Re: More on drafts --

Subject: Re: More on drafts --
From: "Bonnie Granat" <bgranat -at- editors-writers -dot- info>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2002 22:01:55 -0400

----- Original Message -----
From: "Andrew Plato" <gilliankitty -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Cc: <bgranat -at- editors-writers -dot- info>
Sent: Monday, September 23, 2002 9:40 PM
Subject: Re: More on drafts --

> "Bonnie Granat" <bgranat -at- editors-writers -dot- info> wrote ...
> > If you hire me and you do not tell me that my drafts have to be ready at
> > time for inspection by you, and that they really shouldn't be drafts at
> > but should be finished product, you are behaving unethically.
> No, I'm behaving dumbly. Unethical is when somebody does something that is
> fundamentally wrong or hurtful for their own gain.

It is fundamentally wrong to misrepresent how you are going to judge my
work. If you are the kind of person that enjoys entrapping people in the
workplace, you are gaining some payoff for what you do.

> I think you are confusing "unethical" with "unpleasant" or "unproductive."

No. It is unethical to misrepresent anything in a business environment,
period. It is misrepresentation that is key. To withhold information that
has an effect on the evaluation of an employee's work is unethical. It is
also unpleasant, and it is also unproductive, yes, but it violates the basic
concepts of trust and teamwork that must operate freely in any work

> In order for a person to behave unethically, they have to violate a widely
> and accepted code of ethics. For example, lying to a customer about the
> capability of a product is unethical because it violates a basic tenet of
> business that businesses are honest to customers.

Not telling an employee the basis on which he will be judged is just as

> But failing to tell an employee all the possible expectations that might
> heaped on them does not violate some widely held, universal code of

It does violate the widely held, universal belief in the employer's
responsibility to tell an employee what is required of him or her and how he
or she will be judged.

It is
> more along the lines of an oversight. An organization can function without
> possible expectation being perfectly communicated to every employee. Like
I said,
> this is why we have training periods. People have to "learn the ropes" and
> doesn't happen immediately.

A matter such as when and how my work product will be evaluated is hardly a
minor or secondary matter. It is crucial to the operation of the
organization, and there is no excuse for it not been stated clearly at the
outset of employment, or at least within the first week or two.

> Furthermore, it is impossible to adequately communicate every possible
> expectation. Every employee has a different work ethic and therefore
> expectations must be applied to them.

It's a simple, initial matter that needs to be told to the employee. It's
not a big deal. The manager says, "I'd like to see drafts at least once a
week, so please put a copy on my desk on Friday mornings before our staff

> For example, some people think it is perfectly acceptable to consistently
work 30
> hours a week when they are being paid for 40. These people clearly need to
> reminded of the company's expectation that they work a minimum of 40 hours
> week. Personally, I don't think any diligent, professional person should
have to
> be reminded of such an expectation. But, not everybody is the same. Some
> need more guidance and supervision than others. While some are so bad,
> demand micro-management.

Like how my work will be evaluated, the number of hours I am expected to
work is something that should be laid out for me before I am hired. We are
not talking about reminders, here, as far as I am aware.

> Therefore, you're expectation that EVERY possible expectation be clearly
laid out
> on day one isn't just absurd, its impossible.

No, not EVERY expectation, but just the basic ones that exist, such as
whether I am expected to deliver drafts to my boss. This is the single most
basic job expectation that has to be explained to a new employee on the
first day.

> > If you do not tell me what you require of me, and then knock me for not
> > meeting your expectations, you are not only being unethical, but you are
> > being stupid.
> Stupid, maybe, unethical, no.

I must continue to disagree. Totally unethical. It is depriving me of the
opportunity to know how I am being judged.

> > I don't see such a struggle in the present instance. I see a writer who
> > treated like a child. That's unethical. If you cannot see it, perhaps
> > is why you have so many horror stories about your employees.
> Yes, they just won't respond to repeated beatings. $()(#* -at- +_ employees!


> I see a writer treated like a lot of employees. Expectations are made and
> communicated. This is a common occurrence. No, its not ideal. But no place
> ideal. Every organization out there has problems. And either you learn how
> roll with the punches and work with people, or you wind up fighting the
> and ultimately losing.

Well, I think he has a right to be concerned about it and voice his
unhappiness. I think he raises a perfectly valid ethical question.

Bonnie Granat

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Re: More on drafts --: From: Andrew Plato

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