In a weekly meeting with "the customer" yesterday there were about forty people from service companies, twenty engineers from "the customer" and at the head of the table, three senior "customer" scaremongers.
I lost the will to live after ninety minutes of listening to what could mostly be described as b*llocks. The following gives a gist of how the service company people are treated:
Customer: We want your ideas so we can drill faster, save money and not have to pay you for them.
Service Co.: Here are our ideas, for free, these will improve efficiency and save you money
Customer: Why didn't you give us these before ? You've been wasting our money. Your competitors are much better than you. You do not deserve the crumbs off our table.
I kept myself amused by thinking about which one of the puppet cast of Rainbow, each of the three scary men most resembled.
Firstly there was Zippy, he was the youngest of the three. Eager to impress his bosses and show them he was worthy of sitting at the head of the table. He wouldn't shut up, had an opinion on everything, a point that had to be made but contributed absolutely nothing and was a pain in the @rse.
Then there was Bungle, a more senior guy. Always had a bright idea but liked to play the peace maker in the meeting. Also he's a bit chunky, like a cuddly bear. Most likely of the three to break into a song and get everyone to do "the meeting dance" with Rod , Jane & Freddy.
Finally, there was George. The oldest and most senior of the managers in there. Doesn't usually come to the meetings, isn't missed and is the least popular. Somehow fails to grasp the point of anything being said and is the main reason the meeting took nearly 2 hours instead of the usual 40 minutes.
Further analysis on the long drive back from the prison camp, lead me to identify the same three Rainbow characters within the management of my office.
My boss - Zippy
The performance & development coordinator - Bungle
The business development guy - George
All for pretty much the same reasons. (The PDC looks like a cuddly bear too)
Which means that in any group of three or more people, it should be possible to identify the Zippy, Bungle or George amongst us. I don't care which one I am, as long as I'm not Geoffrey. There was something not quite right about him.