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Sergeant eNYgma
10-28-2013, 04:27 PM
Never understood and still don't understand the whole clean your work area thing before a DV's arrival. If it were me walking in and the place is spotless I'd think to myself "WTF have these clowns been doing involving actual work the past couple days/hrs/whatever"?

But sure enough my area will be squared away just in time....but still...guess it's one of those things......

raustin0017
10-28-2013, 04:37 PM
This un-written policy is due to those clowns who don't keep their work area tidy in the first place. It is all about ownership. Those who view themselves as 'renters' don't really give a crap. Owners take care of their property.

BISSBOSS
10-28-2013, 05:06 PM
I never saw what the big deal was about this...

It is a visiting General Officer. Clean the place up for crying out loud.

I ALWAYS wanted DVs to see my shop so I could point out the stuff (Cleared with my Boss FIRST) that we wanted to put "The Bite" on the General to fund in terms of maintenance or improvements.

Sometimes it's GOOD that you can't polish a turd!

-BB-

wxjumper
10-28-2013, 06:24 PM
Just stuff the porn in a drawer underneath some folders and you'll be gtg

technomage1
10-28-2013, 06:33 PM
So when company comes over to your house you don't tidy up a bit (as needed)? Don't get me wrong, I think it can go to far (if you're sorting binders by size and color that's overkill), but if it's general housekeeping I don't have a problem with it.

retiredAFcivvy
10-28-2013, 07:47 PM
In my career, I always viewed this is as support of my boss. And in the end, when the DV was gone, never regretted going the extra mile.

AJBIGJ
10-28-2013, 08:06 PM
I'm not 100% sure for all Military branches, but usually a lot of the "showmanship" is just a mechanism to maintain a significant degree of autonomy over the long term.

I think most everyone I know of prefers just to be able to do their own jobs day in and day out without the very expectation of being significantly hassled by their boss. Well, there's a domino effect in play, your boss wants the very same thing for their boss, and so on...

If your boss to the tenth power or just someone who has access to that person happens to visit and the place looks like an office war zone, your boss to the ninth power gets a little annoyed to be reflected that way, and your boss to the eight power gets livid, when it trickles down back to your direct supervisor, the snowball is the size of a house. Is it overreaction? Probably, but your boss in general does not appreciate that level of scrutiny from the middle management on up, so they will take reasonable steps to be portrayed in such a fashion. Otherwise his/her boss probably will be under the impression they have to step in for your own boss for the most simple of affairs, which makes the more complex things even more micromanaged. No one in a supervisory role who wants to succeed at it wants their boss becoming a backseat driver.

BOSS302
10-28-2013, 08:15 PM
If your boss to the tenth power or just someone who has access to that person happens to visit and the place looks like an office war zone, your boss to the ninth power gets a little annoyed to be reflected that way, and your boss to the eight power gets livid, when it trickles down back to your direct supervisor, the snowball is the size of a house. Is it overreaction? Probably, but your boss in general does not appreciate that level of scrutiny from the middle management on up, so they will take reasonable steps to be portrayed in such a fashion. Otherwise his/her boss probably will be under the impression they have to step in for your own boss for the most simple of affairs, which makes the more complex things even more micromanaged. No one in a supervisory role who wants to succeed at it wants their boss becoming a backseat driver.


http://cdn.arwrath.com/1/104459.gif

Chief_KO
10-28-2013, 09:27 PM
If you're having to do more than just tidying up, dusting, vacuuming etc., you have a problem.

Like said before, if done correctly the "Dog & Pony" show can yield positive results for the workcenters visited. Always be sure that it there is something wrong, needs fixing, etc. it is properly staged and you have a hard copy "what it takes to to fix it" (multiple copies) for the entourage. And of course, be sure your immediate sq CoC is aware of the situation before hand.

Absinthe Anecdote
10-28-2013, 09:53 PM
I have worked at a few places where desks were allowed to look like messy on a regular basis, with stacks of paper and excessive ornamentation. I always thought that you should keep your work center looking good all the time.

Early in my career, a NSA civilian boss told me to pay attention to the work ethic of people who decorated their desk with anything more than a single family photo. His theory was that the more crap they kept on their desks the less productive they were.

