Old friends

Over the weekend I met up with an old friend, someone I’d not seen for 18 months (give or take a couple of months). This particular friend has been in my life for over 10 years and is a pretty special person. He’s been gone for a while, because of a new relationship, and as we know, relationships can change the dynamics of friendships. Controlling partners are common place in relationships – but, we ask ourselves whether it’s our own fault for letting them control us.

What makes us blind to the control? What renders us incapable of seeing what’s happening?

Years ago, I had a relationship that threatened to change all my close friendships, but after seeing first hand how controlling the other party was, I saw through the fog and (for many other reasons, not just this one) ended the relationship. It has taken me a number of years to rebuild those friendships. Some have never recovered. Some teeter along, balancing a fine line.

At the time, I didn’t see how it looked. I didn’t see the effect on the friendships. In the beginning, I passed if off as being ‘new people’ to get used to, but it never really changed. Why do we let it happen?

The good thing is as we come out of the other side of these affairs, is that we build strong and better friendships with our true friends. Those relationships that don’t survive clearly aren’t worth it.

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Flexibility

We put it on our CVs. We talk about being flexible all the time. And, we insist that we’ll manage change as it happens. But what does it actually mean?

At what point do we accept that change is normal? That there is no stability? Do we expect too much?

When, as an employee, is it right to question the constant change, and what are the risks in doing so?

I don’t have the answers. I just see what happens when people say no, or when they offer up a different opinion.

In an environment where flexible and adaptable to change are standard contract terms, it’s not surprising to learn that there’s another restructure on the cards.

I, like those working for me, wait in the wings asking ‘What does this mean for me’.

Credit crunch?

A while ago, I blogged about there being lots of companies using the credit crunch as a convenient excuse for getting away with a lot of crazy policies…well, here we are in March 2010 and I’m starting to see the same things happen.

While I understand companies have to protect themselves and to remove the ‘dead wood’ from the company, right now it’s all coming across as penny pinching. My company isn’t making anyone redundant, before people get the wrong idea, but it’s putting shareholders and cost-cutting above the people that help make it a success.

I recently met with someone who’s philosophy for running his own business is along the lines of keeping employees happy will lead to happy customers and then in turn keep the shareholders happy.  It was refreshing to hear, but I have to ask how many companies employee a similar style? Where I am now the shareholder is king. The pressure across the company at the moment (to deliver more for less) is enormous. The pace is unbelievable. Our bonus is tied to the number – and not to our individual performance.

Is my company struggling? Did it miss numbers?

No.