Sunday, October 02, 2011

Teamwork? Really?...Really?

The memo came down the pipes and there's going to be a "Motivational Teamwork Seminar." It will be on Friday afternoon and you might get to go home early, hooray!

Teamwork? What the Hell is teamwork, really?

First of all, the after-glow of the teamwork sales pitch wears off when everyone starts doing their new tasks because they think their own tasks are more difficult than the tasks other team members. If the concept is allowed to fester in the minds of employees over the weekend, the concept will be more concretely followed starting on Monday.

• Teamwork is an excuse used by those who want to pass off their own responsibilities to others.
• The chief component of teamwork is the taking-up of another team member's slack.
• Teamwork is an opportunity for the crafty to be lazy, and the gullible to get all the work.
• The need for teamwork is a symptom of mismanagement.


Monday, August 08, 2011

Fw: Target's rape factory

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T


From: "Patrick Schmitt, Change.org" <mail@change.org>
Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2011 18:23:12 -0700
To: <fredslocombe@gmail.com>
Subject: Target's rape factory

Change.org

Tell Target: End the abuse at "rape factory" in Jordan

Sign the Petition

Dear Fred,

Thousands of Change.org members have already spoken out against abuses at what's becoming known as the "rape factory" in Jordan.

“We only went to Jordan to earn money to help our families; we had no idea that factory managers would rape so many of us young girls,” said a young woman who goes by the name Nazma to protect her identity. 

Nazma is one of the dozens of Sri Lankan and Bangladeshi young women who have been sexually assaulted by supervisors at Classic Factory in northern Jordan, which makes clothes for American brands like Walmart, Target, and Macy's.

Leading up to next week’s trial against a Classic supervisor charged with rape -- the first such trial -- managers are escalating abuses. Supervisors are locking victims and witnesses in the factory, threatening and intimidating them to ensure they will not testify.

And although the Jordanian government promised that Anil Santha, the manager accused of rape, would not be allowed to return before the trial, he's back on the factory floor.

Despite global outcry over Classic’s abuses and the tactics they’re using to dodge justice, international customers like Walmart, Target, and Macy's are still buying Classic clothing.

Given the critical situation on the ground, Classic Factory workers, consumers, and human rights organizations, are urgently calling on these high-profile companies to immediately condemn human rights abuses and force change. Click here to sign the petition now. 

Target and Macy's have claimed that they are investigating conditions at the factory, but they're deferring to the Jordanian Ministry of Economy and Labor -- which claims there is no evidence of sexual abuse.

Instead, conditions are getting worse. In addition to imprisoning women inside the factory, managers are removing all the males workers -- in some cases even deporting them -- cutting the staff to older male supervisors and vulnerable young women. 

At Classic's urging, the government also arrested the leader of an outside human rights NGO and took his passport to prevent him from intervening to protect the women at the factory.

“All we can do is cry,” Nazma said. “We ask the people who buy our garments, please end this abuse and torture we face. We should be able to work without fear of sexual assault.”

Now is a critical moment for action. Outside pressure and attention can ensure that victims and witnesses are freed and can testify against their rapists -- and that Classic Factory reforms its policies and practices. 

Otherwise, the manager and supervisors will continue to imprison, assault, and rape girls and women with renewed impunity.

Sign now to urge Walmart, Target, and Macy's to force Classic Factory to free imprisoned victims and witnesses -- and end its human rights abuses against women:

http://www.change.org/petitions/tell-walmart-to-stop-rape-and-torture-of-young-women-in-its-factories

Thanks for being a change-maker,

- Patrick and the Change.org team

 

This email was sent by Change.org to fredslocombe@gmail.com.
Start a petition. Unsubscribe from future weekly updates. Edit your email notification settings.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Direct hostile communication in the workplace.

I work at a hospital as a security officer. I work for an outside company contracted by the hospital and I am not directly under the authority of the hospital's hierarchy.

A maintenance employee who is directly under the authority of the hospital's hierarchy is apparently under the misguided impression that the security officers are parking lot attendants. On one occasion the maintenance employee complained to a security officer about other employees who parked in the Emergency Department patient parking lot. On August 5, 2011 at 6:15 A.M. the maintenance person directly confronted a security officer who was parked in a space designated for a Senior, close to the entrance to the Emergency Department. The security officer is a Senior, and as a security officer is required to be close to his vehicle for emergency purposes.

