Author Topic: Miss My Way (long) UPDATE!  (Read 9406 times)

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Mental Magpie

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Miss My Way (long) UPDATE!
« on: April 17, 2013, 06:46:33 PM »
There are 4 stations in my division.  For each station, there is one officer per shift, two shifts per day (Day Shift Officer and Swing Shift Officer).  There are also officers who are floaters: they cover a station when that station's officer is on his/her day off.  For the two days off each officer gets, the same floater may not be at the same station.  Each shift has its own set of floaters.  If this is confusing, please let me know, and I will try to explain again.  When each station is manned by its officer, the floater goes from station to station making sure the officer doesn't need anything.  Officers are not allowed to leave their posts at all for any reason other than assigned duties.  Floaters are errand runners first and fill in at stations second.

I am a Day Shift Officer.
Miss My Way is a Day Shift Floater.

Miss My Way, while at the most spending two days at one station per week, likes to change things in the station to suit her.  I spend five days a week at my station, so it makes sense that things should be run my way.  Sometimes she isn't in my station at all, sometimes she's there for just one day a week.  She doesn't just do this to me, so I know it's not personal.

I am not talking about things that can easily be changed back nor comfort things; this isn't a window shade she has pulled shut.  I am talking about rearranging a printed schedule that is printed out once a month.  She will change it to suit her, reprint it, and replace the old one with it.  This does not work for me.  On top of that, this is not her responsibility.  It is my and the Swing Shift Officer's responsibility to have this paper printed each month.  She will use the sheet during her shift, but that's it.  Twenty days out of the month, I and the Swing Shift Officer use that sheet.  The other ten or eleven days, she may never see the sheet at all if she isn't assigned to our station.

This is just one example of how she must have things her way.  There are plenty others.  She also likes to directly undermine other officers when it will be that officer who gets into trouble or will have people irritated at him/her.  My question is whether I should have words with her directly concerning only my station or if I should go directly to our supervisor.

If I do speak to her directly, what kind of words can I use?  I am afraid my anger and irritation will seep through if I don't have words prepared.  I want to remain polite but direct.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2013, 04:48:18 PM by Mental Magpie »
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EllenS

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2013, 07:03:32 PM »
Well, I can't speak to other issues, but using the printed schedule as an example, it looks to me like the problem is not that she printed it to suit herself, but that she got rid of the one YOU need to use, right?  I mean, if she printed one the way she likes, and took it away with her, that would not really affect you when you came back.  In other words, if she leaves your station as she found it, no harm no foul.

I would try speaking to her first. I have had problems before with asking supervisors for help in dealing with co-workers.  Often when I am looking for advice or help, it comes off as a formal complaint and escalates when I did not mean it to.

Perhaps this would be an angle to approach her - "Floaty,I have noticed that we have different ways of working (insert examples like the schedule).  I would never tell you how to do your job when you're here, but it is important that I have my station set up and ready to go when I arrive back.  So please, when you are covering my station do make sure to leave it as you found it (with specific non-windowshade examples)."

If you wanted to go a step further and be super-gracious, what about offering her a file folder or part of a drawer to keep "her way" stuff, like the schedule, in?  That way the changeover could be quicker and more consistent.

I would also confine this to your own station and not mention anyone else's. 

doodlemor

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2013, 08:27:29 PM »
If my memory is accurate you are a corrections officer, right?  If so, then I would think about whether the things that she is doing are safety/security issues. 

Safety issues should be to be reported to a supervisor, other things you may want to deal with her directly. 

If she is actually violating work place rules I think that you should start documenting.  I'm sure that there are very good reasons for any employee rules in corrections, and it could be dangerous to not follow them.

She may be trying to needle you and others - don't let her know how annoyed you are.

gramma dishes

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2013, 09:52:16 PM »
I would just tell her.  "Stop changing my stuff!!"

If she doesn't seem to know what you're talking about, be very specific about the 'changes' she makes and, if you want to, tell her why they don't work for you and the swing shift officer. 

Give her one chance to stop sabotaging your work station.  If she doesn't stop or if it escalates, go immediately to your supervisor and let him/her know what's going on.

Margo

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2013, 06:07:44 AM »
Well, I can't speak to other issues, but using the printed schedule as an example, it looks to me like the problem is not that she printed it to suit herself, but that she got rid of the one YOU need to use, right?  I mean, if she printed one the way she likes, and took it away with her, that would not really affect you when you came back.  In other words, if she leaves your station as she found it, no harm no foul.

I would try speaking to her first. I have had problems before with asking supervisors for help in dealing with co-workers.  Often when I am looking for advice or help, it comes off as a formal complaint and escalates when I did not mean it to.

Perhaps this would be an angle to approach her - "Floaty,I have noticed that we have different ways of working (insert examples like the schedule).  I would never tell you how to do your job when you're here, but it is important that I have my station set up and ready to go when I arrive back.  So please, when you are covering my station do make sure to leave it as you found it (with specific non-windowshade examples)."

If you wanted to go a step further and be super-gracious, what about offering her a file folder or part of a drawer to keep "her way" stuff, like the schedule, in?  That way the changeover could be quicker and more consistent.

I would also confine this to your own station and not mention anyone else's.
I agree - I would speak to her first,and be ready to give specifc examples. Documetn that you spoke to her (and what her response was) and if it doesn't change, go to a supervisor. It may be that she thinks she is being helpful, and having someone point out that that isn't the cae may be all that is needed. If she thinks it is helpful, is there a way of redirecting her, to encourage / advise her to use the appropriate channel for her to make any suggestions for change?

