June 18, 2008

Burn-out 2

If you haven't read my first burn-out post, please scroll down.

I'm also burned out on being nice...namely to the receptionist, let's call her Jane. Don't get me wrong, outside the office she is my friend and we get along. Inside the office...well, read on.

I worked as the receptionist for six months before I was surprised by a promotion to my current position (which was spurred by my boss leaving). I was also surprised when they told me I would no longer have to answer the phone, even to relieve whomever would become the new receptionist. I recommended Jane for the job, because I knew she needed a better job, and had just moved here from out of state, so she didn't have any contacts. She got the job, and said she was very happy with it. I trained her on what she needed, and she received a few other duties from others around the office.

Fast forward about 7 months. The person who was relieving Jane from the phone complained aobut having to carry her work up to the receptionist desk and then having to carry it back and how she was losing all of this work time because she had to walk 10 feet. My boss and his boss decided to have me relieve Jane. This meant two things: I would now have to carry my work and lose time (not a big deal to me, but the same thing it was for the other girl), and I would have to change my lunch hour. Meaning that the 1-2 lunch hour I had for nearly a year, and so dearly enjoyed, cherished and loved, would now be given up to the receptionist because that's what she preferred (even though I have seniority). I didn't complain about this, however, because I am a team player and it seemed like a small thing I could do for the company that would make everything work smoother.

Fast forward to today. I asked Jane if she could move her lunch to 12-1 so I could leave at one. This might be the second time in about three months that I have asked her to give up the coveted 1-2 lunch hour. She grudgingly said yes. So I emailed my boss, informed him of my wish to use some overtime I have built up and leave at one today, and asked for his permission. He left for lunch, which he takes from 11ish-12ish, without responding. Jane knows this because I told her I would let her know what he said. So she emailed me:

Do I still need to take lunch at 12:00?

I explained the situation, saying that I would prefer that she still take lunch at 12, and she asked me if she could take her lunch at 1 since I didn't know if I would be able to leave or not anyway, because 'the day just flies by after lunch if I take it at 1'. DUH!!! That's why most people enjoy the 1-2 lunch hour. Five hours, one hour off, three hours. Why do you think I enjoyed it so much, Blondie? Why do you think I viewed it as me giving up something for you? And thinking that, friend that you are supposed to be, you would be willing to occassionally allow me to take that lunch? Sheesh woman! See past your own nose once in a while!

But, my boss is gone. I don't know if I'll be able to leave at 1 anyway. And I'm such a nice person, so what do I do? I let her have the stupid lunch hour. I so wish I hadn't ordered my Avon stuff from her. Never again. I'm sick of being nice to her. Grrr.


Ross said...

This is the person (whose name could, in fact, be Jennifer or Jenny or even Mary) you helped get the job? Seems like she should bend over backward to help you out whenever possible. I understand your frustration, though. When people work in close proximity they get on each others nerves. I was going to say the best thing would be some time off, but that's what you were trying to get! Lol. I'm gonna be working soon. I'll know what it's like then.

Incidentally, is this what they call 'office politics'? Mmmm...

K8E said...

My thoughts exactly!

And, yes, this is office politics. You know you have to work with these people E.V.E.R.Y. D.A.Y. and so you try to be nice, thinking that they know the game and they'll be nice too. And then you find out, you work with very mean people.

Stephanie said...

Before my son was born, I worked for our local newspaper. I set up my secretary with her husband, who is one of my best friends, I watched her kids, I loaned her money, I even gave her one of our old cars to use when hers broke down. How did she repay me? By abandoning my car on the side of the road full of illegal drugs, telling the publisher of the paper my stories weren't original (obviously an "investigation" proved they were) and generally making my life at the paper miserable. Why? Because she thought our "friendship" meant that she didn't have to act professionally and behave as I was her boss (I was). When this was pointed out to her, she flipped out. Soured me for a long time on helping people out. I got over it, realized that some people will just milk you for all you're worth and then screw you over. Most people aren't like that however, and the trick is to weed them out. The bottom line is, I have never been happier now that I stay at home with my son and write during nap time. It doesn't even feel like "work at home". I love it; it's awesome. I hope your situation improves. Sorry for the month long comment.

P.S. That secretary? Divorced my best friend four months after the wedding after becoming pregnant with another man's child. Makes me question my ability as a character judge.

Outnumbered2to1 said...

I'm telling you, people disappoint me. Hope you were able to take off early from work anyway. Sounds like you need a "mental health day" Thats what we call days off when we aren't sick.