Work vent - ugh.

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Star*, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. Star*

    Star* call 911

    I have said before I work in an office of all men. All younger men. All younger men who have aristocratic backgrounds. All who have gone to college, have degrees, nice homes, nice cars and who like to judge people by the clothes they wear, cars they drive and company they keep. Also without a doubt they are the most horrible gossips I have ever met. Ever.

    They also have the most annoying habit of constantly correcting everyone. Occasionally I forget a comma, and will get my paper back with a huge red comma on it. Occasionally I will mispronounce an odd name and I will be told in front of everyone how to pronounce it. Fine, but I don't ever do the same to them. As a matter of fact I spell a phonetic sounding name out above a name when it's difficult for them. Not any more. Until Friday I have refused to do a battle of wits with an unarmed person.

    Am I guilty of typos? Rarely at work. Am I guilty of misplacing a comma, semicolon or other punctuation? You bet I am. Do I do that when it goes out of the office to a customer, client or account? It could happen. So when I send inter-office memos trying to keep costs down and productivity up; could there be some short cuts? Sure.

    Since I am not afforded the luxuries of the men, I asked one of them to scan a document and email it to me. He did, and I sent an email saying Mucho's Gracias Amigo. Just a lighthearted atmosphere or me not being serious because our office is supposedly very informal. I received an email back almost immediately in a coarse font stating "I do not speak Mexican, if you wish to convey a thanks please do so in an English based language."

    So I sent him an email reply back that said in Latin -

    I'm sorry you only speak one language.

    Then every single little mistake for the rest of the day I took out my hot pink pen and circled every tiny little error and sent it back. I circled run on sentences. I circled punctuation that was incorrect. I circled where paragraphs were supposed to start but did not. I didn't write phonetic names above the correct names of customer and when they were slaughtered verbally I stood at their door ways and corrected them in front of the customers who were on the phone.

    When they misfiled something I took it out and refiled it infront of them and then put up a note asking them to just place the pulled files on top, stating I would file. One man said "I know my alphabet." So I said "Okay which comes first? Mc before Master or M?" He stood there and I said A,B,C is not filing."

    Later in the day they were both sitting at the conference table and I came in and handed them both a pile of corrected papers, and they asked if I was in a bad mood. I said "No, why would you ask that?" and they said "Because you've been drawing your little pink circles on our stuff all day and jumping in on our phone conversations with customers correcting names and stuff." I took a seat and said "When you constantly correct me and how I say names are you in a bad mood? When you come to me with things that have your LITTLE red marks all over them and make a huge deal about it in front of everyone are you in a bad mood or are you trying to prove a point? What would the point be? That you are smarter or a smarta$$ or that you can put me down or that you just get your jollies out of correcting someone or wasting my time and yours for little mistakes, because here is one day worth of each of your mistakes and wow I have to tell you both if this is going to continue I can really get technical. I just do not see the need to constantly correct and belittle people. It's an error - move on. It's a misunderstanding. Move on. Unless it's going to cost us money? Stop being so serious and MOVE ON. GET OVER yourselves already. Sheez."

    With that I got up, took all the papers and said "I really AM sorry that you don't speak more than one language, but if I hear you call any of the men in the yard Amigos like you have I belive after that nasty little email you sent me I will be correcting you and I can do it in a number of languages of which none I will be sharing with you any more."

    With that I got my stuff and I left. I don't get it - pants ONLY have 2 legs and they put theirs on JUST like I do mine. What in the world makes anyone think they can run around pointing out YOUR mistakes all the time and being so danged serious? Ugh. Oh and the kicker? Just then a customer with a rather unusual name called. He had called a year ago and I pronounced his name OL i FANT. I was corrected in public then and told it was OL EE FANT. Okay so I wrote it phonetically on the folder. No biggie. When I called the salesman that corrected me to the phone and told him OL EE FANT was on the phone he AGAIN corrected me and said "No no no....OL i FANT." I was so confused I got the folder from LAST year and there in RED ink so I would not MESS IT UP - was my phonetics. OL EE FANT like I'd been told. SO I corrected him, on MY correction and he said "Well I messed up." So I said "Then you owe me an apology. Actually Two. Then you need to get over YOURSELF too."


