I hate asking a question and receiving a non-answer.

I also hate being told “because I said so”.

Neither of the above statements bodes well for playing nice in the corporate sandbox.

And with that wonderful intro, I’m here to announce that I’ve had my hand slapped at work.  All because I received a non-answer to a question I asked, was then told “because I said so”, and so I went to another source to find my answer.

Like I’ve said before, I’m stubborn and I tend to dig my heels in when something rubs me the wrong way.

Oh…..wait…..that makes me sound just like Rowdy doesn’t it?  Huh….and all this time he claims that I have no idea what I’m talking about….

Anyhoo….

Little did I know, until after the fact, that the online site I went to for an answer to my question has the capabilities to email new topics to whomever signs-up.  So…the first clue that I get about this awesome ability is Fauna (co-worker) stating I had already received a response to my question.  Uh…I didn’t tell her about posting that question….crap….who else knows now?

Oh….only….everyone….

A few hours later, I receive an email from the original person who responded to me with both a non-answer and a “because I said so” and it was obvious by the subject line that the email was about my online question.

This email sat there waiting for me to open it…staring at me from the screen….daring me to open it….taunting me from cyberspace.

I started back at it for 20 minutes….refusing to open it….knowing that it wasn’t a good thing….I couldn’t handle staring at it any longer….so I did what any rational person would do in my situation….

I logged out of email, clocked out for the day and went home.

And then I obsessed about the email all night, thought about possible responses to an email I had no idea what it said, and spent a sleepless night trying to figure out what I was going to do about the insidious thing waiting for me at work.

I never said I was rational….just stubborn….

Finally make it back to work, log into email, and….stare….damn….it’s still there.

I finally screw up my resolve and open it and come face to face with a screen shot of my online question (complete with my name and timestamp) and a response like one I have never seen before.  The response covered half a page, includes some history on corporate decision making arriving at the point of my question, and an offer to help in whatever way I need – complete with proper spelling and punctuation.

Holy ____…..it’s worse than I thought.

How you might ask?

Easy….the response was all show.

Never once has this person ever responded to my questions with more than 3 sentences….if I was lucky!  Most responses I have received (if I actually received one – I’ve had plenty of questions left unanswered as well) only had one sentence, no punctuation and occasionally horrible spelling.  Snarky remarks usually added for no additional charge….

Immediately I am aware that this response is meant for more than just my eyes.  Someone else has been included in this response, maybe more than just one someone else.  I have no idea who else….they’ve been blind-copied.

A situation like this calls for a special response.

I went about my day, doing my tasks and keeping my thoughts to myself.  At the end of the day, I responded.

I was professional.  I thanked them for the additional information.  I pointed out that if I had received that information in the first place, I might not have needed to look elsewhere for an answer.  I included additional information regarding why the answer given might not be the best solution as a one-size-fits-all cookie cutter response.  I made a suggestion to improve efficiency across the corporate system by revisiting processes because surely I wasn’t the only one experiencing my problem that prompted the question in the first place.  And I took them up on their offer to help me.  I included an item they could help me with by replacing it into my software process, complete with a question of why was the item was initially available a month ago, but had now disappeared; and if it was originally a corporate decision to have it set up that way (as indicated in their initial email), where was the corporate decision to change it and did I miss the communication that was shared with the rest of the entities regarding this change?

While I can’t be sure of anything at the moment….I’m pretty sure the response I gave will not be welcomed by the person whom I responded to.  I’m also pretty sure they will hesitate forwarding it on to whomever they blind-copied.

I had no hesitation forwarding my response, complete with additional thoughts and why I responded in the way that I did.

I’m sure I’ll be talked to again.  I’m just not sure what the talk will be about next.

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