Every week at work, we all receive a "weekly thoughtful reminder" email. It has some random philosophical type of quote that is no doubt supposed to be inspirational, along with some cheerfully upbeat instructions to "be positive" and such. I don't think any of us actually read them any more. I'm pretty sure that we are capable of being thoughtful without having to be reminded on a regular basis. And if they want me to be more thoughtful, sending me less unimportant email might be a good place to start. But this got me thinking about how good I have it in the new career. There really isn't very much Dilberty stuff going on at work. The "weekly thoughtful reminder" is pretty much it. Meetings are rare, and the bosses don't have pointy hair. [Hey! That rhymes!] I have a real office with an actual door that can be closed when I need privacy or a quiet work environment.
Back when I was an engineer, things were much different. Life as a cube-dweller rarely made any sense. Upper management making inexplicable decisions, due dates moving up without regard to reality, middle manager fiefdoms being fiercely protected, and the endless parade of meetings just sucked the humanity out of everyone. And don't forget those TPS Reports. "We're putting new cover sheets on the TPS reports before they go out." "Didn't you get the memo?" OK, I didn't do TPS reports, but you get the idea. Engineers have to document the entire design-build-test process and I don't know of any good engineers who enjoy project paperwork. Not to mention the painful process of getting said paperwork signed and approved by every department manager all the way up the food chain.
So next time I get that weekly thoughtful reminder I will use the few seconds I spend deleting it to remember how lucky I am that it is not an invitation to yet another useless meeting. And I might even close my office door... just because I can.