On Managing:

 

Hello.

It’s been a while.
Sorry about that.

I’m currently developing opinions about managerial styles.
Because I seem to be collecting a basket full of basketcases.

Are you a manager?

Lean on in.

 

1. Do not belittle, demean, or otherwise abuse your staff. If the language you are using is not what *you* would want to hear addressed to *you* from your superior, do not use it with your staff.

2. Mind your tone. Many, many managers use accusative language instead of inquisitive. If you don’t like the way a staff member has done something, that’s fine–but just say it, don’t ask “why”, or “what were you thinking”–this type of language just frustrates your staff. “Why”? Because he or she was trying to get the project done, dammit.

3. Back. Off. Seriously, just back off. Lurking behind an employee’s chair is rude and unhelpful.

4. If you are a micromanager, own up to it. Expressing that something is your preference as opposed to it being the “best” or “right” drops everyone’s defenses, and you will be prone to far fewer eyerolls in the staff lounge (yes, we talk about you. yes, everyone knows when you lose your shit. if you think people don’t respect you, you are probably correct). Additionally, take the time to show your staff how you want a project done if you absolutely need to do so. It would be better for everyone concerned if you just let go of things a little, but if that’s asking too much, at least have the sense to train and explain.

5. Allow grace. Everyone has bad days. If you take the time to notice what’s going on in the lives of your staff, and to be kind to them, chances are you will be rewarded with employees who are willing to work harder for you.

6. It’s okay if you don’t understand tech. Acknowledge this, and trust your staff members who do.

7. Learn to listen. Interrupting is unfathomably rude, and muddles what people are trying to tell you.

8. Do you have employee evaluations? Great. Now get evaluations for managers as well–have your employees set *you* goals and see if you can meet them in a year. This should help remind you of how difficult it is to deal with constant criticism and little praise.

9. Tell staff members when they have done a job well. Even if it’s just a nicely composed email, or if they organized a cabinet–whatever they have done that is excellent, encourage it directly, with specific praise.

10. Answer questions. Telling employees to “look it up” is often singularly useless, particularly if your database of information is enormous.

11. Do not make your employees afraid to call other departments for help when they need to. That does not create a work environment of trust and mutual assistance.

12. Allow your staff to decorate their desks–it doesn’t actually matter if you don’t like their taste in Star Trek posters. Chances are they think your tacky “inspirational quotes” posters are awful. Be cool with the mutual awfulness (unless porn is involved. then definitely don’t allow that noise).

13. You are more high-strung than you think. You are not the clear communicator you believe you are. Your employees know when you are in a bad mood. We pay attention to *you* because you cut our paychecks. Please pay attention to *us* because we are working FOR you.

(You make us want to do this sometimes)
fishslap

 

14. Some employees are dicks. Sorry about that.
But? You have the ability to fire them. Some managers are dicks. Employees can’t fire them in return. Please keep this in mind when you’re feeling ragey.

15. Above all else? Be kind. Build loyalty in your staff with behavior that is rational and polite. If you are thoughtful, sincere, and kind, your employees will generally respond in the same way. Productivity generally goes up when people feel cared for.

 

Honestly,
I don’t know why any of these points need to be made.
Treat people the way you would want to be treated.

 

I’m pretty sure Christ said that.

And He’s had billions of people follow and obey Him for a couple of thousand years.

Pretty good management, oui?

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Nudes:

 

My former and dear professor, Dr. Horner,
posted a painting on his Facebook homepage,
with this fascinating quote about reflection in art:

 

“I do not know why painted things have so much grace in the mirror. It is marvellous how every weakness in a painting is so manifestly deformed in a mirror…” Leon Battista Alberti, 1435, ‘Della Pittura’ (‘On Painting’)

 

"Woman Standing in Front of Mirror" - Christoffer Wilhem Eckerserg

 

And oh,
the sturm und drang that ensued over the nudity,
and how “I don’t want to see this on my Facebook feed!”
and “She’s not my wife! Therefore I cannot look upon her nakedness!”

It was all terribly overwrought,
and one person started making …nasty… cracks about the conservative protestors,
and the protestors got all self-righteous in response…
Just kinda…gross, all told.

 

And here is what I don’t understand about some of my fellow Christians:

If something bothers you,
or moves you towards temptation,
or leads your mind and body towards sin,
avoid it.
Don’t do it.
If it crops up on a friend’s blog, facebook page, or newsfeed,
remove yourself from the situation.

If you are in a close relationship with said friend,
talk to them about it.
Maybe they can censor their posts so that you will not see them
(I already do this for several of my more conservative friends).

But if you are in the position of being a “weaker brethren”,
understand that the onus is on YOU to take charge of your own weaknesses.
You cannot expect everyone around you–if they are not close to you–to know that drinking or nudity in art or yoga or strong language or or dancing or certain movies or amillenialism causes you to stumble.

If you need to,
remove yourself from the situation.

Be nice about it,
and you will find that most folks are far more willing to be sensitive to your needs.

 

On the converse side,
it is difficult to be understanding of a friend who isn’t
comfortable with something.
I am, frankly, terrible at this.

Partially,
it’s a push-back against the prudish behavior that I grew up with.
Partially,
it’s a push-back against my own uncomfortableness with my body.
Often,
I am just unaware that someone might be uncomfortable
with what I’m saying or doing
(Really! I’m usually oblivious! And I’m trying to be better with this, I promise).
It is my responsibility to pay attention to the people I love
and to respond to their needs,
regardless of my personal opinion or belief.

