Call Center Purgatory <$BlogRSDURL$>
Call Center Purgatory
Wednesday, May 05, 2004
  Management Practices..

I remember when I was learning about American history during the time of slavery. My teacher explained that when the masters would keep their eyes on the slaves they would work, but if they would turn away from the slaves, or walk away for a few minutes from the field, the slaves would stop working and just stand there until the master came back into view.

I know what you're saying, "Wow, big discovery, slaves don't want to work" , but there is more to it than that. The nature of work is that if we feel we are forced to do something we will rebel in whatever way we can, no matter how subtle or passive-agressive it may be. If your job feels like slavery, if you are underappreciated and underpaid, of course you are going to be a slacker, it's an unconsious response to an unfair system.

I've had jobs where I did not feel like a wage slave and I had a personal interest in the prosperity of the company that I worked for. Where I wanted the company to make money because I knew that the company would pass on some of that prosperity to me.

I want to please my supervisor, because I think he actually cares about me as a person, even though he is hard to figure out. But that's about as far as my heartfelt loyalty goes. Because I know my supervisor has very limited power to help me. He is directly supervised by another manager, who receives orders from people in another state in response to our numbers and profits.

I hate multiple levels of management, every level gets more and more removed from the people that their decisions affect. But more than that, when management starts to realize that they have a loss of productivity from their workers, they never seem to ask why. Instead, like their models on the plantation, they apply the whip, harass, and try to force their employees to work harder.

I think this is a result of a prevailing stereotype that workers are all lazy by nature and will only work if someone stands over them all day. All workers are not lazy, they just hate being treated like slaves.

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Exploring the mind numbing insanity and childish corporate culture of an unknown call center employee.

Purgatory: A place of suffering and torment with an unknown duration. In Roman Catholic Theology-the place where the dead are purified from their sins.

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