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State Government Is Sucking The Life Out Of Me

After my private industry job picked up and moved to Southeast Asia without me and left me in an uncertain and even frightening brush with unemployment, I decided to look into government work as a means by which to ensure the experience would not be repeated.  I figured that a job in the public domain would be pretty much recession proof, and the benefits were attractive.  Little did I know that I'd end up trading my soul for stable employment.

My job is a joke. 

Fresh out of private industry where values like initiative, good time management, and strong work ethic were commendable and sought-after traits, they proved disastrous for me when applied to a government position.  I was told within my first week to "slow down" because I was making everybody else look bad, and when I couldn't force myself to just go from 100 mph to 0 and kick back doing the absolute minimum like everyone else, I soon found myself finishing all my tasks and then 80% of everyone else's.  Fine, I thought initially.  This will all pay off when I get my performance evaluation, right?

Wrong.

At my first PM ninety days into the job, I received a rating of "Performing at the Expected Level".  When I asked my supervisor why I was receiving a C+ grade for A+ work, she just giggled and replied, "Oh, nobody gets an Outstanding!  People would start to think they deserve raises if we give those out!" 

WTF?

This is the same supervisor who basically threw me under the bus when it came to my training.  My co-workers at the time were already hostile toward me, having both put in for the position I was now occupying, and only very grudgingly and very superficially showed me anything I needed to learn my job.  I was pretty much shown everything by a temp we had working with us, who was already retired and didn't play office politics.  (Thank God for him.)  My supervisor really didn't know anything about how the functions of the job were performed; one of those "leaders" who figure that if they've got staff who knows how to do it, learning it themself is a liability in that they might just have to help out doing it in case of an abscence.

This woman is not worth the toilet paper she uses in this facility.

My bosses' routine is to come in ten minutes late on the two or three days a week she does decide to show up, go distribute Avon catalogues and pick up payments from her customers, go outside and smoke a cigarette with her buddies, then come back to the office to put on her headphones and watch episodes of "Desperate Housewives" from her PC.  About six months ago she caught her husband cheating on her, which I only know because I can't help but overhear her SCREAMING at him over the (business) phone, and I sit about thirty feet away from her office.

"**** YOU, SAMMY!" is as much a part of the background noise here as the humming of the flourescent lights.

Recently we got a new addition to the staff, and it was my job to train her.  (Not really MY job, but I didn't want to visit a repeat of what I went through on the new kid.)  For a while there, things looked hopeful.  She seemed like a quick study and a good worker, initially.  But then, she got the "hang" of the system, and the ghetto came out;  she treats her job like a contest of who can do the least, and at that, she excels.  Every morning she comes waddling in with her cell phone glued to her ear, and since I have the cubicle next to her, I get to listen to the same, thirty-minute conversation every damn day, five days a week:  "Who do she be thinkin' she is?  How dat baby yours?  What do he be doin' wit dat ho?  No she din't!" 

Which would be funny, but for the fact that she refuses to answer the business line when she's on this perpetual conversation, and the fact that when she does answer, the field agents seldom want to talk to her because they can't understand her.  More work for me, yay.

Early on, I was able to establish a system where we rotate workstations every week, when it became apparent that my reward for hard work turned out to be more work.  For a while, it was cool:  it took some of the load off of me, and since I realized I'd be getting the same performance evaluation whether I busted my butt or did my equal share either way, why make an extraordinary effort?  It didn't take long for the "gang" to slow down even more (and I hadn't thought that possible) and start stretching thirty minute tasks into the work of three hours.  The end result of this has become a big-assed backlog on Monday for the next person to pick up.  I happen to follow the bloated sloth mentioned the paragraph up:as I write this, it is Friday afternoon, she is blathering on her cell phone and shopping on line, and there is a huge pile of unfinished work gathering dust on her workstation right now, waiting for me to finish on Monday.

The "supervisor" is, of course, out today.  Like every Friday.  And most Mondays.  How she gets away with taking no less than two days of work a week off, without either lying on her timesheet or working a deal with our manager, is beyond me.  But, being that she and the manager are cousins, I guess that question just answered itself.  Yes, I have approached her about saying something about the backlog:  she does nothing about it, because speaking to an employee about not finishing assigned tasks is too much like work. 

