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Brain Rape...a short rant

By collins_rf ·
The best way to put this out there is from the heart, so here it goes...

For a long time I have approached my job as more than just a set of activities between four daily encounters with a time-clock. For all of those I support and for the business that we engage, I have worked at making jobs easier, processes simpler, streamlined and self-rendering. I have during the course of years put many ideas forward and have recieved credit for and have witnessed developed. Unfortunately for most of the solutions envisioned have been shot down only to be resurrected through other sources resulting in rewards, recognition and ranking. To stand by and do nothing is unacceptable. Going postal is unacceptable. My first choice is to present my case to the first three levels of management in a practical and objective manner. I am relying on their sense of honor and conscience. I can honestly say that I am an asset and in my current capacity it would take the better part of two years to fully train a replacement with respect to the business model aspect of the organization.

Please, discuss...

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Focus, focus, focus...

by GaijinIT In reply to Brain Rape...a short rant

Don't take this personally, but your posting was so confusing (I know you said it was a rant, but..) that I had trouble understanding just what it is you want to discuss.

Finally I guessed that you were looking for advice on how to approach management to get credit for plagiarized ideas that others are enjoying the credit for.

But if your proposals are not presented in a more focused manner than your posting, that may be one of the problems you are facing.

Formulate your ideas, create a professional presentation package, make your pitch, and KEEP THE DOCUMENTATION TO ESTABLISH A TRAIL.

Later, when you approach management for redress over stolen ideas, you will have documentation to fall back on to remind them of your original proposal.

You mentioned that some of your ideas have been implemented to your credit in the past, so it doesn't sound like anybody is expressly stepping on you, it just may be that sometimes your proposals are not 'at the right time' for due consideration.

When you seek recognition later, you can not honestly expect management will remember your case (they have a different point of view, your complaint may only relate to 'one of many' issues, whereas to you, it is central).

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I cannot disagree

by collins_rf In reply to Focus, focus, focus...

I certainly cannot disagree with your reply. There have been occasions a plenty where I could have done a far better job of documenting proposals.

There have been some blatant examples of what I described in my original posting with witnesses to boot. I believe one of my weaknesses is in relying on management's memory and on coworkers sense of honor.

Thank you for your post.

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Never give the complete solution

by wsaconsult In reply to I cannot disagree

Present a high level definition of the proposal solution. If someone steals your idea then you will be able to fill in the details that only you will know, since it is your baby.

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That's one of the cards..

by collins_rf In reply to Never give the complete s ...

Fortunately that is one of the things that I have done. The problem is in the ethics. As time passes, others are trying to produce these ideas while doing so behind my back there appear to be some costs. It is seeing the increase in these costs that has me ready to move to the next level. This is public sector so the costs are yours and mine. Thus we come to this point.

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Ouch!

by Toucan In reply to Brain Rape...a short rant

That always hurts.

Consider it may have to do with communicating the solution in business terms. You see the benefits of a aolutions from your perspective, openly discuss solutions however, the idea is carjacked either because of timing or perhaps the idea is resold to decision makers with appropriate spin.

Often these solutions are captured because others have access to decision makers at the appropriate times. i.e., luch meetings, golf outing whatever.

It's a frustrating facet of business. Do take the advice of phrasing your solutions in well documented presentations, even if it is just "memo for the record". Another effective strategy is to position yourself as part of the team seeking the solution rather than serving up an idea that can be pilfered by a toady. Recognition will come if your are consistently part of the solution teams.

Strategy my friend, we technologists can forget politics when we get excited about logic and solutions.

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Amen to that, Brother..

by collins_rf In reply to Ouch!

It does, and I admit that part of this is my fault do to what could be better improved documentation.

What you described in your post is true. The damnest thing is that thing about access to the decision makers.

Yours is a very valid point. To add to it, I'd say that we can get so passionate about the struggle that we, or at least I, can feel it to the pit of being.

In a way it is as though the folks are not just stealing from me, they are stealing food from my kids.

The real solution you offer lends well to the right solution. Keep my head in the game and document and present.

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Internal Politics

by Alpha2004 In reply to Brain Rape...a short rant

Your biggest mistake is relying on the sense of honour of the management; we live in a world were only the fittest, or cowards, survive.

Very often the idea has to come from the 'right' place before it is even considered. I have often come across the situation were an idea has been put forward and rejected only to be brought out again by the 'golden boy' and then classified as the best idea in years.

An example of this from my own experience was with a firm who supplied electronic equipment.
problems with servicing had arisen and both the Service Manager and I put together what we considered to be the best solution. The 'favorite employee' sent the idea to the Directors with the addition of two ideas we had rejected. Because of his status and the fact that the ideas matched those of the Directors, they were welomed and immediately implemented.

Unfortunately there is nothing you can do, however unacceptable. What I would suggest is that you consider feeding your ideas through your line manager and hope that he will remember that when he is promoted, unlikely but it has worked for some people.

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Reality Awareness Training..

by collins_rf In reply to Internal Politics

There have been more than a few times when I have been in the situation as you have described. As much as I have wanted to believe and hope for otherwise.

Here too there is the possibility that it will be as you described it. I as always will hope for the best but will also prepare for the worst.

I acknowedge that sometimes survival may be more important that winning. The stakes correspond accordingly.

Thanks.

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Re:

by vltiii In reply to Brain Rape...a short rant

The simple solution is to ensure there is a paper trail whenever you have what may be a good business proposal. This can be in the form sending out the proposals in the form of an email and ccing yourself to ccing or bccing the entire chain of command. This way when the proposal reappears as someone elses idea you can prove that it was originally yours. A side benefit is that when the culprits see that there is documentation, they're not as likely to use your ideas as their own.

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This has worked favorably...

by collins_rf In reply to Re:

The last mail that I had sent out I had bcc'd two positions in the chain of command. Unfortunately they niether included my boss or his boss. My poor boss is nearing retirement and the years of dealing from within a bureaucracy have taken their toll.

Government makes cynics and a career in government makes old tired cynics. God bless the man, I'd follow him into ****. He is just as powerless as his boss. His boss is one of the perpetrators.

With the documented proposed solutions on the radar of the next two levels, it makes it a little harder to refute. But I trust the third and fourth bosses up. They have been the only defense and the only support.

And, yes, the other perps have taken notice and backed down slightly. I suspect that the third boss was the transmitter so I made sure that the message was relayed.

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