Friday, January 12, 2007

Letters I Wish'd I Had Sent

This will probably make no sense to anyone out there, but "them's the breaks!"

Dear Subject Matter "Expert"

I am so sorry I asked you to do your job. You are paid to be the "expert" on the subject, so when I have a question, I would expect you to know the answer. Maybe that is too much to ask. I keep forgetting that you were the one who trained us, so, since you trained us, and we still don't know it, why should you know it now?

Just telling me "It's in the database," doesn't tell me that I am looking to create an "office location document." All that I know is that the little thingy on the bottom of the screen doesn't say, "Office." The database doesn't say, "How to make the little thingy on the bottom of the screen say office." So when I ask you for help, it is not because I am lazy, it is because I am being asked to do something that YOUR training didn't prepare me to do.

And making me feel like an idiot while I have a customer on the line is an ideal form of customer service. Let's make the customer wait while I learn my lesson. This is a great way to make our goal of being a "World Class Service Desk."

Maybe if during training you actually did some training instead of showing us on-line videos or talking about your sex life, we might know what a location document is and not have to come running to you for help. But you didn't teach us that. Frankly, you hardly taught us anything. Now, you get pissed when we ask you questions. Maybe we are pointing out just how bad a teacher you really are?

Don't you ever again just look at me like I am stupid and then walk away. I almost quit this evening, but it is not me who is doing the job badly, it is you who did a bad job of training and are now feeling pressed upon because we all are coming to you for help. Just because it is in the database doesn't mean I can find it. (And we won't even mention the stuff in the database that is over seven years out of date.) If I have not gotten enough training to let me know what to look for, I will NEVER find it! So asshole, when I ask for help, help me! We can have the "teachable moment" later. Now, there is a customer on the phone who is getting pissed. And I am getting pretty pissed too.


Anonymous said...

You have been placed in a typical corporate environment: someone does not know what they are doing, but for whatever reason has "floated to the surface". (Certain matter seems universally to float there.)

Now, Ben, you must know that such persons must NEVER be exposed as not knowing, so when YOU ask a question that he/she does not have the answer to, he/she MUST make YOU look like the dumb sh*t. Heaven forbid that someone in a position of responsibility should actually take responsibility!
* * *
I am so sorry you are enduring this. Supervisors who are competent would have handled this in a way that a) got the answer; b) calmed the customer; and c) affirmed you in such a way that you not only learned the answer to your/the customer's question but also motivated you to be a better employee who was willing to eat dirt for the supervisor.

Alas! I have not felt like willingly eating dirt for a supervisor in decades, although I have been forced to do so on many occasions.

Ur-spo said...

true, I did not quite get 'all of it' but I got the main gist; coworkers being nasty. I hear this is most work areas with many people and a hierarchy of departments. So you are not alone.
But it is wrong/sucks/hurts nevertheless.
Better have something hot to drink and make some popcorn, and watch an old comedy this weekend.