I have given up.  I have relinquished my former status as go-getter and workhorse.  I no longer care, I have been assimilated into the Borg.  I am writing this at my desk at work, at taxpayer expense, and when I am finished, I will surf comedy sites and perhaps even post a shorter version of this at FML (**** My Life website). 

And it isn't just this office:  slackery and malingering and illegal negotiating are rampant in state offices here, as evidenced from the misdeeds of those in the highest offices.  From a presidential hopeful who was banging a mistress while his wife was fighting cancer, to an ex-governor who is now being tried for getting his wife an $80,000 job at a local university (an 80% raise in a year when state employees got nothing but a week of furlough time) to a commissioner who attempted to fire an inspector when said commissioner was caught trying to illegally register a kit-car as an authentic antique, and so on and so forth.  They're all dirty.  And now I'm in the dirt, too.

I hate my job.

RedRover RedRover 36-40, F 23 Responses Oct 30, 2009

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This is all true. I went to college for nearly eight years. Walked away with a bachelor's degree. Went and worked in private sector for six years, got as high as asst. supervisor. Went to work for the State of CA and have made little progress in promotion in six years! Each program within my agency I go to work in treats me like every other high school drop out they are accustomed to. They have no respect or appreciation for education or experience. And if you ask why, the reason is that most of them are uneducated themselves. It's a preposterous existence for me but my reality because my spouse doesn't want me to quit now because my spouses thinks our retirement will be so much better than if I go back to private. But I'm losing my love and joy for life. That's state work! Gotta love it.

I have regretted my decision to say yes to a county government job for the last two years of my life. I am bored out of my mind. I have asked for more and more responsibility, but no matter how many more programs I add to my plate, the work still bores me to death. There is no motivation or incentive to get anything done quickly, which is something that I need in a job. Whenever I tell my friends/family how much I hate my job and how bored I am, they always say 'be grateful you have a job' and 'don't leave a government job, you get a pension'. I'm sorry but those two replies are wearing thin on my patience. When I think of doing this job for the next 23 years of my life, I can literally feel my soul dying inside. Government jobs come with a low, non-negotiable salary, and the perks (benefits and pension), in my opinion, are way overrated.

I joined the State gov't and have regretted the decision ever since. Putting aside the fact that I took a 20% cut in pay, because foolishly, I believed that it was question of wanting to work with certain people. Let's just say that working with there people (some of who are great) is not worth the effort.

Where do I begin?
1. Endless meetings that consume my time, to which I contribute nothing or gain anything.
2. Endless stream of emails concerning worthless stuff that I couldn't care less about (pledge drives, townhall meetings, latest worthless news)
3. Wasted money (taxpayer like myself) on worthless projects that someone chose and amazingly enough, still have jobs; worthless vendors that are allowed to "steal" the taxpayer money without regard
4. Managers who focus more on the endless drivel of mgmt techniques that are meaningless, than just letting people work
5. The constant reorganization (a sign of confusion)
6. Benefits and wages that don' remotely compare with the private sector. Of course, they're moving to eliminate all "classified" positions in the name of "competing with the private sector" but it's a joke.
7. Filling out timecards--I went to college so I wouldn't have to fill out a timecard like some factory worker (nothing against those who work in one). I'm an exempt, salaried employee--just assume 40 hours a week unless I say otherwise.

yeah yeah, horrible urban jobs that completely take your soul and the best days of your life, i sometimes feel the urge to leave it all and go live in the forests as a budhist monk or something that is not bound to all this earthling garbage

too sad, too funny, wow, just wow!!!

Wow reading all your comments I can only say that I have been in government work for going on over 7 years. I have 10 years to be vested in my pension and I bought some time back and will be 10 years soon. I have felt like an empty void for the past few years working for the government. I have been back stabbed plenty of times and have worked with the most vile human beings that the private sector most likely would never hire. I am counting down the months until I can leave. I have worked my tail off to be treated like crap.

I am now with the State government for 2 years. I come across the exactly same issues like you. I gave up (to be a hardworking person) and now I am dirty. I hate my job.

