You have each been issued a telephone code. The 14-digit code must be entered to obtain an outside line. This way, we can track phone usage. We anticipate savings of close to $30 each month with this time-consuming new procedure. Next on the docket: the water cooler. The water cooler will be moved to the back closet. The way the water cooler sits now, it juts out into the hallway. The new location will minimize delays for everyone, except those who need water. You're welcome. If some of the higher-ups had had their way, we would have gotten rid of the cooler altogether. I'm on your side here. I was fighting for you guys on this one. What else do we have? Lunch hours. Lunch hours will be taken at set times from here on out. You must plan your day around lunch. If work prevents you from taking your lunch at your assigned time, you will have to make other arrangements for eating. Eat a protein bar. Oh, there will be no more eating at your desks, either. And whenever you leave your desk, your outgoing voicemail message should notify callers of your absence. Also, start thinking about whom you would like as a bathroom buddy. I'll explain what this entails at our next meeting. I think that's all. We'll have monthly departmental meetings to discuss these changes and to hear your ideas on ways to improve efficiency. At least we will for the next couple of months, but we'll probably forget to schedule the meetings after a while. Not like that matters, though, because it isn't as though a single one of your suggestions will have been taken seriously, much less implemented. Oh, and don't forget that Thursday is crazy-shoes day, so go buy yourself the craziest pair of shoes you can find. Thank you for your attention.