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Nothing. Not anymore. I mean, the pay is good and the benefits aren't terrible, but none of it makes the rest of the stuff we have to weather these days even remotely worth it.
Well, let's see. Senior management doesn't communicate well with employees, if they bother to at all. There's one particular member of the senior management team who favors using corporate buzz-words and obfuscating matters instead of being up-front with us. They seem to believe that we're children, incapable of understanding or being able to accept things, which is incredibly offensive. Promotions are given out based on favoritism rather than considerations like skill or aptitude. I watched people who were wholly and completely unqualified for them be promoted to management positions just because they were friends with folks in senior management, while folks who were qualified weren't even given the opportunity to apply for those positions. In fact they weren't even told that there were management positions available, and only found out once those promotions were announced. Lower-level management also plays favorites, giving certain people within their teams ample development opportunities while other employees who are just as capable end up being passed over. It's really difficult to get enthused when you know that one person is always going to be chosen to head up new projects, and not even because this person is necessarily any more capable, but because this person is buddies with management. On that note, management just plain plays favorites. There are several folks who are allowed special treatment. For example, if you don't schedule time off in advance, it can be difficult to get a particular manager to allow you to leave early if you need to, even if you have the PTO to cover it. However, this manager's favorites can come and go as they please. There is also a particular member of the team whom this manager allows to take extended lunch breaks. The rest of us are restricted to half hour long lunches, but this person can, and has, taken up to an hour and a half before. The marketing department is given special treatment. They can pretty much make up their own hours for all intents and purposes, and it's not unusual for them to take day-long "brain-storming" sessions at the local brewery. Worse, they're not particularly competent. They've screwed up pretty badly several times in the last couple of years, and as if that's not bad enough, the rest of us have to clean up their messes. We have to make excuses to angry customers because these "golden-children" can't seem to be able to do their job with any measure of professionalism. Employee reviews are conducted largely by senior management, which consists of a group of people who don't often interact with the employees they're critiquing, and who probably wouldn't be capable of understanding or empathizing with them even if they could be bothered to. I was personally dealing with deep depression last year. I did my best to put it aside and focus on my work, but it wasn't always easy. I still got my work done and kept my level of professionalism consistently high like it always was, but I admittedly didn't always look like I had much enthusiasm for it. And often I didn't, because that's kind of how depression works. Instead of coming and talking to me about it, senior management decided that I was only there to collect a paycheck and that I didn't have any passion for the job. That's not the case at all. I loved my job, but sometimes life takes a toll on a person, and it's not always as easy to separate one's personal life from their work life as these people think it should be. So I got a less than favorable review, all because I was dealing with some tough stuff and these people couldn't be bothered to talk to me about it like management ought to do. Hell, just like human-beings ought to do. Then there's all the Reynolds stuff. They've come in and made sweeping changes that have gutted the company. Where it was once a family environment, it's now just as stark and corporate as any other company out there. It's pretty obviously all being done simply to make the RJR shareholders happy, which has made it impossible to believe in the company or the product anymore. I've seen fantastic people be thrown under the buss and tossed aside, while the folks who will remain after the axe drops are some of the most self-serving sycophants I've ever met. RJR has sucked everything of value out of the company, leaving nothing more than a brand name that it can exploit for as long as the public remains largely clueless about what's happening behind the scenes. It's become a terrible company to work for, and if not for the awesome folks I work with and my equally awesome manager, I'd go nuts trying to keep it together in the midst of all this soul-sucking that's going on.
Advice to Management
My immediate manager is fantastic. I have no complaints about that person. The rest of them are so far gone that I don't know that any of my advice would be heard, much less taken to heart.