Yesterday, my company announced a new president. They do this type of thing by sending us all an email minutes before they send out the press release, so that the valued and trusted employees have no chance to leak to the outside world this priviledged information. So this morning, as usual, we were subjected to the dreaded all-staff meeting.
All-staff meetings at our company are particularly unpleasant because we don't actually have a room that is large enough to hold us, nor are there enough chairs to seat the number of people is CAN hold. So a lucky few are positioned around a large oval table, while the rest are sitting on the ground, standing against the wall, and listening in from the doorway. It looks like a cross between a board meeting, a lineup for a bar and a 40yr-old kindergarten class.
Regardless, you can feel the tension in the air and the heat in the room rise as it fills with nervous engineers. I think everyone in this company has been through a lay-off, so we're all a little cynical and know when to start worrying. Myself, I'm looking forward to my next lay-off and severance package, but that is beside the point.
As the words were being fired at us from a Polycom in the center of the table, I imagined myself deflecting the catch phrases with a big shield... Peeewwmmmmm! Zippo! Zaff! Actually, this mental imagery got me through most of the meeting. I think there should be a ban on such phrases:
- streamline our organization
- develop a taskforce
- transfer the reporting structure
- etc, etc.
I've emerged unscathed, and yet I patiently await the falling axe...