Why is there such little professionalism around here?

Picture the scene. Your big corporate meeting, people flying down from Europe for a day. Let’s all meet they said. We insist we have everyone. Schedule for late Thursday afternoon? Super.

I coordinate with a local contact to attend. Oh, I can’t make it, I have to pick up my kids Thursday afternoon. Right. How about a different time? Yea, that’s fine.

My battery proceeded to die in the evening. So he called me, and I missed it. Around 10 p.m., when I got around to checking e-mail, I see a “I was expecting a call from you.” There was another e-mail regarding a project our companies were partnering on. I had an issue with it, and it was urgent, so I replied questioning his e-mail.

His response five minutes later: “I did not hear back from you regarding the meeting.” I replied I did not get a confirmation so I will get back to him on that in morning. And well, you didn’t answer my question.

I message him after the meeting was confirmed in the morning. He proceeds to call me and say “This is why I was trying to call you yesterday. I can’t make the new time” Eh, what now?!

Fine, you can’t make it. But what am I supposed to figure out when you say I didn’t hear back from you on the meeting. Instead of typing that, why didn’t you type that you couldn’t make the time. Instead of typing “waiting for your call”, couldn’t you have bloody told me what the problem was so when I did check it, I could react?

Let me add that 15 minutes after the scheduled time, he called me. When I returned the call, he told me he wanted to know how the meeting had gone. Er. Did you not propose the time that you then cancelled? You *knew* I’d be in the meeting because it was on your damned calendar as well.

And we wonder why we don’t get a lot of stuff done here. Even though I’m on topic, I will not discuss our favorite telco provider today. But seriously, what is it with simple professionalism around these parts. Why is it so painfully lacking. Inform people what to do, what you want. Communicate! Telling me I’m being transparent with you doesn’t make you that, by the way.

If I wasn’t leaving out the country for two weeks, I’m fairly certain another post on customer service would be on its way. Until then, make do with this happy excerpt I received the other day:

Japanese attitude for work:
If someone can do it, you can do it too :)
If no one can do it, you must do it!
Arabic version:
If someone can do it, let him do it!
If no one can do it, why should I do it?

And yes, this was forwarded quite graciously by an Arab.

Chirag Desai @Chirag