Saturday, March 25, 2006

Company Policy--4/3

Start with a cage containing five monkeys. Inside the cage,hang a banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it. Before long, a monkey will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana. As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all of the other monkeys with cold water. After a while, another monkey makes an attempt with the same result - all the other monkeys are sprayed with cold water. Pretty soon, when another monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it.

Now, put away the cold water. Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one. The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs. To his surprise and horror, all of the other monkeys attack him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be assaulted.

Next, remove another of the original five monkeys and replace it with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm! Likewise, replace a third original monkey with a new one, then a fourth, then the fifth.

Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs, he is attacked. Most of the monkeys that are beating him have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs or why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey.

After replacing all the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys have ever been sprayed with cold water. Nevertheless, no monkey ever again approaches the stairs to try for the banana.

Why not?

Because as far as they know that's the way it's always been done around here.

And that, my friends, is how company policy begins.

Nice catch, thought it needed to be up front!


Anonymous said...

So that explains the unwritten policies.........

...and Andrew, such a good likeness...

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry.....I work with monkeys....

See the monkey commercials on!

Anonymous said...

Click on the here on the post.....

Anonymous said...

I still feel like I'm reaching for the banana and getting beat all of the time. Nobody knows why we can't just have the stupid banana.

I guess I don't learn by experience. That makes me dumber than the stupid monkeys.

fac_p said...

To fac_p: Have you been hanging around and observing at city hall?

Only on visiting days...

Anonymous said...

I guess the new monkey never wants the banana bad enough to fight the "system"

"system" = E$$ENT

Anonymous said...

I told my 13 year old about the monkey theory. She said if she wanted the banana bad enough she would take a beating for it.

That scares me. Not only am I dumber than the stupid monkey, I have at least 2 children that are as well.

(I will be paying for my raising)

Anonymous said...

10:18 post

It's not just the Essent system. Take a look around. Like Dr. Eliz said, there is a heirchy that pats each other on the buttocks.

We're in a mess now guys. Find out reasons instead of avoiding the stairs. The board, the docs, and the nurses.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever been told to do something by a director, and when questioning the reason why, get this answer. "BECAUSE I TOLD YOU SO."

I have. Monkey theory in action---doing what Essent told them, and they don't even know why.

Anonymous said...

LMAO.........the "monkey theory", how true, how true!!

I can now somewhat minimize my pain by visualizing my Director as a monkey with a blonde wig and horn-rimmed Xray glasses. WOOHOO...thanks fac_p for the well needed laugh!

Anonymous said...

I agree with the 13 year old... if you want the banana bad enough then you'll take a beating for it. IF you GET the banana then you hold the power, and all the other monkeys be damned, hungry and booted out of the cage for being such e$$ential a$$holes in the first place.

Anonymous said...

LMAO 6:11 that is so good.

I wonder if you would get fired now for talking about monkey's or banana's at PRMC.

Anonymous said...

Well I had a Theory of the Work Place that went like this:
There are three types of workers in any business: Lemmings, Wolves, and Donkeys.
When the Boss says "Go jump off that cliff!" The Lemming says "YES SIR!" and jumps...mumbling to itself the whole time "Why am I doing this?"
The Wolf says "Give me one good reason why I should jump off the cliff!" If the Boss says "Because the building is on fire and that is the only escape route." Then the Wolf will jump. But if the Boss says "Because I say so!" the Wolf will not jump.
The Donkey will not jump at first (because it was not his idea to jump in the first place) but can be conned into jumping if the Boss uses a carrot (it's for the good of the company! I need you to be a leader for the others!)
Bosses love Lemmings, tolerate Donkeys and loathe Wolves. The problem is that Lemmings and Donkeys are not usually very good workers. Lemmings only seem to excel at sucking up while Donkeys spend most of their shift toot their own horns. Wolves come in and do their job and do it well, but refuse to obey any one who is stupid--a common problem with management.
But now we have Monkeys. I'm not sure where they fit in...

Call me Howlin' Wolf! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhoooooooooooooooooooooo!

Anonymous said...

If two of the monkeys defended one monkey long enough to get that banana the first time, then they could decide if it was worth being beaten and sprayed for.

Once the banana recon was successful and the determination was made the banana was worth it, the three conspirators could share the banana with the other two monkeys, thus convincing them to no longer beat someone trying to help them out.

