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Dysfunction 4. Well done us

I received an email recently that made me want to scream.

I was in the office so I managed not to. Although I did emit a small growl. And stamped my foot. Twice.

The email was addressed to the entire department and consisted of a small list of online features that had just gone live. I read it and was angered by just how shit it was.

  1. There was no context, so I had no idea if the features had been requested by customers, or were just a brain fart someone in the office had.

  2. The features were not described in any way. Am I supposed to be bloody telepathic?

  3. There was no mention of the business value these features have. Nothing.

  4. The sender thanked a bunch of other people in the department for their involvement. In what? Learning how to write shit emails?

ARRRGGGHHHHH!!! Now you can see why I was so angry that I stamped my foot. Twice.

If you’ve got a story to tell then tell the bloody story, don’t just send out a bullshit email to everyone. My inbox is clogged up with enough crap as it is.

The sender was obviously trying to express that something good had happened, and to share the success with the people they work with but they completely cocked it up, because in order to work out if I should give a toss I need to invest more time in it and ask a bunch of further questions.

They may as well have sent round a photo of a dead badger, with no other explanation than ‘here is a dead badger’.

Plus I felt bad for the sender as they just dropped a clanger in front of the whole department – right?


About 5 minutes after the original email, a reply came out, again to the whole bloody department but this time from one of the management team congratulating the sender.


They also provided no context  or explanation as to why this is a positive thing. It’s great if it is, but please help me out here, stop making me work too hard to get to the bottom of it.

When 10 minutes later the head of the department sent a final congratulatory email, again copying in the whole department, I feel like giving up. I must be missing the point as I still have no idea what has actually been achieved, yet the sender has been praised.


I totally support celebrating successes at work, but if you want me to join you, then don’t assume that I know what the f*ck you are talking about.

If it’s good news – tell me it’s good news and why. Then I too can give you a high five and get on with my day (instead of searching the web for a photo of a dead badger and sending in on to you with the subject line ‘Here is a dead badger’)


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