First Skirmish with the New Boss


I’ve had minimal contact with the new boss, apart from a few emails exchanged in regards to scheduling a few things on her calendar, canceling some others. Blah, blah. Nothing much.

Today she comes to ask me about a meeting I scheduled at least a week ago, that she accepted (she handles all her meeting requests) to ask me who this person is that she’s meeting with. (the other party requested the meeting) The other person is part of the department, works for one of the other bosses. So I’m thinking how long has she been here, and she’s asking me who this person is? The meeting in question had to do with getting a recommendation from her for this other person to be on some committee or something, not quite sure ’cause I really don’t care. But why, you may be asking, does she wait until the day of the meeting that she herself accepted to question it? Beats me.

Fine, whatever.

So she starts going through her little iPhone looking at her calendar, giving me alternate times to move this meeting to for whatever reason and she rattles off a few times she finds acceptable. I questioned one of the times she gave me because big as life and twice as ugly she had other meetings on her calendar during at least one of those timeframes, but also claimed to have something where nothing was showing scheduled.

“Did you want it at 10:30?” I asked.

“No, I have something then. Between noon and one o’clock is good.”

There’s nothing booked on her Outlook calendar from 9:00 – 12:00, after which point she’s basically back-to-back with meetings for the rest of the day. “Noon?” I asked, just to be sure we were both looking at the same day.

“That’s what I just said, isn’t it?”

“Yes, but you have …”

“Oh yeah, the blahblahwhatever thing. I don’t actually go to that.”

Now, I read. All kinds of things. Books, magazines, short stories, Tarot cards. But the one thing I do not read is minds. I guess I was supposed to  know by osmosis that the 12:00 – 1:00 recurring meeting on her calendar is one she never actually attends. Think I should just ask her to point out to me which meetings on her calendar are bogus for future reference? Keeping her calendar is a small part of this mostly data entry job. Should we start taking bets on whether I last a year here?

I did, however, show the office manager how to do something in Excel that she wasn’t able to figure out, so points for that, I guess.

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26 thoughts on “First Skirmish with the New Boss

  1. I just don’t get how I’m supposed to know anything about her calendar when she’s never told me anything. Apparently that was the job of the former admin, who is now living in Tennessee and has been supporting her remotely, to fill me in on all this. Now, if she wasn’t still doing this job from 2000 miles away, and had simply quit and gone to another job, who does she think would have told me everything? This attitude of executives who expect you to just know what’s what when you’re brand new to the company baffles me.

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  2. I think you might last longer than a year. Your getting to know her schedule on and off paper/computer. Give it sometime and you will know which is faux and which is real. She seem a bit weird though. In a business setting communication is the key especially when it comes to important meetings. Wishing you well with her.

    “keyword-urge to kill, lol” love it! I give you two points. One for helping out the office manager and another for not killing your boss:D heck three points because it takes restraints:D

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  3. That’s all right, I knew what you meant. 🙂 My first clue should have been when I found out the previous admin (who moved back to TN) was only in the job for six months. The one before her I think lasted a year. No idea about the ones before her.

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  4. This seems to be common in most civilian companies. I’ve worked in different national family restaurant chains from hourly employee to salaried corporate grunt. There was always a breakdown in communications because people of responsibility either “assumed” something or didn’t “own-up” to their own failings. That’s why I said civilian companies; we both have military backgrounds, and those TWO failures could have cost lives. That’s not to say the military is flawless, but the results could be extremely costly, and they didn’t let you forget that!

    Like the others, I know you’ll last longer than a year. I can’t say that for your bosses. 🙂

    BB

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  5. Oh she’s been there for years, she’s not going anywhere. No, management protects themselves and eachother, it’s us underlings who suffer. We’re just the pawns on the chessboard.

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  6. Could you bring this up to her? In a “I was just wondering if there are other things on your schedule that aren’t…blah blah…so I can better prioritize things” sort of way? Keep the focus on how you want to be able to run things smoothly, to make things easier not just for yourself, but for *her*.

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  7. Honestly, I don’t think that would be wise, after what I saw yesterday. Execs at this level just sort of expect you to know stuff w/o asking. I guess I’ll just figure it out as I go along. And if they can me, they can me. :::shrug::: On we go.

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  8. I think you’re just getting to know one another. Who’s more capable that you and I have found people who have staff of any kind truly appear clueless a good part of the time. They’re used to be taken care of it and do assume you read minds. If I knew her I’d put a spell on her that involved a little grace. I’m just saying. Always remember it’s not you.

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    1. I’m starting to think it is me, that I’m just not cut out for this kind of work. When I was younger I was more eager to please. These days it’s more like “I’ll put up with you for the paycheck.” 😉

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      1. I found him here. It’s called Fallen Angel, and it’s by Alexandre Cabanel, dated 1868. I’m liking this new theme, it allows the entire image to be used for the header, rather than having to crop it down to a small slice. I think he will be there for some time, yes 😉

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  9. I have often used a pawn and a king to take a queen or a castle. Though I never recommend playing games unless you are forced into a corner. just make good allies, get to know her like the other replies said, I don’t know about you guys but jobs are few and far between in Ireland 🙂

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    1. Interesting. I never really learned chess beyond the basic moves. It’s hard to say about the job market here. Some of the folks who were laid off when I was found jobs very quickly, though most did not and I think most are still looking. I was out of work for 4 months, which is nothing. Frankly I wish it had been longer! 😀 It’s not all bad here, I get to do the occasional good deed for strangers which is eminently more satisfying than most of the stuff I get paid to do.

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      1. I was out of work for two years, the first 1.5 were fun and then I began to lose all sense of proportion where my skills were concerned.
        Seeing as no one could see I was useful, I started my own business and have never been so busy in my life 🙂

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  10. Girl, the life of an admin assistant will turn your hair gray! Trust me! You will either have to start writing a comedy show starring this crazy person or star in your own show at the insane asylum. I actually have 5 bosses, and let me tell you, that keeps my hair stylist in the money. I feel your pain!

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    1. Ha! Thanks Liz 🙂 Misery loves company and all that. I used to like it, but this is barely even admin work. It’s more like being a buyer, and doing accounting work (coding PO requests, filing). It’s bad when you start envying the lady who cleans the bathrooms.

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  11. I’ve had my own share of “executive day care” duty with VPs who were making a whole lot more dough for their “experience” yet they seemed to be totally clueless when it came to some of the basic tasks of daily living, let alone running a business. A sense of humor and a great support team around me helped tremendously.

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  12. I’m trying to keep reminding myself how lucky I am to be where I am, because it’s not easy to get in there. If it works out, it works out. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.

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  13. Haha, thank Chris 😉 I’m sure it’s been frustrating to her to have to get used to new admins so often. The gal before me was only here for six months, and I have no idea how long the previous one was here. I’m still sketchy on the details.

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