I wish AJ would stop listening to other CEOs, especially if he can't understand what they're talking about.
Monday: AJ called us together for the morning meeting and said he'd decided over the weekend to implement a "backup" policy. I wasn't too concerned at first as I thought it was going to be some part of this "focussing" policy from last week, but no, it's not. He wants everybody to make sure they back up their computer files, and wants me to create and check backup files for everyone. I said well there's a backup taken every night already, so it's not really necessary, and not everything needs to be backed up anyways as it would take up too much room to hold copies of everything. AJ said no, he didn't mean take copies of files, he meant backups - and from now on everyone is to backup everything in case the nightly backup doesn't work. One of the other CEOs at a sister company had said at last Friday's meeting one of his staff had deleted a file and they hadn't a backup of it, and so from now on nobody is to delete anything unless we have made a backup of it first. I was panicking a little by now, and said we all haven't room on the server, and we all need to delete things if we all don't need them any more. AJ said well, there should be room on the server - it's big enough - and you can't be sure you won't need it, so don't delete it.
He went back in his office, and I made everyone promise me they wouldn't back anything up to the server.
The new temporary staffer showed up at about 9:00 - her name is Jo and she looks awful young. Amy and Fiona are getting good at the routine of introducing a new staffer, so they showed her around, sat her down, and kicked off by explaining how the customer invoices were to be typed up. That's when we all found out why the agency had said to Amy that Jo was 'very keen to learn' - and hopefully Jo is keen to learn, because she's going to need to learn an awful lot.
Some things we all are going to have to teach her include:
how to switch on a computer,
how to use the computer once she's switched it on,
what a fax machine is for and how to use it,
what a photocopier is too,
how to make coffee,
how to open envelopes,
how pens work (really - I'm not joking here).
I get the feeling we're all due for another long week.
Tuesday: I came in early, expecting to have problems with the server today after AJ's inspired idiocies yesterday - it wasn't too bad though. Everybody has remembered their promise so far, and the only one who's created copies is AJ. There was nobody logged in to the system so I took out the backup from last night and put in a blank tape, and archived everything nobody had accessed in the last six months. That's freed up some space in case anything happens, and if anybody wants anything specific I'll put just that back up.
Jo was shown how to switch on and log into a computer yesterday morning and again after the lunchbreak, and I was very pleased she seemed to remember some of it. OK, granted I had to run through it again with her, but there were times during the process where it looked as if she did almost remember how to do it. She's well aware of her limitations and freely admits she's a 'bit of an idiot' but she's kind of endearing when she says that. If only she didn't giggle so when she said it.
Wednesday: Amy came over this morning and said her computer wasn't working too well, so could I have a look at it. I said OK, what did you do? She said nothing at all, it's just not happy. I went over and had a look. Well, she remembered her promise not to back up to the server, so she's backed up to her hard disk instead - and she's made backups of not just her files but also some of the program files as well.
I deleted the duplicate program files and told her the machine should work a little faster now.
The big printer wasn't working after the lunchbreak again. Walked over, pulled Mike's mobile charger, threatened him with LeeAnn, and plugged the printer back in.
Jo almost killed the fax machine when she tried to feed through half her memo pad and the card backing got stuck. The poor kid couldn't get it out and she was near to tears when LeeAnn and Amy wiggled it free for her - Fiona said well just take the page from the pad and fax the page only next time, but even she didn't want to criticise her too much as it was obvious Jo was already upset by what she'd done. Amy will fax anything needed from now on, just in case.
Thursday: Well, Jo's trying her best I guess, but it's just not good enough. I have had to log her into the computer every day so far as she doesn't get it, and someone has to check everything she does to see whether it bears any resemblance to what's actually wanted - and it never is. It's a shame as she's a nice kid, but she's causing us all more work and not helping out at all. We all just can't afford to carry her as we're all to busy. Her giggle is beginning to get to us all too - she giggles at every mistake she makes, and she's still making too many.
She's not happy either as she's struggling trying to work out what keeps going wrong, and she said today she didn't really think she wanted to come back next week. She'd be better off in a larger office where they'd have the time to go through things with her - we all just haven't got that time. Fiona and Amy spoke to AJ (who said OK whatever you want because he didn't want to get involved) and they're going to call the agency tomorrow to talk to her and work out whether she will be coming back next week or if they find her something else and send a replacement.
Friday: AJ said at the morning meeting he hoped all our files were fully backed up. I said yes, I've gotten them all on these tapes and showed him the backup tape from last night. He said it's a bit small isn't it and are you sure everything's on there? so I said yes, it's all compressed but it's all on here. He said well OK, as long as you can uncompress it if we need it. I said yes.
He came in to my office just before he went to the afternoon meeting at Head Office, and said you know, I've been thinking - those tapes you showed us this morning are a bit small really and surely it'd be better if they weren't compressed wouldn't it? I said well that's how the server stores the data because it uses the tape drive there and these are the tapes that fit, and he said see if there's a tape you can get that will store the data uncompressed. I said OK I'll look into it and let you know, so he went away happy
Sometimes I try to explain, other times I just give up and say anything to get him to go away.
Fiona and Amy spoke to the agency and they have arranged another place for Jo to go to from Monday. They'll be sending us Sarah next week instead - a lovely girl, very experienced with all sorts of office work, and she'd be with us on Monday at 8:30 ready to start.