It didn't always hold true, but in general it was true, the more memorabilia and nick-knacks on their desk, the less work they did. The worst were people who would bring in multiple drawings from their toddlers to put on the walls of their cubicles; if you see more than one kid drawing, chances are very high that you are looking at the desk of a slacker.

I have seen brilliant workers who had sloppy desks; that's a little different, but someone with tons of newspaper comicstrips, funny pictures, or a shrine of photos dedicated to a pet is almost always worthless as an office warrior.

LogDog
10-28-2013, 10:02 PM
Never understood and still don't understand the whole clean your work area thing before a DV's arrival. If it were me walking in and the place is spotless I'd think to myself "WTF have these clowns been doing involving actual work the past couple days/hrs/whatever"?

But sure enough my area will be squared away just in time....but still...guess it's one of those things......
This isn't anything new and it was probably true when Washington visited his troops or when Caesar visited his troops. The key is knowing how clean you work section should be. Remember, the general has gone through the same thing when he was a Lt. so he knows what he's seeing usually isn't the way it normally is. The real test is what the work section looks like when the general pays an unannounced visit.

LogDog
10-28-2013, 10:05 PM
I have worked at a few places where desks were allowed to look like messy on a regular basis, with stacks of paper and excessive ornamentation. I always thought that you should keep your work center looking good all the time.

Early in my career, a NSA civilian boss told me to pay attention to the work ethic of people who decorated their desk with anything more than a single family photo. His theory was that the more crap they kept on their desks the less productive they were.

It didn't always hold true, but in general it was true, the more memorabilia and nick-knacks on their desk, the less work they did. The worst were people who would bring in multiple drawings from their toddlers to put on the walls of their cubicles; if you see more than one kid drawing, chances are very high that you are looking at the desk of a slacker.

I have seen brilliant workers who had sloppy desks; that's a little different, but someone with tons of newspaper comicstrips, funny pictures, or a shrine of photos dedicated to a pet is almost always worthless as an office warrior.
I worked with a TSgt who's theory was the smaller the desk the less work their boss can give them. He made the mistake of saying this out loud when our flight superintendent (SMSgt) was entering the office. The SMSgt went to his office and brought him a bunch of work and plopped it down on the TSgt's desk.

OtisRNeedleman
10-28-2013, 10:23 PM
I have worked at a few places where desks were allowed to look like messy on a regular basis, with stacks of paper and excessive ornamentation. I always thought that you should keep your work center looking good all the time.

Early in my career, a NSA civilian boss told me to pay attention to the work ethic of people who decorated their desk with anything more than a single family photo. His theory was that the more crap they kept on their desks the less productive they were.

It didn't always hold true, but in general it was true, the more memorabilia and nick-knacks on their desk, the less work they did. The worst were people who would bring in multiple drawings from their toddlers to put on the walls of their cubicles; if you see more than one kid drawing, chances are very high that you are looking at the desk of a slacker.

I have seen brilliant workers who had sloppy desks; that's a little different, but someone with tons of newspaper comicstrips, funny pictures, or a shrine of photos dedicated to a pet is almost always worthless as an office warrior.

Well, NSA being NSA, and having served a sentence at Ft Meade, can see where the NSA civilian boss may have had a point. When I was there saw plenty of people there whose functions weren't apparent or likely even needed. Personally, had pictures of my kids, some things they made for me, and a few other gadgets on my desk or in my cubicle/office, wherever I worked. Didn't seem to affect my productivity. And if you go to any senior person's office, civilian or military, you're likely to see a number of items on the desk/shelves/credenza. So outside of NSA I disagree with the NSA civilian boss' assertions.

Absinthe Anecdote
10-28-2013, 10:32 PM
Well, NSA being NSA, and having served a sentence at Ft Meade, can see where the NSA civilian boss may have had a point. When I was there saw plenty of people there whose functions weren't apparent or likely even needed. Personally, had pictures of my kids, some things they made for me, and a few other gadgets on my desk or in my cubicle/office, wherever I worked. Didn't seem to affect my productivity. And if you go to any senior person's office, civilian or military, you're likely to see a number of items on the desk/shelves/credenza. So outside of NSA I disagree with the NSA civilian boss' assertions.

