Thursday, September 18, 2008

Exit Exams

A comrade of ours, leaving our workplace for bigger and better things, was asked to take an audiogram as part of her exit interview. This was, we assumed, to determine that she suffered no hearing loss during the course of her employment. Why not a vision test, I wondered, since so many of us use computers all day long and we all know what that can do to even a pristine set of eyeballs. What about a height test? ...just to be sure we haven't been squashed shorter by the burdens of our job. I'm thinking there might be a few other qualities that should be evaluated.

1) Bitterness (rated on a scale from everything's-keen peachy to burned-coffee black).
How does the employee feel about their work experience here? Did it live up to, exceed or fall short of their expectations? Were their projects accomplished without undue resistance from other departments, divisions, personnel? Were they repeatedly blamed for failures that occurred under circumstances beyond their control? Were they ever thanked for the times they worked above and beyond the call of duty, even if it was just a teensy bit beyond or merely a meager, "hey, thanks"? Were their efforts sidelined, forgotten, delayed until useless? And then asked, where the hell were those widget designs when we needed them?

2) Illusionment, dis- or otherwise (rated on a scale from rainbow-hued fantasy to bleak).
Has the employee come to accept the fact that the more things change, the more they stay the same..or become even worse? Have they realized that every new form that is created in the name of efficiency always needs even more signatures than before? Had they begun to suspect (rightly) that all the previous people (male) in their position had been paid 20 % more than what they (female) were getting? Were they required to be in more than one meeting a day...and still get their work done?

3) Morale (rated on a scale from rah-rah-rah to kill-me-now).
Are they thoroughly demoralized? If so, then they are good to go. If not, maybe they should be required to stay on an extra month to train their replacement--for half-pay; after all, there would be two of them.

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Noise makers!