Wednesday, July 12, 2006

as the world turns

Hello. I hope all is well (or at least not horrible) in your respective worlds.

Work has been a pain in my ass ever since they hired L and I'm just not motivated to do much at all around here after dealing with drama all day. And so it goes.

Long story short, L is from a sales (telemarketing) background, and she's done it for so long that she approaches every situation as an opportunity to "upsell."

Problem is, we don't sell anything at the City. We provide an essential citizen/developer service. It's not even close to the same approach.

This understandably has led to a certain amount of tension, as my co-workers are trained in a civil service style of service providing, and I approach things from a nuanced personal-shopper-cum-tax-preparer angle.

I think my angle works better, and I have written a marketing plan to support my position, waiting to be unveiled at the appropriate time.

But the last few days have bordered on unbeleivably bad. At some point when I can talk about all this without getting angry, I have to write some of this insanity down. It's like a soap opera in the weirdest sense of the concept.

If anybody out there has anything they'd like to share, please do. I need something else to think about.


  1. wouldn't that make a great sitcom?

    "um, apparently, I need a permit to change my septic to city sewer.."

    "you know, you've come in at just the right time! we're currently running a special on mother-in-law buildouts and underground parking that just might fit your needs. you're going from septic to sewer right?"

    "um, they told me I need a permit. I'm doing all the digging myself..."

    "oh, I don't know if you fully realize the dangers and possible litigation that threaten the do-it-yourself-er: I have a very dear friend and acquaintance who just happens to be a specialist in major plumbing projects just like this, I think I have his card right here..."

    "I was just hoping to get a permit...."

    "Do you... when was your house built? because most homes built before 1968 have a submerged oil tank on the premises, and those can be a maajer, maajer environmental hazard......have you considered looking into having your tank removed and having the surrounding soil checked? because environmental remediation can be a big, big, big problem down the road, but most homeowners' insurance policies will pay for this procedure.......anyway, that's something you might wish to consider since you already plan to go 'underground' so to speak, *snort*

    "Anyway, that permit would normally run you about twelve hundred dollars, but since we're running this summer's special: 'my backhoe's gettin' jiggy so my backyard's diggy,' I can run you the whole package, including septic, for *clickity-clack* let's see... $899.95."

    "I just wanted the one permit.."

    "Nonsense. we'll set you up with that package today at no extra charge....

    "Will that be debit or credit?"

  2. Sorry I've been gone lately. I hope things improve at work with L. Maybe she'll come to learn that her approach doesn't suit the company that well. Keep us posted.

  3. As a seasoned bureaucrat, I have an understanding of the "civil service style of service providing" and it's not really focused on the customer. When you don't have any competition, you don't run the risk of losing any business by not making a good effort.

    If you ask me, the "personal shopper" route should work. Every person that comes to the counter has a different need that requires a customized response. The "upsell" route makes no sense at all; if you're adding a bedroom, you don't need to be sold on adding a porch as well. L seems to have a hard time understanding how government functions, a fundamental disconnect that should have been resolved before she started working.

  4. Heather: LMAO! It's like you know L already. She sounds just like that.

    Kris: It's no biggie. Your plate has been very full. Congrats again, BTW.

    Mitch: I have a feeling she's running into a wall already. This is not an exciting job, but it's an important one, and I think the lack of excitment and burden of importance is 'hitting her sideways,' so to speak. She'll either have to calm down or quit soon.

  5. This woman sounds exactly like my boss. I was presenting some factual numbers to our buyers once and he kept butting in with all these little catch phrases like he was trying to upsell the numbers. They're f*cking numbers...they don't need to be SOLD to is what it is and you must accept that fact!!!

  6. We're working on L calming down some. She's trying to act like a real human being and not a telemarketer this week. I hope it sticks.