What a way to make a living...
September 8, 2008 11:41 AM Subscribe
I have questions about finding a new job whilst working my current one
and hating it
. And changing careers. And what to say to recruiters so that I don't end up in an office environment like this again. And questions about references. Sigh. Oh and guilt.
posted by ticktockdoc to work & money (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I questioned last week about calling in sick while Boss was on hols, (but really came into the office, wherein I looked like I was mitching...) I relaxed [thanks everybody for advice!]. However. Coworker later said he'd asked her to spy/keep an eye on my days off while he was away and report back to him. Considering I was genuinely sick and it was my fifth sick day [all with certs] in 18 months, his behaviour is unacceptable IMHO. He is naturally suspicious [expolice officer] and angsty about his recent [3months] promotion to office manager, but getting someone I work with to spy on me? No. I've had longstanding problems with the work environment that I've always let slide. Until now. Time for a new job.
I plan using many different job agencies. Do I tell them the real reasons why I'm leaving, or do I make up something generic like 'I need a new direction'?
I also want to avoid ending up in a similar office environment, where the work ethic is beyond unreasonable, how do I stress this without sounding lazy or unwilling to work? I feel recruiters will focus on only finding me a position so they can get a comission, etc. During any interviews I attend, I'm really going to make an effort to suss out the prospective employer/office/etc.
Background reasons why I'm leaving also include:
a) Lunch hour is NOT observed [you only get to leave the office/take an hour if all the work is done. If it's a busy day, no lunch break for you. You're allowed to pop to the shop to get a sandwich, 5mins max]. If the no-lunch happens for 5 days of the week, then tough, we're busy.
b) Coworker [fellow admin, aged 45], who's been there 20+ years has to do every. single. task. herself. and is infuriatingly know-it-all, patronising and an utter workaholic. She's known not to take lunch/tea/bathroom breaks for the full day if there's dictation to type, and expects the same from you.
c) I start at 9:00. I do NOT want to feel guilty or late if I arrive at 8:30 or, shock horror, 8:50! It's not my problem that Boss has been in since 7:30 or that admin coworker likes to arrive at 8:00 [she should start at 9:00 too], flys through all the work for both of us, then brag about it.
e) If coworker is on leave, I've to do BOTH sets of work - which one person can't physically do. But then I look incompetant when the situation is reversed and coworker can do the work [by forgoing lunch/tea/bathroom breaks/breathing]
So far, I've kept the peace and played along. The money is good for a 25 year old who never went to college [raises hand] and there are many people who'd die for a regular, long-term 9-5. But spying? No. Being worked to the absolute bone? No.
I'm starting a night-time honours degree in Computing which will last three years. Any tips on what *type* of offices an admin/touchtypist might apply to, given what I'm learning at night? I'm good with and interested in computers, but have no formal qualifications [that's what this degree is for].
Also, references. The old boss is in a new line of work [loss assessor], but regularly speaks with new boss [loss adjuster]. Old boss was awesome and I know will give me a super reference. But I don't plan on handing in my notice until I have a job offer in writing. I've to work a month's notice [ugh] and hope to get a decent reference from new boss too. How do I handle that one? "Old boss? Will you give me a reference and not tell new boss I'm actively looking for a new job, even though you'll meet new boss on inspections?"
And... any help at the lingering guilt over not being able to hack a work environment like that? I feel coworker [and boss and other staff] look down on me for not being in 10 places at once. I'm trying to shrug it off and know deep down I'm a very good worker. And I'm being proactive by seeking out a better position. But there's this guilt still.