A reluctant office lady who still gets zits, but already has gray hair.

Tag Archives: work

So it’s been a week or so since I’ve written, but in my defense, things have been busy. Thanksgiving was suitably filled with turkey, pie, and excessive amounts of family, like every good holiday should be.  Elissa’s entire family is in Ohio, about 2 hrs west of Pittsburgh (where my entire family is), and so holidays have become a balancing act of rushing around and jaunting across state lines.

It’s not so bad, though, at least we get to see everyone and we don’t have to fly anywhere. 

I was just about ready to get on here and say that work is actually okay.  I’m participating in the office Secret Santa, which is markedly unlike me, but I’m trying to make friends instead of just moping quietly in my corner cubicle about how much I miss my old friends.  I still miss my old friends, obviously, but I’m now at a point where I talk to some people and they seem to think I’m okay.  Whoever got me in the Secret Santa was totally stumped, though, and asked one of my teammates what he knows about me.  I told him to say that I like coffee and chocolate, because I’m apparently Cathy from the comic Cathy.  But really, I just want someone to give me coffee and chocolate.

 

Anyway, today started off okay, and ended up in the shitty column, because the owner told my boss that he doesn’t think I do enough work on a daily basis.  This makes me blind with rage because:

a: the productivity metrics of my job are so non-existent that I don’t know how he could possibly have enough information to make that assessment.  Maybe he saw me looking at the internet once?  Doesn’t he know that millennials can check Young House Love and still get their work done?  It’s how we’re wired, for God’s sake.

b: Maybe I have been slacking off, but my job is incredibly monotonous and it seems like I go weeks without anyone noticing if I’m even sitting there, and so it’s frustrating when people only notice when they deem me underproductive.

c: The guy’s a douchebag, so I’m mad that I’m even mad about his opinion.  I’ve been working since I was 16, and anyone who’s ever worked with me will tell you that even though I look at the internet, and I sometimes sleep late, I am a hard worker.  I do everything that is required of me, and I am smart.  Way smarter than the requirements of this job, honestly. 

I’m just frustrated today.  Tomorrow might be better.  The job search soldiers on, but I’m not sure how likely I am to get a new job 3 weeks before Christmas.  

We’ve done some things on the DIY front, so the week hasn’t been a total loss.  More to come on that.

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First of all, I actually did hang the mirrors, and I even took some pictures of the project as I went, but I still need to take some pictures of them where they’re not just reflecting my messy room.*

But I think today’s going to be a busy day at work, so here is the good news and the bad news about today.

  • The good news is that I requested 2 PTO days and they were both approved, and everyone knows how much I love not being at work.
  • The bad news is that I am currently at work, and I am so so so tired.  Improbably tired!  Did I actually stay up all night jogging or doing math while I thought I was asleep? Is there a carbon monoxide leak in my house/car/office/brain that is making me feel so drowsy?  Inexplicably tired.
  • The good news is it’s almost Thanksgiving!  Every year, I buy 2 chocolate chip pecan pies from a friend to take to Thanksgiving dinner (This is not a traditional Thanksgiving pie. In fact, it’s closer to a traditional Kentucky Derby pie, but this is Pittsburgh, and we don’t really celebrate the derby so much.)  Anyway, with 48 hrs until my favorite holiday of the year, that pie is all I can think about.  Soon you will be mine!
  • There is no more bad news to report.  3 day workweek!
  • And one item that ended up kind of neutral:  Had to unclog the toilet last night and it made me start to re-think the dual-flush kit that I installed a few weeks ago.  I get that it works for Ikea, and I get that it works for Young House Love (where I got the idea/courage to attempt this), and also probably most of Europe, but I just don’t know if it’s right for us with our precarious Pittsburgh plumbing.  It doesn’t help matters that we still need a new fill valve, so maybe replacing that will make me like it more?  The jury is still out, but the good news is that the ole’ “Dump a Bucket of Hot Water in the Toilet” trick worked like a dream to unclog it.  So there you have it, kids, my first DIY tutorial.

I’ll say it again, this time in haiku:

Toilet not flushing?

Fill a bucket- hot water!

Dump it all in there.

