Ever since my boss (she of the horrid driving skills and terrible grasp of mental health stigma) came along, nothing has been safe. There’s not a single policy or procedure in the hospital that hasn’t felt the effect of her flighty and manic need to arrange, rearrange, and change again. As she likes to say—“the only thing constant is change!” Except for the fact she’s CONSTANTLY saying this. And constantly forgetting the last thing she changed.
I should’ve known there’d be trouble when I came into my office one afternoon to find her sifting around in the cupboard below my microwave.
“I’m trying to find a straw,” she explained. “but this is setting my OCD off so much.”
She laughed one of those nervous apologetic laughs that are completely manufactured and intended to make things seem less bitchy (but never do). I pointed at the cup of straws right in front of her face. She snatched one up with a fake smile and went clop-clopping back to her office, dragging 19-inch wedges across the bare carpet.
Two days later I came in to discover she’d completely rearranged the cupboard. My “KILL” instinct was in full blown execution. I don’t even use that cupboard and inherited it’s currently messy state from the last person who had this job. But I suddenly preferred it that way, simply because it was prior to her involvement.
I could give you a thousand similar examples— like the binder of historical documents that has been sitting on my coffee table for three years without any issue, until she decided to look at it and completely tore the thing to pieces, scattering letters and photographs out of order then sticking it on her bookshelf and telling me she promises to “fix it later” + 999 other examples.
Naturally, I haven’t said a word about how crazy she drives me because my sole professional goal is to fly under the radar and do as little as possible. Plus, I’m a spy and spies must blend in and go with the flow. At least… that was my goal until she put my life on the line.
Her latest plan comes in the wake of a thousand other abandoned plans and entails moving every single person out of their current office and into a new office. Picture the most fucked up game of musical chairs + heavy office furniture + 900 years of paper medical records and you’ll get the picture.
How does this threaten my life? Because she’s decided the executive offices should be moved to the front of the building. As in, the place where someone will enter when they decide to come kill everyone. I much prefer my current situation, where they have to wind their way through the whole first floor and past a couple dozen offices before they reach me.
I’m sure you all remember how much we’ve prepared for an active shooter—some staff went so far as to build fortresses and stockpile rations— but I won’t even have a chance to dive behind a row of filing cabinets. I’m going down with the ship, and I totally hate this ship.
There’s a slight chance my office move won’t happen since its contingent on her being able to knock some walls down. She likes to throw that out there like it’s no big deal.
“Yeah we’ll just knock down those two walls so we can turn four offices into two big offices.”
No one seems to want to point out that the walls are made of solid concrete and may be load bearing for the other floors piled above us. They’re probably hoping as much as me that this whole place just crumbles to pieces one day.
I’m not saying she hasn’t made SOME good changes. One might even argue that it would be impossible for this place to get any worse. She just goes about the changes in the worst way possible.
Here’s how a reasonable person would do it: “I have decided to move office A to office B and office B to office C, which will now be out-sourced.”
Here’s how she does it:
1. Tells housekeeper she plans to move office A to office B because of the budget.
2. Tells security officer she plans to move office B to office C because of safety considerations
3. Tells me she plans to out-source office C because she is building an empire.
4. Tells the people who work in office C they have nothing to be worried about.
5. Fires everyone who works in office C.
6. Tells everyone in office B they have nothing to be worried about.
7. Hires a new employee to work in office B. Doesn’t tell anyone what their job function is. When asked, she says “they are just there to observe,” AKA you’re all getting fired.
Since she’s been here she’s ousted more employees than I can think to name. She’s demoted them until they retired, humiliated them until they quit, and set them up so they were fired. I’m not saying most of us don’t deserve to be fired, but it’s still a little sad to see them squashed like a field mouse in my car door. Not to mention the likelihood of them coming back to this place with some sort of assault rifle they bought off ETSY because this is ‘Murica.
And when they do, I’ll be the first office in their path. Sitting here with my shoes melting against a space heater in mid-August because the office AC is treacherous, eating plastic donuts from the vending machine and listening to Elton John because it reminds me of a time in my life where I didn’t wish someone would put me out of my misery.
Does YOUR boss make terrible decisions? How do you feel when people go through your things? Do you ever feel unsafe at work?
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