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Trouble in Triathlon ACT?

By justbands 14 February 2010 46

[First filed: Feb 11, 2010 @ 12:33]

Just got this rather interesting email from the Triathlon ACT mailing list. Obviously a disgruntled ex-employeee, some interesting things raised though:

UPDATE: Thanks to LegendLee for pointing out TACT’s response, which some might read as a bit of a mea culpa.

“Position Vacant – Admin and Development Officer

Hours per week: Officially 20, but you will be looked upon disdainfully if you do less than 40 during race season.

Pay: $20,000 per year (or slightly less than double the amount paid in cash to various TACT committee members for working over one long race weekend).

Duty Statement

We are seeking someone with heaps of energy, enthusiasm and a good dose of masochism to take on the recently vacated role of administration and development officer. An ability to turn a blind eye to dodgy business practices would also be looked on positively. You will have the opportunity to use your business administration skills to deal with fascinating committee personalities, experience innovative accounting practices that they didn’t teach you at business school, and develop your emotional resilience by being treated with a general sense of disdain while performing your daily duties. You will also have the opportunity to use your car for towing trailers and carrying heavy stuff about, and be able to demonstrate your natural generosity and good-heartedness by never being reimbursed for petrol or wear and tear. As mentioned earlier, while this is officially a 20-hour a week job, we would consider you a big sooky lah-lah and general piker if you didn’t put in close to that time again as a volunteer during race season. If we don’t have enough volunteers for an event, we will expect you to give up your weekend free-of-charge to fill the gaps. We may occasionally pay you some extra for doing overnight security duty, but we will then make you pay by putting you on the most remote and distant run marshal point so that you can miss most of the race and demonstrate your ability to survive more than 24 hours without sleep. If you have any additional skills and talents such as photography, we will ask you to give up your time and use your equipment free of charge for race weekends and then allow you to again demonstrate your resilience by expecting you to keep smiling while one of our well-paid committee members flits past and comments that you appear to be taking “happy snaps” instead of doing real work. This is a great opportunity for developing skills and abilities that may one day help you advance your career to being a full-time doormat or whipping boy/girl (Please note that Triathlon ACT is an equal opportunity employer).

Selection criteria

1. A broad disdain for best practice in business administration and a desire to maintain shoddy systems. TACT will support you in this by having the treasurer remove and delete your book-keeping work so that you lose all will to do it properly and diligently again. This should be combined with an adherence to the philosophy that running jolly good fun events is more important than investing any time in developing good business systems, sponsor relationships or organisational professionalism.

2. A tolerance for managing difficult relationships between committee members. They will assist in this by griping about each other in your presence, to which it is expected you will nod politely and not tell them to nick off and let you get on with fixing up their messed up, or non-existent, business and marketing systems.

3. A disinclination to ask difficult questions. In particular, questions that you should have an inability to ask are:
a) Why is it that our books have not been done for a full quarter?
b) Why is there $367 missing from petty cash?
c) Why do we pay committee members and select staff members in cash for assisting at events when we don’t receive invoices from them?
d) Why do we employ family members of committee members for jobs that are not made available to anyone else and pay them without making appropriate arrangements for withholding tax?
e) How do you think our unpaid volunteers would feel if they knew how much committee members get paid for assisting at some events?
f) Why do we let our members think that race fees are expensive because of insurance, when insurance for the Canberra Capital weekend was $465 and fees paid to committee members and associates for organising that weekend came to $12,000?
g) Why is it that when I ask difficult questions about making potentially dodgy tax declarations, even though I’m a part-time office assistant I am suddenly responsible for the running of the office?
h) Ummm. . . could a committee member please explain to me their understanding of conflict of interest and why it is wrong? Anyone? Anyone?
i) Oh, for f*ck’s sake, are you people for real? Hellloooooo – is there a bit of professionalism hiding in the room anywhere? Some knowledge of tax law? Hellooooo? Hellooooo???

4. A sense of humour, satirical skills and an ability to responsibly use mass email systems.

5. Sufficient passion for the sport of triathlon that you’re willing to stick your head up to make a point and continue to be a thorn in the side of the organisation after you’ve left.

Please submit your expression of interest addressing the selection criteria to the Executive Officer. If you can’t find him in the office, you may need to make your delivery by torchlight in the nether regions of the association president.”

What’s Your opinion?

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46 Responses to
Trouble in Triathlon ACT?
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p1 11:45 am 18 Feb 10

I thought that Ironman was a surf life saving even for people who eat uncle tobys products?

Actually, some wiki reading shows that it is both, although the surf race started first.

spleenville 6:48 pm 15 Feb 10

Being a regular unpaid TACT volunteer, I can empathise.

I remember seeing him at many an event staying late, lifting heavy things and trudging back from remote parts of the course after everyone else had gone home. Job maybe not as described..?

Not sure I’m 100 per cent on the blaze of glory email. And it’s sad that he has incinerated the bridges given his stated passion for the sport – I can’t imagine he’ll show his face again at any event.

Oh… IMx7 is 7 times a competitor in Ironman (Triathlon’s Holy grail event where you swim 3.8km, ride 180km and run 42.2 km). An incredible test of physical endurance but not a patch on spanking the monkey 7 times in one day!

LegendLee 6:28 pm 15 Feb 10

pippie said :

Woah – crap – didn’t mean it to be an attack on depression – half the people I know suffer this condition in some form or another, including my younger sister.

Really? Didn’t mean it to be an attack on depression? Basically, you made an assertion that the ex-employee’s claims had no validity because he may have been suffering from depression and that the only error made by TACT was to hire someone who may or may not have been suffering from depression at the time. Which part of that is not having a go at people with depression?
You say that half the people you know suffer from depression. Amazing. That’s well above the national average. Do you have some sort of Pied Piper ability that magically draws despressed people into your presence? Or does the fact of knowing you make people depressed at a much higher rate than average?
Perhaps you’re a bit prone to exaggeration(which gives your initial post little credibility). Or maybe you’re just not very good with numbers. Are you sure you don’t work for TACT?

justin heywood 10:09 am 15 Feb 10

As an ACT triathlete, I would just like to confirm that we all know who ‘wheezipops 47″ is. None of us have ever heard of vg’s IMx7. We think he might be a pole vaulter.

Regards Justin (beedlebug 23)

sloppery 10:06 am 15 Feb 10

vg said :

sloppery said :

vg said :

Admire that the person stood up and said some things?

They fired off an email on the way out the door. That’s not brave. Brave is saying it to the said committee members face to face. Email is spineless

And what do you think would happen if the person DID do that? Fired? Shouted down? What would be the realistic outcome? It’s not all about being a tough guy, mate. Sometimes brains and cunning beats muscles and aggro.

If what he said was factual, whilst in the employ, what could they have done. Heard of unlawful dismissal?
…..and how do you know I don’t know him. IM x 7 might mean something to those in the know

IM x 7. I Masturbate 7 times a day? I’m impressed you can hold it, what with all the ‘roids and all…

imhotep 8:41 am 15 Feb 10

The OP’s claims are correct. I too have ‘inside knowledge’ of this issue (taps side of nose -wheezipops 47 for those in the know.)

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