A site of endless curiosity

Since when does taking vacation mean you don’t show up for work?

with 2 comments

Christmas is this weekend.  So this is a good time to watch employees differentiate themselves.

I had the opportunity this morning.
It’s an important project.  We have contract deliverables due at the end of the calendar year and some are late.
We have a conference call each morning at 8:00am for a “plan of the day” to get this done.

Two people who were on vacation today did not show up on the call
One person who was on vacation did show up on the call
For the rest of the team this was a working day and they all showed up.

The person who was on vacation who did show up on the call is also on vacation all next week and will be traveling to her parents house for Christmas & New Years celebration.  This individual has budgets to do which have to be completed by the end of the calendar year.

I asked her is she will complete them.  She told me she is taking her laptop with her to her parents house and will complete them next week while on vacation and submit them by the end of the calendar year as promised.

What to learn

People have plenty of opportunities to differentiate themselves

  1. Committment to promises they make (commitments to themselves)  – no matter what
  2. Committment to the team – They don’t let other team members down
  3. Committment to the project – The project has contractual obligations which have monetary penalties if not delivered on time.
  4. Committment to the company – The company’s brand is built on the quality of the projects it delivers

So, for the folks on vacation that could not phone in for a 30 minute conference call for an important project…
… I suppose that “vacation really does means vacation” – no matter what.

Sometimes it’s easy to pick the winners from the losers; the A-Players from the B and C-players…
… and who you would select for your next critical high-profile project.
People just somehow sort themselves out all by themselves.
All you need to do is watch and observe behavior at every opportunity that presents itself.
And those opportunities are plentiful.


Written by frrl

December 22, 2011 at 5:55 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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2 Responses

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  1. If she is doing budgets I doubt she is a mere ‘worker bee’.

    One of the facts of business life is that managers have to be on call 24 hours a day 365 days a year. Quite frankly, if a person can be absent from an organization for a week and nobody notices, that person isn’t very important irregardless of title.

    And an organization that would rely on such a person is foolish indeed. And when the bad stuff hits the whirling implement and the organization looks bad and loses business because of it, both the person in question, and the persons direct manager should both be disciplined.

    RHIP … but … RHIR.


    December 23, 2011 at 2:33 am

    • I agree with you. None of the people I wrote about has any operational responsibility. They are all professional services folks working on a consulting project which has to be delivered by the end of the calendar year.

      Some people have 9-5 operational jobs, they must show up, if they don’t show up they are missed and the business will suffer. But they are the lucky ones. They go home at 5pm and their jobs end. For managers and executives, their jobs unrelentingly follow them day and night, at the office and at home on weekdays and the weekends.

      I walked across a corporate campus with an executive that was terminated. He told me that the day he got fired was the best day of his life. He said it was like the weight of the world was lifted off his shoulders. I suspect that after many years under extreme pressure of his job he finally got to “go home” at the end of the day. A feeling that the 9-5 operational people got to feel every day of their life.


      December 24, 2011 at 6:51 am

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