Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Kumbayas

I guess it's time to talk about the Kumbayas.

Though Kitty Kat's time at her workplace has come to a close, it has certainly influenced many of our late night discussions over coffee and cake. For she actually chose to enter the hitherto unexplored realm of kumbaya hipster start-up that miraculously achieves decisions based on a conciliatory group consensus with mandatory shared hugs, frequent backpats and regular group singing over an office campfire.

With the ubiquitous ukulele in hand of course.

No doubt you've seen many of her impassioned colleagues - these affluent millennials huddled around artisanal coffeehouses sipping their hastily deconstructed caffeine concoctions in pseudoscientific glass beakers. For someone relatively seasoned in the intensely aggressive working culture of medicine, these modern day urban hipsters seem almost implacably alien to me.

Obviously such a hip upstart of a company comes with only a mere handful on their board above the impossibly decrepit age of thirty; with the majority only having a couple of years under their belt before being voluntarily propelled into lofty positions they are utterly unprepared for. Curious executive decisions that nonetheless give rise to some unusual work conundrums.

Imagine a human resource manager barely out of university finding himself incapable of writing up a feasible exit strategy for the underperforming employees. In fact the little milksop balked at the very idea of firing an incompetent point blank; resorting to such sadly wishy-washy methods as offering cordial suggestions instead. Apparently tough love would cause these fragile hothouse blooms to shrivel, wither and die.

Seemingly not content with filling the ranks of the company with incapables impossible to dismiss, the ineffectual manager then next decided to come up with intriguing proposals at work.

Kat : Now we have to deal with key performance indicators like Integrity and -
Paul : Stop. How the hell do you score Integrity? Does it rise year by year? Could it remain the same? 
Kat : We have no idea. There's also a Sense of Possibility.
Paul : I can't even possibly see sense of that. 
Kat : Yes.
Paul : Honestly the more sense of possibility you have the less sense of reality you have. Half the asylum patients would score really high on sense of possibility - in fact they would flap their wings to fly out of a towering skyscraper. Is that what they prefer? 
Kat : Obviously.

Really. Bringing up such tedious bureaucratic paperwork for a fledgling startup with members fewer than the principal characters of War and Peace. Offering other constructive feedback to subtly alter his proposals is only seen as a monstrous act of aggression, apparently creating an unhealthy work environment.

Manager : I sense some hostility in the room. Perhaps we need to talk about this before we proceed.
Paul : It's already past working hours and we haven't made a single decision even after a three hour meeting.
Manager : Could I offer you some feedback on what you just said-
Paul : There's going to be a knife feedback in your chest if you keep telling me that. 

Thankfully I have little of such nonsense at work to bother me since I would have gladly disemboweled him! Clearly Dilbert drew inspiration from just such passive aggressive millennial managers. Or perhaps I could be impugning the reputations of the millennials and it's just this particular group of hipsters.

You can see why we spend several evenings laughing over such ludicrous work shenanigans. Although it has me starting to wonder if the human resource manager has nefarious plans to sink the entire kumbaya hipster startup.

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