Fired For Playing Solitaire?

from the what-if-it-made-him-more-productive dept

Politicians love to find actions that make them look "tough" on something -- even if the end result actually has bad results. New York's Mayor Bloomberg seems to be going down this route, as he personally had a city employee fired after spotting Solitaire open on his computer. This really isn't a first for politicians. A year ago, a state senator in North Carolina looked to have Solitaire banned from government computers, claiming that it would save the government money. Apparently, both of these politicians think that if someone doesn't have Solitaire on their computers, they'd automatically be productive workers during the time that they were otherwise playing (rather than doing something else to waste time). Of course, studies have suggested that a quick game of Solitaire at work can often be good for worker productivity. It gives workers much needed breaks that make them more productive when they are working and makes them happier. However, none of that matters, apparently. Why not judge employees on the actual work they do, rather than on whether or not they take an occasional break?

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  1. identicon
    Professor HighBrow, 11 Feb 2006 @ 2:06pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    "Strict enforcement of company 'rules' breeds a smarter, more secretive employee who can get away with anything."

    Absolutely. The employee just becomes resentful of all the 'stupid' rules and circumvents them, if they are even somewhat clever. I'd do the same, and probably anyone here would.

    It sounds like there really isn't much of a debate here; Employees need 'Office Space' - pun intended.
    The fact is, if the supervisor is so aloof as to let an employee get by while wasting hours upon hours, it's the supervisor/manager's fault just as much as the employee's.

    Additionaly, I completely agree with the idea that a worker [especially at a desk job a.k.a. sitting in front of a PC all day] should be judged only by their work output, regardless of when they leave or come in, take breaks, or anything of the sort, as long as the necessary level of professionalism is maintained.

    I've worked at both ends of the spectrum...a company that was too relaxed to the point where people were literally wasting time and getting paid for it, to the opposite end, where ever single minute of the day was monitored and even if you had the runs your "Statistics" for that day would suck.

    Neither one was perfect, but I think it depends on what the company really wants.
    A) Creativity, Less error, long-time employees
    B) Robotic repetition, plenty of errors, and a high turnover.

    I also agree with the simple biological statements regarding attention span, etc...
    If you don't allow someone to shift focus away from their task often enough, you will just end up with less efficient, stressed out workers.

    And no, I'm not quite sure what a "spoon up the arse" feels like, but I'd imagine it would be rather painful and I'd probably quit that job the same day....

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