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How do you deal with disappointment?


How do you deal with disappointment?

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bkubicek
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Comments posted to this topic are about the item How do you deal with disappointment?
Andy Robertson
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Disappointment and other emotional reactions in the office can be caused by all sorts of issues! Sometimes work issues but often working environment issues! How about air conditioning wars anyone? How many times does the office get too hot! It turns out that someone (generally a lady, and probably in a summer outfit with relatively low insulation properties) decides that the office is too cold even though it's 25+ degrees and so they turn the air conditioning off without asking anyone else - specifically me - if they are too hot or too cold. They have plonked themselves right under the air conditioning vent at the coldest point in the office. Why!!! Why? please someone tell me why if you are prone to cold you sit right under the air conditioning unit in a flexible working environment. I have a thermometer on my desk, it rises over 26+ degrees. I feel I can't turn the air con back on because if I go near it they stare and tut and groan and shiver!!! There is clearly a secret consensus that I have been excluded from and my personal temperature is not a consideration. Sod it, I'm going home.... I'll work from home this afternoon that'll teach them. Next day I get in and the air con is full on and someone has even turned it down a notch so it cools at 22 degrees.... suddenly I feel a bit chilly... perhaps we should turn it off for an hour...?

The best thing to do seems to be to talk to a friend in the office and get whatever is bugging you off your chest. Everyone needs to vent some spleen now and again. I think people underestimate how much stress there is in the IT profession. A senior IT professional man in my company took his own life a while back. The best thing to do is talk, but sometimes that doesn't seem easy or even possible. I find the best thing is to get up and go out and have a walk and a stretch, try and have a think about something else and come back to the problem that is causing you stress. Talk to your manager or a friend or both and generally a solution, or at least a plan to find a solution, will come along.


peter.row
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I think the article considers things in a vacuum too much. If you do communicate but falls on deaf ears, in some cases raising the same issue repeatedly then rather than exploding with anger in some ones face, which is probably going to get you fired, perhaps having a bit of a "sulk" for an hour or two so the anger can fade is a better option.

The example about the printer engine; whoever was managing this was at fault they should have included all stakeholders explicitly and not relied on word of mouth.
Dave Poole
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Walk a mile in another mans shoes. Before you cast the splinter from your brothers eye, look to the plank in your own. Why did you exclude your co-worker? What was their explanation for their behaviour?

If I was the prime supporter of a system and was excluded from rewrite discussions there would be a number of things that would be going through my head. Top of the list would be "Why am I being excluded from something that everyone knows is my area of expertise, is this a move towards me being fired"? At which point emotions will quickly escalate and rational thought will take a back seat because being fired has far wider connotations than ceasing to work for a company.

If I knew that someone was the prime supporter of a system I was assigned to rewrite they would be the first person I'd include. The system has been deemed "not fit for purpose". The insights they could give might bridge the gaps between the perception and the reality. I have seen systems been declared "not fit for purpose" and projects spawned to write a replacement without there being a clear communication of precisely how the original was "not fit for purpose". This condemned the project to deliver the next generation of "not fit for purpose" software.

I agree that sulks and strops are not the way to deal with stuff but one person's sulk is another persons withdrawal to get ones emotions in check and to think things through.

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kaj
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Sorry, but your story comes accross more like one of bad management style than one about a team member behaving badly to disappointment over his role in a project.
peter.row
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David.Poole - Monday, May 14, 2018 1:42 AM
Walk a mile in another mans shoes. Before you cast the splinter from your brothers eye, look to the plank in your own. Why did you exclude your co-worker? What was their explanation for their behaviour?

If I was the prime supporter of a system and was excluded from rewrite discussions there would be a number of things that would be going through my head. Top of the list would be "Why am I being excluded from something that everyone knows is my area of expertise, is this a move towards me being fired"? At which point emotions will quickly escalate and rational thought will take a back seat because being fired has far wider connotations than ceasing to work for a company.

If I knew that someone was the prime supporter of a system I was assigned to rewrite they would be the first person I'd include. The system has been deemed "not fit for purpose". The insights they could give might bridge the gaps between the perception and the reality. I have seen systems been declared "not fit for purpose" and projects spawned to write a replacement without there being a clear communication of precisely how the original was "not fit for purpose". This condemned the project to deliver the next generation of "not fit for purpose" software.

I agree that sulks and strops are not the way to deal with stuff but one person's sulk is another persons withdrawal to get ones emotions in check and to think things through.


Exactly what I meant to say, but you did it a lot more eloquently.
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David.Poole - Monday, May 14, 2018 1:42 AM
Walk a mile in another mans shoes. Before you cast the splinter from your brothers eye, look to the plank in your own. Why did you exclude your co-worker? What was their explanation for their behaviour?

