Important people — an observation
Recently I have been temping. Nothing much, just "essential" work — as in critical to the economy - the nature of which I will or may disclose at a later date.
Due to the restrictions imposed because of the virus most of the company is working from home and so the office I work in is a bit...weird. Empty desks, very little sound or movement...weird.
Wandering around for a bit of a five minute break I get to see the rows of desks, the cubicles and the goldfish bowl offices, the occupants of which I don't get to see or know apart from through the occasional certificate of merit or photograph on their desk. It's kind of...poigniant. Perhaps they will return. Perhaps they wont.
Of course, it's times like this, when companies are facing cutbacks due to falling profits, rocketing expenses and lack of sales (as in nobody seems to be earning any money these days), that some members of staff start to worry about their worth to a company. Those same people, usually in semi-high up managerial positions, try harder to make their presence felt — their impression made on the fabric of the business — as if their existence is essential and that without them, in their opinion mostly, the company will fall apart. And yet, their absense and lack of presence is made more apparant as their enforced "stay at home" protocol goes against everything their precious little egos tell them.
Does there really need to be a Head of Paperclip Management? Did Nigel Floppicoq really need that whole team to gawp at spreadsheets monitoring the reversed polarity of the flow of neutrons? How about Holly Chubbychops and her need to get an NVQ qualification in Toilet Roll Science?
The Head of Paperclip Mangement, Nigel Floppicoq and Holly Chubbychops, despite government directive, come into the office on regular occasions. Often just to sit and have loud conversations on speaker phone or Zoom. Just so those higher up know that they have made the effort to go into the office while everyone else stays at home with Little Jonny and Floella protecting grandma and following orders.
As horrible as it sounds — these are the same people that, had they anything valuable to contribute would be taking the opportunity to broaden their horizons — expand their knowledge or improve themselves. Instead they are concious their lack of worth is easily exposed and so they put extra effort into shouting, making their presence felt. Putting undue stress on their colleagues. Holding unnecessary Zoom meetings. Ordering paperclips that will never be used. Monitoring spreadsheets, the values in which have been stagnant since April/May 2020. Desperately trying to find a training provider who can deliver an online course in the fundamentals of Desk Draw Contents. While at the same time trying to justify why the work week has to be Monday to Friday — why the work day is split into 8 hours the way it is and why they are the people that object to everyone working from home. Mostly because everyone needs to see how important their essential £40kpa job is.
These are the same people that likely put others at risk. That queue too close in supermarkets. That don't wear masks. That tell their co-workers to return to their desks when the aeroplane hits the building. The same people that only just know how to tie their own shoelace without a simple diagram. That, in high school, nobody gave a flying fuck about because of their air of self importance. The it can never happen to me types.
An empty vessel makes the most noise.