Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Working Hard or Hardly Working

I realize I am not the only person who has a few bad apples for coworkers. Considering all employees, if that was true, there wouldn't be a need for HR, right?

These days, the one at the top of my list is a completely incompetent, manipulative twit who barely manages to function on a daily basis.

In my experience, incompetent deadbeats who happen to have "HR" in their title are assumed to be highly functioning professionals. Many employees outside of HR believe HR employees are untouchable. At my esteemed place of employment, this is true.

At least for the bad ones...

You can set the tone for minimal expectations and get away with it. Those of us who consistently perform at a high level and continue to take on more responsibility are idiots. If my performance started to dwindle, I have no doubt it would be discussed rather quickly. The term to describe this phenomenon is professional punishment.

Taking it a step further, these employees do more (or less) than fail to perform. They actually make significant mistakes, fail to meet deadlines, and depend so much on their coworkers (me) to do their job, that an expectation has now been set.

Before you start believing I am a sucker who can't say no, keep reading.

This started because my coworker was new. One of those new people who most of my other coworkers realized wasn't suited for this job. After a couple of years, she hasn't grown into her position. Here is a general breakdown of her ineptitude:

  • Recruiting: She struggles to manage her recruitments and often whines to our supervisor about her workload (which is minimal) until she gets help. She is not beyond crying to get her way.

  • Compensation: She frequently plagiarizes the work of others. While I am not a fan of reinventing the wheel, well .......... you get the point.

  • Employee Relations: She often makes a situation worse because she doesn't like ER. Doesn't like it? I didn't realize we were paid to only do the things we like but what do I know?

  • Committees: Unless you considering being a note taker extraordinaire a skill, she doesn't contribute.

  • Meetings with her customers: She cannot go alone. When I am asked to go, I used to help her, tried to let her lead the meeting, but not anymore. Really, I don't sabotage her but everyone's time is valuable and it is embarrassing to watch. When she freezes up (about 60 seconds into the meeting), I deal with the issues. She doesn't seem to care about appearing to be my note taking assistant when dealing with HER customers.

  • EEO/AA: "I don't like to get involved in things that could get me sued." Direct quote. Wrong job field don't you think?

  • Special Projects: What year would you like it completed in? Can you provide her with step by step instructions? Does it include the ability to perform any type of analysis? Do you mind waiting until Hell freezes over?

  • Communication: If she doesn't like an employee or manager, she either gets snippy with them or avoids them like the plague. If a problem arises (obviously it does), she cries. Cries about how mean or unreasonable they are. The result? A big meeting with our boss and management in the department the mean employee/manager works in. The result of these meetings? The official answer is process improvement and a commitment to improve communication (hug hug, kiss kiss). The reality? The department loses a little more respect for HR as a group. This happens in cycles, then things calm down for a while until the next problem.

At this point, the department calls me when they need something because I am not a whining, incompetent, passive-aggressive little girl who hides behind her supervisor.

I cannot stop helping other departments entirely because they are customers. They have needs and THAT is my job. My coworker makes all of us look bad. It is not easy to accept when I work very hard to be approachable, strategic, and work in partnership with my departments.

I have addressed this with my supervisor numerous times. She doesn't follow through. Our HR Manager (Mr. Shit4Brains) knows about this but chooses not to deal with it.

Employees have been telling me for years that accountability decreases as you move up the corporate ladder. For some people (like the HR management team at my company), this is true.

Anyone else care to share their HR coworker horror stories?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

New to this blog...usually follow AAM, Evil, and Wenchie. I had a coworker who was a complete bitch, rude, callous, and arrogant. She had a mere three years on me. She would whine/complain/be mean to her hiring managers, and her work would get dumped on me...the hiring managers LOVED dealing with me but I had double the work load at half the salary (no joke). Our boss fell for her fake-resignations (which they counter-offered) and complaints of being overworked. The best was when she came in late one day, I had six of her jobs, and then she watched the Mets game on her computer all afternoon (and cheered/boo-ed). I got my dream job and quit. She quit a month later and started a horrible job that she now hates (so I hear).