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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Work, without end.

It has been very busy where I work, there are orders, shipments and phone calls, faxes and emails, the place is buzzing with the excitement of a wonderful holiday season, and we work hard to deliver joy around the world.  It is more than a job, it is a duty, a trust, a privilege.  We work long hours, with a smile on our face, we toil until our backs ache, and our fingers hurt, and our feet are sore, and we like it, we are happy about it!  Sometimes we are so busy we can't even come to work, and we send an email, "I am so busy, I will be working from home today."
We'll leave a light on for you.

Seconds after the email announcing a sad day without our cherished associate the nearest person will rush over to their work station and turn on the light.  It is a ceremonial in nature, and people will often stop and say hello to the light in honor.

Besides, just because they are working from home does not mean they should work in the dark, we are not animals, after all.  Not that I think all animals enjoy working in the dark, but several of them prefer the dark.  In fact many animals are such dedicated third shift associates (including the appropriately named Panamanian Night Monkey, and the oddly named Paradoxical Frog, which may or may not be a frog, or a paradox) scientists even developed a word for them, Nocturnal.  But, that really is not what we are talking about today.  

We are a small company, and we have very few formal requirements, so people who are working from home don't really send an email as to when they stop "working," and start "not working" from home.  This leads to some uncomfortable decisions, "do we shut off the light?" what if they are not done working?  

Besides, in some ways "shutting off the light" seems so final, similar to "pulling the plug" or "terminating with extreme prejudice."  

"Hey, what ever happened to ol' Bob?"  

"We had to shut the light off on him.  It was a tough decision, but it was for the best."

There is a lesson here, share information, data is critical for decision making, update people on your activities, you are not alone, and people need to know.  And, if you are going to work from home channel 6 shows old Bugs Bunny cartoons at 2:30 Eastern Time, man, that Bugs kills me.