With great reluctance, Jack was working his way slowly through Torchwood’s annual performance reviews, a job he always loathed, but which he couldn’t avoid because despite their long friendship, Lizzie was still his boss. Even he couldn’t get away with saying no to the woman who held Torchwood’s purse strings.
These were his people though, his team, every member handpicked, more or less, by him; how was he supposed to remain impartial when they were the closest thing he had to family?
Okay, none of them were perfect, they all had their good and bad qualities, but that was only natural; they were humans, not emotionless robots. So what if Owen was a bit lazy and prone to playing computer games when he should be working? At least he was drinking a lot less these days. In fact, he hadn’t come to work with a hangover in months. Tosh was good for him, a fact everyone else could have told him long ago, but he’d had to figure that one out for himself. He could do with exercising more, his fitness levels were below par, so that was something he should perhaps be encouraged to work on, but aside from that Jack wasn’t too concerned.
Tosh was much more outgoing these days, which was also a good thing. She was becoming more confident in her own abilities in the field, although she still wasn’t entirely comfortable with giving the rest of the team orders when she had to take the lead. She also still far preferred losing herself in the intricacies of alien tech to doing fieldwork, but she was their technical expert so that couldn’t be considered a problem. Every member of the team had their own areas of expertise.
Gwen… Well, she still tried to boss everyone around, and could still be tactless, she’d never been all that good at thinking before speaking, but she was getting better at not challenging his orders loudly in public, for the most part coming to him with her concerns and discussing them privately instead of insisting that she knew best. Motherhood seemed to be mellowing her. She hadn’t liked being effectively grounded during her pregnancy, but since Anwen’s birth she’d grown up a bit. She was behaving more responsibly and taking fewer risks.
Mickey was Mickey; he could be brash and opinionated, but he had a good head on his shoulders, and he was learning to be a team player, even if he did still have a tendency to go his own way, charging into danger without a second thought. Jack could hardly criticise him for that, since it was a trait he shared, and he suspected it was at least partially due to both of them having travelled with the Doctor. Ianto would no doubt say Mickey could do with being tidier; his work area was the messiest part of the Hub, if you didn’t count the med bay during an autopsy. But he was the team’s mechanic and weapons expert, so some leeway was required. Taking machinery apart for repair was a messy business.
Like Tosh, Andy was steadily gaining confidence in his own abilities. From day one he’d been better at following the chain of command than Gwen ever had been, but he’d also been prone to slavishly following orders instead of thinking for himself. Working for Torchwood was very different from being a copper, but he was taking the initiative more often, and was beginning to make suggestions both in meetings and in the field. He’d come up with some pretty good ideas recently; it just wasn’t always easy to tell whether he was being serious or sarcastic.
Ianto was, inevitably, the hardest to review; it was extremely difficult for Jack to avoid being biased in his case. Ianto Jones was smart, capable, efficient, hardworking, perhaps a little too detail oriented… Hmm, if anything he could probably do with letting go a bit, learning to delegate some of his many, often self-imposed, responsibilities. He worked too hard and needed to relax more; in a job like Torchwood, stress could become a serious problem.
Coming to his last performance review, Jack smiled; this was the easiest part of the whole exercise. There was one member of the team whose efficiency and dedication were beyond reproach in all areas, and who was deserving of the highest performance rating possible. Someone who did all that could be expected of them, and more. Someone the whole team, including Jack himself, could learn from.
“Congratulations, Nosy! I’m officially naming you Torchwood’s employee of the year.”