Thursday, November 30, 2006

Slipping Through the Corporate Cracks


When meeting new people at work I assume that these new people are intelligent. After all, we are a huge financial company that extensively screens all new potential candidates before hiring them. However, it seems that sometimes, invalids slip through the cracks. I’m not quite certain how it happens, but it does, and occasionally, I have to deal with them. This was the case almost a year ago.

“B, this is S, you’ll be training him this afternoon.” My boss walks away.

Thus began the training.

I proceeded in describing our general duties in the exciting world of sales operations, and succeeded the introduction with a task. The task was to update a spreadsheet with information provided by a client. All he had to do was to copy and paste a line from one spreadsheet into another. Not exactly rocket science, but the look he was giving me was totally infantile, and I was afraid that he was going to start sucking his thumb.

“Umm… so do you get it?”

He nods slowly.

“Okay.” I pause, and look at him again to make sure he isn’t lying. I can tell he is. Whatever fuck it. “So anyway, the e-mail the client sends is going to look like…”

“How do you do that?”

“Do what?”

“Move so quickly from one screen to the other.”

“You press ‘ALT’ and ‘TAB’”

“What about the internet explorer. How do you make a new one just appear?”

“You press ‘CTRL’ and ‘N’, it’s a shortcut key. They’re great.”

“Dude… are you like a genius or something? Did they send you to special schools or something?”

I look blankly at him for a moment. Then I continue the training.

I’m an impatient fucker, especially for stupidity, but contrary to this intolerance, I permit a learning curve. After all, I was once a new hire as well. However, if someone comes by your desk every day for weeks and asks you the same question over and over again, and you have to answer them by pointing at the same spot on the procedures they’re clutching in their hand, then there’s obviously some sort of disconnect. Now, S was nice as all hell, but he must’ve been a premature baby or something because the guy was seriously stupid. And to further aggravate the situation, he had a case of halitosis so severe, his breath was almost visible to the naked eye.

S made me stop and wonder about my own qualifications. Was I on the same level as this guy? I mean, the same people who hired him had hired me. Maybe I was totally deluded in thinking that I was a semi intelligent, corporately cultured employee who was doing well at his job.

A couple of months ago, S got fired. I felt horrible. But at the same time, it made me feel better knowing that he was in fact someone who slipped through the cracks, and not a peer. I know, I know, I’m going to hell.

I wonder if I would’ve been nicer to him had he been a hot chick. Who am I kidding, of course I would’ve.


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