If I was the prime supporter of a system and was excluded from rewrite discussions there would be a number of things that would be going through my head. Top of the list would be "Why am I being excluded from something that everyone knows is my area of expertise, is this a move towards me being fired"? At which point emotions will quickly escalate and rational thought will take a back seat because being fired has far wider connotations than ceasing to work for a company.

If I knew that someone was the prime supporter of a system I was assigned to rewrite they would be the first person I'd include. The system has been deemed "not fit for purpose". The insights they could give might bridge the gaps between the perception and the reality. I have seen systems been declared "not fit for purpose" and projects spawned to write a replacement without there being a clear communication of precisely how the original was "not fit for purpose". This condemned the project to deliver the next generation of "not fit for purpose" software.

I agree that sulks and strops are not the way to deal with stuff but one person's sulk is another persons withdrawal to get ones emotions in check and to think things through.

Absolutely.

bkubicek
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David.Poole - Monday, May 14, 2018 1:42 AM
Walk a mile in another mans shoes. Before you cast the splinter from your brothers eye, look to the plank in your own. Why did you exclude your co-worker? What was their explanation for their behaviour?

If I was the prime supporter of a system and was excluded from rewrite discussions there would be a number of things that would be going through my head. Top of the list would be "Why am I being excluded from something that everyone knows is my area of expertise, is this a move towards me being fired"? At which point emotions will quickly escalate and rational thought will take a back seat because being fired has far wider connotations than ceasing to work for a company.

If I knew that someone was the prime supporter of a system I was assigned to rewrite they would be the first person I'd include. The system has been deemed "not fit for purpose". The insights they could give might bridge the gaps between the perception and the reality. I have seen systems been declared "not fit for purpose" and projects spawned to write a replacement without there being a clear communication of precisely how the original was "not fit for purpose". This condemned the project to deliver the next generation of "not fit for purpose" software.

I agree that sulks and strops are not the way to deal with stuff but one person's sulk is another persons withdrawal to get ones emotions in check and to think things through.


I appreciate all the comments. Just a little more background. The print engine is currently crashing and randomly not printing things properly. A couple co-workers, not the person that supports it, spent three months trying to fix the memory leaks and set the print engine right. After three months things were better, but some things could not be completely fixed including it randomly crashing and on occasion it would be missing a print page in the middle of the print job. During these three months, the co-work that supports the print engine made no move to try and fix things, which is why these other co-workers had to get involved in the first place. The interesting thing is after I wrote this article and tasks were assigned to the co-work that currently support the print engine to get them involved, they didn't do the tasks they were asked to do. It is a bit maddening as they wanted to be involved, but once they were involved they didn't do what they were supposed to do. So again, another co-worker has to do what was assigned to them to meet project deadlines. There is more to say, but I think I have disparaged my co-work enough.

Ben
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Very recognizable,
IMHO your coworker received job satisfaction from maintaining a broken system and dealing with the issues: in other words: treating symptoms.
Then you came and wanted to fix the system: in other words: cure the disease.

This is cultural issue and can not be solved easily. Your coworker needs to change his attitude from treating towards curing.

This is hard, and hopefully they can be encouraged on this track. Their passive-agressive and immature reaction does not bode well though.

Best of luck with this one!!
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bkubicek - Monday, May 14, 2018 4:42 AM


I appreciate all the comments. Just a little more background. The print engine is currently crashing and randomly not printing things properly. A couple co-workers, not the person that supports it, spent three months trying to fix the memory leaks and set the print engine right. After three months things were better, but some things could not be completely fixed including it randomly crashing and on occasion it would be missing a print page in the middle of the print job. During these three months, the co-work that supports the print engine made no move to try and fix things, which is why these other co-workers had to get involved in the first place. The interesting thing is after I wrote this article and tasks were assigned to the co-work that currently support the print engine to get them involved, they didn't do the tasks they were asked to do. It is a bit maddening as they wanted to be involved, but once they were involved they didn't do what they were supposed to do. So again, another co-worker has to do what was assigned to them to meet project deadlines. There is more to say, but I think I have disparaged my co-work enough.

Ben

From this, I would suggest the co-worker doesn't agree that the project is required or heading in the right direction. I would get them in on meetings etc to work out what they think is flawed, what they think needs changing and come to a compromise. Yes, it may be that they are fed up with what they do or may be protectionist about their role, but its up to the manager/project leader to deal with that and try to get the person on board with the changes, rather than dictating terms to your co-worker. Remember, if they are the one supporting the current system, they probably know the flaws and the good bits inside out and therefore are a valuable resource.

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