Wednesday, 17 December 2014

The Christmas Party Fiasco

C'est pas un cadeau

"Gloria, I want the Christmas party to increase employee engagement, especially for the nerds and geeks. Please lead this process in a democratic fashion, but I hold you responsible for the results. Stan."

I received the above text from CEO Stan 2 months ago. Ever since then, I have had indigestion, as it were.

My Dad, the late Pierre Elliot Ramsbottom, was not a great believer in democracy. 
Dad used to get very upset when reading the newspapers and used to say "Hitler would be Governor General of Canada if we ran the RCAF via democracy." 
The RCAF, for my American readers who tend not to be worldly, is the Royal Canadian Airforce.

I feel somewhat like Dad. Today we had a meeting of the CPTF, the Christmas Party Task Force, which is run as a democratic tree-hugging, consensus driven committee which is not allowed to vote.

The CPTF committee met to put on the final touches on next weeks' party, and once again everyone reverted back to issues that I had assumed were "water under the bridge", another term Dad used a lot.

The straight white  boy who runs Diversity, Hugh White, restated that 30% of the staff are Christians. Whined Hugh: "The vast majority of our staff are Hindu, Islam, Confucian, Jewish or other, so why are we imposing ourselves? This is not Diversity compliant." 
It is important for me to mention that Hugh and his wife Comrade Ludmilla White (nee Khrushchev) belong to the 30%, in line with my core value of Diversity.

Downsizer/Load-shredder Cynthia Axe did not even pretend to give a hoot about the party. Axe emphasized that "if I need to fire anyone during the party, I'm outta here". Under duress, Axe speaks with sloppy English. As I acquire my posh English accent, it appears to me more and more that in some ways, Axe is poor white trash. 

Emerging Technologies Chief Comrade Carl Marks, it appears, has ordered the Russian Red Army Choir to be piped in by video to the party, at a cost of 500,000 rubles. I told Carl he was way over budget. 

Comrade Carl stood up, drank something from a flask that smelt of brandy and said: "Budgets are for pussy cats, Gloria. Kibinimat budget. Go "screw yourselves" with the budget. We need vision, not a budget. We need motivated nerds, not a budget. We need to bury our products bugs in the internet of things-not a budget. 
HR is useless. Let's set up a union, like the French do all the time".

CEO Stan asked me by text-"is the party ready? The party is HR's domain. But try and accommodate the ever so eccentric Comrade Carl. Stan"

Ever so eccentric


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