- Officemate who won't shut up
What do you do – how do you deal with this? Here are the facts…
– I significantly outrank her but she’s been around longer. Bluntly she is support staff whereas I’m business core.
– she’s mentally quite unstable and generally a very angry person (in an otherwise very low-key office) but I’m currently on her “good” side although I think she’s picking up on frostiness lately
– is constantly on the phone shouting in a way that makes it impossible for me to do my job, even when I’m on sensitive calls myself (drowning me out). One time I did wave at her to turn her f**king volume down (she is support staff; I was on a client call) and afterwards she got well pi$$y about it…
– we’ve recently installed new IT systems and this has been a particular catalyst for the telephone temper tantrums. Also it means there’s been a constant flow of IT staff in our office which is very disruptive and unnecessary (everyone is having problems but she’s the only one being a diva about it…)
– whenever I’m crazily busy she asks me to look at photos of her nephew or comes out with assinine mundanities like “JHW, I’m HUNGRY…”…”JHW, shall I have the salmon for lunch or penne arrabiata?” etc. When I’m 5 minutes off a deadline that’s been building for months…
Shall I headbutt her/”quiet word” her/marry her?
/rageattackPosted 6 years agoalfabusSubscriber
make a little placard that says “button it, fatty”; whenever she is being loud, hold up the placard and stare at her with a withering look in your eyes – this is negative reinforcement.
if you want to take a more complete approach, then whenever she does actually shut up (in response to the placard, or when you are clearly busy or on the phone) throw her a biscuit… bonus points for throwing it on the floor and motioning for her to pick it up in her mouth.
DavePosted 6 years agomuppetWranglerMember
Just tell her she’s a pain in the arse and let her deal with it. If her method of dealing with it is to become more of a pain then tell again. She will either try harder not to be a pain or hate you so much that she will no longer have anything to do with you both outcomes would be a result.Posted 6 years ago
ha I see what you did there crispedwheel.
No you’re right, it is pompous to view the rank thing as material to this. It’s not really relevant. But the problem is definitely with her, not me, even if I am a bit of a pompous little man…you don’t act this way in an office
It’s exactly the same issue as the Asky Man thread though, i.e. I’m completely stumped for a response when other people fail to respect social norms/boundaries! Very Peep Show/RossfromFriends. I hope this doesn’t end in an almighty rowPosted 6 years agojoao3v16Member
You could always have a read of the office practical joke thread??
or the “do tw*ts know they are tw*ts” thread from yesterday
she sounds like one of those people who are so absorbed in themselves that they’re completely obliviuos to the effect their behaviour is having on others, and too arrogant/pig-ignorant to accept anything to the contrary.
Not sure what you do with that kind of person.
Ask her line manager to have a word?Posted 6 years agoemma82Member
. One time I did wave at her to turn her f**king volume down (she is support staff; I was on a client call) and afterwards she got well pi$$y about it…
Don’t know where you work but if you were senior to me and used the f word at me you would be on a warning. Tbf your attitude stinks as much as hers, your op makes you sound really arrogant so if thats how you behave at work she’s probably trying to wind you up.
All you can do is *politely* (I.e not the f word)? Ask her to keep the volume down, make sure she knows what your deadlines are and reiterate the need for quiet when on a customer call. I’d probably be sending around a general office etiquette memo to set out what is expected. It can go to everyone and not single her out but she may subtly get the message? I’ve worked with a pain in the arse before and the best advice I got was just to put them in a little mental bubble in my mind and block them out. It worked.Posted 6 years agohoraMember
Approach someone within the business for advice, policy etc.
I’ve worked with girls like the one you describe and they can be utter political animals without realising it when they perceive they are being ‘attacked’. When in reality you are asking someone to be reasonable. She’ll have a little list in her head of victimisation. She’ll also lack any self awareness at all. To her, shes normal. You on the otherhand are grumpy and probably a bit of a doom and gloomer.
You need to start doing something otherwise you’ll snap at her and she’ll have the ‘look at me prostate on a cross whilst he bullies me’ syndrome.Posted 6 years ago
there was no use of the eff word (plenty from her though) – I just raised my hend quickly and then lowered it, i.e. a “lower your volume gesture”. It was a bit of an abrasive thing to do but I was on the phone to a client, while she was on the phone talking to a friend, and I just lost it.