    :surprise: If you made it this far - thanks.....just needed to get THAT out.
  2. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    Uhhhh..Mexican is not a language.
  3. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    Good grief, Star! How do you stand it! They sound like a bunch of pompous 'donkeys' to me! If that was me, I 'd be pounding on them with my stapler!

    And I sincerely hope you didn't pass up the chance to inform "the learned one" :smug: that people in Mexico speak Spanish, NOT "Mexican"!
  4. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I'm so sorry.

    I think you were doing okay, but then it concerns me that they corrected you about the pronunciation of the guys name in the middle of all the discussion of THEIR insensitivities of late regarding the very topic.

    When they mentioned that last "correction," how did they do it? Were they polite or something else?

    My guess is that much of what you are saying is going right over their heads.

    Is there at least one person in the office who is bright and sensitive? You might get this person to be your ally.

    In the My Big Fat Greek Wedding, the wife says that the husband might be the head of the household, but the wife is the NECK.

    My guess is that is the situation in that office. They might be the figure heads, but you are the real stuff that hold them up.

    Rent My Big Fat Greek WEdding. The Greek women "fool" the men into thinking they are making the decisions.

    Sooo....since you are outnumered, one thought I had, was to allow them to think that they know what they are doing. Pick and chose your criticisms. Critize with-o them even knowing they've been critized. They will sing your praises.
  5. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    I nearly forgot!

  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Thanks so much for reminding me why I decided at age 30 to never have a boss again! The memory was beginning to fade. DDD
  7. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    I blurted out an immediate answer to that but I don't think the board censor would like it. I'm sure that if you use your imagination you can figure it out. :bigsmile:

    I don't have any good advice off the top of my head. Mainly because it is either slightly sarcastic, antagonistic or otherwise snarly OR it could come back and make the entire company look like idiots instead of the one guy (typing his stuff up as it's written without corrections). But..I shall think on this.
  8. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    They may not even notice! I once did up a letter (as a favor) for one of our department heads. I'm the one that's supposed to fix their mistakes and make what they said come out sounding halfway intelligent - also because I'm the only one who could read this guys handwriting. He had scribbled out what he wanted to say and I asked him how he wanted to end it ... he jokingly said, "Just sign it 'Love and kisses, B---!'"

    So I did it and sent it off looking very neat and professional. Then I went back in and typed in "Love and kisses, B---" on the bottom, printed off another copy and gave it to him for his file copy. Of course, that was only on his copy, not the one I sent off. Then I waited to see his reaction ... and waited ... and waited. HE NEVER EVEN NOTICED! He never even looked at it! Drat!
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2009
  9. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    My first thought was the same as Dazed. Mexican is not a language.

    I have to admit, I got a kick out of attending Miss KT's Back to School nights and proofreading the info the teachers handed out. If these people have the responsibility of teaching our kids, they'd darn well better know how to use Spell Check. It also gave me the heads-up on which instructor I was going to have to watch closely on grading policies.
  10. tawnya

    tawnya New Member

    "Do you want to talk to the man in charge, or the woman who knows what's going on?"
  11. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    Oh, Starbie...we could never been in the same room together. I'm just envisioning the whole scenario. I did appreciate your proper use of the ;.:tongue:

    Red pens work best to make an effect. Run on sentences..well, they just don't get them.

    Personally, I'd speak in Latin all the time. It will freak them out. This chick is crazy!! Yeah...get over it. Now do your job.

  12. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    You did great!

    I had a lead co-worker once who would get so upset when other staff would teasingly walk pass his desk into my office with, "Oh never mind, I will ask the person who really knows!" They were teasing but he never took it that way.
  13. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Girls thanks - and tawnya - printing it out and putting it up TOMORROW. lol - really I did - at home.

    and here's the rest of the story that I guess I've been too I don't know what to share. Also, yes I know there were several punctuation omits in my above post. For those of you who caught the Mexican as not a language comment? You get a cookie. :smug: I didn't even go there with him. Like I said, no sense in doing a battle of wits with an unarmed person.

    Three weeks ago our boss hired a consulting firm to come in an assess his business. I can tell you from a personal stand point of being hired to take care of payroll for three and in a 1 1/2 years time doing payroll for 22 we have grown exponentially. I will also note there has been no pay raise for me. There have been pay raises for the men on their annual anniversary.