It was a proportional relationship. One or two things is okay, but if it goes to excessive ornamentation like stuffed animal collections or a collection of any kind, it is very likely that you are looking at a dirt bag. It basically held true outside of NSA in my experience.

I always wanted my office warriors to have a spartan desk.

Drackore
10-29-2013, 04:50 AM
I took over a work center that was separated from the rest of the unit. We're talking 70s furniture at best, held together by duct tape. Our mission was more important than the rest of the unit and was winning the unit awards and getting the unit extra funding that they were siphoning for other projects, but we weren't seeing it. The previous NCOICs were the "tow the line" types and let it all slide. When I took over I started pursuing getting us some new furniture and when I was told there was no budget for it, I brought up the fact that our mission had funds set aside for just our mission and overhead to support misc expenses that they shouldn't be spending...that didn't go over well. So then I took to the DV visits. We would dog and pony the hell out of our facility and I would ensure that any DV that came to our unit made the 15 min drive to our facility (I would vol to be the driver or scheduler or something) and then I'd be sure they saw our furniture, state of the building, etc. After the Group and Wing CC and one DISA guy...suddenly we had a furniture budget and some extra funds for DIY projects and furniture. It was my first "play the politics" game where I was successful.

Sergeant eNYgma
10-29-2013, 10:44 AM
I have worked at a few places where desks were allowed to look like messy on a regular basis, with stacks of paper and excessive ornamentation. I always thought that you should keep your work center looking good all the time.

Early in my career, a NSA civilian boss told me to pay attention to the work ethic of people who decorated their desk with anything more than a single family photo. His theory was that the more crap they kept on their desks the less productive they were.

It didn't always hold true, but in general it was true, the more memorabilia and nick-knacks on their desk, the less work they did. The worst were people who would bring in multiple drawings from their toddlers to put on the walls of their cubicles; if you see more than one kid drawing, chances are very high that you are looking at the desk of a slacker.

I have seen brilliant workers who had sloppy desks; that's a little different, but someone with tons of newspaper comicstrips, funny pictures, or a shrine of photos dedicated to a pet is almost always worthless as an office warrior.

Guess I'm golden then, I don't have a single pic on my desk (I get hassled from home about it it's mostly laziness). As has been mentioend this time in particular nothing special but the last time we had a DV people were scrubbing the floor IN blues.....so yeah....

loggie94
10-30-2013, 06:15 AM
Generally, I am all in favor of using DV visits as an excuse to keep the place spruced up. The frustration is when things get taken too far by innocent Senior Leader comments overzealously persued by the yes-men in the middle.

My personal favorite was the extra cleaning (of the streets) that went into preparing for a 4-star visit to base x. Um, sir...happy to do the cleaning, but since the 4-star lives on base, do you really think he'll buy it?

wxjumper
10-30-2013, 02:38 PM
Fact is unless you own the place or it is some hippy joint like Google, no matter where you work you are always going to have to put up with walk-through. 99% of the things people complain about in the military happen in the civilian work place just as often.

Absinthe Anecdote
10-30-2013, 03:19 PM
Fact is unless you own the place or it is some hippy joint like Google, no matter where you work you are always going to have to put up with breakthroughs. 99% of the things people complain about in the military happen in the civilian work place just as often.

I always said that and can now confirm it since I've been in the contracting world.

Heck, those hippies at Google even have to put up with corporate politics; plus, they are under tremendous pressure to be innovative and produce results. That free-wheeling hippie spirit is a thin veneer in companies like Google or Apple, those guys jump through the same kind of hoops.

I would say that companies like that have less dead-weight than any government institution, including the military.

OtisRNeedleman
10-31-2013, 01:51 AM
I always said that and can now confirm it since I've been in the contracting world.

Heck, those hippies at Google even have to put up with corporate politics; plus, they are under tremendous pressure to be innovative and produce results. That free-wheeling hippie spirit is a thin veneer in companies like Google or Apple, those guys jump through the same kind of hoops.

