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People Just Don't Want to Get Along These Days
Old 01-14-2017, 10:14 AM   #1
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People Just Don't Want to Get Along These Days

I've been out of the corporate world for over 5 years now, and overall I don't miss it.

However, I am finding that many of the volunteer activities that I was so looking forward to before retiring, are diminished if not ruined by people who just refuse to get along. Everyone has their own strongly held opinions, and they don't change no matter what anyone else thinks. And often, their opinions are on what everyone else should be doing, not themselves. I'm involved in two organizations, both activities I love dearly, that are going downhill - with seemingly intractable differences. Weak leadership yes, but you can't force volunteers to do anything they don't want to. So we go in circles (downward) year after year.

Maybe it's always been this way, and I'm just waxing nostalgic for good old days where people could get along and reach consensus on problems, that really never existed.

I swear internet connectivity has made it worse, too easy to silo ourselves and only interact with like minded people if we choose to (and many do evidently) - just the opposite of what I thought connectivity would bring, boy was I wrong.

Hopefully I've just stumbled into the only two volunteer organizations in the world like this, but those key activities haven't lived up to my pre-retirement expectations.

Whatever else their faults, at least corporations are forced to move forward or die - they can't go in circles for long.

[/mild rant]
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Old 01-14-2017, 11:20 AM   #2
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ruined by people who just refuse to get along.
You're not the only one. But it's been there forever. At least in my world. It's what drove me away from home and what drove my retirement from work. Nobody wants to get along. Everybody is trying to get away with something or extract something.

Believe it or not I had this exact conversation with my girlfriend not 12 hours ago
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Old 01-14-2017, 11:31 AM   #3
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I'm not finding it too bad so far but not 'volunteering' in a volunteer organization rather have a relatively low paying position (something I would and have done for free in the past) at my local university on a volunteer basis. I guess in that respect it is still a corporate environment with mandated direction from above and a specific mission.
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Old 01-14-2017, 11:33 AM   #4
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You're not the only one. But it's been there forever. At least in my world. It's what drove me away from home and what drove my retirement from work. Nobody wants to get along. Everybody is trying to get away with something or extract something.

Believe it or not I had this exact conversation with my girlfriend not 12 hours ago
Yeah... but did she agree with you ?
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Old 01-14-2017, 11:57 AM   #5
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There's usually a certain polite restraint in the workplace due to having to keep the job. But not in volunteer organizations.
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Old 01-14-2017, 01:26 PM   #6
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Definitely has not always been that way. I have a theory or two as to how we got here .
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Old 01-14-2017, 01:28 PM   #7
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"People Just Don't Want to Get Along These Days"

Of course they don't. They never did, starting from back when they were cave dwellers, and even much earlier than that. In a recent thread about the human microbiome, there is talk about C. diff crowding out other bacteria and causes the patient to die. See, not even bacteria get along with one another.
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Old 01-14-2017, 03:02 PM   #8
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"...........See, not even bacteria get along with one another.
Yea, but I think these bacteria are more like volunteers than employees.
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Old 01-14-2017, 04:07 PM   #9
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Yeah... but did she agree with you ?

In fact, yes. That's what makes her so special
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Old 01-14-2017, 04:11 PM   #10
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I've been out of the corporate world for over 5 years now, and overall I don't miss it.

However, I am finding that many of the volunteer activities that I was so looking forward to before retiring, are diminished if not ruined by people who just refuse to get along.....
[/mild rant]
Yes, we had a discussion about volunteering a while back, and I mentioned how I put up with that for about 5 yrs before I finally left. When it ceased to be fun, no more "volunteering" for me.

What a shame because it was a cool gig, but the whining & pontificating was too much like my w*rk environment...I was trying to escape that.

_B
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Old 01-14-2017, 04:20 PM   #11
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Volunteers can be fired.
You just need volunteers that all think the same way....

I don't volunteer in any official capacity, as it's just like working without the pay. I will informally help folks on an adhoc basis, that way I'm free to stop when I want.
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Old 01-14-2017, 04:53 PM   #12
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That is so unfortunate that volunteering has been a disappointing experience for you. Perhaps all social organizations have certain unpleasant characteristics that trade off against the good that people working together can do. It just doesn't seem to take much to make a frustrating mess.

We are mostly introverts ourselves, so our volunteering tends to be on the fringe of any organization, on our terms (we offer to do certain things when and where we think we can uniquely contribute), and we are never in charge of leadership or organizing others. When it becomes a drag, we step away.
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Old 01-14-2017, 05:20 PM   #13
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The first time I volunteered was in 1967, got me three years, suspension of some of my constitutional rights, full set of clothes, three hots and a cot, and lots of guidance and direction, ... they trained me too. Thanks Uncle Sam. Can't remember if we all got along.
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Old 01-15-2017, 12:53 PM   #14
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I ran a Beaver group back when my boys were the right age. The organizing committee wanted to have a social club so I would just drop in and state my requirements and leave. If my requirements were not met, I would recruit new members.

That was many years ago and I think that social media has made people crazy. So I don't volunteer anymore. I just give money.
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Old 01-15-2017, 01:07 PM   #15
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That was many years ago and I think that social media has made people crazy. So I don't volunteer anymore. I just give money.
Though indirect, I think that's a contributing factor, that most folks don't recognize. We're all prone to be more emboldened in our views these days, because it's so easy to find lots of others all over the world with your views - online. Years ago, your circle of friends and family were "the world."

The irony to me is, the corporate world doesn't look as bad now that I look back at it from the perspective of the volunteer organizations I've gotten involved in over the past 5 years. In the corporate world, someone has to make sure things happen, when/if the organization doesn't get things done. Organizations that don't move forward, die off in time. Moving the business forward takes priority over making everyone happy.

In the volunteer organizations I've been involved in, leaders and members alike are willing to go in circles for years while the organization declines, all the while blaming those with any other POV for the decline. Everyone is absolutely certain they're right. Leaders just don't want to make anyone feel bad, never mind making progress. Avoiding making anyone unhappy takes priority over moving the organization forward.

I just never expected that...
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Old 01-15-2017, 01:17 PM   #16
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............

In the volunteer organizations I've been involved in, leaders and members alike are willing to go in circles for years while the organization declines, all the while blaming those with any other POV for the decline. Everyone is absolutely certain they're right. Leaders just don't want to make anyone feel bad, never mind making progress. Avoiding making anyone unhappy takes priority over moving the organization forward.

I just never expected that...

That perfectly describes the City Council, next sizeable city to the east of me, Johnstown PA.

And they spent lots of time, effort and money to get elected. It is volunteerism of the expensive kind.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:14 AM   #17
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Yes I do not understand why anyone would want to be a mayor these days. Loss of privacy and not much money.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:23 AM   #18
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Yes I do not understand why anyone would want to be a mayor these days. Loss of privacy and not much money.
Eh, in this case the mayor has the cushy job. All he does is attend soirees, banquets, and other social gatherings and smiles a lot. He looks pretty in a suit. The city manager is the one getting the beatings.
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Old 01-16-2017, 08:01 AM   #19
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I swear internet connectivity has made it worse, too easy to silo ourselves and only interact with like minded people if we choose to (and many do evidently) - just the opposite of what I thought connectivity would bring, boy was I wrong.
agreed - I've been saying for years that the internet is the tower of babel
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Old 01-16-2017, 08:08 AM   #20
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agreed - I've been saying for years that the internet is the tower of babel
I've said it before, but I thought being connected would bring us together, it's been just the opposite it seems.

But I hope we'll find better ways to connect with others, I'm not giving up on the positive social potential of the internet yet.
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