Thursday, 5 May 2022

Mass resignations are not inevitable: Tidbits from the First Lady of HR

almost defunct?

In our management meeting this week (during which I sit next to CEO Stan in my seat-at-the-table), I was warned  by Comrade Karl Marks that "we are on the brink of a huge melt down if there is mass resignation of our nerds. All our knowledge is oral tradition, all our code is handed down from generation to generation in Hindi, Greek, Hebrew, Spanish, Cantonese and Scottish English." 

Comrade Karl was referring to the Cantonese dialect, and not Cantonese noodles with tofu. Scottish English is a form of English that English speakers don't fully, or partially, understand.

CEO Stan said that "mass resignations are not a bad thing, Comrade Karl. The code you guys write is all Greek to our users, and none of our users speak Greek. Did you know that Karl?"

Comrade Karl looked at CEO Stan and then at me: "Kibinimat Stan, stay on track, keep in line and shake a leg. Gloria, have you taken propylactic measures to prevent melt down".

My readers don't know yet, but soon I will be in Vienna. I have been practicing my German verbs, but nonezeless, I answered Karl en anglais, which means in English.

"Comrade Karl, as you know well, I am ahead of the pack. You will never find me straggling from behind or dithering in the rear. All our nerds have a stay bonus-they remain employed at our firm or they do not STAY in the USA. They are on a B737/9 visa. Furthermore, their passports are held in safe keeping in Moose Jaw, Canada, in my family's safety box. And, if one of them quits by ignoring all the constraints, we will blow up their home using a drone which I commissioned from a defector from the now almost-defunct Russian army."

At that Comrade Carl got furious. "Almost-defunct my ass Gloria. Who told you that, for Christ's sake? What are you smoking Gloria? Whatever it is, roll me a joint. Tak."

Thursday, 17 March 2022

Comrade Carl issues a rebuke to our client


CEO Stan

CEO Stan looked very concerned when I met him in the executive elevator at 7.59 AM. 

I thought that he was upset when he found one of our nerds, who had worked all night, asleep on the floor of the elevator. But I was wrong, although I don't like saying that. Stan spoke:  "4 of our 4 top accounts want to uninstall our new product. Gloria, make preparations to send Comrade Carl and a bunch of his nerds to the client site on a one way ticket, in coach, until they get the product up and running. And let them take an ethnic airline, like Alitalia, Iberia or El AL."

I sauntered out of the elevator and walked into Comrade Carl's office. He had changed the "touch and feel" of his office by hanging  pictures of Joe Biden, Kamalla Harris and Marshall Zhukov on his walls. I informed Comrade Carl of his upcoming overseas soujorn and suggested he pack his bags at once. The Comrade told me "I have no bags. That's a bourgois excess". Tovarish (Comrade) Carl poured himself a glass of brandy in a flask (that had a picture of U Thant)  and suggested that we walk over to the conference room for the morning management meeting-during which I sit next to CEO Stan.

                                                                            Off to Pago Pago Pago

Stan opened the meeting by castigating Comrade Carl. "Your software sucks Comrade. Straighten up! Off you go to Pago Pago, Pago Pago Pago, Inuit and Uzbekistan to fix it, you louse. I should never have hired you, you scumbag."

CEO Stan needs a coach, if you ask me.

Comrade Carl turned red in the face. "I'm not going, not until I address the management teams of our thankless clients by Zoom. I want to knock some sense into their thick skulls. I call for an end of this. I rebuke their stupidity. I reject their claims.This is outrageous. This is a conspiracy, kibinimat. I suspect that Gloria  and the HR team have recruited turncoats, client spies, Benedict Arnold and Arnold Benedict. Using a blockchain to recruit is the only answer. Who needs HR?"

Being a Canadian, I did not know who Arnold Benedict is. Even CEO Stan, who is from Missouri, did not know. He told me "Get the Comrade some Xanex before he leaves".

As Comrade Carl and 5 nerds, all named Igor, headed for the airport, Stan asked me if Comrade Carl is flying El Al. "I want him to really suffer".

                                                                    Sitting next to Stan

Monday, 28 February 2022

Managing Russian nerds in War Time

Comrade Karl Marks, our Chief Nerd and User Experience Guru,  told me that he is faced with the "management challenge of his lifetime".

260 of his nerds hail from Russia, 78 of whom are named Svetlana or Vadim. 

Up until yesterday, there were 259 pictures of Putin on the walls of our cubicles. The one cubicle wall without the aforementioned picture was that of Comrade Karl himself, who has a picture of himself wearing a cape and holding a Uzi. 

As war broke out Comrade Carl sent out an email invitation for a ten o'clock meeting to "all nerds who speak Russian". 

This email was recalled by Mister Hugh White, the Head of our Diversity Section. Hugh White is straight and white as a lily.

 Hugh recalled the email because "one cannot exclude English, Scottish, Hindi or Hebrew speakers from receiving emails, or else we will be sued for linguistically dising our staff". 

This was the first time Hugh has used the word "dis".

