FWD: RE: Troublesome Writers

Subject: FWD: RE: Troublesome Writers
From: "Jane S." <judydh -at- total -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 16 Dec 2000 09:11:55 -0500

One phrase keeps coming up in this thread that I find troubling:

the relationship is
perhaps best severed for the good of both parties

I find that a little arrogant -- the alternative for one party is temporary
poverty, or who knows, an even worse work situation because they can no
longer use you as a reference of any sort. Having been in two very bad work
situations that I would have loved to flip off, I would like to think I did
the mature thing by sticking around and trying to improve the situation. I
was thwarted all along the way, and then at the end when I've had it up to
here and I was putting the next job in place , I got the pink slip. Of
course, like Lisa and every other fired person out there, you gotta think
that there's something that you need to fix (and then do something about it
on your own terms). The fact is, so do those workplaces, and yet it is so
common for everybody to gang up together like a little tribe of survivors
and assassinate the character of the departed. It's ridiculous, it's
unprofessional, and it is exceedingly harmful to all concerned but most
especially the person who was fired.

Companies are far more resilient to bad behaviour than individuals are.
That's been said at least once before on this list. Companies also have
strange cultures where bad behaviour is institutionalized for some parties
no matter how clearly wrong it is. You have to extricate yourself from those
companies as quickly as possible, and I've learned from my two experiences
that 50% of the time you really ought to go for the financial insecurity
than to stick around while job hunting, because poverty is certainly
survivable but character assassination is not. At least if you quit you give
them the figurative black eye.

A little honesty goes a long way. Work is often negotiated coming in and
going out, and it is not totally unheard of to reassign people to more
satisfying projects to protect peace, productivity, and a continuum from
inside-to-out for both the employee and their peers. You might be surprised.
Sometimes that is exactly what they're asking for, sometimes they ask for it
because they know that they can do better for the company than people are
setting them up to do. The mentality of 'you don't deserve a new document
until you can demonstrate how to spell-check the old' has got to go, because
that is exactly how you're going to lose some writers who are justifiably

My humble opinion.

Jane S.

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