    I was not informed of the consultants appointment. I did think it was odd that all of a sudden the salesmen (the pooper) and the (other) guy were cleaning their offices. They simply said to me that sales calls were down and they had time. It didn't feel right. I stayed late to clean my office anyway and found out by accident a consultant would be coming in around 9:00 A.M. I also didn't sleep much that night as I anticipated and did negative forecasting that this was a way to get me cut back in hours.
    I also figured the consultant would be a young man like those I work with.

    Imagine my surprise and moreso theirs when a woman in her late 40's, early 50's showed up. She was the alpha. No doubt. She had been in banking for 20 years and was all business. I liked her immediately. She had direction, and you knew if you worked for her it would never be boring. She spent two days interviewing all of us. She asked me for reports, timed how fast I got them to her. Checked how accurate I was. Asked what I felt were weaknesses and strengths. She said I was very spot on to her assessment of me. I told her the weaknesses would only get better if I had support from the owner. She agreed. No surprise.

    In her report to the owner with no bias whatsoever as it is a business win or fail - she told him the pooper is a slacker, a user, and a milker. He needs to be fired and the fact that he's actually kept him on the payroll nearly three years is a huge problem. Did he like throwing his money out the door? She said he has an office, equipment, cell phone, brand new company truck, uses more fuel than anyone in the company, gets a salary, has paid days off, vacation paid, and it has been shown in a cost analysis that every month he is paying him to stay at work. WHY? Then she said it was also mentioned that the owner would never fire him because their families were friends and it would not bode well to let him go. A threat. The owner did not belive it. She asked him "Why would I lie to you? Even his body language changed and his voice, posture and he was scary. I felt uncomfortable to be in the same room with him, yes it was a threat."

    Then she moved on to the (other). Boss said this was to be the manager. She said "He lacks the temperance to deal with stressful situations and is a hot-head. While he's an excellent sales person, that is what he is, and that is where he will do well for your business. This is about making YOU money. As far as handling people? No. Being your right hand man, caring for this company? No. He's a salesperson. He's not truly happy here, it's a blip on the map for him and if a better deal came along tomorrow he would walk."

    So my turn came. The page was flipped. In essence? She told him I was over-worked, underpaid and was the only one interviewed that had the ability, education and temperance to run his company. I was his right hand man. I needed to be promoted. I needed an immediate raise. At the very least since he gives everyone else a gas card to get to and from work and I run errands? He could do that. But....nothing. She told him that all the tasks she asked m to perform were done with perfection, spread sheets that I designed in Excel were brilliant and asked for copies to use in other companies, I'm highly organized, and in twenty years of being a banker if she was still in the business she'd offer me a position as her assistant, I was THAT good.

    So yeah - it's a little frustrating to hand over a $1k bonus to a man that you know isn't doing as good a job as he could or to sit next to a man who spends most of his day pretending to go out on sales calls when the wives of sub-contractors are calling you and telling you their kids have no school clothes but this jerk is having breakfast or lunch on the company dime, in a newcompany truck with air conditioning on company gas - not producing - yet still has a job and you're getting red pen marks and verbal corrections on pronunciations doing 5x the work, leaving for lunch in your 20 year old truck (but it's yours lol) with no AC - and thinking - OH please let me hit the lotto and get out of here.....:tongue:

    Somedays you just need to blow it out your stack to your you can go back and say - OHhhh Mexican IS a language now? Si! Mui Intelhenti. (Very Smart) Wow you got your degree where? I won't print THAT here...just in case. :surprise:

    Thanks Girls.....:laugh:
  14. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    :bravo: As I started to scan read your post my husband walked through the room. I called to him and said "I think you'll get a kick out of this post that is written by the woman I have mentioned often." He took the time to sit and listen (not his favorite thing, lol) but he had this big grin on his face.

    At the conclusion he asked "well, did she get a promotion or a raise?" I replied "not yet...and likely not much". Then he said "she sounds a bit like you, doesn't she?" I nodded and he laughed.

    Sexist as it sounds, a man (yes, a wonderful kind man) sees the bottom line in $$'s. A woman can feel the power of acknowledgement. Good job. I hope you can reap both benefits. DDD
  15. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    It sounds like your boss got some very good advice and then decided not to follow it! Ahhhh, such is the lot of those of us considered to be 'support staff'. I'll tell you ... if THEY all stayed home one day, WE could run the place (and often do)! But if WE all stayed home one day, they'd be in very deep doo-doo! Your work will double and triple but you see none of the rewards because what you do is not appreciated.

