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我在报社的日子:混日子员工欢乐多

When I had been at the FT for about a year, a young woman who had just joined the paper invited me out for a drink. I had barely taken a first sip of acidic white wine when she declared herself terminally bored with writing mundane corporate news stories and asked if I was too. No, I replied. I found it very interesting.
在我加入英国《金融时报》约有一年的时候,一名刚刚加入这家报业公司的年轻女孩邀请我一起出去喝一杯。我几乎还没来得及啜上一口酸味白葡萄酒,她就已经宣布自己对于撰写平淡的公司新闻故事感到彻底厌倦,并询问我是否也有同感。不,我回答道,我觉得这是一件很有趣的事。

“I really envy you,” she said, fixing her big, round eyes on me. I settled back into my seat, preparing to be told what a brilliant financial journalist I was. Instead she said: “You seem so happy just bumbling along. I wish I could be like that, but I can’t – I’ve always been a compulsive overachiever.”
“我真的很羡慕你,”她一边说一边用她又大又圆的眼睛看着我。我在自己的座位上坐好,等着听她夸赞我是一名多么出色的财经记者。谁知她却说道:“你似乎对这样子混着感到很开心。我希望自己也能像你一样,但我做不到——一直以来我都要求自己取得超越常人的成就。”

As an insecure, rabidly ambitious 25-year-old, I wasn’t terribly pleased to be put in the bumbler class. Neither was I fooled by the faux-envy. Yet I now discover that she was on to a general truth that almost never gets acknowledged: bumblers make happier workers and may be worthy objects of envy.
当时作为一名缺乏信心、同时又极有抱负的25岁青年,我对自己被归入“瞎忙活型”(bumbler)的行列感到很不开心。她那虚假的羡慕也没能将我骗过。如今我却发现,她提到了一个几乎从未有人承认过的一般事实:“瞎忙活”的员工在工作中更容易感到愉快,或许他们确实是值得羡慕的对象。

Last week I was sent a new piece of research showing that the worst-performing employees are often the most engaged ones. This is a radical departure from the standard view that performance and engagement go hand in hand: high performers are meant to be the motivated ones and the all-round cheerleaders, while low performers are supposed to belong to the awkward squad and be disaffected and grumpy.
我近期收到的一份最新研究报告显示,表现最差的员工常常是那些在工作当中最投入的人。这一结果严重偏离了认为业绩表现应与员工投入程度成正比的标准看法:表现优异的员工本应是在工作中充满动力的人,或者是多才多艺的啦啦队长型员工,而表现落后的员工则被认为是一群笨拙的人,他们常常心怀不满并且脾气很坏。

Instead, according to the consultancy Leadership IQ, the feeblest workers in almost half the companies surveyed fared much better than the high-flyers on three measures of engagement. They were more likely “to give 100 per cent”, they were more likely to recommend their company to others, and they were more inclined to think that their bosses treated people fairly.
但咨询公司Leadership IQ提供的资料显示,在接受调查的近半数公司中,能力最弱的员工在三项有关投入程度的指标上表现得远比抱负极高的员工要好得多。他们更有可能“100%地投入工作”,更愿意将自己的公司介绍给其他人,并且他们更倾向于认为自己的老板对待员工的方式是公平的。 The consultancy concludes that this is a worrying consequence of bad management. In these companies, the useless are not told that they are useless but are left to trundle along believing themselves to be good. The upshot is that their more able and hardworking colleagues come to resent them and end up cynical, disengaged, critical of the company and prone to quit the minute they get the chance.
Leadership IQ得出的结论是,这是管理不当所造成的令人担忧的后果之一。在这类公司内部,能力不行的人没有被告知他们难担重任,而是被放任着瞎忙活,同时还自我感觉良好。由此产生的结果是,其他更有能力、也更努力工作的员工对这类同事心生厌恶,并最终变得愤世嫉俗,对工作不再全心投入,对公司心怀不满,并且倾向于一有机会就立刻走人。