I agree that support staff matter and the rank thing isn’t really material. If I were support staff and she were business core, this would still be wrong though, wouldn’t it? Minimum standards of behaviour etc.Posted 6 years agoiDaveMember
I’m completely stumped for a response when other people fail to respect social norms/boundaries!
You actually mean when they fail to respect your particular norms and boundaries. Not everyone is like you. You must have noticed this by now? Do you think they should all have your outlook on life?Posted 6 years agoDezBSubscriber
No you’re right, it is pompous to view the rank thing as material to this. It’s not really relevant
No it’s not. You’re right to be annoyed by an inconsiderate turd working in the same office as you.
I have told people in the past, or used management to do it (eg. helpdesk (yep, more support scum (hey, I used to be one) playing Radio 1 all day long making it impossible to concentrate).
Trouble is, if she is mentally unstable you’re fighting a losing battle.Posted 6 years agojustatheoryMember
There is a girl in our office who is exactly as you describe. Everything and anything is treated as an interesting anecdote that must be broadcast at maximum volume to the entire office. She also swears a lot at really inappropriate times and is constantly making veiled xenophobic/borderline racist comments.
She is business core though so there’s nothing that can be done 😀Posted 6 years ago
You actually mean when they fail to respect your particular norms and boundaries. Not everyone is like you. You must have noticed this by now? Do you think they should all have your outlook on life?
You’re right to an extent but equally surely some social norms and boundaries are objective – that’s why they’re called “norms” and not “certain individuals’ points of view”! Like that you don’t make the moves on the girl you know a guy is after while enjoying his hospitality, or shout swearwords in the office about insignificant stuff!
Ack it’s all kicking off again, albeit I hope in an entertaining way…Posted 6 years ago
You are absolutely right that there’s possibly a gender issue here which is why I haven’t said anything – I do wonder if in that respect part of the issue is with me and maybe my inability to respect difference, etc! i.e. different people just do things differently? Don’t want to be oppressive. Don’t want it to escalate into a row.
We’ve established above that I’m a pompous w@nker for bringing the rank issue into it, and I’ve retracted that as irrelevant, but business core are the people who go out and make money and basically keep the lights on, while support staff are the people who may still play a very important role but don’t actually sell/make what the business gets its income from. The distinction does existPosted 6 years agopasstherizlaMember
I had a one off issue that was similar with someone at my work.. I was on the phone and the maintenance guy wanders into my office, at this point he can clearly see I am on the phone. he starts banging around with the radiator and I couldn’t hear the other end of the line. I muted the call, and said ‘do you mind I’m on the phone’! to which he stormed off and went to his manager, His manager came to see me and I explained the situation.
This guys line manager was insisting that I apologise so I dutifully did as I was told, even though I was in the right in my mind.
after I apologised to the guy he said that if I had spoken to him like that in the real world he would have smashed my face in and I’d be picking up my teeth for weeks..Admittedly I laughed very hard in his face and told him that he could try which annoyed him even further (bloody bullies) I in turn reported this to his line manager as unreasonable threatening behaviour, little did I know that others had complained and he lost his job.
moral is complain to their manager they may have been pissing everyone off.Posted 6 years agoPapa_LazarouMember
be thankful – I sit in an office where no one speaks for 8 hours, as it not even hello or goodbye.
button it fatty
I used that little gem to someone the other day after she stopped me and son (in pushchair) crossing a road full of stationary cars. She absolutely exploded and screamed abuse at me and my son for the next 5 mins as we walked along next to the crawling cars. The abuse included screamming that my son (pointing at him) was a bastard offspring, my wife is this and that, I was white trash. I blew her kisses and laughed, which did the job, but am sure it scared my son a bit.Posted 6 years agowhatnobeerMember
Can you move to somewhere else in the office? Have a polite word that sometimes you’re too busy to chat? Maybe eventually of being nice but firm she’ll get the hint?
Tbh what amazes me is the number of people, who instead of offering constructive advice want to try and make this all your fault and blame you! Even if it is party your fault (I dont think it is) pointing it out isnt really going to help.Posted 6 years ago
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