At 10.00 every single nerd in his department assembled in the Vladimir Putin Meeting Room, which had been hastily renamed the "Stalingrad Salon".

Comarade Carl went to the podium with a cup of Borsht in his hand and wearing T shirt with a picture of Gorbachev, including the birthmark on his forehead. "Comrades, this is a great day, if you are a warmonger. Kibinimat, who the f-ck is a warmonger in 2022? But hey, since when did the world make sense". 

The nerds threw rice at Comrade Carl, as often happens in non-western settings. One of our nerds, Nickolay, asked Comrade Carl if he had served in the Red Army. Comrade Carl asked me: "Gloria, check my CV-my memory is slipping as I age". 

Carl, of course, had served in the Red Army, when he was hospitalized for paranoia when he went to Ohio State University. After he was released, he started speaking with a Russian accent and studied Software as part of his rehab.

However, I did not share this information. Discretion is the mother of virtue.

Monday, 7 February 2022

Introducing Unlimited Vacation


9 Sanjays,  all 14 Svetlanas, 6 Moshes and old de Villiers burst into my office along with Comrade Carl Marks, their boss and the unstable Head of R & D. 

They sat down on the lovely carpet and started to chant- "We'll close the whole plantation without unlimited vacation". Notice the rhyme. They also demanded unlimited teletrabajo (working from home), more spicy food and better chopsticks on Chinese Food Day.

Of course, it is very difficult to catch me unprepared. But they did. 

That very night, I invited the whole jama'a (gang) to a Chinese restaurant to announce our new unlimited perks plan. Each nerd was told to pay for what they ordered but  that HR would transfer $5 to their salaries for the meal when Herr Krebbs our CFO oks this expense. Herr Krebbs is now in the Black Forest, looking for some cash.

Here is the new policy, word for word, as  I announced it after the nerds placed their orders.

"We value the wellbeing of our nerds. We know that back in your homelands, you all  lived a life of want. And we know how important Green Cards are. 
We also know that unlimited paid vacation is great. In Romania, the government used to hand out free apartments. But there was no food. And few public toilets.
Starting today, any nerd who wants to go on vacation can do so. All he or she or it needs to be is take a laptop computer, keep the mobile phone on 24 hours a day, take customer calls, listen to the daily podcast HR Cares and tell their kids to shut up during conference calls. This offer expires at midnight.

The nerds stared throwing rice at me and chanting-Gloria-Gloria, you bring us Euphoria". That rhymes also.

It was 23.59 (11.59 pm) when my speech ended. At midnight, the nerds paid their bills, boarded their motorbikes and drove home. 

Another day in the life of the first lady of HR.


Saturday, 22 January 2022

Getting your team to "get" the company culture right


"How is that your nerds get the company culture so right?", I was asked recently in a BBC World Service, France 24,  Free Europe and Danmarks Radio/English Language  interview

Never the one to brag, I nevertheless acknowledged the fact that very few nerds deviate from the party line; after careful statistical analysis, I am certain that this success can be fully attributed to the " Glorious Corporate Culture Class" which all nerds participate in on day one at our firm.

Actually on Day 2, when they recover from the spicy food they eat in our Diversity Cafeteria as they arrive at our campus.

The Glorious Corporate Culture Class (given in 28 languages including Glasgow English) consists of 4 2-minute microteaching seminars, which drive in a major "underpinning" of the cultural edifice of our firm.

The first micro seminar is about "Decolonizing Pecuniary Expectations".  The main point that I make is that old fashioned money is the opium of that the landed gentry use to colonize the nerd (the working man, and even woman). Now, this must be decolonized and the nerd can find meaning in work alone, along with a warm meal and pizza with extra cheese for the night shift.

The second micro seminar is about Working from Home, aka Teletrabajo. In this seminar, we show a Spanish speaking nerd, or nerdette, wearing a sombrero who is supposedly on a Zoom call, yet in reality are napping in the afternoon sun. On the screen is a  blockchain named Andy which  generates a pink slip from HR or RH, which sends the aforementioned nerd/ette to collect dole.

The third session has a table laced out with pizza, pepperoni, extra cheese, diluted Diet Coke, baklawa, Turkish coffee and pep pills and Cipralex. But, the table is  covered with glass on which there is the sign-Opens at 1 am.

The fourth session shows pictures a nerd on a cellphone whilst driving, answering an angry clients' call.  Upon leaving the room, all nerds get a printed copy of our insurance policy for Driving and Texting whilst taking customer calls.

I would ask that these ideas, if implemented, be attributed to me and not Ms Axe , as I did have a dominant, hands-on, strategic, sustainable and global hand in formulating them. Oh yes -I forgot-only 3 faces in all 4 seminars are white. And no proper English is used whatsoever, except for the insurance policy.

Mass resignations are not inevitable: Tidbits from the First Lady of HR

almost defunct? In our management meeting this week (during which I sit next to CEO Stan in my seat-at-the-table), I was warned  by Comrade ...

Glo at her best