 

*I just kind of think it’s hilarious that my solution is not to clean the room -that would be ridiculous!- but instead to take different pictures where the mirrors do not reflect the mess.


So yesterday was one of the worst days I’ve had at this job yet.

If you’ve read my About This Girl page, you know that I work in the online education industry.  I worked for 6 years at a big-name for-profit college company, but left when they started laying people off and freezing raises, because I wanted to leave on my own terms.  Also, my job as a ‘team lead’ was incredibly stressful, and I felt like the time was right.

My new job is at a cyber-school and I took a substantial pay cut to take it, but at the time, it seemed like the best choice and that I was making an investment in a more stable career.

Well, it turns out I was pretty wrong.  My new company is low-budget, pretty unstable, and it’s managed/owned by someone who is probably very intelligent, but not particularly tech-savvy and not particularly business-minded.  Also, he’s kind of a jerk who treats everyone as though they have no idea how to do their own job.  I have a lot of feelings and opinions about him, but I’ll abbreviate them in the interest of time.

My particular position is administrative, mostly.  I have some lofty title that may lead you to believe that I have more responsibility/authority than I do, but I’m basically responsible for pushing buttons all day.  There are a few variations on this:

-Some days are busy and I have to push more buttons than usual.

-Sometimes, there are priorities and I have to push the buttons in a different order.

-Sometimes, I’m not given all of the information that I need, so I have to deduce which buttons to push.

-Sometimes, for reasons outside of my control, I’m unable to push the buttons due to tech problems, so I have to explain this to various people inside and outside of the company.

-Also, unfortunately, sometimes I push the wrong buttons and I have to apologize thoroughly and sincerely to everyone involved.

At first, I was really mad when I found out how data-entry-focused this job was, especially because I wasn’t exactly wonderful at it.  I started at the busiest time of year, and I made typos, because I’ve never had a job like that before.  I felt really self-righteous, telling everyone who asked that I used to MANAGE people with jobs like this, and that I felt totally bamboozled by the interview process.

Eventually, it slowed down, and I realized that I have quite a bit of downtime, which I should probably appreciate, after living an all-job-all-the-time lifestyle for about two years.  I’m still looking for a new job, but not as actively, and, like I’ve mentioned, I’m still trying to come up with a game plan for how to change my situation.

Then, about 2 weeks ago, one of the managers here came down and said that one of his employees had given her 2-weeks notice and that he would need my help in her absence.  It sounded sort of occasional and casual, but the new responsibilities involve performing quality assurance (QA) checks on our online courses.  Since QA can be a bit of a resume buzzword (and I’m looking for more skills!), I was actually pretty excited about this possibility, because I want to make myself a more marketable candidate.

A member of his team gave me a half-hour training session, but she didn’t really tell me the scope or regularity of the responsibilities and I just sort of pushed it to the side, since the button-pushing demands of my own job had escalated and I really didn’t have time to do anything extra.

This all seemed fine, and I was still pretty gung-ho about the new work until yesterday, when the stereotypical hothead small business owner called all of us into a meeting and basically said that I’m accountable for the QA of all of the courses, effective immediately.  And it didn’t even seem like it would be effective immediately, as much as it sounded like it was already effective, as though if he found errors in any course, I would be personally accountable.   As if this wasn’t infuriating enough, he proceeded to say several times to me in his standard-issue condescending tone, “Do…you…understand??  This is important.”  The manager whose team is actually responsible for the content of the courses said nothing to indicate that I hadn’t really started doing these quality assurance checks or that the training I received was nowhere near thorough enough to be fully accountable.  He just sat there quietly while I was instructed by the owner that I have 2 jobs now.   For the same shitty pay.

This meeting put me behind schedule, but instead of working from home last night (for free!), I decided that I had already dedicated enough hours of my day to this guy and his crappy company, so I decided to paint the kitchen ceiling, because I needed to do something where I could control the outcome.

(To be continued…)

 

P.S.

When I think of the insane owner, I think of this scene from A League of their Own, not because he makes me cry (he doesn’t) or because he yells in my face (he doesn’t), but because sometimes I feel like asking him if anyone ever told him he looks like a penis with a little hat on.  There’s no crying in cyber-school, after all.