Say It Loud, Say It Proud! Job Schmob!

We know how unpleasant your boss can be. We know there's at least one coworker who sucks the ever loving life out of you. To help alleviate the symptoms of work rot, browse our latest job stories or post your own (anonymously, of course).
Rude, cliquey co-workers Written by mrsgiraffe on 04/27/2015I worked for about five years for the same company in retail. On my very first shift, I was struggling to get all of my duties done as I was new. My manager said to me, ‘Well, I guess you’ll be working late then.’ She and 5 other co-workers left the store. I stayed back nearly two hours to complete duties that I had little idea how to do, with no one to ask. The next week my manager ripped into me about how bad my work was that night. I later found out it was against company policy for a manager to leave me in that position.

All my co-workers seemed really cliquey, and didn’t talk to me unless I spoke to them. One girl would usually start whispering to the others when I entered the room or walk past her. I had to call in sick one morning because I had glandular fever, and she began yelling at me, and saying I had to come in for the set up.

For a time, I tried to make a lot more effort. I wondered if I had come across as rude somehow, and rubbed them up the wrong way. Each morning, I would pretend I had to go get something from where they were working and chatting so I would have the opportunity to say hello. They seemed pleasant when I did this, but right after our greeting, they went straight back to their conversation.

The manager invited me to a work dinner, and I was excited because it seemed like my efforts to get to know the team was paying off. When I arrived at the dinner, I sat next to one girl and we happily chatted for a few minutes, before another girl arrived, sat next to me on the other side and joined in the conversation. This lasted a few minutes before the conversation became purely about things they had done together, and it got to the point where I could no longer contribute or feel interested in talking to them. This lasted for nearly half an hour before we ordered out food. I felt rather foolish sitting in silence while everyone at the table was chatting to one another. After this, I switched seats with one of the girls, feeling as though I would have a better chance at conversation with somebody else. The guy I tried to talk to after this was not interested in chatting, and would respond to my questions with one word answers. It was such a relief to go home that night. On Facebook, one of the girls had posted a status about what a great night it was, and tagged literally everyone at the dinner except me.

I didn’t get invited to another work dinner; not that I would have really wanted to go anyway. They used the work whiteboard to write down who was bringing what dish to a work party. Only me and another girl renowned for not working hard were not invited.

One manager who was often given the task of giving me constructive feedback would often tell me that the other managers thought I was really quiet and stand-offish. I felt very hurt by these comments. How did they not realise I was making every attempt to get along with my co-workers? This manager would also say, ‘Everyone here has been complaining about you!’ She never specified which co-workers, or what they were complaining about.

On my last shift, a couple of co-workers wished me well and hugged me. A few months later on Facebook, I saw another girl had been given a cake and a huge card on her last day. She had worked there six months. I had worked there for five years. That really annoyed me.

I’m annoyed at myself for not moving on from this job quicker, and it’s been on my mind lately. I should have left the job after the first shift, but I thought if I stuck it out, it would get better. It never did. Anybody else have a similar experience?
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Government contractor - I hate it here Written by anon on 04/26/2015I hate my job.

I talk to people from all over the US, and everyone seems to be an idiot. Especially the Department of Veteran affairs. My God. I feel like I could personally run a VA hospital with no experience and I'd fit right in. The incompetence and stupidity of pretty much everyone who works there is incredible.

There was a big glitch in the government system which I supply support for. We were flooded with calls about said glitch, as well as the usual call from VA idiots.

Sure, the VA is the worst, but it's not just them. People who work for our government should know what an explanation point is. And yet I get asked what it is every other day.

I have vastly overestimated the intelligence of people. ...I'm so tired.
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Network Operation Center - Oh you enjoy your new job? Let me spend every moment complaining about it to you! Written by Ayashi on 04/26/2015Recently--by that I mean May of 2014--I landed a job at a relatively well-to-do NOC. It is very low-visibility and offers four day work-weeks. Call volume is almost non-existent and as the rule tends to fly with NOCs, when nothing happens, you are doing your job perfectly.

