Time machines

George points out that thousands of post offices have removed the clocks from their waiting areas. "The Watson Post Office is one of the nation’s 37,000 post offices in which clocks have been removed from retail areas as part of a "retail standardization program" launched last year. The effort is designed to give the public-service areas a more uniform appearance, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported in Thursday editions."

Oh. Gotta love the focus on uniform appearance.

And Matthew points out, "I went to Sears a while back to pick up my repaired dehumidifier. They have a big sign up that says I’m to be given a gift card if I have to wait more than ten minutes for my transaction to be completed. The guy waited on me, and a timer started ticking on the TV located over the service desk. He disappeared into the back to pick up my dehumidifier. 9 and a half minutes later the timer stopped. 15 minutes later I was handed my dehumidifier.

I asked this guy about the gift card and he pointed at the TV monitor which still displayed 9:30. I asked to see a manager… [apparently, they figured out how to change the timer so it always stops just before ten minutes].

On the way out I noticed a big sign congratulating the employees for serving all customers in ten minutes or less last month."

Often, more effort goes into circumventing a system then it would take to just do a great job in the first place…