The frustration of my current role

It’s a Saturday afternoon, and I’m exhausted to the bone! I was initially going to highlight the long and harrowing experiences of searching for work … but instead a tirade of verbal diarrhea has spewed relating to my current employment, so, I’ve changed the title, and reformatted my expulsions and present them here without further ado:

I currently work in a well known entertainment establishment in Melbourne. I work for their IT department. I’ve been there for four years. In the last two, my frustrations have grown to the level that are causing me to be ill.

The Main Frustration – The last few years: On Frameworks, Strategies and Processes
The greater part of my frustration comes from the small shop mentality that our department suffers from.

On the one hand, as a company, we are proud that we are a billion-dollar-revenue company, with a worldwide reputation, impacting the lives of nearly 9000 employees.

On the other, we have an IT department that likes to use (often contradicting) phrases like:

    • the fact that our competitors have twice the IT staff with half the systems shows we are more advanced and streamlined
    • the fact that our competitors can achieve five-nine service levels and we can’t shows that our staff are not as committed to services and require more management
    • we are too small to worry about enterprise architecture
    • we don’t need a permanent [systems/solutions/technology/IT] architect the engineers can do it as part of their role
    • we can easily determine future directions organically based on the desires of the business and a committee of senior management, without the need for specialist IT staff to achieve this function.

    Armed with that sort of mindset (and their PowerPoint based technology plan), it is virtually impossible to go forward with the argument for any form of framework (even something as rudimentary and simple as Zachman is too difficult and constraining for this place!) let alone considering true frameworks for the enterprise (such as TOGAF 8), process quality or management tools (like Six-Sigma) or any other form of best practice methodology (such as ITIL).

    I’m continuously told to relax and stop worrying about things that are outside of my job role. It’s the professional equivalent of the sexist and equally demeaning don’t worry you’re pretty little head about it!

    So as a professional, one who is passionate about getting their job done, one who is about righting wrongs and trouble-shooting the department more than the iron and one who is constantly trying to improve their long-term work-life balance (even if it means destroying it in the short term) the whole situation is a screaming disaster.

    I said it before … I have to leave … and that’s what I’ll do … especially after …

    The Recent Frustration – The last 6 months: The story of Chucky’s Bride
    At the end of last year, things changed. For the worse.

    A new “leader” was assigned to our team.

    She came up into a senior IT management role after spending the last two years on the entertainment floor … oh, but she has IT experience our illustrious leader assures us! After all she spent 16 years at a national bank in their mainframe division prior to working the floor …

    Now, what on God’s good earth makes him think that she is capable to do the role? Because she can spin a big wheel in a mini? Well, whatever his reasons, he makes the team have lunch with her to see if there is compatibility. There wasn’t. The team asked her questions, told her the state of play, judged her reactions and came to the same conclusions. GET SOMEONE ELSE!

    We all expressed our concerns to our illustrious leader. I specifically mentioned that when I asked the question:

    It’s been two plus years since you were in the IT field, and even then it was in Mainframes, how do you think you will be able to handle and react in a team with technologies ranging from Midrange to desktops, Windows & Netware to Unix & SANS?

    she chirpily responds with

    Oh, it’s no big deal! Nothing has changed in two years, and it all comes from Mainframes anyway …

    Our illustrious leader simply smiles and ignores our remarks.

    We later hear he told the CIO that we were all very happy and felt positive about offering her the position.

    Thus she was hired.

    Thus our nightmare began.

    Since then it’s been month after excruciating month of being nano-managed; having meetings that run between twenty to fifty percent over their allocated time; having those meetings three to five times a day because a stray thought entered her head; having more meetings to re-explain to her the techniques, methods or technologies you are utilising that you explained in the last four meetings but she either didn’t understand, interrupted you with other questions while you were explaining it or pretended she understood as she sat there nodding like a novelty toy sitting on the rear parcel shelf of a car!

    When will it stop?

    When will it all end?

    When will they realise that she is driving the team insane?

    Never.

    I guess I always knew it … really, I did. The illustrious leader has a boner for this wondrous glorified two-dollar-good-time-girl … completely ignoring the range of commentary proffered by his peers and his staff over the last 6 months.

    Well, enough about that … the big wheel of justice will spin around … eventually.

    Oh, by the way, why “Chucky’s Bride“?? Well, I did some research – and in speaking to members of her old area at that national bank, I soon discovered she was nick-named as such because she was approximatly the same height, her voice screeched with the same intensity, she kept trying to slash everything she didn’t understand (and assumedly threatened by) and ran in the same stiff-legged style. They claim the department was re-structured primarily just so she could be made redundant – fancy that, eh?

    There’s no fixing this … it’s time to leave … and so I shall …

    TTFN

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