I have worked as a Medical Laboratory Technologist in a Baltimore area hospital for 38 years. During those years I have seen changes in technology, testing, the use of information technology and automation. I have also lived through the warp-speed changes brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.
What I have learned over the past thirteen months under new management is that staying in one place for so long is viewed as a bad thing. For years I have gotten the looks and questions from the younger generation (who seems to change jobs as often as they upgrade to the latest cell phone) about why would I work in one place for that long of a time. I understand that and accept it; I find it humorous, actually.
Being of German descent, I have a strong work ethic and I take pride in that. Cal Ripken, Jr. is my sports idol and what he did everyday is well-known; 2632 games played in a row. Trying to emulate him, I have not missed a day of work due to illness for 30+ years. My maternal grandfather and my parents instilled in me and my siblings that you find something you like to do and you give everything you can to your employer. Take care of your job and your job will take care of you.
I find that to be an archaic concept now.
Part of the problem is that I have been working in the lab longer than my direct supervisor has been alive; she is 36 years old. The new Manager is probably not much older either. The lab’s Medical Director was in elementary school when I started working there.
I was also taught that if you wanted to find success in your profession you find a mentor who has achieved that success and pick that person’s brain. I have always sought out advice from others and have worked previously with a group of people who wanted to do the best that could be done together.
The culture now is “look at me and what I’ve done”. Today’s management knows it all even though they are not aware of what goes on in the “trenches”. I’ve seen things, ideas and concepts come and go and come back again and I try to voice both sides of how those decisions will affect the workflow. Speaking from experience is now considered “negative”.
When I’m asked why the lab does something a certain way, I try to explain the why and the history behind the why. Those explanations are looked at with a blank stare and comments of that’s stupid or I’ve never heard of that.
Management have a very narrow view of the lab; time started in November of 2020. No one is interested in what we have been through collectively. Those experiences shaped what the lab is now but none of that matters.
Should an opinion or feeling be expressed, I am told that I shouldn’t feel that way or that I shouldn’t take things personally. Opinions and feelings are now devalued.
When did this all change? Are the current management teachings such that if you have the title, you have ALL the right answers?
Reset and teamwork are the current buzzwords thrown around the lab. Reset means do things the Manager’s way and teamwork only applies as long as you agree with her pre-determined policies and thoughts. If you disagree she walks away from you and claims you are being difficult.
I do not profess to have all the answers but I thought my experience would have some value. I am treated like a dinosaur who’s time has come and gone. Working in one place is not a bad thing or is it?
My goal was to reach 45 years of service; I’m not sure I will be allowed to achieve that. This new management has other priorities.