Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
"The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-15-2007, 09:18 AM   #1
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,617
"The quit-lag phenomenon"

Odd title, but this Business Week article really resonated with me.

Liz Ryan's job performance dramatically improved after she'd given her quitting notice and she realized that many things piled up in her IN box didn't need to be done after all.

Maybe we should all mentally quit our jobs once a month and truly sort out the priorities.

__________________

__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-15-2007, 10:23 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
Lusitan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Boston
Posts: 620
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Great article.

Reminded me of the character Peter from the movie Office Space after he had been hypnotized into not worrying about his job - suddenly he became "a straight-shooter with upper-management written all over him."

Similar to being a lame-duck employee, I think being FI allows you to step outside of the politics and the BS and actually be a better and more valuable employee. Because you don't need the job, you're less concerned about the backstabbing, the office politics, and working your way out of employment by really solving problems instead of just constantly patching things up and then finding your job eliminated or outsourced.

It's probably why so many weathly people "love what they do" because they literally have "no fear" when they go to work - they do what they enjoy and know they can leave at the drop of a hat.

I doubt it'll keep me working once I reach FI, but it will make that last year or two more enjoyable.
__________________

__________________
Lusitan is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-15-2007, 10:34 AM   #3
Full time employment: Posting here.
Sandy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida
Posts: 855
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quit-lag. Interesting phrase.

I change j*bs, on average, every 4-5 years. I get bored, see through the BS, and don't want to do it any more. Just started looking around for (hopefully) one last gig. Even if it takes 6-8 months to find, I am already in the quit-lag mode.
__________________
I would not have anyone adopt my mode of living...but I would have each one be very careful to find out and pursue his own way, and not his father's or his mother's or his neighbor's instead. Thoreau, Walden
Sandy is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-15-2007, 08:56 PM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Fireup2020's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,186
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Is this why I focus on my customers and basically slap together the monthly and quarterly verbage on "reports" that people do not focus on?

Of course the statical reports are generated elsewhere! (they do matter to someone) My folks getting settled in military retirement and/or obtaining suitable employment is more rewarding any day!
__________________
Make no mistake, my friend, it takes more than money to make men rich. - A. P. Gouthey
Fireup2020 is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-16-2007, 11:25 AM   #5
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 117
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusitan

Similar to being a lame-duck employee, I think being FI allows you to step outside of the politics and the BS and actually be a better and more valuable employee. Because you don't need the job, you're less concerned about the backstabbing, the office politics, and working your way out of employment by really solving problems instead of just constantly patching things up and then finding your job eliminated or outsourced.
I started feeling that way after I stopped living paycheck to paycheck.

I do need *a* job, but there's lots of jobs out there. I don't even need one that pays as well as this one. Makes it easy to cut through the BS.
__________________
slepyhed is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-17-2007, 08:39 AM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Eagle43's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: DFW
Posts: 1,883
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

This article is so true. Most won't admit it, but corporate and government work is at least 50% unnecessary. Especially the non-technical and the work which does not directly involve a paying customer. The quickest way to verify this is for the corporation to have a big lay-off. Who takes up the slack? Or does it just go away? Best way to see if a job is necessary is to stop doing it. See if anybody calls.
__________________
Resist much. Obey Little. . . . Ed Abbey

Disclaimer: My Posts are for my amusement only.
Eagle43 is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-17-2007, 08:53 AM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,018
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

What a great article!

I'm convinced that it's healthy to resign and start anew every couple of years. Haven't managed to do it myself, except for specific portfolios. Clears the decks, sweeps the cobwebs away, makes you realize how much BS goes on in the name of work.

Being FI definitely helps me to Just Say No (to BS).
__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-19-2007, 02:50 PM   #8
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 198
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

I discovered this quit-lag thing myself. I've been close to quitting a few times over my 8 years at my company. Since I'm in a technology position, I usually manage a large percentage of my to-do list through email. When I get this close to quitting, I tend to delete things on my "do when I have time" list.

As the person said, when you delete everything that would be "nice", you end up with a short list of things you can work on right now. You go from 150 emails to 7. Of course, while I was deleting I was saying things like "Hah, screw you, I'm never going to do that".

But once I cleared down to that 7 emails, I found I felt much better about my job. I was able to focus on the few important items, and clear them out pretty quickly. Interestingly enough, things I thought were "important" to remember pretty often faded away. Either they weren't important enough, or people just forgot about them. Either way, less work on my plate.

So once in awhile I try to get my to-do list emptied, my inbox emptied, etc. It makes a pretty big difference to feel that you're all "caught up" instead of constantly having a huge list to work on.
__________________
HobbyDave is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-19-2007, 09:54 PM   #9
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,617
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

When I was an instructor at a military training command, we had to keep time cards on ourselves. Every month we were expected to submit a tally of how much time we spent on the podium, how much time we spent preparing, how much time we spent on admin or watchstanding or whatever.

