Want a project to fail? Behave like this.

To save you the trouble of listening, this is an audio recording of a woman whose television viewing was interrupted by televised warnings of a tornado. Apparently, she was cut off from watching the season finale for “Criminal Minds“. From her perspective, since the tornado was happening in another county, she should not have had her entertainment options penalized by the fact that other people or the families of people who watch the same station outside of her town might be in danger.

I have no way of verifying if this audio recording is real. College Humor publishes many, many kinds of videos, some genuine, and some fake. But having seen less extreme examples of this very behaviour before many times over my career, it doesn’t surprise me.

This woman demonstrates a shocking lack of empathy or concern for the welfare of others. She shows a complete lack of flexibility in the face of an uncontrollable change to her environment. She apparently believes her service providers should provide a level of exclusive service completely incompatible with the fees she pays for those services as a consumer. She portrays an unrealistic sense of entitlement indicative of the worst side of modern consumptive culture. I could keep going, but really, her behaviour is so outrageous it just doesn’t need any more explanation.

I think we all need to listen to the message this woman sends. And after we recover from our outrage, I think we need to monitor our own behaviour and that of the people we’re responsible for at work, and make sure to expunge any behaviour that even remotely smells like that seen here.

Warning #1: Language. Yes, this audio contains some. A lot of it has been bleeped out, but the lady’s truly classy demeanour still demonstrates a lack of restraint.

Without further ado, I bring you, you’ve gotta be freakin’ kidding me:

Warning #2: Apoplectic Editorializing. If this is a real phone call, I hope the woman who placed it has Internet. I hope she’s seen how her phone call to the radio station has been received by the public. And I hope she’s deeply ashamed of her behaviour, and of herself, especially in the wake of the disaster. However, something tells me that someone this galactically self-absorbed is incapable of understanding the impacts of anything outside of her trailer, and the peanut butter stains on her remote control.

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I’m a professor of project management at the college where I work. My students continually amaze me with their insights, passion and all-around awesomeness. I figure they deserve access to more answers than I can give them by myself. This site is for them.
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