It’s been a bit of a hectic week. Last Thursday I had the joy of going through a carbon monoxide event at work. That’s unsettling enough as it is. However what it has highlighted is our utter lack of preparedness for any situation, as well as a pretty large gap in my bosses reasoning.
During the vent they were pretty useless and couldn’t even bring themselves up to being emotional supportive let alone actually supportive. Generally concerning themselves with the business and not us, the ones who had been exposed to poison gas.
I should also state that no one knew what the alarm sounded like, so we were breathing that stuff in for quite awhile trying to figure out what was going on.
This all transpires, come in Friday my coworker and I discuss the event, talk about some things we want changed. Some realizations that we should take this seriously and decide to learn from this.
So I talk to our bosses about this. Almost immediately things go off the rails. The basic argument they have presented is that since you can’t plan for every possible disaster there’s no point in planning for any disaster and as such people will use common sense and that’s going to be the plan.
Now I’m not going to pretend to be unique in that I’m the first person to have uncaring bosses, if anything, they are generally caring. After being shook up by what had happened the day before and the guilt and shame I had felt over the event (I had been to lunch when the alarm started, leaving my coworker in the building alone for almost an hour) then I’m presented with these two very sudden idiots that can’t seem to rub two brain cells together. They refuse to even acknowledge that it was all preventable (the CO spewing furnace had known issues and should have already been fixed, the alarm should have been tested regularly, the list goes on) and resolve to change nothing.
In my professional career I’ve experienced those moments when you just feel like a piece of meat. When you just feel reduced to a cog in a machine. Each time is always unique and in sometimes subtle ways. At the end of the day it shakes your confidence.
Folks, care about each others safety. If you lose your reputation for that then you’ve got very little left.
P.S. One of the partners bought us lunch yesterday. I guess that’s some sort of admission of feeling guilty.