Now you've got five monkeys who are willing to take a hosing for a banana. They then convince any subsequent new monkeys that the banana is worth the hosing. Who doesn't shower before they go out to dinner anyway?

The hose guy sees the now clean monkeys enjoying their banana and wishes they would share. The monkeys negotiate a trade; a piece of banana for the handle to the water faucet. Now, they can eat their banana without the shower.

Oh, you ask what happens if the former hose guy withholds bananas? The monkeys claim disparate treatment since former hose guy set a precedent by offering them the banana the first time and cite animal cruelty laws until they get more bananas. Now the former hose guy works for them. They have become "The Man".

Anonymous said...

10:18; Look for, the union label...

Anonymous said...


I like your theory, there is just a couple of animals missing in my opinion.

There is the leopard, who changes his spots frequently. Some days he works very hard, some days he sucks up to management, some days he talks on the phone most of the day.

There is also the jackel that keeps the chili stirred all the time, heckling others, and tries to keep some one upset all of the time.

The monkey must be the one who lets the circumstance be their guide as to what they do, and how they react. If it takes them beating someone up, to not catch the water, then so be it.

What about the lion? I have worked with some of those too. They hunt--get their work done, watch their babies, but don't jack with them, or they will have you for supper. I actually don't mind working with them at all. They are steady, mind their own business, and don't like their business jacked with---especially their babies.

Anonymous said...

And there is the ostritch, and the snake in the grass. We can't forget those.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the ostrich. He just sticks his head in the sand and thinks everything is okay. If he can't see, it must not be there.

Any ostriches out there?

Anonymous said...

I think there might be some cross breeding going on in this jungle, because I know a wackel, and a wonkey, and a dion. I know a couple of jackeys too.

What the lion and the wolf don't understand, is that if they could work together as predators, they could keep the flies off, and take turns watching their children.

But, the wolf stands alone. He will win some battles, but never the war and will always have trouble with the flies.

I think there are some jungle animals in the docs as well.

George Orwell--Animal Farm?
No---more like Guns and Roses,
Welcome to the Jungle

Anonymous said...

Alas, too true. I've been a lone wolf for a long time. Can't believe no one mentioned Weasels!!!


Anonymous said...

Weasels have their place. They kill of the snakes and some of the insects anyway---and they might even get a clucking chicken.

They hide so much they aren't that much of a bother.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of George Orwell's Animal Farm,

Who's going to stop the next in line from becoming another dictatorship?

I know I'm thinking ahead here, but if the hospitals don't split into two for competition, we will be back to square one with the staffing problems, if we don't look into a union.

Anonymous said...

Did someone say "union"?

Anonymous said...

In the jungle, the mighty jungle the lion sleeps tonight.

Oning a whop, owing a whop owing a whop.

That's going to play over in your head while you try to sleep, just like the Welcome to the Jungle song got me. Ha ha.

Anonymous said...

Yes Sir, Union! Look how well it's working for the Paris Police Officers. From what I hear, they have been working the city administration and council over, getting basically whatever they want.

Maybe we should look into this. Does anyone have any contacts?

Anonymous said...


From that link I quote:Over the past ten years the healthcare industry has become a main target of union organizing efforts. While registered nurses represent the largest group of healthcare professionals, union efforts to organize nurses have met only limited success. Evidence suggests that nurses are more inclined to join a union if they believe the union can help them address one of their most important concerns—the quality of patient care. This paper discusses the significant workplace problems nurses currently face in acute care hospitals and how those problems negatively impact nurses' abilities to provide effective patient care. The paper also identifies, examines, and analyzes strategies that unions have developed and employed to increase nurse voice and involvement in patient care/nursing practice decisions in acute care settings.

Unfortunately I do not have access to the entire article. I suspect tho the first step would be to contact the AFL-CIO.

Anonymous said...

The limited success may come from the inability to strike.

However, lots of issues effect patient care--and a union could help. To have someone to fight your battles for you is a big plus. I'm sick of fighting.

They bring in alot of options for workers. The ANA can bring Collective Bargaining to the table as well.

History has shown that employers fight the union tooth and nail--I wonder why? Someone to have a voice, someone to get the pay scale up to par, someone to look into health occupational saftey issues, that aren't addressed by the company.

My father has told me for years that nurses need to organize. He has seen the issues in health care first hand, and being a teamster himself, has shown me many ways a union can help.