Greetings fellow wage slaves!!<br />
<br />
I've been on a ~ 2 year hiatus from this site and decided to pop back in today, just to revisit the old neighborhood, as it were. (And I mean that in the literal sense; there was a time in my life when I pretty much LIVED here.) Experience Project hasn't changed much in the time I've been away but I am delighted to inform you that my work situation has... and absolutely for the better.<br />
<br />
There's a line from H.L. Mencken that goes; "Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." While obviously I did not go supernova on my co-workers and slaughter the whole crew one day (Internet connections being notoriously difficult to access from Death Row and all,) the aforementioned quote encapsulates quite succinctly sentiments of one who has reached their tipping point. A person pushed to the maximum level of abuse they are capable of enduring is a dangerous animal indeed. This can, and often does result in savage and bloody consequences. But sometimes, anger can be the energy that fuels far less violent (and far more satisfying) vengeance.<br />
<br />
I think the one pivitol event that was the impetus for the hoisting of my own black flag was what transpired one miserably cold, sleeting December in 2010. I was coming back from the distribution point that supplies our inventory in our massive, crappy old utility van, fighting a miserable head cold, aching from hair follicles to toenails, and dreading the coming task of having to hump a (literal) ton of inventory into the building over several loads. I'd pulled up to the building, swung into the Service Parking area, started to pull into one of the five spaces reserved for freight vehicles, and lo and behold! There sat the POS Pontiac belonging to Ms Useless herself, my beloved stupidvisor, in the space reserved for my own POS van.<br />
<br />
Apparently Princess Parasite had deemed the weather "too icky" to bear for the epic,<br />
200 meter trek across the parking lot from whence her reserved spot resided, and had helped herself to the closer spot in the docking area. Which was, and still is, clearly marked : SERVICE VEHICLES ONLY<br />
ALL OTHERS WILL BE TOWED<br />
<br />
I went into the building with the engine idling and asked Her Majesty to please move her personal vehicle out of my space; I had a metric fuckton of product to move and with the December sky really getting ready to throw up on me, was in haste to hustle it done. Countess Cuntess just looked at me with uncomprehending, bovine eyes and went back to doing whatever it is they do on Farmville, as if I had not addressed her at all.<br />
<br />
One hour later, and she had still not moved her car. And by then the conditions outside could only be described as "apocolyptic".<br />
<br />
So, I spit upon my hands, got back into the van, and commenced to back the old dreadnought right up to her back bumper, nice and tight so as to prevent her egress, and took my happy *** right down to HR to submit a leave slip on account of my horrible head cold. I left for home shortly thereafter.<br />
<br />
The ignition fuse to the van left with me.

More to come.

Greetings fellow wage slaves!!<br />
<br />
I've been on a ~ 2 year hiatus from this site and decided to pop back in today, just to revisit the old neighborhood, as it were. (And I mean that in the literal sense; there was a time in my life when I pretty much LIVED here.) Experience Project hasn't changed much in the time I've been away but I am delighted to inform you that my work situation has... and absolutely for the better.<br />
<br />
There's a line from H.L. Mencken that goes; "Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." While obviously I did not go supernova on my co-workers and slaughter the whole crew one day (Internet connections being notoriously difficult to access from Death Row and all,) the aforementioned quote encapsulates quite succinctly sentiments of one who has reached their tipping point. A person pushed to the maximum level of abuse they are capable of enduring is a dangerous animal indeed. This can, and often does result in savage and bloody consequences. But sometimes, anger can be the energy that fuels far less violent (and far more satisfying) vengeance.<br />
<br />
I think the one pivitol event that was the impetus for the hoisting of my own black flag was what transpired one miserably cold, sleeting December in 2010. I was coming back from the distribution point that supplies our inventory in our massive, crappy old utility van, fighting a miserable head cold, aching from hair follicles to toenails, and dreading the coming task of having to hump a (literal) ton of inventory into the building over several loads. I'd pulled up to the building, swung into the Service Parking area, started to pull into one of the five spaces reserved for freight vehicles, and lo and behold! There sat the POS Pontiac belonging to Ms Useless herself, my beloved stupidvisor, in the space reserved for my own POS van.<br />
<br />
Apparently Princess Parasite had deemed the weather "too icky" to bear for the epic,<br />
200 meter trek across the parking lot from whence her reserved spot resided, and had helped herself to the closer spot in the docking area. Which was, and still is, clearly marked : SERVICE VEHICLES ONLY<br />
ALL OTHERS WILL BE TOWED<br />
<br />
I went into the building with the engine idling and asked Her Majesty to please move her personal vehicle out of my space; I had a metric fuckton of product to move and with the December sky really getting ready to throw up on me, was in haste to hustle it done. Countess Cuntess just looked at me with uncomprehending, bovine eyes and went back to doing whatever it is they do on Farmville, as if I had not addressed her at all.<br />
<br />
One hour later, and she had still not moved her car. And by then the conditions outside could only be described as "apocolyptic".<br />
<br />
So, I spit upon my hands, got back into the van, and commenced to back the old dreadnought right up to her back bumper, nice and tight so as to prevent her egress, and took my happy *** right down to HR to submit a leave slip on account of my horrible head cold. I left for home shortly thereafter.<br />
<br />
The ignition fuse to the van left with me.

