At a previous job, I had an email directory I called “clobberation.” It referred to an initiative to promote “collaboration” between various entities. However, the initiative wasn’t clearly serving a mutual benefit; often it felt like you were getting assimilated into a Borg-like collective. Hence, clobberation. I was reminded of the whole “dude, I got clobbered” feeling when I met with our diversity team to discuss how technology can promote diversity. The diversity team has asked us to create a “diversity audit tool” to allow each department to report on its diversity initiatives. I suggested they change “audit” to something more approachable. The diversity team also wants a “collaboration” tool for each of the 5 diversity sub-committees to share information, but the head of the diversity overall wants to control the content. So it’s not exactly a many-to-many relationship. Or, actually, not really a collaborative tool, right? I suggested that maybe to get started she could err more on the side of collaboration and less on the side of control, but that got nixed. For now. In 6 months, I’ll follow up… we shall see. Fear and loathing all over again….

7 Responses to “Clobberation”

  1. essprit said:

    Jul 10, 08 at 3:04 am

    I recently heard some very smart senior higher ed people talk about diversity, which is important and necessary, and how that it was even more important to foster inclusiveness. Sounds like the person you mention may be sacrificing the latter in pursuit of the former.

    A side note – it would be interesting to explore that Borg metaphor at some point. I’ve found myself wishing recently that some parts of our institution were a little more Borg-like, if only in the narrow sense of more effective and timely communication & being more transparent about what is going on. Heresy, probably, but these are strange times.

  2. bendy said:

    Jul 10, 08 at 6:16 am

    I sure hope that any heterogeneity averse team members uncovered by the Diversity Audit Tool can be provided with Mandatory Sensitivity Training. Diversity Audits without MST… that’s like digging for night crawlers when you don’t have a bass boat!

  3. essprit said:

    Jul 10, 08 at 3:03 pm

    P.S. I wonder how many of us would get in trouble if people saw how we *really* labelled things in our e-mail folders/labels.

  4. admin said:

    Jul 10, 08 at 4:39 pm

    It’s all about the right tool for the job! We want Borg-like efficiency in our communications and our ability to comprehend our environment. We want our collaborative chaos when we want to promote creativity and agility.

    Bendy, you’re absolutely right about the MST. I’ll suggest that to them. If only we could refine the name to be even more oxymoronic (emphasis on moron), e.g. “mandatory freedom celebration training.”

  5. kdghty said:

    Jul 11, 08 at 1:12 pm

    my darling British husband had to undergo 2 days of diversity training at work.

    i think you can imagine how well that went over… 🙂

  6. g-lo said:

    Aug 14, 08 at 4:37 pm is available.

    We are all fools for not paying 8 bucks a year to own it. Think of it as 2.0

  7. admin said:

    Aug 15, 08 at 7:56 am

    Got it. Thanks! Want to work it with me?

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