And?

That goes both ways.

As Christians,
we are called to have compassion on each other.
We are called to submit to each other in love.

Teetotalers need to play nice with Wine-drinkers.
Wine-drinkers need to play nice with Teetotalers.

Both ways.
Ambivalence.
Compassion.

 

But getting back to that particular painting…
I believe there is value in celebrating the human form–
even in this fallen, broken state.
I love beautiful nudity in art,
and I believe it is wonderful
(and this painting is absolutely breathtaking.
Look at the light, the shadow, how natural her gesture is,
how the painter let us see a tiny, sunlit moment…it is glorious).

I also believe that it can be abused–
that art can be titillating instead of sublime.
And that those lines are very, very fuzzy.

The intention of the artist matters–
the approach of the viewer matters.

But I do not believe that it is acceptable for a Christian
to blindly suppose that their own particular struggles
should be the burden of all Christians,
nor is it okay to make a sin where there is simply…
struggle.

 

Life is hard enough.
Vive l’Grace of Christ,
and also:

Don’t fight with strangers.
It’s bad form.

The Vendor/Client Relationship:

 

I saw this at my old job a few years ago,
but it still rings true:

 

 

The first (and only) rule?
 

Clients. Are. Crazy.

Don’t Cook the Pinterest Yet!!!

 

I forgot two VERY SPECIAL SNOWFLAKES in the ingredient list:

1 3/4 cup of Christian-ese
2 Keep Calm and Carry On posters,
neatly shredded into unpalatable irony
and/or trite sayings.

Do not neglect the addition of these two ingredients,
or NO ONE WILL EVER REPIN YOU EVER AGAIN
IN THE HISTORY OF EVER.

 

A perfect Venn Diagram illustration, right here, folks.

Pinterest:

 

A Recipe:

 

5 heaping cups of Maudlin Sentimentality
3 tablespoons of Bad Mommy Poetry
1 teaspoon of Oh God If Only I Could Wear That
2 pints of Are You Sure You Want that Cookie

Mix ingredients thoroughly with a pinch of poor grammar,
and bake at 350 degrees of Celebrity Gushing.

Remove from oven, and frost with enough
This is the Coolest Thing/Idea I Have Ever Encountered on the Internet
to mask everything else.

 

Tada!

You’ve just signed up for Pinterest!

 

…Which doesn’t mean that I can stop pinning.

 

MINE.

 

‘coz I can’t.

Cut open glowstick. Dump in jar. Swirl. Revel in own radness.

 

I want to do this for a wedding SO BADLY I COULD DIE.

 

This may be a sickness.

Follow Me!

Food? Shoes?

 

My body has one of two primary reactions when it gets depressed:

1) It wants to eat everything in the world
(mostly gummi bears),
 
Or

2) It wants to buy shoes.

The truly terrible issue at hand is that July has been hella’spensive,
and consequently, I can’t really justify the shopping.

I also managed to lose a teensy bit of weight,
and I don’t want to jeopardize that by going on a calorie binge.
(No Sense of Proportion Girl, at your service)

So,
what do YOU do to fight the Black Dog
when money is tight and you don’t want your belt to do the same?

 

Help me out, kids,
‘coz this shit is looking reaaaally appealing right now:

 

OMFZeus!

 

I love everything about this shoe. ......I might make out with it.

 

LOOK AT THIS SHOE. BASK IN THE GLORY, PET.

 

Got to try these on. Almost "accidentally" walked out with them. Oopsie.

 

Shop 'till you drop into a bag of overpriced shiny pretty things made by a blue-haired gay guy. Because that will make everything better.

Flower Speak:

 

So you’re dating.
Or married.
Or generally edging around the notion of making another person feel
special and tingly.

Maybe.

Here is my comprehensive and exhaustively researched guide to
What Your Flowers are Hollering about You, Your Character,
and Sometimes Your Car:
 

Standard Red Roses:

“I have no imagination whatsoever.”

 

Standard Red Roses with Baby’s Breath:

“Not only do I not have any imagination,
but I’m also into infantilization.”

 

Daisies:

“LET’S WANDER IN FIELDS WITH UNWASHED HAIR AND SCRUB EACH OTHER WITH EARTH FRIENDLY PATCHOULI.
WAIT WHERE ARE YOU GOING???”

 

Gebera Daisies:

“I know enough to not give you boring daisies, but not enough to give you a flower that will last longer than two hours before drooping.
…There is a probably a double meaning in that.”

 

Carnations:

“McDonald’s is a good date. So is Taco Bell. I watch Carl’s Jr. commercials and wear Axe Body Spray.”

 

Calla Lilies:


“My car has a leather interior. Also, we will go to restaurants with price fixé menus. You lucky thing, you.”

 

Alstroemeria:

“I am a mildly interesting person with a habit of listening to talk radio.
…And these were on sale at Trader Joe’s.”

 

Potted Cactus/Succulent:

“You can’t keep anything alive.”

 

Sunflowers:

“I am so full of sunshine and good cheer, I will probably give you skin cancer.”

 

Peonies:

“Erudite, well-read, thoughtful. Methinks we’ll be having The Sex now.”

 

 

(Seriously. No carnations. Ever. They look like shite in bouquets.)

 
Totally gakked from: http://thehairpin.com/2011/07/the-modern-meanings-of-flowers

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