The Importance of Follow-Through

The fridge that my department shares is disgusting.  I think people put things in it and forget about it, and everyone’s too polite to throw things out, so things stay in there forever.  It’s just a little mini fridge, but it’s so dirty that when I enter the kitchen/copy room, I smell garbage.

I don’t spend that much time in the kitchen, and I have my own mini fridge in my office, so it doesn’t bother me personally; it only makes me wonder how a group of highly educated people could collectively be so uninterested in basic sanitation.

One Monday, I saw a sign on the fridge saying that the entire fridge would be emptied every Thursday at 3pm.

Great!  Many offices use a weekly emptying policy to avoid disgusting situations as such.  But somehow, I knew it wasn’t going to work.

Alas, Thursday came and went, and on Friday morning, the fridge was still full to the brim.

Two weeks later, the sign was taken down.  The fridge is still full and the copy room still smells like garbage.

I wonder if such “threats” had been posted on the fridge before I got here.  There’s a good chance that the same person posted the sign, didn’t follow through, and nobody cleared out the fridge.  Why would you post the sign if you weren’t going to follow through?

I understand that if everyone’s food is in the fridge at 3 on a Thursday, and you throw everything out, people will get mad.  Well, just do it once.  People will learn their lesson.  If you want to be nice, toss the food and leave the plastic boxes out for pickup.

I wish I knew who it was that posted the sign so that I could lose respect for a specific person and not just some anonymous entity.


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  • June 2009
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