Confessions of a benefits manager

Blogs%20confessions%20imageCandid: I love new year and the chance to start over, and I am quite determined that this year will be different. I’m not talking about turning over a new leaf here; more like chucking over a forest. This year, I want to be better, slimmer, and more successful. This year, I resolve to stop indulging in the seven deadly sins.

Let’s start by talking about lust: I have decided there is no place for lust in the workplace. No more stalking Sex-on-Legs, that really good-looking bloke in finance. He may be a bean-counting Johnny Depp, but if he was ever going to notice me, I have to assume he would have done so by now. Finding spurious excuses to hang around his desk is wearing me out and distracting me from other, more viable opportunities like that adorable sweetie in IT support. OK, so he might be a bit young as no-one in that department looks a day over twelve years old. Mind you, if Madonna can get away with it, why not?If I am ever going to get back into my Armani interview suit, I must do something about gluttony as well. No more packets of Hula Hoops in the car on the way to work, and certainly no more Twix bars for tea.

Now I think of it, lunch at the local greasy spoon is probably a mistake too. I shall have to bring in a packed lunch of houmous and carrots like Matchstick Mel, our smugly anorexic new department secretary. Frankly, I think she could do with a bit more weight on her to smooth out the wrinkles: she looks like a blow-up doll with all the air let out. Gosh, sorry, gossiping about work colleagues is probably yet another sin. I’m going to get more exercise too. I’ve started using the stairs instead of the lift to get to the second floor, especially as it takes me past that sweetheart in IT.

I don’t think greed is such a problem, unless you count stock-piling stationery. Of course, I’d like more money as much as the next man, but in my job, knowing how fickle the pay-planning process is, I might as well count on fairies as count on getting a good pay review. Around here, cash is in the lap of the gods, or at least in the laps of the Higher Beings (our executive management team).

I might, however, need to do a bit of work on sloth. Of course, I can’t compete with my colleague Lazy Susan when it comes to work avoidance. She is a master in her own field on that one, but I am a bit of a slob around the office. Look in my desk drawers and you will find the evidence: bits of fluff, half-eaten Twix bars, Hula Hoop packets, deadly dull reports sent out by Smarmy Consulting that I assume I will get round to reading one day but of course I never will, the empty box that some thingumajig came in which might come in useful, and assorted empty biros.

A new year is a perfect time for a spring clean. Clearing my desk also puts off getting back to proper work for a bit longer. Better still, some of the bits of paperwork have been hanging around so long they have time-expired and it actually feels like I have reduced my workload when I put them in the bin. Win win.

You probably know what I am going to say about wrath. No, I still haven’t forgotten that incident when Creepy Caroline from organisation development plagiarised my presentation. She might be friendly these days but she still hasn’t owned up, and so I am still angry about it. If she had said something it would be OK, but she hasn’t and that’s just plain creepy. Gosh, sorry, got a bit carried away with report-rage. I might need a chocolate break to calm down a tad. Looks like I have a little bit of work to do when it comes to wrath management.

I don’t think I’m too much of a sinner when it comes to envy. It would be easy to look at the total compensation statements for any one of the Higher Beings and think: he doesn’t deserve that much. How can a total numpty with as much idea about management as my cat be in a position to earn close to a quarter of a million pounds a year? Really, it can be quite surreal when you have access to the numbers. However, my view is if total idiots can make it to the top, the door is way open for the rest of us. Good luck Numpty, I say.

Not sure where to start on pride. Sometimes I feel we are like a pride of lions with Big Bad Boss prowling around the office roaring at everyone. I am proud of my achievements last year. I know I developed some clear policies and delivered some first-rate communication materials, but there is no good to come of it. All my best achievements go entirely unnoticed, as Big Bad Boss is only interested if the Higher Beings are interested, and the only thing that really interests them is their own pay cheques.

On the other hand, if I make even the tiniest of mistakes, you can be sure that Big Bad Boss will shout it from the rooftops so that everyone hears about it. No, there is no need to worry about pride getting the better of me around here.

On the whole, while there are a few new resolutions on the list, I am not so much of a sinner as my dear colleagues in compensation and benefits, and compared to those devils in organisation development, I am well on the way to becoming a saint.

Next time…Things get romantic in the office for Candid