Talk to someone from a union--find out what they can do for you--Ask PD how their experience is going. Don't throw this baby out. Don't say no to it before you get all of the pro's and cons. Many people who don't want a union, are intimidated by employers who don't want it.

Many people just don't have the facts, and since some people provide negative feedback, they dismiss it as an option.

Anonymous said...

I suspect even getting a union rep around talking to folks should scare the good ol' boys somewhat...snickers

fac_p said...

"The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." Plato

Okay, I'm becoming more receptive to the union push. There are two union links in the list--the second is the national that was in one or two other Essent hospitals.

Anonymous said...

I have to confess I have always been against unions for the simple fact that they create more problems than they solve. I remember watching Michael Moore's Roger & Me documentary and thinking they (the citizens of Flint, MI) brought this on themselves. The unions got the employees ridiculous salaries. Here are some guys who may have a high school diploma getting paid $25/hr (this was 20 yrs ago when that was AWESOME money) to screw hubcaps on cars. They were making more than most healthcare professionals! So of course GM chose to go to Mexico where they could pay $2.50/hr! Unreasonable demands made by the union brought that gravy train to a halt. I don't want a union that will do that. But the more I see of PRMC & E$$ent the more I want change! I want something to shake those complacent ignorant jerks up. If a union will do it, then YES!

But what I really want is an advocacy group that will insure that hospitals do this:
1. Put patient care about the Almighty Dollar.
2. Realize that their employees are their best PR. Happy employees exude positive feelings that patients, visitors, etc can't help but feel.
3. Lose the gulf between employees and management. And by that I don’t mean we have to all hang out together, but spend some time TALKING to employees and showing that you, the director/supervisor/admin care about their opinions and appreciate their hard work. At one hospital I worked the Admin walked all over the hospital with pocketful of coupons for free cokes, desserts, meals at the cafeteria. If he saw a housekeeper buffing the floors he’d say, “You’re doing a great job there! When you get done, go get an ice cream!” and give the man a coupon. He’d walk into an office and say, “You folks are working hard today! Lunch is on me!” and he’d give everybody free meal tickets. It didn’t cost the hospital much to do this and made the employees feel like “Hey the Big Boss sees I’m doing my job and appreciates it!”
4. Be aware that good PR doesn't come from silly ads or banners, but ensuring that everyone--EVERYONE--that comes thru the hospital doors can sense that this place cares and is there for them!
5. Makes communities realize that hospital employees are often the best citizens a town can have! Educated, dedicated, caring, enthusiastic and eager to make their town just as good a place as their hospital. Support and encourage them, Paris!

Can we make a union like that? I’d like to see it done on a national level!!

Anonymous said...

American Nurses Association!

That's what they want too!

Anonymous said...

I've been out of town for a week. Is the hose guy still working for the monkeys, or did he join the IAHGTWM (International Association of Hose Guys Tired of Working for Monkeys)?

Anonymous said...

Who's the hose guy?

Anonymous said...

see 10:18's post...

Workin4Change said...

This was posted on the Citizens for Paris site regarding city workers, but E$$ent needs this lesson in treating employees as well!

"Anonymous said...

As an adminstrative member of another city, I like to surf around and look in on other cities and see what issues, if any, they have in common with mine. WOW, did I find a nugget here.

Just a suggestion from someone who has seen her city go through what appears to be going on in Paris; Even if only a fraction of what I have read on this employee site is correct, you have some big problems that need to be rectified. It seems as though your city employees are not very highly thought of in your city hall. You need to find a way to make amends and bridge that gap. If the comments with the central theme of the employee as "whiners", "crybabies", etc are coming from city hall, maybe you at city hall should consider different careers. An administrator who condescends to his or her employees cannot expect the employee to do his or her job with the required enthusiasm it takes to do it well, safely, and efficiently.

Your employees are not stupid. They know how to do their jobs because they are the ones doing them. Just that simple. Listen to them. Try out their suggestions. All of them may not work, but there is always a better way to do something. And that better way may be lurking in the mind of one of your employees right now.

Employees, give your administrators a chance. They make mistakes too.

Administrators, department heads, supervisors; you must respect your employees. Word gets out. You treat your employees badly enough and you won't be able to get anyone to come to work for you.

Good luck Paris. Looks like you may need it.


Sure can't say it any better!