The staff weenies hard-working analysts at the Chief of Naval Education & Training claimed that this data was essential to determining the hourly rate a military instructor's time was worth for training civilians & foreign military sales. As an experienced staff weenie administrator in my own regard, however, I suspected that the data would just be used to conduct staffing reviews followed by billet cuts.

One day, instead of sending our department's data faithfully up the chain of command, I sat on it. Every month after that, over 50 military instructors' hours went unaccounted for in the CNET bureaucracy. We detected no change in their usual efficiency & responsiveness, not that it had ever been worth noting.

The analysts were all over it, though, and just two years later we got a query. I demurred. By the time my lack of cooperation had escalated up the chain of command to my CO and the CNET Chief of Staff, everyone had decided that the whole exercise was a waste of time. The following month the training-command timecard system was cancelled by a brief message, and that was my little victory for paperwork reduction.

On my final month of active duty, I eliminated over two-thirds of the office files. No one ever noticed that, either...
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-20-2007, 10:43 AM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
kcowan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific latitude 20/49
Posts: 5,720
Send a message via Skype™ to kcowan
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

I never did any requested staffwork. Most was never missed. The odd one that was followed up, I would ask them to get permission from my executive because my primary duties were going to suffer as a result. Never heard from them again.

I was considered "Not a team player" by the staff weinies but I was consistently a top performer and I think that saved me. I also loved my job. The only BS portion that I had to do was expense accounting but I only did that every two months when the cashflow became an issue.
__________________
For the fun of it...Keith
kcowan is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-21-2007, 09:34 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
SteveR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,803
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quit-lag?

All the time.

I used to change jobs every few years as well as locations. My average stay in one location was about 3 years. But, once I got off the Corporate Ladder and decided to live more and stop going for that next position, I have moved far less. I have now been here for 4 years and will retire before long. I have no regrets.

I have been in Quit-lag for many years. I had my ER date planned for over 10 years and each year closer makes getting involved in the daily corporate BS that much more nauseating. The folks who work with me know I don't swallow the BS and they respect me for pushing back on stupid corporate initatives that are thoughtless and worthless. I have a bit of a reputation for being honest...sometimes very openly honest about what I think of these programs. Despite, this mgt. keeps wanting to promote me and I keep saying no. They asked again last week for me to accept the current position I am doing on an interim basis full time. This is not what I want to do. Soon I will tell them my ER date and lthen listen for the pin to drop.

Quit-lag has been an essential part of my work day for years. It allows one to cut through the BS, filter through the noise to only hear what they REALLY mean. My work load is very high and has been for several months; doing three jobs is not for the weak. However, I also only do what is really needed. The other stuff sits on the back burner until it is asked for again...and again.. to make sure it is really a priority and not just a whim. If it is good for the business, I will do it, if not...it sits.

It is all about priorities and knowing what is real and what is vapor. Making the business better is a priority; making someone reach an empty goal is not.
__________________
Work? I don't have time to work....I'm retired.
SteveR is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-21-2007, 08:45 PM   #12
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 718
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Someone should write a book about living with the quit lag phenomenon. Probably generate enough to ER on
__________________
Mwsinron is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-21-2007, 11:04 PM   #13
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,275
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Sometimes the 'bad reports' you do are actually USED...

I worked a long time ago and after doing the monthly report for a few years... I went to my boss and said "I think we should stop doing this report".. He asked me why... I said "I always have a cover letter with the main points.. and at the bottom I had put down 'If you have any questions, please call'"... well, nobody had called me in over 18 months... so I said let stop this...

WELL, he said "this report is used by the board of directors for their discussion.. the call it the "Texas Proud" report, not the monthly divisional performane report"...... well, that made me feel better....


Fast forward to today... I got demoted in the last merger... and now just do what I see needs to get done.. the 'bosses' don't know as much as I do and they are running around with no direction... trying to 'fix' everything at once... One time I said "It was not broke until after the merger, you got rid of all our good systems".... didn't go over well....
__________________
Texas Proud is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-22-2007, 12:16 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
SteveR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,803
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud

...Fast forward to today... I got demoted in the last merger... and now just do what I see needs to get done.. the 'bosses' don't know as much as I do and they are running around with no direction... trying to 'fix' everything at once... One time I said "It was not broke until after the merger, you got rid of all our good systems".... didn't go over well....
Most managers don't know how to fix anything because they use role models of managers who don't know how to fix anything either. They know office politics and how to "work" the system but true problems solving is not a strong suite for most of the ones I have know.

