Friday, June 14, 2013

DotTeeVee: 12 mistakes managers make: at will employees

Am I properly managing my competencies, leveraging my synergies and jacking my dannies? Because I'm the successful businessperson of this new age and also a totally unaware knob I'm always asking these questions. Fortunately, there is help. I'm talking about training videos where we watch manager Goofus go full retard and then get a nice post-game breakdown from someone eager to sell us things. For example, today we will examine the issue of making grandiose promises that you can't possibly keep. Is it a good thing? The answer might surprise you. Well, actually it probably won't, but according to a "Build Your Blog Brand" seminar I've been attending I should use this first paragraph to make various bombastic statements to gain reader interest before vomiting out the dull drivel.

Today's feature is brought to us by the good people at "Rose's Dozen Manager's Guide." No, it's actually not a list of "Yo Mama" jokes for corporate suits. Instead it's a series of "best practices" to insure the sweet, sweet capitalism gets done and done well. For example, "Your words can bind the company." Wizard spells or perverted acts, which joke to make? Let's get to the managerial binding and discipline.

I guess every rose has its lessons, just like every CFO sings a sad, sad song.

Cheery music plays and our manager identification figure is joined already in action, talking to a potential hire about "work stations" and "customers." Yeah, that's business all right. Yup. I don't normally comment on video quality, but this one looks like it was, as the kids would say, "recorded with a potato, LOL, epic failz, YOLO, I'm functionally illiterate and there should be another world war to thin out our ranks and teach the rest of us some maturity."

All the hot Adam Smith talk is diverted somewhat by the introduction of "Marvin," an older gentleman who just happened to be all up in the work stations, for real.

 "Give it up for Marvin! This guy is The Man!"

Our "what not to do" hero wastes no time in putting over the virtues of Marvin. Specifically, he's the best computer technician the manager's mom (!!!) has ever seen. Wait, what? I thought this was advice for profit margin assassins, not momma's boys who are only employed because of nepotism and use their foolish words to "bind" their companies. "But my mom says I'm a good executive!" etc.

"I employ this computer stud named "Marvin" and own all these work stations.

We continue extolling the considerable virtues of Marvin as our clueless manager talks about his "fifteen years" and then foolishly gets all tangled up, or "bound" if you will, in his words by declaring there's excellent job security. Marvin assumes that "she's already hired," just as any sensible person would after mommy's favorite junior exec constructed a verbal cage for himself with poorly chosen vocabulary. I understand that you're enthusiastic about Marvin, who wouldn't be, but you know you just fudged up.

  "Good thing your mom's the boss, loser. I wonder if Marvin wants to hook up..."

A drum fill takes us away from this sorry scene and we're informed by a graphic that "Steve's mistake" was making crazy promises. Then we meet a woman I'm assuming is "Rose," who grinds in additional indignity by calling mom's devoted son "Mister Common Sense." We get some shilling for her product and then an evaluation of what we just saw. She bugs her eyes out and insists that our anti-hero could get in trouble "legally."

The solution: don't promise shit. If people try to force one out of you, just be all "I speak no English" and hide under a work station or behind Marvin. We are advised to consider all employees as "at will" meaning you should regard them more like units in a Command and Conquer game and less like human beings. Specifically, "you can fire them at any time, for any reason." "Marvin, I don't like that you're so bad-ass and make me look even worse by comparison. You're fired." I don't see any way that could lead to legal problems, as opposed to making an empty promise. 

"Marvin, I'm giving you about an hour to put your pants back on."

We close out with a narrated summary of what we were already told. Here we get the fine print that explains you can't just go firing people because they look at you cock-eyed and so on. We also discover that Montana doesn't have "employment at will." What they do have is not explained, so if you were watching this from Butte I'm so sorry it wasn't at all helpful.

I think we'd all rather not dwell on all of that. Instead, more Marvin!

Guess what else your mom says I'm the best at."

Komment Korner 


I love Leonardo DiCraprio in this movie!

this is awful i hate coprorate bull at will means your a niger your black your fired or your gay your fired or i dont like you I im in a bad mood your fired it doesnt matter all they have to say is your fired no reason.

Aaron Zehner's first novel The Foolchild Invention is available in e-book format at and Barnes & Noble.

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