Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Interwebs Are Interesting Today!

The interwebs are chock-full of fun stuff to read (including this here blog-a-delic thingey.)

But today, I have stumbled upon a cornucopia of goodness, including:

* An article about road-testing cat litter. Now, as someone who loves cats, and frequently changes poopy catboxes, I have a personal interest in this; however, overall, it's a well-done consumer product testing piece.

* A nice review of the fall TV season. My sister has been raving about Modern Family, and now my favorite TV critic is, too. I guess I'm going to have to tune in before my cable goes digital and I no longer have TV reception. (Don't ask; it's a looooong story.)

* An interview with Balki. I don't know, maybe it's that I grew up in a family where a funny accent was always encouraged, but I have a soft spot for Balki.

Tomorrow (or possibly later today if I'm really bored): The interwebs are also full of good things to buy!

Friday, October 2, 2009

You Can't Kill an Idea: It's Banned Bookweek!

Banned Book Week ends on Sunday, so take some time to celebrate your intellectual freedoms with a banned book, or with John Stuart Mill, who eloquently outlined the value of diverse discourse in On Liberty:
"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind. Were an opinion a personal possession of no value except to the owner; if to be obstructed in the enjoyment of it were simply a private injury, it would make some difference whether the injury was inflicted only on a few persons or on many. But the peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error."

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Good Boss, Bad Boss, Part 1

Well, in case my previous post didn't indicate anything was amiss with work, I have been in the crosshairs since returning from my hoo-hoo-related medical leave.

Today, I was once again the recipient of another condescending, snarky email written in a tone more suitable for a mother addressing her stubborn four-year-old than boss addressing a grown-up professional.

Which brings me to my post title: Good Boss, Bad Boss.
Good Boss
* The Good Boss does not blame an individual for an error. When errors occur, The Good Boss looks to process, deconstructing and reviewing processes to detect potential weak spots. The Good Boss then works collaboratively to correct flaws inherent therein.
* The Good Boss understands that humans occasionally need time to go to the dentist, see a kid's play, or take the cat to the vet, and that the time to do these things doesn't necessarily have to result in lost vacation hours or lost pay.
* The Good Boss knows that most people are adults who will, when trusted and given the right resources and authority, do a good job.
* The Good Boss knows power and responsibility need to be delegated simultaneously.
* The Good Boss does not expect you to keep working once you get home.
* The Good Boss is happy and willing to do the grunt work alongside you, and in some cases, does it for you.

Bad Boss
* When errors occur, The Bad Boss is quick to jump down an employee's throat without assessing why the error occurred. The Bad Boss is not interested in processes, but in results only.
* The Bad Boss does not have your back. The Bad Boss leaves you to fend for yourself if something goes wrong, and takes all the credit when it goes right.
* The Bad Boss has no problem being unprofessional, but will become extremely indignant if you behave unprofessionally.
* The Bad Boss thinks that his/her employees don't talk about salaries, layoffs, who got a raise and who didn't, who left their stinky yogurt in the fridge too long, and so on.
* The Bad Boss is a master of intimidation and will use fear, passive-aggressiveness, and many other childhish tactics to get what s/he wants.
* The Bad Boss usually has no empathy.

As I said, this is Part 1. I'm sure that Part 2 will be equally thrilling.