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Subject:Re: Average Hours Worked From:Andrew Plato <gilliankitty -at- yahoo -dot- com> To:"TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Sun, 4 Aug 2002 11:43:23 -0700 (PDT)
<eric -dot- dunn -at- ca -dot- transport -dot- bombardier -dot- com> wrote:
>> When you are hired as a salaried person, you're not being hired for 40
>> of work. You're being hired to get a job done. And if that job takes you
>> than 40 hours, then you should start considering ways to reprioritize
>> such that you CAN get it done in 40 hours.
> That's a load of Worthless Drivel. What job am I being hired to accomplish?
Write documentation, I presume. If you don't know what job you were hired to
accomplish, then I would say you and your employer have a serious communication
problem. Which says something about you (a professional communicator) and your
> Whatever the boss decides needs done? A *CONTRACTOR* is hired to get a job
> if there is a deliverable. If there isn't one deliverable contractor and
> salaried employee are hired to work at a reasonable pace, for the standard
> number of hours per week, for a reasonable pay.
No. Employees are hired to fill a need within an organization. You don't hire
people just to be there. People are hired to fill a need and get work done. You
are useless to your employer if you are not helping the organization sell its
products, serve its customers, etc.
Most executives don't really care about hours, they care about results. They
don't really care if you worked 35 hours or 45 hours. They want to see results.
Projects done, customers happy, sales increasing, etc. Maybe some low-level
manager who has nothing to do but analyze timesheets and obsess over the mundane
cares about hours, but these type of people are rarely effective in an
> Well, that confirms it. You're either Andrew Plato or someone who plays a
> good facsimile. Of course if a writer doesn't have enough time to finish any
> work regardless of the load it *MUST* be because they're obsessing over
> templates, or methodology.
No, but some do. They become disassociated with the purpose of their job (produce
docs). This causes them to consume time with obsessions and one-off work. In the
effort to "work better" they "work zero."
This isn't a tech writer-only problem. Its a problem in all careers. In security
work there are folks that are more interested in obsessing over Microsoft's evil
ways then actually securing networks. In my opinion, they are just as guilty of
being disassociated from the purpose of their job as font fondlers and template
> Gee, why not stop trolling for response with pathetic trolls like the above?
> Isn't this the same drivel that was repeated in each and every post before
> hiatus? If anybody has any complaint or problem it's because they're
> over something worthless. Amazingly previously the list wasn't doing so bad
> was discussing employer/employee dynamics and trade-offs. Now we're arguing
> we aren't in fact indentured slaves.
Or maybe what you really mean is: "before everybody was agreeing with me (or
disagreeing in a soft, pleasing manner), now I am getting seriously challenged
from a person with a fundamentally different perspective and the rhetorical might
to communicate that perspective, and I don't like that. So I will just attack him
and get him to go away again."
> <<A half-assembled radio is worthless. A fully-assembled radio that
has a few
> dents and dings has value.>>
> All right then, to play this stupid, insipid, and banal game, let's consider
> following scenario:
> 1-You signed a contract to be a techwriter for 50,000/yr specifying 40h/wk
> occasional overtime
WHOA! You said "contract" we need to see some exact wording there, dude.
I don't have any contracts that say: "Hey man, come on in for 40 hours a week
and I'll pay you 50K a year. Oh and yeah, like sometimes, bummer dude, you might
have to like work extra."
Most employment contracts establish MINIMUM expectations. And few if any say
"overtime is expected."
> 2-You arrive at work everyday on time
> 3-you take only 10 minutes break for lunch
> 4-you work 12 hours a day 7 days a week.
What was preventing you from getting the job done in 5, 8 hour days?
> 5-All you do every working second is type a continuous perfectly organised
> written stream of text at 50 words per minute.
> 6-The Boss asks for more.
If I were you're boss, I'd ask: why they hell can't this "professional"
get this job done in a normal work schedule?
> Exactly when in the ridiculous scenario of "you were hired to do a job
so get it
> done" does it become too much and acceptable to complain?
As I have said 100000s of times, Eric, if your employer's work environment does
not suit your needs, you are welcome to turn in a resignation and go find an
employer that DOES suit your needs. You're not chained to the desk. You have free
will - exercise it.
Generally, companies that treat employees like crap don't retain the best
employees. They retain victims who enjoy being abused. And these people rarely
turn out quality material because they're too busing masticating over how poorly
they are treated.
Likewise, employees who don't get the work done and don't live up to expectations
generally get kicked around from company to company until they either wise up or
become one of these victim types.
Either way - you have control. Exercise it. But don't complain how The Man took
control of your life and made you suffer. You LET The Man take control of your
life and make you suffer.
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