Last week, the facility manager, Jim, brought me an email that had been sent to him and to our old interim director. It was about a city contract that I manage, so Jim thought I was the best person to deal with it. I agreed, but to cover my bases I took it to our old interim director, Paula – who, by the way, is now the museum’s part time accountant. The timestamp on the original email was 11:49 AM.
Paula also agreed that I was the best person to deal with the information request, but asked that I take it to our current Executive Director, Jeff, and let him know that it had been received.
So, I did. However, Jeff decided that I was NOT the best person to handle the request, and asked that I instead deliver the email to Betsy in Development. He also asked that I have Paula forward the email to his account since he never received it.
Betsy wasn’t in her office, so I left the email on her chair with a note explaining the situation. Then, I returned to Paula’s office and asked her to forward the email onto Jeff.
Jeff received the forwarded email from Paula in his Outlook inbox at exactly 12:17 PM, and promptly he forwarded it on to Betsy. Betsy was working from home that day, and received Jeff’s email around 1:30 PM. After quickly browsing the document she forwarded it back to me with the note:
"Can you please take a quick look at the language below and let me know of any changes?"
So, yeah, after a two hour tour of the office, the document landed right back where it started – ON MY DESK.
Somehow I think we aren’t as efficient as we ought to be.
(NOTE: All names have been changed to protect the true identities of everyone involved.)