Wow! I work for State government, and I feel your pain. I have been there 20+ years. I have a great boss now, but I have suffered through some of the same type bosses and coworkers that are mentioned here. I've had the boss who rarely came in on Mondays and Fridays. Everyone knew she was stealing leave, but her boss had no backbone and let her get away with it. This same boss made the comment, after she was promoted, that she had gotten to the level she wanted to and wasn't learning anything else. She didn't know basic department procedures and depended upon senior non-supervisory staff to know everything. She did nothing but occupy a chair when she showed up. She claimed she was making her employees weak if she answered everything for them, but she didn't know anything, and if she had a question, she didn't hesitate to run to her boss. Even though I have a great boss now, I still have to be around some slacker co-workers from other groups who attempt to dump work onto our group. Because I have work ethic and feel an obligation to learn my job to the best of my ability, I have always been one of the go-to girls in every job I've worked. It gets really old to be loaded down with work when others are texting, taking smoke breaks, reading Nook, working crossword puzzles, taking personal calls, etc. all day long. As you say, the new employees quickly become corrupted by the lack of expectation from "the system." I look forward to retiring in five years and getting out of this dysfunction. My next career will not be in any type of government work. I will be doing something I enjoy.

Hi,<br />
I completely understand. It's been 3 years from me and I am completely burned out. I have never seen so much waste in one place in my entire life. I do the work of 5 and my co-workers string on 3 month projects for years. No recognition--- no consequences. I am not alive to be dead. I really wish I could have changed things but it's a waste of my energy and talent. <br />
My advice to you if you are still there is to ask the power of the universe of whatever you believe in to give you an immediate sign and when it shows up just follow it. Don't think about it too long just follow. We only have one life and we aren't meant to spend years squandering our enthusiasm and talent no matter what our situations are or what the economy is doing.

I suggest that you drop to one click above the norm and enjoy the job while you still have one . while you are my style of person,I couldn't afford to pay you what your really worth. so hang on to what you have and keep looking for something more to your liking. as things are looking to change for the worse for most of us.<br />
Good luck !

hey redrover, hoave your ever thought about throwing the ghetto chick under the boss? why are you doing other's work? i was in a asimilair situation like you training and helping people, but it doesnt pay off. its a dog eat dog world. beat them at their own game.

I work for a state and I think posting on this site about how ****** it is will become my specialty. Sounds like you've had to work with a bunch of losers with personality problems. I'm away from the capital and most of our state employees but I've worked with enough people to have some that are just psycho. Of course at least 90% are lazy as ****. Also stupid. And in that environment they just get stupider. Its great that you've been able to stand up to some of these people and out think them. I'm actually worn out from commenting on about 5 stories from state/federal government employees. I'll try to get back and reread your comments and write more.<br />
<br />
Oh I LOVE stupidvisor! I'll be sharing that with a few of our decent employees tomorrow.

