26 August 2009

"'Cause I don't believe you" --Crack the Sky

I get conference advertisements in my work e-mail a lot, which is kind of strange because I don't go to a lot of conferences--maybe one conference a year.*

One of the most popular topics for these conferences--and I just got another email for one today--is "Doing more with less." This idea, that if we were just a little more efficient... if we worked just a little smarter... if we re-engineered our processes and looked for ways to cut down on overhead... we'd all be freakin' MacGyver.

Can we just stop that lie right here and now? Because every time I hear it, a delicate little part of me gets screwed up a little more tightly. See, there's this belief inherent in the "do more with less" philosophy that we're all idiots and if we just woke up to the fact that we're being idiots, we could solve any problem. Offensive, no?

But "doing more with less" is bad on a whole different level; it is no less than downright un-American at this time. "Doing more with less" is the cornerstone of the lousy economy that we're mired in right now. You heard me. So stop that belt tightening.**

There are companies out there that used to employ 100 people but now get by with 75 because they think they can "do more with less." So 25 people wind up out of work.

(And 75 people get high blood pressure and rocky relationships. They're the winners? Not so sure.)

So what do the 25 unemployed people do? They "do more with less", by golly. They "stretch" meal dollars by not going out to restaurants and not buying high-end groceries. So, the restaurants can't afford to stay open and the grocery stores jack up their prices and cut back on staff, meaning: more people get laid off. And you know where that goes. Thaaaaaaat's right: more reality television with Flava Flav. And nobody wants that.

Hm? Oh, and cataclysmic, world-wide spiraling economic failure. Which, let's face it, isn't much better.

"Do more with less"? How about "do more with more"? Or even "do less with more"? Because that's a slogan I can get behind. How about "do a teeny, tiny bit that you might have done anyway with so much stuff that it might as well be the warehouse at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark"? Can that be our new rally cry?

Come on, people. If we all do the absolute minimum, while consuming the maximum, we can stimulate this economy into a golden era of prosperity. Really, it's the least we can do!

*cue America the Beautiful with image of flag waving in the wind*

* And, even then, I have yet to be in a water balloon fight or wear a fez. It's disheartening.

** It makes your muffin top that much more muffiny.


Felisa said...

Can I just clap and not say anything? I've got nothing to add... but I agree!

LiLu said...

*slow clap*

Kate said...

I think this goes along with my personal slogan which states, "I want it all and I want it all right now."

Little Ms Blogger said...

You forgot to add that once the company has made the cutbacks to prove that you can do more with less, they start internal campaigns stressing a work-life balance.

The Bug said...

Definitely an economic plan I can behind - I'll let hubby know we're starting it tomorrow!

justjp said...

JP's economic plan: Let everything fail or hit the proverbial reset button. Yes, it would be rough at first, but a "free market" economy depends on the occasional collapse.

I feel you 100%

Bilbo said...

I'm joinin' LiLu in that slow clap. We've gone beyond the stupidity of "doing more with less" - we are now doing less with less, and it's getting lesser all the time.

Liebchen said...

I like where you're going with this. Start a revolution!

Kate said...


You mean, there are people who DON'T want more Flava Flav TV? Seriously, what is this country coming to???

Tina said...

As part of the "lost" in doing less with less at Mega corp - you can guess my take on this.

Hannah said...

How about "do more but not at the expense of the environment?"

Funny you got that kind of ad in your email. I get a million flyers a day from similar companies trying to rope people at my work into going to useless conferences/workshops. How much return do they actually get? Is it really worth wasting all those trees? Nope!

spleeness said...

This is a pet peeve of mine too. When NASA came out with their slogan "Better, Faster, Cheaper," all I could think was "pick any two!"

Mike said...

Here's how you do more with less. You quit checking your product as it goes out the door. The customer will tell you if there's something wrong. If you still have any customers.

mylittlebecky said...

i am so there. let's do it.

kelsi said...

i'm gonna start by opening up four new credit cards.
and blogging all day at work, instead of just part of the day. it's gonna be great.

Jill Pilgrim said...

Viva la revolution! Or however the hell you spell that. You know what I mean.

lacochran said...

Felisa, LiLu, Liebchen, Tina, mylittlebecky, kelsi, Jill Pilgrim: It's time we did less for America!

Kate: Sounds reasonable to me.

Little Ms Blogger: *heeheehee* You are so right.

The Bug: We thank you for your support!

justjp: The husband requests you remove your hands.

Bilbo: I agree with you. More or less.

Kate: Disturbing, I know.

Hannah: Nope!

spleeness: Even one is tiring.

Mike: I thought you were retired. Now I find out you work for Microsoft.