Hello, 2016. Please come in and take a seat. Here’s a cup of coffee; I’ll just be with you in a moment. I have something I need to wrap up before we can get started.
Twenty fifteen, we got off to a bit of a quiet start, and then things really went downhill. Let’s just work through your performance review together, and maybe we can both learn something from the experience, okay?
The thing is, 2015, you came highly recommended by so many people. I was told that you were going to be fantastic. I had officially beaten cancer in 2014 and was full of thoughts and ideas and plans for things I wanted to accomplish. I was playing my guitar and thinking about recording some songs, and was beginning to pull together a vague idea for a short story–nay, a novel! You were going to be so great, 2015.
But then, 2015, you decided to outdo yourself in the area of Velociraptor Incidents. Maybe you were trying to be an overachiever, like your friend 2013 and her cancer diagnosis, or maybe 2014 and her PTSD/anxiety assault on my husband while he tried to recover from 2013’s velociraptor incidents. I’m sorry to let you know this, but Velociraptor Incidents are to be avoided whenever possible–they are the opposite of what we want to see as progress on your Goals and Objectives.
Let’s just take a quick look at what we set out as Goals and Objectives for you, 2015, and review how well you did on them.
- Give me a place to do more music: Okay, we did that for the first few months of the year, and it was fantastic. But you really dropped the ball during your second half, 2015.
- Give me space to write more: Same as above.
- Help me get back into running: we’re both responsible for this one faltering, it’s true, but I can’t help but place a lot of the responsibility on your shoulders, 2015. You really made things extra challenging for me.
- Time management: You were particularly bad with this one, 2015.
- Taking initiative: Maybe we should have been more clear at the outset what kind of initiative is good to take, and what is not good. I’m not pleased with your performance there.
I’m sure you know what w’re going to chat about next, my dear 2015. That’s right: Your Velociraptor Incident. The Great Flood of 2015 started off as a frustrating but probably manageable velociraptor incident. We were old pros by then, of course, after 2013 and 2014’s performances. But you really tried extra hard to reduce our capacity to deal with things. Above and beyond, my friend — truly. We were battered and bruised, the kids were starting to have anxiety issues, my post-cancer positive outlook and unshakeable attitude was shaken. I got depressed, Adam was beyond unhappy, and Lyra suddenly couldn’t be alone in a room and was convinced we were going to end up living on the street, no matter how many assurances we gave her.
Just a quick reminder for you, 2015: Velociraptor Incident was NOT on your Goals and Objectives list. It was about as far from it as it could have been. I’m uncertain where you got confused, since I don’t think my communications on that front were unclear. If you thought that we needed some more problem solving skills and a more complete SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats, in case you’ve forgotten), you are mistaken. We’ve really had enough of that around here to last us at least the next few years. We are strong, and we are weak. We see many opportunities, and threats will always be there. As an organization, we’re almost hyper-aware of these things now. We didn’t need more reminders this year.
Overall, you haven’t done a stellar job this year, 2015, though it seems like you made an effort to pull up your socks and put some extra work in come autumn, and I don’t begrudge your efforts to redeem yourself from October onwards. We’re happy to not be living in hotels, or friends’ basements, or temporary rentals. It’s even better to be living in our own home, with yard and space and everything. I think if you do a self-evaluation you might figure out where you went wrong. I really hope that you did better for others, though I’ve heard mixed results from many.
Hopefully you’ll take away that you should pay attention to your goals, and try not to take initiative in a way that is completely opposite the goals of the organization. As for me, I’ve discovered that I should improve my communication skills, so that mix-ups like this are less likely to happen. I’m glad we can both say we’ve learned something.
Still, what you’ve learned is no longer my concern; we’re done here, and it’s time for me to begin orientation with 2016. I thank you, 2015, for the good things that came of your work, but I won’t lie when I tell you that I’m glad our time is at an end. Thanks, and here’s a cup of coffee to enjoy on your way out.
Now, 2016, please come into my office. Let’s start with a nice, clear definition of your goals and objectives…