We recently had a team of efficiency experts come through our office to make some improvements. In my opinion, all of the improvements were good. I like efficiency -- it's a good idea to cut away unnecessary paperwork and redundant work. Sometimes processes build up over months and years until they don't make any sense anymore. And then the mantra becomes, "That's the way we've always done it", or "That can't be done", when someone asks why or how. Something completely ridiculous becomes written in stone -- just because. It often takes an outsider to look at the system and suggest changes. Usually the changes are positive, if people follow them. But often what happens is that, once the efficiency experts have left the building, the folks in the office "tweak" the new processes and things become cumbersome and redundant again. The thing that makes sense to one person is completely illogical to someone else, and in the frustration tempers start to fray, and people become annoyed with each other.
"But why are you doing it this way? That's not what the efficiency team suggested. Did you tell anyone you decided to change it?"
The efficiency team pays a visit a few weeks later, wonders why none of their suggestions are being followed, and everyone is in chaos again. I think in some respects every organization must be the same way. Whenever groups of people are working together, not everyone is going to agree with each other all the time.
I think it's time for the folks in our office to have a pizza lunch, where eveyone can kick back and relax for a while. All work and no play...