I would say that companies like that have less dead-weight than any government institution, including the military.

Indeed. Worked at Microsoft for a while. Yup, if you didn't interact with customers the dress code was non-existent, and the pay and benefits were great. But you were expected to pull your weight. And there are, indeed, corporate politics. Got to see something at MSFT I'd only read about in my grad school textbooks - new director comes in, brings in all his friends, institutes a two-tier society, and largely destroys the morale of a fairly good-sized group of people, including running off three fine young managers.

Salty Old Dog
10-31-2013, 10:45 AM
Not sure why it started, way back when. But nowadays, it's due to two things:
1. momentum (once it started rolling, it keeps going)
2. the attitude of, "I had to do it, back in my day.....and now it's your turn to do it, for me, just like someone will have to do it for you, if you ever attain this rank!!"

USMC0341
10-31-2013, 10:54 AM
Indeed. Worked at Microsoft for a while. Yup, if you didn't interact with customers the dress code was non-existent, and the pay and benefits were great. But you were expected to pull your weight. And there are, indeed, corporate politics. Got to see something at MSFT I'd only read about in my grad school textbooks - new director comes in, brings in all his friends, institutes a two-tier society, and largely destroys the morale of a fairly good-sized group of people, including running off three fine young managers.

Sounds like what happens in government everytime there is a shift in power (state and federal).

Measure Man
03-18-2014, 05:04 PM
...because if you don't spruce up when the General comes around, you'll never spruce up.

TSat75
03-18-2014, 05:13 PM
In general, I think tidying up is in order.

However, one time, in band camp :) when I was an Amn, I was doing a 365 day PMI on some comm equipment (TER-170 - for those that know what that is, I'm sorry). Anyway, this PMI was very in depth. We had test equipment on our shelf that only got used for this PMI. Took a long time just to set up some of the tests...and much much longer when (not if) the tests didn't go right. So I've been knee deep in this for the better part of the day. I had general housekeeping in order, but there is no way around it, it is an ugly procedure. So I'm getting ready to get to a stopping point for the end of day, when my boss finds out of a DV the next morning. So we are "tidying up"...when I am told to pack up the TER and put it all away. I protested - it took me all day to get to where I was, and I'd be working on it for a couple of days...it'd take me at least an hour to tear it down...and another 7 to set it back up. No dice - I'm an Amn...I had to put it all away for the DV (who didn't even come inside the bay)...then back out to start all over again.

When I became an NCOIC, I wanted the DV's to see my guys working. I wanted a clean environment, an orderly environment - sure. I wanted the DV to see that we took care of what we had...but we needed more. Can't get more if you can't show you can take care of what you have...but not so well that the DV thinks you are doing "great". I also wanted to show that while we worked hard, we were orderly and organized...not "losing" parts behind the stacker systems. But, as was said, you can go overboard. A lesson I learned well as an Amn.

MACHINE666
03-18-2014, 07:36 PM
I have worked at a few places where desks were allowed to look like messy on a regular basis, with stacks of paper and excessive ornamentation. I always thought that you should keep your work center looking good all the time.

Early in my career, a NSA civilian boss told me to pay attention to the work ethic of people who decorated their desk with anything more than a single family photo. His theory was that the more crap they kept on their desks the less productive they were.

It didn't always hold true, but in general it was true, the more memorabilia and nick-knacks on their desk, the less work they did. The worst were people who would bring in multiple drawings from their toddlers to put on the walls of their cubicles; if you see more than one kid drawing, chances are very high that you are looking at the desk of a slacker.

I have seen brilliant workers who had sloppy desks; that's a little different, but someone with tons of newspaper comicstrips, funny pictures, or a shrine of photos dedicated to a pet is almost always worthless as an office warrior.

Yeah, I had one dick-bag NCO who had his "I love me" wall....he had 3 CCAF degrees because he had been cross-trained 3 times. Even former cops and supply troops who know this douche said how much they couldn't stand this guy. What's funny is how he would try to flex his stripes on me, only for me to come back and show him in the AFI that what he was doing was against policy....he pretty much left me alone once he knew that he couldn't win with me.