Friday, July 17, 2009

The Passive-Aggressive Organization

My reaction: 
From a study by Booz Allen, this document describes the toxic effects of passive-aggressive group dynamics on an organization's ability to execute. Because their lines of responsibility (tasks to be completed) are orthogonal to (that is, almost completely independent of) their lines of authority, technology-focused groups are particularly susceptible to this "disorder."

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Medieval Helpdesk

My reaction: 
This video shows the time-honored, traditional value of showing patience in dealing with a user's insecurity.

(Also, it's pretty darn funny. )


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

What is Passive-Aggressive Behavior?

My reaction: 
Known clinically as the Negativistic Personality Disorder, here are the "symptoms" of passive-aggressive behavior (from Appendix B of the DSM IV)
  • Passive Resistance (Procrastination, Inefficiency) to Fulfilling Occupational Tasks
  • Complaints of Being Misunderstood, Unappreciated, Victimized
  • Sullenness, Irritability, and Argumentativeness in Response to Expectations
  • Angry and Pessimistic Attitudes Toward a Variety of Events
  • Unreasonable Criticism and Scorn Toward Those in Authority
  • Envy and Resentment Toward Those who are More Fortunate
  • Inclined to Whine and Grumble about Being “Jinxed”
  • Alternating Behavior Between Hostile Assertion of Personal Autonomy and Dependent Contrition
I dare you to watch one of these characters in action. Or, rather, in-action.

As you watch, keep in mind that I can't be held responsible for any damage or injury you might cause to surrounding furniture or pets.

We know these people. We work with them. We are them.

Passive-aggressive behavior is everywhere, a fact of life. Nothing can be done about it, right?



Passive-aggressive behavior is a choice. As with any socially maladaptive "bad" behavior, passive-aggressive habits can be identified and "broken," in others and in ourselves.