    It sounds like this consultant was very insightful - I wish she'd spend a few days with us! And she is very correct that, just because someone is successful doing their own job, does NOT mean that they will be just as successful as a manager. That is an entirely different thing, a whole different mindset. One boss back, we had a woman who was technically a very good accountant. Almost too good, she was such a stickler. If they had asked her to give up her Christmas holidays to look for a one-penny difference in something, she would have done it! She would have been excellent if she was working for someone else. But as a manager, she was absolutely the worst, the most demoralizing, rigid, hateful supervisor we have ever had! She had absolutely no idea how to manage and get along with other people. She redid everybody elses figures (people who have been there 30 years!) because she trusted no one but herself. She publicly berated people in staff meetings and refused to listen to anyone. Luck for us, she stayed home several days a week because she was hung over - really! But would they get rid of her? Of course not! It's too hard to fill that position, whereas people like us (they think) are a dime a dozen! She finally ended up doing herself in (job-wise) ... and the very first day she was gone, it was a whole different atmosphere, like the clouds had rolled away and the sun had come out! People were happy again and chatting pleasantly among themselves - like venturing outside and meeting up after a bad storm!

    And being treated like that is SO demoralizing! It's almost a joke where I work that the higher the paycheck, the less they actually do, especially the long-time employees. The reigning champion collected his fat check every month and did virtually nothing but wander around telling stories and joking around. When he finally retired, the second in line took his place. This guy has to literally scrounge for things to do to look busy! Last week one of the inmates was on a riding mower cutting grass in front of the admin. building. And where was Mr. Fat Paycheck? He was (I SWEAR!) on a golf cart, following right behind the inmate on the lawn mower ... back and forth ... back and forth ... back and forth!
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2009
  16. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    I'm burning at the thought of your boss spending $$ to have a consultant, then ignoring her advice. GRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I'd love to see you paid what you're worth AND treated with respect. If not there, then with another company that actually VALUES the employees that keep the boat afloat!
  17. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm with Mattsmom, how dare they spend the $$$ and not following the advice? I am just steaming!
  18. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Awesome to receive such a wonderful (well deserved!!!) report. As is evident, well deserved sometimes doesn't mean well reported. However, in this case...well deserved + well reported doesn't seem to be adding up to more pay. What is wrong with this math?
    Re: the pooper (you have SUCH an interesting way with words...LOL!) it not what you know, but who you know??? Life is such a PITA sometimes.
    Do you have a copy of that report? When are you scheduled for your next pay raise? I would ask for a BIG one then or at the next appropriate opportunity.
  19. tinamarie1

    tinamarie1 Member

    Gosh Star! You are one strong woman to work with a bunch of men. Nothing against men, its just we are totally different in the way we talk, approach people, multi task. At my last job I worked for an arrogant southern politician. Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse...he hired his son!!!! My job quickly became a babysitting position. "where is N?" I don't know mr. c...."well, f'ing find him!!!"
    My friend still works there, and since I left 3 years ago, the son is still being babysat and makes more than everyone there, and still doesn't know the basics of insurance. After 3 blessed years!!!
  20. Star*

    Star* call 911

    If I told you what the consultant made an hour it would make your hair stand on end. Initial consult for three hours was $1200. Then her fee was $300/hr. After that it's 50k. We had 2 days.

    My Mother said it took her two days and she got paid to tell him what he already knew. Again, he spends money on people who didn't deserve it. I told her I thought she had a neat job. She got to go around and get paid to ask everyone their opinion of what they thought was wrong and how to fix it. Then she took everyones ideas and put them on paper, and presented them as her own, when all in all it was really only all our own ideas - just third party presented from another source by someone who wasn't afraid to loose their job by saying to the boss "here is what needs to be done." Very clever and profitable. When I told her this - she smirked.

    The pooper is called this because when he's not riding around pretending to be working he's in the bathroom three times a day, twenty minutes or more at a time, and he uses on average a roll or better of toilet paper a day personally. He has NEVER replaced a roll. Never put up any paper towels, never put a liner in the trash can, never taken out the trash and feels the need to leave the door open after every do-do. Then leaves the office, gagging us all. I have three kinds of spray in the restroom and he continually turns off the automatic poot-sprayer and door bell because he has "issues." He's also is the #1 corrector of things in the office. Either way you go he's a pooper.