I generally get to work about 20 minutes before my day technically starts. Partly it’s because I’m hopelessly committed to arriving everywhere precisely “on time” and partly it’s because I generally need ten minutes to mentally prepare for the long walk across the parking lot and getting the day started. Most days this adds up to ten or fifteen minutes of time just sitting in the truck watching the world around me.
Sure, technically I’m sitting in the parking lot watching people, but I’m not doing it in a creeper-stalky kind of way. I’m really just noticing people pass by and making observations – like who can’t park worth a tinker’s damn, who forgets something on the roof of their car three mornings a week, and who else is just sitting there trying to summon the courage to face the day.
The thing I notice most often, the thing that is so common as to be nearly universal – is that almost no one is smiling. No one has a spring in their step. Nearly everyone looks like their being led to the gallows. They’re plodding their way to the front door like they expect someone to shank their puppy once they get inside.
Clearly this place ain’t Disney World… and I can see plainly why they never bothered to do another “employee viewpoints” survey to see if that morale problem had turned around. There’s really not much need for a survey when the answer is written all over everyone’s face.