Mergers are a mess. I have been in a couple of them and cleaning up after the "elephant parade" is a chore!
Staffs are cut without much real knowledge of who really knows the system or not. The office politics kick into high gear and the rats end up eating each other as they pounce on the small bits of cheese tossed out by the new management. The end result is a brain drain and those that survive the occupation by the new company tend to be those that threw others under the wheels of the train to save their own skins. The few systems 'engineers' manage to keep the steam pressue up in the organization but the gears don't move. The guy who know how to make the next operation move is gone and with him the undocumented procedure that acutally make something function.

I could write a book on this stuff. But only those that are truly "in the know" would be the only ones to really 'get it'; management would have it burned.

If you are in a merger you have a lot of entertainment to keep you busy for a while. Especially when the Corp. Staff shows up to tell you what you are doing wrong despite the fact that they have no clue on what is right or wrong. Their management forced them to "go down there and kick some butt"

Editorial Comment: there is in fact a significant loss of both intellectual and fundemental systems fucntionality history from most companies. The folks that learned how the stuff works are the ones that get canned or get fed up with all the BS and HR flavor of the month projects that all fail. These learned pions are the wheels and cogs and grease the make the organiztion function in a nearly adequate means; until management steps in and starts making changes becaue they believe their job is in fact changing things. The write reports that extoll their prowess in taking charge and making changes to the obviously inefficient and inadequate system. The report rolls up to the next level and added to and embellished. Then tothe next level where even more 'editorial" changes are made to put the proper 'spin' on it to allay the fears of upper managent.

The truth in this situation is that change for the sake of doing something different without knowledge of why the change is being made, the effect on other systems of the change being made, and the lack of understanding of what is really going to happen when the change in finally implemented. Chaos is the twin of change and once unleashed will complicate the working of the system for years. Management will pile on change after change until the system finally chugs to a grinding halt and the order of the day is to find the idiot who broke the system. Someone will be found and summarily politically executed though being given less responsibility for the system. This leaves the system in the hands of rookies that then start to re-invent the wheel again and again with little real success.

Middle management convinces upper management that a new system is needed. A systems King is found and he is now Lord of the domain and what he says gos. We will find the best system money can buy. Once found he will direct hundreds of hired consultants to 'fix" the bugs in the purchased software so it works with the existing system. After $millions are spent and even funneled in from other projects it is finally ready to launch....a year late...with 300 patches. The day of the cut-over, the consultants are excused and the remaining staff if now responsible for running and trouble shooting a system they don't know squat about. When the errors start rolling in...the consultants are gone to another job and have no time to come back and fix what they broke before they left.

Anyway, mergers and new management is a riot. You have to keep your sense of humor about it all and find a way to make some $$ on the conssession stand you set up for everyone else to watch the three ring circus.

You get the picture.
__________________
Work? I don't have time to work....I'm retired.
SteveR is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-22-2007, 08:55 AM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
maddythebeagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,450
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusitan
Great article.
Similar to being a lame-duck employee, I think being FI allows you to step outside of the politics and the BS and actually be a better and more valuable employee. Because you don't need the job, you're less concerned about the backstabbing, the office politics, and working your way out of employment by really solving problems instead of just constantly patching things up and then finding your job eliminated or outsourced.

It's probably why so many weathly people "love what they do" because they literally have "no fear" when they go to work - they do what they enjoy and know they can leave at the drop of a hat.

I doubt it'll keep me working once I reach FI, but it will make that last year or two more enjoyable.
I posted a thread awhile back on this....seems there is a cycle...younger folks might think that they are in a cell, but realize once they become more FI that they might be creating their own walls....

I have to admit that I havent cleaned fish in my office, though....but have the red stapler
__________________
- Hurry! to the cliffs of insanity!
maddythebeagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-22-2007, 09:20 AM   #16
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
kcowan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific latitude 20/49
Posts: 5,720
Send a message via Skype™ to kcowan
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

The dilemma for most organizations is that the truly smart people find ways to expend maximum energy on getting the results expected of them and they rise in the organization. The ones that spend time doing the staffwork are the least capable of making meaningful changes to the organization. This phenomenon aggravates organizational rot setting in.
__________________
For the fun of it...Keith
kcowan is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 03-24-2007, 12:33 AM   #17
Full time employment: Posting here.
Dog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 781
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Been around the company for a long time ....through a couple of mergers, reorgs, RIFs, etc.....anyway, have finally wised up on projects and requests....I don't jump anymore, but wait for a second request. So many requests are reactionary to some exec's tangent and never really need actual follow up.
__________________
"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?" - Mary Oliver
Dog is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 05-03-2007, 11:32 PM   #18
Recycles dryer sheets
Average Joe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 93
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

I thought there might be some relaxed quit lag time, but it looks like Iíll miss it. My office is ready for my disappearance. I could clear my stuff out in less than an hour. I could have a replacement (provided they were qualified) sufficiently oriented in a few hours. Everything heíd need is organized and ready. This is good, because chances are we wonít cross paths.