Keep in mind I had just left a nightmare job doing tech-ops for a gigantic miserable corporation filled with half-witted middle management and close to 70 phone calls a day, from end users and 'others' alike. Let me also state that I had to commute by train from a ghetto in Chicago to the financial district, and I was being paid roughly $17,000 less than I am now.

Let's fast forward. I love my boss, and I love my boss's boss. They both work by example, have our backs, and are readily available to help us through anything be it personal or technical. I have never had such a luxury. My team consists of 7 people, and since one person can run the NOC we really only see our colleagues maybe twice a week for a few hours.

I never in my wildest dreams would've found that to be an eternity of atrocious madness until I found myself working next to a guy my age (32) who has a double master's in business (he enjoys telling people this) and is an immigrant from Bulgaria. He enjoys making fun of 'Murica which I personally don't mind as I am native to the UK. Anyway, he was the first person charged with training me in. I was with him clock-in to clock-out for two weeks, learning about how he hates his wife, how he loves money, wants more money, doesn't get enough money, hates his job (my job, our job), and hates that he doesn't have enough to do.

Realizing he was toxic within seconds I reasonably shut my mouth and simply stared at him as if waiting for the punchline (you should try it), he eventually said "I'm going to start my own business, maybe trading, I want to be my own boss man, have millions." That's when I laughed as authentically as my lying arse could. He took it well. Nevertheless, it persisted, badly. He miscalculated his income and ended up not being able to pay his federal taxes because his dead-beat wife spent 3 grand to go to London to attend a "success seminar" only to return bewildered and none the wiser (he and her are the PERFECT suckers, naive as a newborn.)

He actually asked me for money that day. A week and a half after I started. Before I received my first paycheck. I asked if he was joking and he said he wasn't, that his wife spent all his money and now he can't afford to send his son to daycare (his wife has no job, why does he send his son to daycare?) I told him absolutely not, and after hours of listening to him cry about his misfortunes and how the job I am trying to enjoy is the cause of it all he hit rock bottom--he got scammed into a ponzi scheme. I was the one who alerted him of it because like the naive dotard he is, he tried to scam ME into it. He next got a part time job at Uber where he would come to work talking about all these "irritating b*tches whining about everything and only caring about money." I saw my opening and shot true, "Wow that sounds identical to the hopeless guy who sits next to me at work!" Surprisingly, he laughed.

I should also add that he comes in late, sometimes up to two hours, and leaves early every day. VPNs in on his phone and clocks in and out so his punches appear legit. He hates himself and this job that much apparently. I didn't rat on him, I don't care because I've successfully trained my brain into mentally transforming him into an irrelevant cartoon-like essence that just happens to be within proximity and emits sounds now and again. Anyway he finally had enough money to pay his taxes and guess what he does? He spends 1500 dollars on a gigantic cappuccino machine and had to file for an extension, followed by asking me again for money.

After another hilarious rejection he began trying to sell me things. Shoes (his son's shoes, I don't have a child), a bondi-blue iMac mouse he said was a collector's item that I could "flip" for "thousands" (why didn't he?) A broken tablet that has a huge crack on it and doesn't appear to have functioning internet capabilities, covered in oil stains--he tried to sell me that one for two hundred dollars. What prompted me to actually compose this was today he asked if I'd like a cheap place to live close to work, which of course I am, and he tried to sell me his guest room, in his house, with his family occupying it. He somehow is my age, has a double masters in business, and has accumulated all the stupidity possible in a human being while I have been present on this rotting earth the same amount of time but only have a simple B.S and a bit of common sense. I love my job but he makes the two days I see him absolutely dreadful unless I tune him out completely.

I am not lying, he tried to sell me his son's shoes. His current endeavor is day-trading on his craiglist-bought-laptop. Before he left today he asked if I would "give" him my Microsoft Windows license and he would "give" me something worth as much in return. I said "what this time? Half of a rotary phone? F*ck off."

