Reason as the Leading Motive

Difference in Work Ethic

Posted by Jerry on December 5, 2005

So, there’s a fundamental difference in my own work ethic and others’ at my office. Just a few moments ago, I had this cutie new hire gay boy who works in our graphics department come up to me and say he can’t do the project I asked him to do by the specified date because he is currently swamped right now, and needs to prioritize. Well, then. I said, try to prioritize it as well as you can, and let me know how late beyond the due date you can complete it, because I need to respond to my customer accordingly to inform them of the delay.
But in my mind I thought: Well, no shit! Get your ass here at night and sit through it to finish it on time!

See, when I get someone giving me a deadline, I feel it is now wholly my responsibility to meet it in however way I can. And that is what I have always done; in every job I’ve held. I’ll stay as long as it takes; do whatever it takes to get the work done in time. I do not want anyone else having to take responsibility for the delay that is mine. Like now, I have to answer to the customer and take responsibility for this delay because the customer could not care any less who is really the one making all the delay here.

The fact that I may be swamped with many things to do is my own business; it is not the responsibility of someone else to worry about and consider my list of priorities so they have to change theirs.
Of course, I do understand that consideration should be given to a reasonable amount of workload. But I work under the assumption that due dates are specified precisely because that is the date out of necessity that it needs to be done – not out of some spite or arbitrary whim to simply make my workload miserable, but because the deadline is indeed a requirement that has to be met.
So, if someone gives me a deadline, I work under the assumption that there is very good reason why there is a date when this job needs to be completed, and I give myself the instruction to complete it in any way I can.

In fact, I am so careful about such things that when I place a request for project to be completed, I never put a due date unless I absolutely need it to be completed by any certain date.
It seems like the ethic of this boy at my job is quite different. The fact that I specified a deadline makes no difference to him. I have to tailor my deadlines to meet his at a project that I gave him to do! Anyway. So this is annoying, to say the least.


3 Responses to “Difference in Work Ethic”

  1. Gazoo said

    Just a thought… I guess you rationalize writing this post while on company time by saying that the work gets finished. Nonetheless, some would consider even this a serious lack of work ethic. Any thoughts?


  2. Ergo Sum said

    Umm… no. Work ethic works on common sense… not on a robotic sense.

    Common sense tells me that if there isn’t anything “work-related” that needs to be done, I can use my time to do other things… for example, writing on this blog.

    Robotic sense would tell me that 8:30am – 5:00pm is work time and therefore I must only do work-related things… and in the event that I have nothing work-related to do, I must sit idle and do nothing else until I get something work-related to do.

    Now, common sense also tells me that if I have something work-related to do… that work should obviously take priority over any and every other miscellaneous activity.

    Now, common sense also tells me that if I have some work to do that is high priority, or that comes with a deadline… I must take it as my responsibility to meet that deadline and get it done.

    How does that sound? Good question, though. 🙂

  3. Gazoo said

    Sounds good to me… you never let me down.


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