The correct action when one sees another employee or contractor violating rules is to write a detailed report of the incident and submit it to your supervisor or the administration safety officer. It is for management to decide the course of action that follows the report.

The purpose for this procedure is to avoid creating a hostile work environment. This procedure is part of regular training for employees at this hospital. The maintenance employee receives this training, indicated by his continued employment at the hospital, therefore, the actions of the maintenance employee are symptomatic of more important personal issues that create frustration that must be vented opportunistically.

Opportunistic aggravation, delusional vindication and self-fulfilled validation: Creating the reason for the way you feel after the feeling.

When someone seeks to create an outlet for frustration, or seeks to create a situation where one feels vindication or validation for the way one feels, by attempting to aggravate another person into action, this person has unresolved feelings of anger or frustration. This emotional state is a chemical imbalance in the brain that is incorrectly attributed to outside causes.

That is why the terms "glass is half-full" and "glass is half-empty" is commonly accepted for describing certain types of personality. Some people remain either optimistic or pessimistic in different situations precisely because their brain chemistry hasn't changed with outside events.

The chemical imbalance is mostly genetic, but frequently the result of consuming substances like alcohol or other drugs.

An employee who receives regular annual training on the subject of workplace cooperation and communication, yet cannot constrain behavior to within the recommended parameters, will eventually become a safety risk to fellow employees and must seek treatment or be removed from the environment.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Management Skills

I arrived at work and found this sign taped to a desk manned by several people throughout the day.

Management doesn't want anyone to be seen consuming beverages. They made that clear from the beginning, but most of the employees were thirsty or some such nonsense.
Now management posted this sign on the wall by the desk so anyone passing could scold the occupant with a scowl or rude comment.

Was posting a sign like this really the right thing to do?
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A new opportunity not to be squandered.


Not too many of us go out much anymore, I sure don't. Maybe it's just my age, or that I work nights and sleep during the day so my free time is during the dark hours of Springfield when nothing but Denny's, Walmart or the grocery stores are open. It might have something to do with having a minimum wage part-time job with no benefits and a schedule that changes weekly so I can't have a second job.

The first six or seven months of this job was particularly arduous because I was always on standby in case someone else had a schedule change or some kind of emergency. On top of that I worked in Jacksonville and lived in Springfield with my mother. Ever since I was laid off in 2001 from what I thought would be a life-long career, I couldn't find a job that paid enough for me to afford my own place to live. I've been in economic prison for ten years.

My most recent year at my job as a security officer has been mind-numbing. My job consists of making sure doors are locked, standing watch over patients under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or both, directing smokers to the nearest off-property location, getting wheelchairs for patients and visitors arriving at the emergency entrance and keeping people from straying too close to the helicopter landing area. Ninety percent of my job is checking doors, the rest occur infrequently.

It's a far cry from my experience in mass media production which has been with me most of my life. As a child I was fascinated by magicians and illusions. I loved creating special effects, visual and audible, for written stories, puppet shows, magic shows, photographs, audiotape, eight millimeter film, video, and now digital media respectively. It gives me a sense of power over nature to be creative. When I have that power stripped away from me, to be distracted by menial labor that pays too little for me to live independently, it kind of pisses me off.

It motivated me to create SPFLD.net because I was so embittered by the lack of respect and support for my type of skills in central Illinois. This is totally the wrong area for my skills but I must survive and I need my family's help until I can finally get on my feet again. Unfortunately I'm 47 years old. I'm basically un-insurable because of my age and companies that normally offer health benefits wouldn't be able to insure me.

I'm guessing that's the only reason they won't hire me because otherwise I would simply assume they were complete idiots. It could be that I'm not pretty to look at too. I'm overweight and I look freakish. Nobody wants to spend work time with a 47 year old overweight freak.

I have an opportunity to take a test for a job at the University of Illinois at Springfield for a position producing television. I already have experience working in the Office of Electronic Media, I was a student employee there for a few years while I finished my Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication.

I took the test before and didn't get the job. I wonder what happened to the last person who got the job? Is he or she still there? Did the person get promoted, transferred, fired or laid-off because of the recession of 2008? Did they quit?

I'm worried that if I do get the job, I might get laid off soon because the state budget is in tatters. If the university has a first-in-first-out policy, there's a chance the only reason I or the person they hire after taking this test will simply be firing fodder used to protect existing positions.

