Friday, October 31, 2008

The difference between a manager and a leader is the difference between control and inspiration.

You remember my recent disappointment that we are no longer allowed to listen to the radio via the internet at work. It subtly changed the atmosphere in the office for many of us.

But wait, there's more.

Yesterday, my supervisor informed us that from now on there is no more make up time.

Joseph and I have been carpooling - it started when his bike was broken down. We carpool to the light rail. Then from his light rail stop, he caught a bus. That evolved into him riding to light rail with me even when he has his bike and then biking to work from his light rail stop.

As my commute to light rail from the office is much shorter and easier to his (right outside my building), I get back to the car earlier. So, I started staying after work to get caught up - I have not fully caught up from being sick a week in August - and also to earn time so I don't have to use vacation for little things.

A new coworker who doesn't have vacation yet has been earning time so she can have her son's 21st birthday off. Another earns time so she can get off early on other days to pick up her kids. It has been very nice.

Apparently, my boss's boss has come over to our unit a few times and noticed people missing. She confronted Boss about it. Boss tried, she really tried to stand up for us, but the boom was lowered. The law was laid down. Flat. By the books. Only by the books.

No more make up time, not for kids, not for a little extra lunch time, nothing. Boss feels very badly.

I am none too pleased with the powers (or power) that be.

There's more. There has been a lot of office re-organizing. Cubicles taken apart and reconfigured. Among the changes, they moved Boss from her window cubicle to as far away from the windows as you can get. Like me, but I am not a supervisor. And, being at the front desk, I can stand up, lean over the counter, and glimpse the window down the aisle. Boss is walled in. It is a biggish cubicle, but not light and airy. In fact the overhead lights directly over her cube are off for conservation purposes.

I am beginning to wonder if there is something personal going on. Boss is the ONLY supervisor away from the windows. There are several non-supervisors with windows. Admittedly, Boss's original cube was far from her staff and now she is in the midst of us. However, there are non-super occupied window cubes near her unit.

Although Boss is short staffed, they have been slow to authorize her hiring and yet they have been pressing her because travel claims have been backlogged. Short staff and the record late budget apparently are no excuse.

Last week Boss was really down and stressed. I don't know what it was - personal and/or work or ? I think a lot of it was this garbage from above.

Having to take away our make up time really hurt her, too. And she had to try not to show any of her own feelings or blame the upper. But we are not stupid.

Today her staff gave her a card in which we each told her how much we appreciate, respect and like her. Hope it helps. She is a great boss and a very nice person.


  1. It sounds like you have a really nice boss! Too bad, her boss isn't quite as nice. :( I'm sorry.

  2. Some people are motivated by money, some by prestige, some by power. Power over people. Control. Sounds like Boss-of-Boss is there.

  3. This is the same story my mother has experienced. If only you could start cartooning about it all, maybe make millions...