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Re: I'm out of Cream of Wheat - Crisis DaisyM

Posted by fallsfall on February 6, 2004, at 8:35:39

In reply to I'm out of Cream of Wheat fallsfall, posted by DaisyM on February 6, 2004, at 1:07:33

Daisy,

You have one really important task today. You need to ask someone to get you some Cream of Wheat. Can you ask a friend at work to get some on her lunch hour? Can your husband pick some up? Can one of your kids walk to the corner store? Can you ask a neighbor to leave some on your doorstep? Can your Mom get some for you?

I would mail some to you, but I don't know where you live.

I guess that, if worse came to worse, you could get some yourself at a store (but it would feel so much better if someone else got it for you).

Even if you decide that you don't want to eat any today, you need to have it in your house (and maybe in your office, too).

Now, the other issue: "And yes, I have thought about what would happen if I ever ended up in the hospital. I would have to get stuff done, people HAVE to get paid, etc. Sounds crazy, right? That is half the stress...".

I have been where you are. I managed a group of 42 engineers (plus 20 coop students). I had to be there, I had to get stuff done, things would fall apart if I wasn't there. This was VERY bad.

It is not good management to be indispensible. Just like you put contingency plans in place when you are working on an important project - "just in case something goes wrong", you need contingency plans for every task that you do. Are you the top boss? Do you have managers working for you? Do you have competent individual contributors? What happens when you go on vacation? Depending on how your organization is set up, you could ask either your boss or subordinate managers to cover your tasks - either ask one to "be" you, or spread the work out among them (this kind of decision is made by person 1, person 2 can sign this kind of documents, etc.). It is BAD business to have things set up so that they will collapse if you are not there. What if the Twinkie Truck hit you? You need to put processes into place so that your work can be covered if you are not there. Of course, you WILL be there all of the time that you can (and probably some of the time that you can't). But, for your company's sake, you need to have a backup plan.

 

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