The Dilbert cartoons from my desk calendar are always funny but today’s really spoke to me.
Imaginary productivity. It’s how I spend the majority of my day. It’s how a number of people I work with spend their day. This was true, too, of my last project/job. If Scott Adams has published a cartoon on the subject, it isn’t just my industry and work space, it’s a problem everywhere.
This made me wonder, how did we, as a country, get to this point? How many people spend hour upon hour at desks or in cubes on imaginary productivity? And, why?
The problem, from my humble observances, is two-fold. First is just a general lack of work. In my particular industry, our client has a budget for contractors and must spend that budget, regardless if there is enough work to go around. It’s wasteful; and aggravating for those of us stuck in the situation.
The second problem is a lack of trust in others. This was particularly true in my last job. The majority of the tasks were handed to three people on a team of about 30. They were extremely overworked and overtasked but the powers-that-were did not trust the abilities of rest of the team. Again, wasteful and aggravating for those stuck in the situation.
This comic is going to be framed and hung on my cube wall. It’s sad, really.
Here’s hoping that your productivity is real, not imaginary, and fulfilling.
(Dilbert comic strip from Dilbert.com, created by Scott Adams, originally published Dec. 24, 2005 and is thoroughly awesome)