I worked in state government for less than 5 years, but that's all I could take before I decided to resign. Not only had my boss sexually harassed a member of our office, but he made several other people uncomfortable. Instead of being let go after people complained about him, the higher-ups decided to let him keep his job, while letting other people fall by the wayside. Beside that, my direct supervisor had the distinct habit of tattling on anyone for anything. She rarely said anything positive about anyone, in fact most of her comments on previous coworkers were condescending and hypercritical. I'm sure she hadn't said the best about my work performance either. The irony in the situation, though, is that her own performance has been dwindling for a while now. That and she doesn't even know how to stay organized and get the work done on time. I guess it's hard to look in the mirror and see yourself for what you really are when you are so set on making all of your coworkers look bad. She ended up getting some coworkers fired, although the big bosses claim it was for other reasons. Unfortunately, I am probably the only one who really saw what happened and knows the truth, even more so than HR. They tried telling me I was making a mistake by leaving, but I don't think so. I have little tolerance for cover-ups and lies, especially when it affects people who were mostly innocent. It was probably one of the most toxic environments I had ever been in. People had refused to work on our team because of the negative energy and their inability to trust my supervisor. I had to leave for my own health, mentally and physically. No job is worth that much stress and toxic energy. I'd rather do a job that requires less knowledge and pays less, but has a more positive atmosphere. I had to learn my lesson the hard way, but at least I paid down some debt from school and saved some more money. When you think of it in those terms, it seems like the cost was higher than the payoff, though. I'd rather get those few years of my life back, but at least I am out of it now and I can move on with my life. No one will ever do it for you and very few people will agree that leaving a job is a smart move. Only you can determine if the pros outweigh the cons....but sometimes they won't and you have to do what is best for you.

Your observation regarding the frequent promotions of the least productive candidates was very timely. Just last week, the bane of my working existence, the oxygen-thief mentioned in the OP, got promoted to another department!! <br />
<br />
I'm beyond the point of being disappointed in my employer for advancing this individual, who would have been out on her arse months ago had she been working in private industry. I'm beyond the point of feeling embarrassed about being a government employee, given the example this worthless waste of skin will no doubt impart to the public at large, with whom she is now assigned to deal directly. I'm past even caring about the tax dollars wasted on the increase in salary for this procedurally inept, perpetually late, malingering, entitled enthusiast of bringing-outside-drama-into-work-every-day HEIFER... I'm just delighted to have her gone.<br />
<br />
With the vacancy we now have in our office, they'll be screening candidates for the position very soon. I've already made up my mind that, when we do get our new arrival, RedRover is going to be the stupidest tool ever employed by this organization. People are going to wonder how I manage to feed and clothe myself every day, I'm so dumb. Ask me a question about job procedures and protocols? "Herp derp derp... duuuhhh... I forgot." Ask me to show you around the building and where the bathrooms are, or the cafeteria, or where we pick up mail? "Uhhhh... I dunno." <br />
<br />
My stupidvisor set me up for failure by setting an incredibly bad example of work ethic, by creating this consequence-free environment where 8 hours straight of playing Farmville is acceptable and to hell with the JOB, so you know what? She can train the next employee this time. I'm starting to look forward to the shiatstorm that will no doubt ensue, considering the fact that she knows not what the hell actually goes on in here or how to do any of it.<br />
<br />
Let's see how my "boss" likes working in the dark. 'Cause any illumination I could have offered got extinguished a LONG time ago.

I think that the state gov has sucked the life out my missus as well. She's worked there for 20 years and she hates it but this is in Australia, it sounds like a very boring job, maybe that is what sucked the life out of our relationship? Nah it was just her

