Tuesday, April 27, 2010

You've Never Lived a Working Life Until You've Lived Through a DI.

Hahaha. Not really.

But a DI enriches your working experience in ways like no other ways can enrich your working experience. No matter which side of the fence you're on, whether you are the inquiror or the inquiree, emerge victorious or traumatised, a DI will leave its footprint in your inner being long after it's over.

I am fresh from yet another DI today. Prosecution isn't the sweetest of jobs. It doesn't gain you friends (especially if you are well-prepared prosecutor, compliant with the 10 DI steps and then some) and your colleagues, especially the alleged employee, will undoubtedly see the less friendly (or should I say just plain mean) side of you as they become the sausages on your interrogating grill.

But it's a job. It's MY job. And my job is to defend the Company. So take it personally.

That's right, everything's personal in every DI. What's not personal in a DI?

  • The entire thing sparks off with the intention to create a come-uppance (personal)
  • The alleged employee would be pissed off that someone has reported him/her and will go all out to exact revenge (a grudge is personal)
  • If evidence to support the allegations are overwhelming the alleged employee will accuse the Company of witchhunting (getting personal)
  • Witnesses for the prosecution will relish the opportunity to contribute to the downfall of their less-popular colleague (personal)
  • The prosecutor gets to bask in glory as the defence crumbles in his/her hand (oh come on, no one hates to win) (definitely personal)
  • The panel get a breather of their usual routine work for a bit to amuse themselves with some court-room antics (or spectator-sport, when things get rough) (indulgences are personal)
  • The whole thing is a big juicy piece of office gossip (hell yeah)
  • The prosecution team gets a pat on the back from boss if it's a job well done (personal gain)
  • If it's botched up, no one in the DI room gets a bonus and the Company gets to make some savings (wins and losses again)
  • Everyone learns everything, even though it's a lesson in how indispensable you are (very, very personally painful lesson).
Let's put that aside for the moment and let me share something useful with you today.

When you receive any document from the alleged employee, such as his/her reply to your show cause letter, do not tender it as evidence if the alleged employee has marked it "Without Prejudice".

A document marked as such cannot be tendered in court as evidence and makes no admissions whatsoever on the part of the writer.

If the alleged employee tenders a document marked "Without Prejudice" as evidence to support his/her defence in the DI, you should object to it (if the Chairman has not disregarded it already). A document marked "Without Prejudice" from the alleged employee shows that he/she is not genuine about settling the matter, so motion to disregard it and for both parties to adduce evidence from the DI proceedings itself.

So you learnt something new from this? See - told you a DI makes you better. *smile*