There may be some truth in this account of the relatively happy bumbler syndrome. But if I think back to my colleague all those years ago, there are some more elemental reasons for the bovine contentment of the terminally feeble and the gnawing dissatisfaction of the overachiever. For a start, poor performers may feel fortunate to have a job at all, while overachievers feel almost any job is a let-down. (My ex-colleague has risen through quite a few jobs since leaving the FT.) With lower expectations, bumblers feel less inclined to criticise their employers and don’t assume they are brighter than their bosses. Neither do they feel enraged that they are not being given more interesting things to do.
这份有关“低能员工更开心综合症”的调查或许部分反映了真实情况。但当我回想这些年来自己共事过的所有人,我认为,还有一些更加基本的原因导致了无可救药的笨蛋感到心满意足、而一心追求成功的人则感到苦恼。首先,能力较差的人或许对于能够找到一份工作已经深感幸运,而对于追求卓越的人来说,几乎任何工作都让他们感到失望。(之前约我喝酒的那位同事在离开英国《金融时报》之后已在好几个工作岗位上历经升迁。)由于期望值较低,能力较低的员工不太倾向于批评自己的雇主,同时也不会自认为比老板聪明。这类员工也不会因为自己没有得到更有意思的工作任务而感到生气。

It may be even more basic than this: bumblers are Type B personalities who are simply built to be happier. A recent academic study showed that ambitious, Type A personalities are more successful but bumbling Type Bs are at least as happy and live longer. Other studies have shown how life’s “satisficers”, who do the minimum to achieve the desired result, are generally better pleased with their work than the “maximisers”, who strive to do things as well as possible and are inevitably disappointed with the outcome.
事情甚至可能比以上的分析还要简单:混日子的员工属于B型人格,他们天生就比其他人更容易快乐。近期的一项学术研究显示,充满抱负的A型人格者通常更为成功,而做事迟钝的B型人格者则活得更加开心,寿命也更长久。其他研究已经表明,生活中的“满足者”——他们为达到预想结果只会采取尽可能少的努力——对于工作的满意程度通常比“追求成就最大化者”更高,后一类人倾向于把事情做到尽善尽美,因而总是不可避免地对结果感到失望。

But whatever the reasons for the relative happiness of bumblers, their existence in such large numbers in most businesses I have experienced overturns two tenets of modern management practice.
但不管能力较低者究竟是出于什么原因过得更加愉快,在我所接触过的几乎所有公司里,这类员工都大量存在,这一事实推翻了现代管理学实践的两大原则。

First it shows that all this stuff about employee engagement is nonsense. The engagement of a high-flyer is worth a lot – or rather it is worth a lot if it means they stick around (which often they don’t). The engagement of the lowest flyer is worth less than nothing, as ideally you would want them to be so disengaged that they would slope off somewhere else. If moderately poor performers feel happy that’s nice for them, but surely not a top aim of management if the result does not lead to them working any harder.
首先,这一事实表明所有关于员工敬业度的理论都属无稽之谈。能力较高型员工对工作的投入态度很有价值——或者说,如果此类员工将留在公司的话(而他们通常不会这么做),这种投入将会很有价值。而能力最低的员工对工作的投入则什么价值也没有,因为在最理想的状态下你会希望他们对工作极不投入以至于偷偷溜去了其他地方。如果业绩表现中等偏下的员工在工作中感到愉快,那这对于他们而言是一件好事,但这绝对算不上是管理层的首要目标,除非让员工开心能促使他们更加努力地工作。

The even more troubling implication of this survey is that there is little point in trying to manage people at all. If under-achievers are in part happy because management has washed its hands of them, then surely the same trick ought to be applied to everyone. If all staff were left to their own devices, the ambitious could get on with being ambitious and the bumblers could get on with bumbling. An awful lot of managerial effort would be saved, and everyone would be a little happier than they were before.
这项调查结果更加让人感到不安的一点在于,它表明试图对人进行管理几乎没有任何意义。如果表现较差的员工过得愉快的部分原因在于管理层对他们撒手不顾,那么这一方法完全可以应用在全体员工身上。如果所有员工都被放任自生自灭,那么事业心强的人大可放手追求成功,而能力较低的人则可继续混日子。管理层由此可以省下大量精力,而每一个人也能比之前过得更加快活。

 

[来源:来自网络] [作者:admin] [日期:13-05-04] [热度:]

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