Thursday, May 21, 2009

Open Letter

Dear Real World,

I am seriously thinking we might have to break up soon. You keep throwing these impossible insane people and situations at me and I'm not sure how much more my bleeding heart and thin skin can take.

Like this latest employment episode, was this some elaborate fraternity prank? That's the only way I can explain how truly terrible it was.

Firstly, I should have known something was up when the dude was so eager to hire me. I mean, I know I'm brilliant and cute and smell really good so any straight thinking 35 year old male would be sold. But this wasn't a date, it was a *job*.

Secondly, I should have known that the hellish 19 mile commute that took over an hour and a half EVERY day both ways should have been a deal breaker.

Applying for a simple secretary position and finding myself with not only one but two desks of work to do for not only one but two companies should have also been a warning sign. All this for two companies who happen to be totally unrelated to each other and have two totally different needs. One of many being a capable and trained accountant that boss-man just assumed "because I was smart" that I could just step into, despite my protests and admonitions of only having "light accounting" as in balancing my check book.

People go to school for years and study for years after that to be able to keep up a full set of auditable books, much less two of them. Oh - and the detailed and helpful instructions of "just go and do this" were invaluable in dealing with the waves of overwhelmed "wtf" and my helpless internal hysterical laughter.

So when boss-man comes back in all of 20 minutes demanding a pretty and accurate one page report of the "this" and I'm still starring blank eyed at the instruction manual and begin to ask a clarifying question and he oh so sensitively yells back "DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU TWICE??" - um - yeah. That's not so conducive to my productivity.

Or having boss-man call almost every weekend asking me to come to do things as meager as send an email when he knows I'm 100s of miles away at Coachella and not exactly available to drive 4 hours to come into the office to send and email that isn't an emergency to someone that can't look at it till Monday anyway. A bit irrational you think?

I don't mean to be picky but also have a suggestion in the responsibility section of things. When someone hires someone else, lets try to make sure its not just to have someone to dump all of the problems they've left hanging or have managed to avoid/ignore.

Like say, when an individual has started a business that costs about 25K a month to keep up (not including payroll or anything else, just infrastructure support) and you're only billing customers about 17K a month, you're going to run into some problems running that kind of deficet. Look at the State of California and the US for that matter. AND that's assuming that everyone will pay their bills on time every month, which they don't. SO - putting off the bills you have to pay for months and months and making arrangements time and time again and not paying them and finally getting disconnection notices (which will cause a lot of customers to have a bad day) and putting the newbie on the phone with the only instruction being "fix it. Disconncetion is unacceptable" but because boss-man had totally abused any good will we might have had for leverage all I get is a bunch of people yelling at me, $10,000 bills to pay, no money in the business account to pay it and boss man being as unnegociable an inflexible as the collectors are. Yeah - thats effective.

Oh - and having boss-man not letting me know the entire situation before I get on the phone with said upset and lied-to people was really considerate. Brave even. I was floored by the honor-bound way boss-man was running things. I found it inspirational even. Made me want to do everything better and faster, since rapidity seemed to be his core value. Things were expected to be done before he asked for them, even before he imagined they needed to be done. Last time I checked I was an employee, not an X-Men, and this is a three room, 3 person operation, not some Fortune 500 highrise in New York. Having expecations purportional to you resources is a pretty key part of success last time I checked. Boss-man hadn't gotten the memo yet.

Oh and Real World, letting people go around with all these expecations and frustrating senses of entitlement under the guise of "thats how things are in small bussiness" is ascenine. Its even worse when that's their answer to every question you have. That or "DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU TWICE??!"

Being a small bussiness doesn't excuse you from simple values like honesty or decency. It doesn't suspend the concpet of keeping your word to your vendors or the people around you. It doesn't make things like bills go away. It doesn't give you the right to just plow your way, emotionally and logistically through life. As a matter of fact, it heightens your accountability. You have to run a bussiness as well as be a leader and be more responsible because if you have people working for you they don't have a logistical safety net. If you screw up they don't get paid. It's that simple. More caution is required, not less.

6 weeks of this almost did me in Real World, and I have to say, I'm one of your better assets. I'm addiction, STD, child-out-of-wedlock free, I'm literate, educated, in possession of responsible transportation, and make divine chocolate chip cookies. I think all that puts me in the top 5% of the population and few would disagree.

I think you need to start treating me with a bit more care. I'm not affraid of hard work or doing hard things but I am not a magician, a whipping boy, or a push over.

Please reconfigure your settings, I'll mend and dress my gapping wounds and we'll meet back up some time next week.

bewildered and bruised,


Quixotic Healer said...

Has your dad tried to beat him up yet?

Ms. Liz said...

He wrote him a stiff and stern lawyer letter demanding all my unpaid overtime and then went down there to collect it for me on Tuesday. Boss-man was such a coward he had his assistant walk the checks down to the door. He couldn't even face him. Hes kind of a pathetic excuse for a human being.

Kim said...

YIKES! I'm so glad you're out of there. Sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen.

Liz W. said...

Holy moly!

Count your blessings that you've escaped that madness, and open your arms to receiving something better--WAY BETTER!!!!