Micromanage Vue

Another lovely spring day here.  I’ll take 200 more, thank you.

Pepper-car is still in the shop.  I don’t mind driving the rollerskate/banana around.  It’s the perfect size for me. In fact, I finally had to put more gas in it today. We got it with a half tank last Tuesday.

First, the low fuel light came on last night as we were driving to a family birthday party.  I thought, Okay.  I still have 1/4 tank, right?  I can read (enormous) gauges right in front of me.  Shouldn’t that pan out to at least 10-15 more miles?

Then this morning, the light came on again.  This time, just a picture of a gas pump.  Ruh-roh.  I got it.  You need gas, like, now.  I dropped Ruby off at school and drove up to the gas station.  I practically filled it on $20.  That’s a 6-gallon tank for you.  Reminded me of my old VW bug.

Meanwhile, I called the body shop this afternoon to check on my car repairs.

“Hi, I was calling about the status of my car?”

He knew who I was right away.  Is that a good thing?

“Oh right, the Vue.  I’m still working on it.”

Obviously.  Or was I that obnoxious that he knew my voice?

“I ordered a part from Saturn.  I need a flare so I can get this back panel straightened out.  I can’t go any further.  The auto parts guys said I should have it in the morning.  They’re pretty reliable.  So…maybe…Thursday?”

Thursday is generally the worst day of the workweek for us to accomplish errands, other than Wednesdays.  Our insurance company insists we *must* return the rental the same day our car is finished.  They will not pay for any extra days of slacking.

“Uh, okay.”  I tried to sound upbeat.  What else could I do?

“I’m really sorry,” the fixer said.  He sounded chagrined.

Then I felt bad.

“No, it’s not your fault.  I know you’re doing the best you can.  I’m sure it’ll be great.  We have a rental, so we’re all set.  You do what you need to do.”

He suggested I call back tomorrow and check on the status of the part.  Do I sound like I need to micromanage?  Cause I truly don’t.  This is one area where I know nothing.  I’m perfectly content to let others do the disassembling  and reassembling of damaged vehicles.

I had an old boss who tried to manage my every move.

“Susan, did you call about that package?” He paced back and forth in front of my desk, a picture of anxiety.

“Yes, Bob.  It hasn’t gone out yet.”  I smiled, trying to be kind.  In the interest of posterity, I most likely did grit my teeth.

“Well…when it gets here, you get it to me right away, okay?  It’s important.”

“I will.”

We had a conference call on it and everything, including instructions to be.at.my.desk at 7:45 a.m. the next morning to receive it properly.

Said package never arrived. I went on to a mandatory morning  meeting and other duties.

In fact, said package went to the wrong address entirely and somehow got blamed on me, despite giving out perfectly correct instructions on our address, etc.  The package held bid documents for a possible new project with Bonneville Dam.  We never bid on it.  Turned out to be a good thing, as we hadn’t the manpower or space to house it anyway.  Caught a little bit of heck in the crossfire.

Folks, micromanaging doesn’t work.  It only frustrates those who try to assist you and makes you a little bit crazier.

Never try to teach a pig to sing;  it wastes your time and annoys the pig.  – Mark Twain

Follow instructions.  Fill the gas tank if you need to. Do your part of the process. But don’t hover. Let the little piggie be. It’s okay to allow others shine to in their areas of expertise.  Pay them well.  Compliment and encourage them.  They deserve it.  They have a skill or ability you don’t, and it’s useful in this world.




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