Should a Person Be Fired for not Knowing the Latest Version of Outlook?


Should a Person Be Fired for not Knowing the Latest Version of Outlook?

I admit it, I’m a Luddite.  I can barely find my way around MS Office.  Word is sort of OK, I can get my email, excel is, well thank God for Carla or I would have no chance. And lets not even talk about the rest of it. I have spent two decades learning the ins and outs of Word and some of the rest at least to the point that I can write an article. Now Bill Gates comes along and comes out with docx and it doesn’t work the same as doc. I have to learn a whole new series of commands, links, and the rest. Damn.

In an article I just read in the WSJ, HR departments are using the ability to run a certain program well as a criteria for layoffs.  All the rest of things being equal, if you have a problem with excel or word, you could be at risk. You have to keep ahead of the curve. Whose fault is that.

I was perfectly happy with doc. It worked fine for my needs. It was fast, slick, and perfect. However the marketing wizards at Microsoft have decided that they need a new program to sell so they come up with docx. It sort of runs the same as doc, but if you have docx and send it to a person who has doc, you do so at your peril. And if you write a document in docx and save it in doc, you are threatened with banishment to the spice mines of kessel by the trolls in docx. OMG

Ad you realize that in a few years you won’t be able to use doc. It will go the way of the dodo.

My job is to edit, kibitz, blog, whine, point out, and the like. Its not to keep up with the latest piece of software that is ‘better, faster, quieter, more capable.’ I look at these programs as fancy pen and paper. Am I to lose my job because I can’t run docx properly?

I bought a tablet the other day. Not because I needed it but because my technofriend from Canada has one and he pointed at it at Best Buy. Now my wife is harassing me to use it. HUH — Tom Carter tells me his ipad is the greatest thing since bottled beer and I can’t figure out what to do with mine. I have the weather one it and can get my email (but I do that with my blackberry). I can skype — But the sound is weird. I can log on to my PC, as long as I’m sitting in my living room and on the same router as my desktop. Suda tells me she watches TV on hers. I watch TV on my 40 inch flat screen. Can someone tell me what the tablet is for? Kids and some not so kids use it to email, text, and read books (I have an ereader), and watch videos. I’m told if I put all my documents in the clouds, I can work on them on my tablet. But I keep my docs mostly in outlook attached to emails. Now what. I guess I could…..

Plus there are greasy fingerprints all over it and they are mine.

I really feel for the poor soul who is canned because they can’t run docx or the latest version of excel. I thought these were supposed to be tools that helped us in our jobs, not the job itself.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

One Response

  1. I am so glad we share this feeling. Since I got my new computer – I am in the dark and miss my old word/excel ways. Since you are my boss and have the same difficulties as I am having, I feel rather safe in my job security. I know if I start failing in my selling ability – I should be worried!!!

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