Funny you should mention work attire. I used to have something of a problem with office dictates on clothing myself, but for different reasons. While most of what we do here is computer-generated, some of our tasks involve picking up inventory at prison work camps and correctional manufacturing sites (the prison system makes a lot of our material) and sorting through license plates seized by enforcement agencies; dirty, sweat-intensive tasks for which business dress is simply not practical. These details came up on a regular basis and were specific to certain days of the week; I tried to account for them and dress appropriately when I knew I had a chance of getting grubby that day. This was another situation where I got punished for doing the right thing... these were also the days my lovely female co-workers would be certain to come in in their best and most expensive power-suits and three-inch dress pumps (whereas I had thrown on some jeans and a t-shirt, given the sort of work we were anticipating) and then giggle and point to their ankle-breaking foot gear and over-the-top skirted suits when it came time for the dirty work to be handed out, as they couldn't POSSIBLY be asked to either drive our filthy utility van or be expected to move heavy materials with a hand-truck when clothed so well. So, guess who got the grunt work on those days...?<br />
<br />
I was absolutely delighted when our director did a safety evaluation on us and decided that we needed uniforms and safety shoes, because it pretty much eliminated any use of the old Get Out Of Work Free card via wardrobe. Now, we're all in the same polo shirts and dress slacks and steel toes, whether we like it or not. (I love my uniform just because it saves me about twenty minutes every morning trying to put something together that "matches", not to mention the way it leveled the playing field.) The only people who are put out by this arrangement are those who deserve to be put out.<br />
<br />
But to deride somebody for maintaining a professional appearance while in a traditionally professional role? WTF? Are your co-workers terrified of anything remotely exceeding mediocrity? Do they walk around the office with the unbl<x>inking glaze of a Stepford wife or something? Lockpick, our co-workers ought to go in business with one another. I think both groups are just made for eachother-- a bunch of grown-up C students to whom "Average" is a badge of honor.

RedRover,<br />
<br />
I too am a bureaucrat. Some of these are common phrases (said on nearly a daily basis) others are some I've overheard lobbed against me:<br />
<br />
"The interview is over take off the suit." "You're making everyone look bad, slow down." "Why do you wear a suit?" "He's thinks he's a man or something." <br />
<br />
Productivity, resourcefulness, ability, decisiveness, caring about proper dress attire are all attributes that will absolutely get you no where in a government job. You certainly don't get paid well.<br />
<br />
I also have been cornered by a supervisor who constantly asks why I dress well; she wouldn't let me walk around her once in a hallway by actively stepping in front of me. She also walked up to me once while I was at the copier and put her arm around my shoulders and demanded to know why I hadn't attended a presentation. She is not even my supervisor, but this came across as intimidating to me. I am already looking for a new job and I just got this one.<br />
<br />
I really just do not want to play these games and am seriously contemplating resigning without a backup job. Seriously I just want to go to work and work nothing else. I consider it a freaking good day when I don't have to deal with comments like the above. <br />
<br />
To be perfectly honest I'm willing to work for less if it means I don't have to put up with people being obnoxious to me on a daily basis. I wonder if some of these people do this to get performers to quit so they can maintain the status quo or if they are just that obnoxious?

I am sorry to tell you this but unless you work for yourself, you are going to find this immature crap everywhere you go. As I found out, it also goes on in Non profit positions. There is a lot of backstabbing and childish games being played no matter where you go.

I worked with an office manager in a health clinic who I swear had to have slept with someone to get this position!! She knew NOTHING about how to manage an office, nothing about computers, no people skills, and no tolerance for anything. She expected everyone to come in with make up on, nails done and looking like we were ready to walk down the runway...it was a health clinic, not a fashion show. She too would come in a few hours late, spend time doing God only knows what on her computer with the door shut, disappear for hours on end and then have the nerve to tell me how to do my job!!

Some people believe others owe them something because of their position! The only thing I owed her was a slip of reality but I took the termination instead. It was well worth it although I still steam over to this day and that was 4 years ago!!

I am now an AVON rep and I love it! I get to meet new people, I am part of an awesome leadership team and we have so much fun!! Oh, and I get to spend time with my 13 year old daughter which means the world to me!!

All my best to you all!!