Because my skills have been squandered by so many potential local employers who tossed away my resume in favor of someone younger, prettier, familiar, or related, I must be cautious about the length of my employment, and budget accordingly by spending as little money as possible. It should be easy for me. I'll just keep my poverty lifestyle and pretend I have no disposable income.

I really don't expect to get the job at the UIS. If I do get the job I will need therapy to piece together the shards of my broken hopes and dreams so I can start smiling and caring about my health again.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Fw: Thank You for considering USIC

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

-----Original Message-----
From: recruiting@nationalrecruitmentcenter.com
Date: Sun, 12 Jun 2011 04:00:14
To: <FREDSLOCOMBE@GMAIL.COM>
Subject: Thank You for considering USIC

The following is for non-HTML enabled mail clients:

Dear FREDERICK,

Thank you for your interest in the Utility Locate Technician position position in Morrison. We appreciate the time you spent exploring opportunities with us.

At this time, we have decided to pursue other candidates whose expectations and qualifications more closely match the position requirements.

Again, thank you for your interest in USIC.

Regards,
USIC Human Resources.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Firing Fodder

I've been working a minimum-wage part-time job for over a year and an opportunity to work at a university recently presented itself.

I applied for the opportunity to take the civil service exam and qualified, that is, to take the test.

If I pass the test, I must still go through the interview process. There are probably still more stages of qualification that increase the chances of employment disqualification.

But this time may be different. There may be a glimmer of hope for living-wage employment, but something seems wrong. In this economy, with the state so deep in debt and borrowing money to pay its bills, why is the university hiring again?

The same position was open two years ago. What happened to that employee? There are any number of positive as well as negative reasons why the position reopened, but there is one that is particularly heinous called "firing fodder."

Most places of employment have a first-in-first-out hiring policy. Usually these shops are union organized, but it's fast becoming popular with non-union employers as well.

In March of 2008 I was working a minimum wage temp job when I jumped at an opportunity to work for $11 per hour as an Audiovisual Services technician, what I was professionally trained to do.

I changed jobs and was laid-off eight months later. I was out of work for over a year during the recession. If I kept my minimum-wage job, I would have been working steadily as a temp in the health field.

So now I have this seemingly golden opportunity that under better economic circumstances would lead me down the path of prosperity, home ownership and comfortable retirement.

But chances are this time I will be picked up after quitting another job, then dumped again so it will look on paper like "sacrifices" were made, when really the whole point of hiring fodder is to preserve the next few people up on the totem pole.

I'm not sure I should follow through this time because the economy is getting worse again and I need at least the job I have.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Firing Fodder

I've been working a minimum-wage part-time job for over a year and an opportunity to work at a university recently presented itself. I applied for the opportunity to take the civil service exam and qualified, that is, to take the test.

If I pass the test, I must still go through the interview process. There are probably still more stages of qualification that increase the chances of employment disqualification.

But this time may be different. There may be a glimmer of hope for living-wage employment, but something seems wrong. In this economy, with the state so deep in debt and borrowing money to pay its bills, why is the university hiring again?

The same position was open two years ago. What happened to that employee? There are any number of positive as well as negative reasons why the position reopened, but there is one that is particularly heinous called "firing fodder."

Most places of employment have a first-in-first-out hiring policy. Usually these shops are union organized, but it's fast becoming popular with non-union employers as well.

In March of 2008 I was working a minimum wage temp job when I jumped at an opportunity to work for $11 per hour as an Audiovisual Services technician, what I was professionally trained to do.

I changed jobs and was laid-off eight months later. I was out of work for over a year during the recession. If I kept my minimum-wage job, I would have been working steadily as a temp in the health field.

So now I have this seemingly golden opportunity that under better economic circumstances would lead me down the path of prosperity, home ownership and comfortable retirement.

But chances are this time I will be picked up after quitting another job, then dumped again so it will look on paper like "sacrifices" were made, when really the whole point of hiring fodder is to preserve the next few people up on the totem pole.

I'm not sure I should follow through this time because the economy is getting worse again and I need at least the job I have.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Gas prices too high for low-wage commuters

Gas prices have exceeded the maximum amount necessary to allow for minimum wage earners to commute to bedroom communities to work.

