Matamoros, Mexico: Washington, D.C.:

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Get Off the Escalator

Many of you have asked me whether or not I'm actually hiding all of "the real stuff" that goes on in the Foreign Service for fear of retaliation from the Department or my bosses. The answer is no...not really.

Granted, there are certain things that I know I shouldn't talk about. After all, this is a public forum, and once something is on the internet, it's on the internet forever. There's no going back. That being said, however, I feel like I'm OK at telling it like it "really" is. I don't hesitate to post about things I find interesting or odd about the Foreign Service. In fact, the Department has an entire open forum (available only on the intranet - State's internal internet) devoted to allowing people to express their opinions and ideas, be they negative or otherwise.

So, with that small disclaimer, I'd like to share with you the following video. A friend of mine from work sent it to me after I had taken a little initiative and changed a process that appeared inefficient and illogical. Apparently, no one had thought to change it. No one had wondered if there was a better way to do that thing, because, well... that's just the way it was done.

I've come across other examples of this kind of thing happening. The Department is really big on precedent and what has happened in the past. Now, it's true that I also think the Department is innovative and willing to take some risks, but in a ginormous government bureaucracy like ours, some things never are super hard to change. If something happened to you in the past that rubbed you the wrong way, you will forever be afraid to try to step around that something in the future. And more than likely, you'll pass that along/down to whoever you're working with.

With that, I leave you with this video. It's titled "Government Employees," though the video itself doesn't seem to specify that they're G-men (G-people, for those of you who are sensitive to that kind of thing.) I don't really find it insulting or offensive. In fact, I find it to be rather accurate....sometimes. In any case, let's just say that I make an effort every day to get off the escalator...and to bring others with me (instead of just fixing the escalator.)


Until next time...peace.

1 comment:

  1. I love this video... don't remember when I first saw it, but it is a great life lesson/commentary!