Hi RedRover!<br />
<br />
Wow, that took some balls! I applaud you to standing up to them!<br />
<br />
I had a similar experience this year when I asked a co-worker for a client's file & because she has a habit of dragging personal issues to the office, started screaming her head to me in front of another co-worker. I headed out to cool myself and the screaming co-worker refused to apologise & the rest of the team banded together and told me to take the heat! LOL <br />
<br />
So, after a half hour session of blahs from them, I wrote a resignation letter and submitted to my manager and Head Personnel. I was severely angry as it such abuse coming from them. <br />
<br />
Of course my hands were shaking when I tendered in the letter. I spent the next 48 hours during the weekend getting myself together, as I hadn't scouted for another job yet.<br />
<br />
But the action that I had done was noted. The following week my manager & I went to see a client & he asked me what made me resigned. I was still bitter and angry, but told him everything. It was crazy - we had a group discussion about it which was fine for a couple of days. But I suppose there's like a tacit agreement to sabotage. <br />
<br />
I stayed on.<br />
<br />
I'm sorry to hear about your experience during Christmas. Never mind the cold looks that they pass to you - hang on until the right opportunity knocks on your door =)<br />
<br />
Have a great weekend!

Haha... I'd completely forgotten to mention the office gossip crap. There's plenty of it around here as well. Particularly galling was finding out my co-workers were actually laughing at me behind my back for finishing all my assigned tasks well ahead of schedule and then assisting them with theirs; specifically, overhearing a co-worker tell another member of the "team" that she wasn't worried about making production that day because the "stupid white girl" would surely pick up her slack. When I stopped stepping up to help, it wasn't long before I overheard her revise "stupid white girl" to "lazy white girl." Lazy, as in, no longer earning this woman's paycheck for her. I can't win for losing around here.<br />
<br />
Since I wrote this experience, things have improved marginally, however. A few weeks ago I came in on a Monday, and was greeted by a backlog of work left from the week prior equal to virtually the entire workload for that week... literally nothing had been done in that period by the co-worker assigned to that station. Nothing. My "supervisor", either oblivious to the mess or just indifferent, then handed me a stack of data entry amounting to at least eight hours of uninterrupted work, told me it was high priority and could I get it done ASAP?, and then PROCEEDED TO WALK OUT THE DOOR TO A CHRISTMAS PARTY WITH THE CO-WORKER RESPONSIBLE FOR THE BACKLOG.<br />
<br />
I lost it. I spent the hour the rest of the office was enjoying their party and composed a scathing email outlining this outrage, which I cc'ed to said supervisor, our manager, and then three more levels up the chain of command. That got immediate attention.<br />
<br />
It's since been much easier around here, but damn. I can see my breath in this office. It's been cold enough in here to hang meat lately. <br />
<br />
Oh, well. Good thing I didn't take this job to make friends!

Hi RedRover,<br />
<br />
I was struck by your cat thumbnail which I thought was fantastic!<br />
<br />
Apparently, working with the government cuts across the borders.<br />
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I used to work in a fast-paced environment which made me independent in terms of making decisions. As a public relations exec in the hotel industry, I respected the people that I was with for their dedication and effort. I used to pity the Sales Managers for being creamed by the Director of Sales every morning.<br />
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But, as I was just fresh out from college and worked with my former company for 3 years, I decided to jump to working with the govt's media department. Also, I was looking at the pay scale that was definitely 3 times higher than what I was earning then.<br />
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Bang! Now it's been 3 years into the department and I've lost every sense of my self-respect and dignity. My co-workers are backstabbers and one particular sticks out like a sore-thumb, as our manager depends a huge bulk of information from her. <br />
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The worse part is I nearly lost my family in the process because I have to balance the mundane bureaucracies and malicious office gossips (when do these people every stop talking I'll never know). <br />
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I'm grateful in the sense that I can speak to our Personnel Head about my problems, and I'm grateful that I have a job. I even tried to make my work more enjoyable. But nowadays, I've managed the hours - not the work - with extra doses of relaxants to numb my bleeding heart. It got to the point when I just loathed the smell of the office and the people I have to interact with.<br />
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The funny part is, after this year's evaluation - and possibly the worst year in my life - I was recommended a raise.<br />
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It was so odd. It seemed as if I've been with devils and here I'm presented with an extra gift for putting up with the nonsense. I basically felt useless. In any case, I've been scouting for a career that's more challenging and more humane... more towards corporate social responsibility. I'm sure I'll come across with a few more acts in the course but the pressure is too much.<br />
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Anyway, I hope that all will be well for you too!<br />
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Cheers!