As an employee paid only $8.25 per hour, my taxes withheld bring my net hourly wage down to around $6.20 per hour. I work in Jacksonville, Illinois, but rent there is too expensive so I live with my mother in Springfield. Unfortunately, gas prices have gotten so high that I may need to terminate my own employment because I can no longer afford to commute all the way to Jacksonville to work. It has become cost-prohibitive to commute to Jacksonville from Springfield, and back every day.

Unfortunately, I was recruited from Springfield because my expertise is too specialized. The previous employees of my skill set who worked for my employer and lived near enough, have all been fired, quit, or were recruited by more appreciative employers.

There's nothing left at the bottom of that barrel to scrape.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Sales jobs in Springfield, Illinois

If you are good at sales, you could come to Springfield and try your hand at it.

But I must warn you that you will probably not have much luck finding more leads for your company than it already has, because the only people around who have so much money that they may be persuaded to buy something they don't need have already been customers.

In fact, many previous customers are busy getting themselves out of debt around here. Face it, anything that doesn't sell itself and requires a sales person to push it isn't fit for the new economy we have today.

The last two big recessions occurred during a period of time when communication among the public was unprecedented. They were Zeitgeist changing recessions that will forever scar the prospects of high-pressure sales.

There are a lot of business models in Springfield that require sales people if you're interested, but don't be surprised if you're accused of being bad at your job and shortly fired.

The Internet has taken the job of pitch-man away. If you manage to find a good product and just happen to be the exclusive supplier, you are very lucky.

If you can build a website for your product or service and then buy advertising on popular search engines and social sites, you might have a shot, but everyone has their teenage nephew building their own websites, so don't think for a minute you'll get rich doing that for anyone else.

In Springfield, the same companies keep advertising for sales people again and again. They probably lose their sales people because they get scapegoated over lack of customers or bad products or services.

I suggest going back to school and getting into some kind of medical, financial or legal field.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Porn as an excuse to save money

If your boss doesn't like you and you use a computer at work, imagine the possibilities of you getting accused of something you had nothing to do with.

City Water Light and Power (CWLP)employees are being accused of viewing pornography on a computer at work, according the the State Journal-Register:

City workers face discipline for viewing pornography - Springfield, IL - The State Journal-Register

Justice Potter Stewart of the Supreme Court of the United States could only arrive at the following definition of pornography "I know it when I see it."

Since CWLP workers are union, the only immediate damage can be suspension without pay for a period of time. In this case, only five days.

Perhaps if enough suspensions are issued, the city will be forced to examine the books again and hopefully, ignorantly, trim a little less fat away from CWLP because they suspended workers and saved money. If the accountant has any brains, he or she will add back into the books the original expenses without suspensions, and arrive at the real budget from which to make cuts.

Since pornography was identified and defined by the Supreme Court so vaguely and arbitrarily, the term can be used with a much wider scope to net more cost-saving suspensions of line-workers while saving much needed gold for the parachutes of management and other political patrons ghosting salaries at the power plant.

So the next time you see a computer at the office with free Internet Access that requires no login or password, chances are you will find yourself lumped in with some perverts in your office and get suspended under false pretenses.

Monday, January 24, 2011

President Obama to discuss jobs. What is a job exactly?

Despite the definition of "job" in the dictionary, a job is supposed to allow an individual to work a reasonable amount of time to provide food, shelter, and transportation for the individual.

Previous notions about work was that men worked to support himself, his wife, and as many children as his budget will allow. His wife had the responsibility to raise the children to be productive citizens.

In reality, wages are so low that both parents must work, and as a direct consequence, the children are raised to be unproductive members of society, socially inept with marginal labor skills or skills in areas where there are huge surpluses of workers. However, if your child wants to grow up to be a prison guard, there will be plenty of need for that.

What you want to hear from the president are words such as "independent," "entrepreneurial," "small business," "self-sufficiency," "equitable individual prosperity," and perhaps "efficient use of renewable resources."

If instead you hear about "jobs," you're being lead down the path of delusion that a job will result in prosperity, unless you work for the government, especially social services, because you want everyone else to be poor so you can keep your job.

Monday, January 03, 2011

If an employer asks about your credit history...

SUE THEIR PANTS OFF! CONGRATULATIONS, YOU WON THE LAWSUIT LOTTERY!

The Illinois Employee Credit Privacy Act is now in effect!

If you wern't hired because of your credit score. GO GET 'EM TIGER!