What makes work so crap?

What are the things that make your experience of work so crap?

Here’s my far from complete list that I came up with as I wrote this week’s ‘The Decrapify Work Not-Newsletter’. What would you add to it?

The technology

The tech we have at work has become a real drag. We were promised that it would release us from drudgery but it’s done the opposite, it’s ensnared us in its Kafkaesque web (no pun intended).

Open Plan offices

The norm used to be small offices.
Then we all got shoved into open plan offices. And hated it. These distraction factories are ideal for no-one and sub-optimal for everyone.

Gaslighting and double-speak

When I entered the workforce in the early 1980s, most organisations had a paternalistic outlook. Employers asked for loyalty but, in return, they cared for their employees.

Today, few people believe their employers care for them.

Yet nothing in the way organisations speak to their staff acknowledges this. Quite the opposite.

It’s bad enough being served a shit sandwich every day, without being told to believe it’s sirloin steak.


The ‘bosses’ obviously earned more than I did when I started. However, it wasn’t a huge amount more.

Now the gap is absolutely huge. They no longer live in the same world and share little life experience with the rest of us.

Lack of care

I mean, they don’t really give a shit, do they? See all the people Big Tech have just dumped to improve their short-term profits.

Excessive Workloads

We’ve had decades of ‘efficiency’ measures that always end up with us being asked to do more with less, all the while the f*ckocracy of the modern organisation creates more meaningless work for us to wade through to actually get anything done. No wonder Burnout is going through the roof.


Do you sometimes wonder what your job is for? Do you see the end result of the process that you are part of? Are you able to see the outcome of your actions? Or do you sit there, shuffling bits around a screen, and wonder if your computer is actually connected to anything?

Green-washing, well-washing, tick-boxing in general

Not just going through the motions but being really proud of going through the motions!

Values, Mission and Purpose

Oh god, make it stop!

Remember, one of Enron’s values was ‘Integrity’.

Boundary Violations

It used to be that you went work, did your 9-5, then went home.

Work and your personal life were clearly demarcated.

Now, thanks to your office mobile, work intrudes into all parts of your life. And you’re expected to be OK with that.


From ‘job for life’ to ‘job unless the CEO needs to make his bonus for this quarter’.

There’s no real security in a salaried role any more. You will be abandoned in a heartbeat if it suits your corporate overlords.

If you want the full rant, read the latest issue of ‘The Decrapify Work Not-Newsletter’.

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