Saturday, April 17, 2010

If you think I'm a dummy, then YOU are the dummy

So I have been now at my new job for almost 2 weeks. I have been through the ringer already and I think I might even survive this new adventure.
For four years I was the ruler of my roost. I knew almost everything and everyone. I set the pace; I was the go-to person. Now, I am the newcomer. I have no idea where to get paper for the copier. For 3 days I used the pen I carry in my pocket book because I didn’t know how to get a pen or where to go get one. Now, I am a feeling a little bit more comfortable.
There are many systems that need to be learned and I have not had a lot of training. It has been a somewhat sink-or-swim experience. Gratefully, the other colleagues that I have met have felt my pain and have refused to completely leave me astray. Someone calls me every day to see how I am doing and when I call with a question, they are happy to help. Either these are the nicest people in the world, or they are just scared that I might leave and they will have to take over my work load.
Now, there seems to be some people who think that because I am new to this workplace, that I must be new to work in general or at least to this type of work. I am fresh meat. I am the new kid on the block. I think that they are trying to see how nice I am and how much work they can get me to do that I am not really supposed to do. I am new – not an idiot.
It started with a simple request: “Can you send something for me via UPS?” Now, see, my new company is HUGE. We have computer systems for everything. So I thought, “Why not? That way I’ll learn how to use the system.” Then, as I got busier, I forgot all about the shipment. Today, I came back from lunch to find an envelope on my desk with a yellow sticky note with the shipping address. I walked over to the employee and told him that I couldn’t do the shipment anymore because I have not been set up in the system, and considering that I still don’t have access to half of the indispensable programs, that I didn’t know when I would be able to help. As I stood there, trying to hand over the envelope, he smiled and looked at me… and didn’t move to take it back. I kept trying to give him the envelope, but he kept giving me reasons why NOT to take it back: he could wait; it would be a good learning opportunity; someone else used to do those shipments for him. I got tired of discussing it and suggested that he then take the envelope to the person who did the shipping before. His response: “She’s just around the corner. You know, maybe you should take it and become her friend so she can teach you how to do it.”
I stopped smiling.
I extended the envelope one more time and told him no. He then tried to GUILT me into it! “Oh, I just thought that since we are in the same department, and you are sitting right THERE… that you were supposed to help.” My response: “No. I work in the EXECUTIVE suite, and I report to SUPER BOSS, not you or the team. My location is temporary until they finish remodeling the suite and I leave your sorry ass over here with the LITTLE PEOPLE.” Finally he took the envelope.
I walked away to talk to Super Boss about something else. When I came back, there was a cubicle meeting between 3 of the other workers that dissolved rather quickly once I came back. Two seconds later, one of them offered me some candy. I thought maybe they had spat on it or it had fallen to the ground, but I took one, because I am new, but I am not stupid. I am a newcomer, but I am only a bitch if you make me.

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