For the very first time, he very much f*cked off. I couldn't think as slow as this train wreck if I tried, but I just cannot take my eyes away from the tragedy that is his toxic co-worker complex. Oh well, maybe this will be fun to read for someone.
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Coffee shop - Slave in a county without slavery Written by Batista slave on 02/16/2015When I interviewed for my current job I made several important things clear. First I had previous long standing commitments on Sunday and could not work then and a second which is relevant to this was that once something was given I expected it to be held to, at a previous job I had been told I'd receive a raise of pay that never came, and my boss agreed.

Recently, about a month ago, my boss started trying to force me into working Sundays and ignoring other commitments and even more recently has started making last minute changes to my schedule and in a field where employees aren't usually on call is making me be on call. For a lot of people this wouldn't be that big of a deal because hey they get some extra hours for pay but, to expect a post time employee only making minimum wage to do that seems absurd. I've had to cancel plans for my time off over it.

Also my boss requires that I answer any and all text messages sent by her even when I'm on my time away from work in addition to unpaid training I must do at home.
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Our Beginning - WARNING: This Employer May Be Detrimental to Your Health! Written by The HR General on 01/20/2015I was hired at Our Beginning, a childcare center (though she would call it a "children's school") run by P.J. Things went pretty well for the first three or four months--but after that, it seemed I could do no right!

She failed to communicate her expectations to me, and then would scold me for not meeting the expectations she'd failed to communicate.

She made promises to me, and to other employees, that she followed through on either very late, or not at all. For example, it took more than a year for the company to get an electronic time clock, after her promises to me that it would happen in just a few months. It took 6 months for me to get a proper desk for my office... then she took it away from me and gave it to the new Admissions Coordinator... then she berated me for not having an organized work space!

She played favorites, and compared me unfavorably to the previous Office Manager and several other employees (almost all of whom have since quit).

She did not respect my time outside of work; she called me at home before and after work hours, and on weekends, usually about trivial matters that could have waited until I came back to work. She would often call with something else she needed to have done before I went home for the day... just as I was getting ready to go home for the day. This resulted in my working 50-60 hours per week, at a rate that worked out, per hour, to only 1 or 2 cents above the state minimum wage, if my weekly 40-hour rate was divided by hours actually worked.

And, in the 16 months I worked there, I had only two full vacation days, plus 4 days of bereavement leave. (I was promised more, plus comp time I was owed, but somehow P.J. never thought it was a good time for me to take it!) And I was "punished" for taking the bereavement leave... I had to work a 15-hour shift with no lunch to get everything done she said I had to get done before I left!

The job itself also deteriorated over time... instead of playing to my strengths, it emphasized my weaknesses. (She would promise me writing projects, but other than the occasional bone or two thrown at me, those never materialized. I gave her, not just second, but third, fourth, and even fifth chances, to keep her promises.) I was forced into a customer-service position in the company's front office, with lots of noise and constant interruptions, even though I had no experience, or desire to work in, customer service, and was originally hired to do a completely different type of position! She admitted I might do better in a different type of work environment, but refused to change the work environment, or the hours, to accommodate me.

You can imagine what a toll all this took on my physical and mental health, over time. I ended up having a severe flare-up of an already-existing health condition due to all the stress and overwork, and a doctor finally told me I would either need to consistently limit my work hours to 40 per week or less, or quit the job. My repeated requests for a part-time work schedule, to both take care of my health and to have a better work-life balance, fell on selectively-deaf ears.

I'm pretty patient, and I think I was more than forgiving in P.J.'s case, but I'm not Mother Teresa--and there are limits to the amount of suffering my doctor would have advised I tolerate! His exact words to me were that my work situation "was not sustainable and was bad for my health," and that he felt it "would be unhealthy for anyone," not just for me.

It's probably also worth noting that 6 employees in my last 6 months with the company--myself included--either walked off the job or quit without notice, and of those 6, 4 cited health reasons as their reason for quitting. That right there tells me I'm not the one with the problem!

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