I already like to keep an empty inbox whenever possible and I like to have things prepared to make future work go expeditiously (maybe this is because Iím so lazy that Iím willing to put in a lot of work in order to avoid doing a lot of work). There is no unnecessary debris to confuse someone whoíd walk into my office or open up the files and systems that compose my virtual workspace. There is very little paper. Everything there is there for a good reason and if thereís no good reason for it, itís not there.

I think my approach to this is pretty common in all the services. We move a lot and it teaches us to always have things ready for the next guy to take over without having to clean up any mess youíve left behind. After all, you might be the next guy after him, returning to your old position after a deployment - you want whoever filled your shoes while you were gone to have had a well organized start and hopefully kept it that way.

So with everything ready, Iíd hoped that Iíd hit a period where my imminent departure would lead to shutting off the flow of new and extra work and I could spend more time on my personal concerns. But I canít drop or hand off a project that Iíd already had planned. So Iíll now be TDY overseas at a time I had told them I wanted to be (and am authorized to be) on a short period of permissive TDY followed by terminal leave (if you donít speak military, permissive TDY in this case is essentially a bit of ďfreeĒ time to get my affairs in order and terminal leave is leave taken at the end of the career Ė leave from which you donít return). The project will have me miss my PTDY window entirely and force me to sell some of the leave I had planned on using. But they say they donít want a novice to take over this project and they donít have anyone else around with my background. The whole thing was my idea, my planÖ. my mistake to have an initiative that they would want to display as a feather in the cap (itís already been reported up the chain that ďweĒ are going to do this thing). I should have been working something dull and invisible that no one would notice not happening. Theyíre afraid someone without my familiarity will get into trouble if things donít go smoothly. No one is plotting against me personally. Theyíre just looking out for their interests.

On the plus side the trip will allow me spend time in an area Iíve always enjoyed visiting. I can see some old friends. And Iíll get three months of combat zone tax exemption and hostile fire pay. But it does force me to give up some of the down time that someone in my situation would normally get. The day I come home is the day Iíll be done with work, other than filing a travel voucher and clearing up some details that will get me out the door.

Another beneficial side effect is that I should now have an easier time getting out the door gracefully without the (unwanted on my part) formality of a retirement ceremony. Iíve already communicated my wish for no ceremony and no gift. So far there has only been minor pushback on the issue. Iím not telling them this, but Iím just not that keen to stand in front of the people here and say anything. A couple of the dozens of junior people that I work pretty closely with every day have already asked about my ceremony (which surprised me Ė Iím aware that some of them do look up to me, but I didnít suspect theyíd want to go out of their way to attend a retirement ceremony). If it was for them, Iíd do it. But Iíll get my chance to tell them goodbye and because of the timing and the way the schedule works here, they wonít be available during the time that I could have a ceremony anyway. As for my peers and superiors, this unit does not do the things Iíve mostly done in the past and I really donít know most of these people. I donít dislike anyone intensely and I donít think anyone does me either, but I have no close friends here. My wife doesnít want to attend a ceremony here either. She has enjoyed having me home a lot more while weíve been assigned here but is nevertheless very unimpressed with this unit compared to other places Iíve been assigned.

So my departure will likely be a happily anticlimactic day. Iíll come back from my little trip, file my travel voucher and any necessary reports, and then keep a low profile as I expedite the out-processing tasks that stand between me and terminal leave.
__________________
Average Joe is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 05-04-2007, 12:07 AM   #19
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,617
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Average Joe
So my departure will likely be a happily anticlimactic day. Iíll come back from my little trip, file my travel voucher and any necessary reports, and then keep a low profile as I expedite the out-processing tasks that stand between me and terminal leave.
Selling back all that leave isn't such a bad deal either!

Don't do anything to earn that hostile fire pay...
__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"
Old 05-05-2007, 07:46 AM   #20
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 717
Re: "The quit-lag phenomenon"

After a few years of being retired, I'd forgotten most of this stuff. Thanks for the visit down memory lane.
__________________

__________________
Random Reinforcement is Highly Addictive.
riskadverse is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I announced today that I quit mountaintosea Life after FIRE 25 04-10-2007 07:17 AM
Issues with "The Coming Generational Storm" Zoocat Life after FIRE 17 09-27-2006 10:59 AM
Can I quit at age 60? BigMike FIRE and Money 10 05-09-2006 10:47 PM
Outlook for a 27 yr old who wants to quit captain_krunk Young Dreamers 16 02-22-2006 10:20 PM
Why don't more people just quit? RockMiner Other topics 66 05-02-2005 02:21 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:37 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.