IN LIGHT OF THE STARBUCKS BARISTA CONTROVERSY, A REPOST

Ineptly implemented social conscience or genuinely clueless even if well meaning Corporate Speak

Original published March 31 2011 on the now defunct Posterous, 17661 views, adapted for this repost.

Contrary to the current religion of Lean, not everything in Japan is based on humanistic principles, after all, they are the ones who brought us dying on the job as an official cause of death:

Karōshi (過労死 )

which can be translated literally from Japanese as "death from overwork", is occupational sudden death. Although this category has a significant count, Japan is one of the few countries that reports it in the statistics as a separate category.

THEN, consider this:

You have to read it to believe it. Thinly Disguised Corporate Contempt in the Name of Customer Service

Thinly Disguised Contempt for Those Who Work For You

clueless corporate solutions

Using face recognition software to make sure employees are smiling, really?

  • How about nurturing pride and joy in work in a dignified and worthwhile working environment?
  • Who would work under these conditions except those who have no choice?
When the leaders insert themselves in the day to day, in essence, command the work of the workers, more often than not the result is confusion. Executives can’t and shouldn’t do the work themselves. Tactical decisions from afar tend to be rigid, without the benefit of the most up to date feedback. The military call it "The Fog of War." Once you enter the fray all bets are off. Hence, simple flexible plans created by the leaders that can be adapted by the boots on the ground.

What inspired me to repost was this wonderful dialogue over race with my nephew Jay Smooth, the infamous hip hip radio host from WBAI in New York... notice how he responds when accused of co-opting.  It shows that racism, like many systemic problems defy easy solutions until you fundamentally humanize the system.

Smile! And that Means You!

I remember an old New Yorker cartoon of a mile long conveyor belt, conveying little cakes surrounded by a legion of harried women running like chickens with their heads cut off on either side. Along the back wall was a gigantic sign that said: “Nobody doesn’t like Sara Lee, and that means YOU!

About the Author

Dan Strongin works with medium to small companies, helping them master the art and science of managing.