I would not say anything to her about other officers' stations, but if you know that she is also doing this for other Officers and that it is a problem for them too, it may be worth letting them know you've spoken to her and will be referring it up, sp that they can do the same if they wish - if there is more than one person reporting the same issue with the same person then it is less likely to come over as a personal problem.

Do you have any kind of deaprtmental meetigns where it could be raised as a general issue?

On a practical level, I would also keep  copeis of things she may change so that yu can at least put things back the way they should be relatively easily.

JenJay

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2013, 07:56:42 AM »
I would email (so it's documented) her "Coworker, when you cover a shift at station X please do not throw out, re-write or otherwise change any of the forms and schedules that I am using. Thank you, MM."

If she does it again you contact your mutual supervisor, explain the situation and that you've asked her to stop, and ask him/her to speak to her.

As for her deliberately doing things incorrectly when she knows it'll get the main officer spoken to - watch your back. The supervisors should be made aware that this is going on. I bet once they look for it they'll see a pattern where Thing gets messed up on an officer's post but hey, look at that, MyWay covered that post yesterday. Just like that other Thing a few days ago. What a coincidence!
« Last Edit: April 18, 2013, 07:59:49 AM by JenJay »

Mental Magpie

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2013, 04:47:33 PM »
Well, my saying anything was kind of railroaded because she ticked off another Day Shift Officer who sent out an e-mail instead.  The other officer sent it to everyone and did not name any names.  It was a general, "Please leave things the way you found them" but with a hint of "because you're ticking everyone off!".

The other officer called me to ask me if something in my station had been changed, too, thinking that one of our supervisors did it (it happens from time to time but there is usually an e-mail to follow explaining why the change was made).  I told her that it hadn't and asked who was in her station yesterday.  "Miss My Way, that's why I was calling to ask you..."  I explained how things had been changed in my station, too, and the other officer just started to rant...I let her because honestly, I was feeling the exact same way.  Then she sent out the e-mail and called me back about twenty minutes later to tell me that one of our supervisors had call to inquire as to what had happened.  Apparently the supervisor knew it was Miss My Way before the other officer even mentioned it. 

Thanks for all of the advice, folks; hopefully she'll give it a rest.


As an example of her changing a schedule, let's say I have one part highlighted because it makes it easier for me to read.  She removed the highlight and added black boxes to the days off where I had none, again, because it was easier for me and my partner to read that way.  She then printed it out done her way and threw away mine.  I can use her version of the schedule, it's just harder for me to do so.
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

EllenS

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2013, 04:51:12 PM »
The crazy thing about all this is, why throw yours away?

If a different layout works better for her, fine - but it's the messing other people up I don't get.

Mental Magpie

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2013, 04:53:01 PM »
The crazy thing about all this is, why throw yours away?

If a different layout works better for her, fine - but it's the messing other people up I don't get.

That was my thought...use hers but leave mine there!

She likes to say, "Well, that's not how we used to do it."  You know what?  That was over a year ago, let it go already.  I think it is very much a control issue with her.
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

Oh Joy

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2013, 05:43:27 PM »
Just want to make sure I understand correctly.  I'm assuming these stations are manned 24/7.  You are assigned to it 40 hours each week, someone else 40 hours each week, and the other 88 hours are manned by by floaters?

Thanks!

Mental Magpie

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2013, 05:53:41 PM »
Just want to make sure I understand correctly.  I'm assuming these stations are manned 24/7.  You are assigned to it 40 hours each week, someone else 40 hours each week, and the other 88 hours are manned by by floaters?

Thanks!

No, these stations are manned only 16 hours a day.  That's 40 hours by me, 40 hours by my partner (so that's 80 hours of how we like it*), and 32 hours of floaters (which may mean at the most 4 different floaters and at the least 2).

*My partner and I discuss how we want things and compromise so that things work seamlessly between us. 
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

hjaye

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2013, 01:57:59 PM »
Before you do anything, I would have a talk with whoever her direct supervisor is. I would explain what the problem is that I was having with Miss My Way, and ask him if he wanted you to talk to her first, or if he wanted to deal with it.

If he says he wants you to talk to her, try and gauge how much if any he will back you up if she persists in changing things.  If he doesn't care, then there is not to much you can do. You can tell her to stop, but if she faces no consequences if she doesn't then nothing will change.

if her supervisor wants you talk to her, and then is willing to discipline her if she doesn't, you can tell her please stop changing the way the schedule is printed, and please stop doing whatever else she is doing that is messing things up.  You can then tell her, if she continues to change things around, you will have to take your complaint to her supervisor.

TootsNYC

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2013, 02:41:10 PM »
The crazy thing about all this is, why throw yours away?

If a different layout works better for her, fine - but it's the messing other people up I don't get.

yeah!

I can totally see that she'd like a schedule that works for her, in terms of readability, but to toss yours? That's just incredibly rude.

She really *IS* "Miss My Way." (nice name for her)

Mental Magpie

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2013, 04:47:11 PM »
The crazy thing about all this is, why throw yours away?

If a different layout works better for her, fine - but it's the messing other people up I don't get.

yeah!

I can totally see that she'd like a schedule that works for her, in terms of readability, but to toss yours? That's just incredibly rude.

She really *IS* "Miss My Way." (nice name for her)

I wouldn't even mind if she asked me, "Hey, can you print my version on the back, too?  I'll prepare it every month if you just print it out for me on the back of yours."  I'd be happy to do so, as printing only takes a minute.  It's the total lack of respect that I think bothers me the most.
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

EllenS

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Re: Miss My Way (long)
« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2013, 04:49:53 PM »
What if you just proactively did that?  Or put them back-to-back in a page protector, and left her a note? I know it's not your job, but if this is someone you have to deal with long-term, a little gesture like that might open the door to her being more of a team player.