Saturday, October 8, 2011

Help for the boss

"I want to talk to senior staff at round table and tell people to stop giving me information the day of a meeting, it does not do me any good. If it is long, I should be given it the Friday before, if not, it needs to be given to me the day prior, so I have time to read it. To give me a notebook or a long paper right before a meeting is not a service -- it is a waste of the peoples' time who put the information together; it makes me feel bad; and I'd rather not get it."

Donald Rumsfeld
Secretary of Defense

You're not helping the boss by giving him lots of information he won't have time to process.

1 comment:

Steve said...

Amen and sevenfold Amen!

A favorite Pentagon trap is for,say, a deputy-assistant under SECDEF to generate a pressing issue paper - preferably to a wide senior chop chain - and to solicit comments by 1630 the same day. Such happens especially during the budget build and/or when proponency for a major weapons sysatem or political matter needs action.
I wish I had a dollar for every hour I sat outside the Joint Staff Director's office at 1745 hours, a 'purpled' memorandum needing one 3-star's nod before moving on tothe next-senior officer for his/her chop, in a line that goes on forever...until 1631 (at which time the flags start THEIR 26-hour days..
Now, that's what action officers are for: to develop and route the issue papers, patiently waiting one's turn as an O-5, when the next most junior supplicant to the almighty is a 2-star. They are dispensible, moving hands on an eternal clock whose 2359:59 is somewhere in the E-Ring.
Witness DR's plea supra, when the harried AO takes his triple padlock bag to brief SECDEF- PLEASE keep it to one paragraph, and remember: wrestlers, naval aviators, and cabinet level secretaries never have a rush hour because it's always midnight somewhere in the E-Ring...

Steve Myers