Image Source: http://illinoiseducationassociation.org/rif-resources/
A recent plurk from a colleague caught my eye, paraphrased below:
Earlier this year, my district implemented a “reduction in force” (RIF). That meant I lost my job as a district technology support person, but I didn’t lose my job with the District. I applied and obtained a job at a campus as a teacher. Now, my principal is asking me to do work I once did in my technology support position. What should I do?
It’s a tough situation, isn’t it? The District has essentially told you, “We have to eliminate your position due to funding cuts.” Yet, when you’re a technology “expert,” you’re essentially like a priest who’s no longer doing the job…your hands are still consecrated, still imbued with mystical power.
When your boss asks you to do something, calling on special talents that are needed but no longer recognized as worth paying for, what do you do?
Some of the responses folks have offered include the following:
- Explain to the principal that you need to make a point of not to be the go to person. Show professionalism.
- If you go back to the classroom, you shouldn’t be expected to assume extra duties.
- “I’d like to help you but unfortunately the position I’m in now, doesn’t allow me the time.”
Unfortunately, I find these responses unsatisfactory. When I served as a 5th grade teacher, teaching Reading/English Language Arts and ESL in a small Texas town, my skills with technology often involved me helping other teachers and administration. I didn’t expect any extra pay, although if people wanted my help after-hours, it would cost them a free dinner they made themselves, not take-out…I still remember a catfish dinner with some fondness. In fact, just last year, someone treated me to a BBQ lunch for helping out on the weekend.
“The pessimist complains about the world.
The optimist expects it to change.
The leader adjusts his sails.”
John M. Maxwell, leadership expert, author