Kate started this – then Janiece continued it, and Vince has jumped on the bandwagon – so I thought I’d add to the volume of excellent complaining being done this week. These are the things that irk me right now:
- Respond to email & voice mail. You want me to deliver business benefit for you, then you need to respond to emails and phone calls. Answering within 24 hours is not too much to ask of anyone. No one is too special to be exempt from this rule.
- Show up at meetings. On time. We are all masters of our own calendar. If you accepted a meeting request then be there, by phone or in person, on time. I do not want to have to go round you up so we can start, it will not be pleasant for either of us.
- Get stuff done. On time. If you miss your target date, let me know ASAP and give me a new time frame so I can replan. Don’t disappear and start ducking my phone calls and emails.
- It is your job. Don’t ever tell a customer – or a colleague – that something’s not your job. Figure it out, own the responsibility for solving the problem, and ensure it gets done.
- Reorganizing the business should not be a hobby. Try stamp collecting.
In my personal life:
- Get off your $*%^&$ cell phone. You’ve heard me rant about this before. In the grocery store, in line at the fast food store, driving, on the ferry or bus, even in public restrooms — everyone is on their cell phone, talking loudly, whenever they feel like it. Have some awareness of your surroundings, demonstrate some courtesy for those around you and hang up your cell phone.
- Learn how to drive or let someone else do it. Don’t drive ten miles an hour under the speed limit, during rush hour, weaving back and forth, while you talk on the cell phone, tend toddlers and look for your turn off. Either focus on driving and do it moderately well, or let someone else drive, because you’re a hazard to those around you.
- If you are selling or soliciting something, and I say no, back off. This applies to petitioneers, phone solicitors, band candy hawkers, and streetcorner panhandlers. When I say no thank you, it means no. Don’t push, don’t assume you and your cause are too special for the common person’s refusal, and don’t get pissy. Just back off. I don’t feel the need to be polite because I don’t consider being solicited a polite activity.
- Deliver my doggone mail. I didn’t ask to be issued a 3″ x 4″ x 12″ box – and if the junk mail and phone book and small package you’re trying to cram in there today don’t happen to fit, then deliver it to my front porch. Don’t take it back to the post office and leave me a slip asking me to pick it up. I have a job – I’m not available during your bankers’ hours – and it would be really great if you’d do your job, too.
- Bring me my restaurant check. Why is it that at many restaurants, service seems to end with delivery of the meal? It seems like lately I can’t get my check delivered on any kind of prompt basis. We sit and stare at each other over dirty dishes sometimes for twenty minutes to a half hour while our server seems to have disappeared. Just bring me my check – it would not be rude if you did so with the meal.