Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Some readers have noticed I didn't mention Father's Day this past Sunday. A couple of them e-mailed, hoping I was too busy celebrating with my children, and didn't have time to post. Or perhaps that I flew home to Michigan to visit Anonymous Dad. Sadly, that didn't happen. I did offer to take Anonymous Son into the office with me, but he opted to watch television instead, and I didn't force the issue. Look, work doesn't slow down just because Hallmark's created another ridiculous holiday to slow worker productivity. We had a full office on Sunday. Granted, many of the associates don't have kids because they haven't had time to cultivate personal relationships and find a partner. But even just the ones with children, many of them were here doing work, just like they're supposed to be.

A couple of years ago, after a bit of an outcry from some younger associates, we started allowing associates to celebrate holidays, on a limited basis, in a specified time frame. For example, if someone's anniversary fell on the 15th of a month, we might try to work his schedule so that even if he couldn't leave to celebrate on the exact day of the anniversary, he'd get two hours on the 17th to go surprise his wife with a dozen roses, and we'd try not to send him any urgent e-mails on his Blackberry.

But the policy became a bit ridiculous after a while, and the delay between when the holiday occurred on the calendar and when the associates got to celebrate it just kept growing. No one could leave to celebrate Christmas '04 until May '05, and by then everyone's thinking about Valentine's Day instead, which they got to celebrate around Halloween. I think it's a terrible policy. But I lobbied in a bunch of the partner meetings to at least try and catch up by skipping some holidays that aren't important, like Labor Day and Mother's Day. So we did, and finally, we've been able to cut the delay so that we gave some associates an hour off this afternoon to celebrate Father's Day, even though it only happened three days ago.

The firm's making a whole big deal about it, and issuing a press release, and sending out self-congratulatory e-mails, just to trumpet the fact that people get to celebrate a holiday within a week of it actually happening. And even though it was my idea at the partner meeting, I'm not mentioned in any of it. Unappreciative. Ridiculous. Why am I wasting my time trying to make life better for the associates if I'm not even going to get any credit for it?

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