I think, therefore I write. (我思,所以我写。)

Cogito ergo scribo

Monday, June 21, 2010


Just arrived at KL office. Will be at KL for this week.

The main purpose for me to be here is to monitor that underperformed team member. I'm gonna take this chance to do a performance progress review with him as well, just so that everything is written down through the proper protocol and we won't get into any trouble if we really need to ask this guy to go.

Big boss, who's from HK, does not understand the implications of simply firing someone. It may land the company into trouble if we aren't prudent about the approach. He actually told me to just get rid of that guy now rather than wasting our times guiding him and monitoring his work.

My ex-little boss, on the other, being a Malaysian who had worked in our Malaysia office before, knows full well that we gotta be really careful of possible trouble under the Employee Act. He was the one who advised me to conduct a performance review and issue warning letters, if necessary, before we terminate the employment.

As for me, I do not really think I can bring myself to actually "fire" anyone. I don't even know how to reprimand this guy in the way to make him realises that if he doesn't improve quickly, there will be no more chances for him.

I've given him months to improve and I did see his attempts at putting effort in his work, but then the results of his work are still less than satisfactory. This leads me to wonder if this is because he's simply incapable. I mean, it may simply be a case of not having the ability to perform. After all, not everyone is born equal when it comes to talent and ability. No matter how hard the person tries, if he/she lacks the necessary ability, then there's only this much this person can produce.

(And i've not even asked him to make me any coffee before like what angel depicted in her comic. Probably i should; maybe he has a hidden talent in making coffee... ok, ok, i know this nasty comment is really uncalled for. I apologise.)

The corporate world is a cruel place. No, in fact, there aren't much differences as compared to school. The students are given time to learn and study, but there are only these many exams within a year, and there are also these many times you can fail. The final result paper is not unlike the performance review; if you do not meet the passing marks, you gotta redo the grade, but after three times of failing the same grade, you are out of the school.

And the corporate world is not a school. You are paid to produce good results, and furthermore the work you produce is not just your own. There are consequences to everything we do. My other team members have already been complaining to me about his work, which is adding more workload on them in checking and redoing his work, and also tarnishing the excellent image that we had built so far for our team. They are expecting me, as a team leader, to do something about this situation.

Given that we've just lost a very capable staff and I've not been able to find anyone with the same calibre in the field, the pretty gal subordinate and even myself have to do some programming work now because this only technical guy we have simply cannot be entrusted with major and important work. Big boss is pressurising me to hire, but my stand is that I would rather take on more work ourselves than to get yet another underperformer, which in the long run will only add on even more work on us. Of course, my boss, being a Director, unaware of the details of our work, will not understand the dilemma that we are faced with.

I seriously hate all these people management issues in the corporate world. You see, if i enjoy any of such work, I'd have gone into HR field instead of IT. I know full well that this is inevitable as one goes up the corporate ladder, but to climb the ladder is never my ambition, nor being put in this current role my will.

Anyway, I have until Thursday to figure out how to put across the harsh message to the underperformer without actually being harsh. I plan to arrange the review with him on Friday and let him ponder over the weekend. He may probably start looking for a new job for all I know. And perhaps that is not entirely a bad thing either.

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you sure your subordinate did not sneak peak you when you blogged on this in office? he must be very hurt if he reads this (especially, especially the coffee part, and the fire part). being leader sometimes need to be harsh because everyone is looking up upon you and unable to make wise decision not only does no good to yourself but also the whole team. i never got (don't think i'm qualify at all, not in future also hopefully) the chance to interview people, only got rejected by interviewers until that i have lost count (oh well, that's probably i did not serious in interviews or i'm not good in their eyes and choice) . but the thing is how did the staff get into the company with much being grilled and scrutinized.

don't say-lah don't have ambition of climbing ladder - being stagnant and under-appreciated is harder to swallow. of course it would be nice to work under wonderful, capable and talented boss (like steve jobs?), but what if you are assigned to incapable one - it'd be better yourself become boss. don't let job get frus into you-lor :). hopefully you get good (better) substitute for the one that left - hey, ever think of getting fresh grads who hunger for experience, and energetic too?

yup, malaysia employment policy is much protective than singapore - the latter can fire with just simple reason "under-perform". not sure if that's good or bad, not to say this cultivates slackers as most my friends in malaysia work for 12-13 hours ....



speaking of school exams i came across long ago (via one of the blog i read)


if only candidates are honest and do not hide their incapability. by the way, i also spun my way during job interview.

Share your cogitation

Sunday, June 20, 2010 @ 3:52 am: About yesterday
Saturday, June 19, 2010 @ 4:17 am: Very tired
Friday, June 18, 2010 @ 5:58 am: Finally done
Thursday, June 17, 2010 @ 7:51 pm: Pressing on
Thursday, June 17, 2010 @ 7:21 am: Exhausted
Thursday, June 17, 2010 @ 3:48 am: Dreadful work
Wednesday, June 16, 2010 @ 3:57 am: Not offloading
Tuesday, June 15, 2010 @ 2:58 am: Unusual night
Monday, June 14, 2010 @ 3:30 am: Random updates
Friday, June 11, 2010 @ 3:28 am: Nice drawing