Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Plagarism Doesn't Exist Inside Companies

I got an email forwarded to me today. It was written by my Executive VP, who is outlining a new strategy he is initiating. The orignial email went to the CEO and a few other senior execs. The reasons behind the strategy - about 80% of the email - were cut and pasted from a marketing overview I wrote and sent him recently.

Nowhere in the message am I mentioned. Nothing like "...based on a marketing analysis from the Window Manager..."

Ten years ago I would have been furious. Today...well, I really don't care. Really. Maybe because I am jaded. Maybe because I am more experienced in business and understand how things work:
Email Doesn't Have Footnotes - To be fair, there was probably data in there not only from my marketing analysis, but also from the sales force, other marketing people he talked to, etc. And my analysis wasn't generated in a vacuum - there were people who I could have thanked. There is no opportunity to put this sort of information in footnotes in an email or a put in a "I would like to thank John and Fred and Joanne...." for every single thing sent out.

Your Job Is To Make The Boss Look Good - Your job - any job - is to make your boss look good. In an ideal situation, he in turn takes care of you. If I make him indispensible, he makes me indispensible. And I ride his coat tails all the way up. I haven't worked long enough with this guy to find out if this is the case, but as I noted before, he has brought me into his staff meetings although I am technically one rung too low to be included.

I Am In A Good Place - I work remotely from HQ, from my house or a local sales office if I want to hop into a "real" office. As noted before, I'm happy with this situation and he is welcome to use whatever I send as long as he keeps me in my present situation until I am ready to move. I have no desire to go to HQ or anywhere else just yet.
The one thing that bothers me is that he didn't copy me - or bcc me - on the original message. Someone else on the original list recognized that it pertained to an area I specialize in and sent it my way. An oversight? Maybe. Maybe not...

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