Thursday, March 03, 2011

Mail | Attacks on managers just as 'rude and crude'

Regarding recent remarks in this comment thread, Anonymous@2:34 p.m. writes:

It's hard to take many of the anti-management comments seriously, folks. I am a former worker bee of Gannett. Glad to be gone. And, I dislike Gannett's approach to cut people to save profit, even if I understand it. But, for those on here who lump all of management into one big, bad, uncaring pile of crap, it is you who have missed the boat of understanding, reason and logic.

One poster above said that Gannett trains its managers to be "rude and crude." Give me a break. During my time in Gannett, the managers I had were not a perfect bunch. Some were lazy, one was particularly mean, and all of them held information pertinent to the well-being of employees close the vest. But, a vast majority of them were also good people who treated me and my colleagues well. If Gannett trains its managers to be "rude and crude" than that professional development tool was left out of my site.

I am not here to say that management is all good. There are some who are not, at every site. But, to lump every one of them into one category is ignorant of reality and human nature. I understand people are hurting right now. I know many feel downgraded, unappreciated and taken advantage of. I know it's hard to watch pay cuts and layoffs come when the upper brass is taking big bonuses (which should be discontinued during these times IMO). But, to an outsider with no dog in the fight, your comments blasting management seem to point out that one of Gannett's ultimate failings was the hiring people who are unable to see fiction from reality, who make blanket statements about large groups of people and who have let bitterness and rage take over logic and reason.

Your attacks on management are just as "rude and crude" as management's coordinated attacks on Jim.

This blog is useful in many ways and I enjoy reading it. But, at times it's hard to feel sorry for many of you on here just as it's hard to believe that management is doing a good job ushering a new era to a once proud company.

15 comments:

  1. I couldn't have said it better myself! Thank you for a much needed reminder that on bad apple doesn't ruin the bunch.

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  2. a well-written post. you are calling out the immature, and, at times, silly.
    i'm being nice calling them silly.

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  3. There are a lot of good managers. Most of them are at the managing editor position and below. It's when some get up to the executive level that things seem to change.

    I really have to wonder if it's the company culture that produces this change.

    I don't don't think anyone was slapping all management, but certainly a visible portion of it, the "top dogs" you might say, exhibit this rude, crude, my way or the highway mentality.

    I think some people are bitter about "management" because the big wigs get bonuses while the so-called "worker bees" get pay freezes and termination notices.

    It's a shame when the rich who get richer share none of the "pain" and when they repeatedly enrich themselves at the expense of others.

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  4. 8:59 is correct. In the newsroom, once you become a top editor, the company owns your career and soul. May not be the case now, but the top editor got paid relocation expenses ans sometimes their houses were bought by Gannett as were bounced from town to town. There were bonuses for diversity hires, bonuses for keeping positions unfilled, along with bonuses that the publisher could dole out to executive committee members (news, advertising, circulation, marketing, h.r.) who were the most obedient. Under the Currie/Blake/Silverman regime, scores were kept for their ridiculous monthly contests and "unofficial" files were used to keep/dispose of editors. It was their way or your career was wrecked.

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  5. Blake = Mary Kay Blake?

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  6. People are extremely frustrated at USAT. I can't condone the attacks on the characters of Hillkirk et al. My hope is that he and others are alerted to the moods and frustrations of his employees and he tries to address them. Ignorance may be bliss, but not in the media business. And certainly not in an organization that's supposed to focus on communication. Right now, there just isn't any. We have virtually no interaction with senior managers. Things haven't been simplified or made smoother. There is top-down intrusion than ever. People are frustrated. Leadership by committee and second-guessing and third guessing isn't working.

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  7. a well-written post. you are calling out the immature, and, at times, silly.
    i'm being nice calling them silly.

    3/03/2011 6:50 PM

    This looks totally like an enablers post.

    Really? Here's food for thought:

    I swear never to be silent whenever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor - never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor - never the tormented.
    Elie Wiesel

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  8. Oh for God's sake. Yet another totally over the top comparison to a group of people who TRULY were oppressed. Because you didn't get a raise or work in a industry that is shedding jobs or have a boss who (gasp) may be hard on you isn't "oppression." Grab your things and walk out the door. And here's another point: don't come back here, because it's not doing you, the company or anyone else any good. Walk away, for good. You are free.

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  9. Agreed, 9:47. Unless NNCO is now putting people to death instead of offering the severance package, comparing our situation to the Holocaust goes beyond the pale.

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  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  11. What does the Holocaust has to do with what the sentence actually says? Just because a Holocaust victim wrote this?

    Just because this person doesn't see through the rose-colored glasses you seem to have put on? Last time I've checked there is a fundamental law allowing free speech in the U.S.

    BTW: How all of you know that this person is working for Gannett?

    Just asking, because you know assuming makes an a......

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  12. Jim: Yes, Mary Kay Blake. She was highly effective in the old Gannett regime. Why do you think she has hung on as a highly paid VP at The Freedom Forum/Newseum despite the constant blood-letting there? She knows so much about Overby and Paulson that they leave her alone. As is obvious now, Marymont and her Gannett crew have little power. Guys like Silverman used to run amok carrying a Louisville slugger, which the staff was supposed to find charming.

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  13. http://www.linkedin.com/pub/bruce-dewar/12/987/315

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  14. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  15. 10:43 You can't just call someone a liar.

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Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."

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