Mean Girls and a sick husband.   1 comment

Another week has gone by.  And what a crazy one it has been.

Work sucks.  I manage a team of recruiters and our company recently had to abolish individual quantitative goals due to federal government regulations.  In the spirit of “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon,” my thank you note is as follows…”Thank you Democratic Party…for inserting your nosy ass right where it doesn’t belong.”

Anyway, once goals were taken away and my team realized that they a) had no goals, and b) their manager would be out on maternity leave for 12 weeks, they decided to stop working.  It is a classic case of “when the cat’s away the mice will play.”  It’s terribly disappointing though because my team continued to perform very well when I was out on maternity leave with my first son.  Even more, they were the rock stars of the company during our last fiscal year.  Now that I’ve been back to work for a month, I finally have a grasp of what’s going on with my team.  When I first got back, I had to learn about our entire new management and compensation plan.  Everything changed during the 12 weeks I was out…and I mean everything…right down to our pay cycle and benefits.  Our goals changed, how we conduct business changed, our data management systems changed, our Human Resources system changed, our pay periods changed, our benefits changed, our phone systems…EVERYTHING.  The only thing that didn’t change was the name of our company, and I am half expecting that to change soon too.

I manage a group of “Mean Girls.”  If you’ve ever seen the movie with Lindsay Lohan, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  My team is divided.  I have three team members who have continued to perform well and adapt to change.  The other three however became lazy sacks of shit while I was out and decided to stop working.  Because I am still required to generate a certain amount of revenue to my client based on the number of individuals I recruit to that client’s programs, my team still has to work.  They are still goaled on qualitative objectives, which at the end of the day all relate back to how they perform on a quantitative level.  Sounds all sorts of crazy and f*cked up, doesn’t it?

So, back to the Mean Girls.  I have the ring leader, the stupid one, and the one who is constantly trying to ensure she fits in with the other two.  Sometimes I swear the movie was filmed at my office.  It is obnoxious.  My Mean Girls are what you would describe as professionally immature.  Try as I can to have a professional environment, they are an obstacle in allowing that to happen.

I have had to talk with each of them about arriving to work on time, turning on their computers and actually working when they arrive, working their entire shifts, and staying off of the internet during their work hours.  I’ve had conversations and now most recently, documented conversations.  This past Friday, my manager counterparts were in town for a meeting.  We were all in my manager’s office when through the door I hear my three Mean Girls all in one of their cubes looking at wedding dresses online.  WTF.  I was less than five feet away.  I had JUST spoken with two of them about browsing the internet not too days ago.  I’m guessing they thought I wasn’t paying attention, but I was and so were my fellow managers.  One of my manager colleagues stepped out of the office and asked what they were doing, and they said they were making calls.  They lied to her face.  It was incredible.  She told them to get back to work and they reluctantly walked back to their desks and giggled a little bit.  I was furious.

I continued with my managers’ meeting and we went to lunch.  At lunch, I decided I would hold an impromptu meeting with my team and tell them exactly how I feel about their behavior.  I scheduled the meeting for 4:30pm and was looking forward to it.  Once I had all six in the office, I told them exactly how I felt.  I pride myself on being flexible and fair, and empowering my employees to do their very best.  I provide them the tools and resources they need to perform and succeed at their jobs, and recently I feel that the more I give, the more some of them take.  I told them they embarrassed me in front of the other managers and I was disappointed in them.  I told them that we are perceived as slackers across the company.  I reminded them that just in August of last year we were super stars and went above and beyond our goals, and since then we’ve done nothing but miss goals.  I told them I have been defending them since September and I no longer can or will defend them to my manager or our corporate team.  I told them that I brought them in as a team because I wanted them all to understand that even one or two individuals who are slacking can bring down the rest of the team.  More importantly, I let them know that if they are not willing to work hard while they are on my team, they will not continue to be on the team (and they all know that means they will not have jobs). I ended the meeting on a positive note and told them to rest up over the weekend and be prepared to come in Monday and rock it.

I believe the meeting was effective.  I received emails from two senior people on the team who congratulated me on taking a stand and told me they respected me for what I said.  I could tell the Mean Girls were slightly scared by my words, and I am looking forward to seeing what happens tomorrow.  Will their attitudes change?  Will they start performing?  Will they stop slacking and browsing the internet?  I don’t know.  But, what I do know is that my Mean Girls are all receiving their first round of written disciplinary action tomorrow.  Perhaps that will force them to understand the importance of the situation.

I suppose I’ve always taken pride in my work and acted professional.  I go to work to work.  I feel very lucky to have the career I have and work for the awesome company I work for.  I honestly believe these girls do not have a clue how lucky they are to have their jobs.  One of them is a single mother, the other is recently engaged and planning her wedding, and the other lives on her own and takes care of her sickly little dog.  They all need the money.

I suppose we’ll see how this next week goes.  I do not like to be this kind of manager.  I want to lead my team to success, not have to deal with their professional immaturity.

On to more important things.  If you’ve been keeping up, you know my husband came down with a severe case of vertigo last week.  Unfortunately, he still has it.  He has also experienced a myriad of other symptoms over the past week and a half which have scared him.  I mentioned before how my husband is the strong one…never worried about anything.  He always has the answers.  This has scared him.  He’s spent the past week and a half researching the internet whenever a new symptom arises, and now he believes he has the onset of Type 2 Diabetes.  I read all the symptoms and what people experienced before they were diagnosed, and I am afraid.  What he has experienced is extremely similar to those diagnosed with diabetes.  However, I’ve also read the symptoms related to mono, and many of his symptoms also point to that.  Honestly, neither is desirable, but I’d rather him have mono than diabetes.  Either way, it sucks.

He’s been very tired.  He has been helping out with the kids, but has not felt like doing much else around the house.  He seems a bit depressed, but that could be just from being tired.  He goes back to our family doctor tomorrow morning for a check up on his blood pressure, and he plans to talk with the doctor about his findings and ask for a referral to see someone else.  He wants to be tested for diabetes, mono, and would like an MRI.  He’s never been concerned about his health until now, and now that he’s armed with a little bit of knowledge, he plans to stop at nothing to figure this out.  He wants to feel normal.  I don’t blame him.  I couldn’t imagine having the spins for a week and not knowing what was causing them.

I am completely cognizant of the fact that much worse things could happen and there are people out there dealing with much more debilitating health problems than he is, but for now, this is our reality.  If any of you reading have experienced prolonged vertigo, red ears that are warm to the touch, upset stomach, fatigue, sore throat, and pressure in the ears, please let me know what your diagnosis was.  We’ve got two little boys who need two healthy parents…

Unfortunately I have to spend the next few hours of today cleaning up my house.  I’ve neglected housework a bit this week.  There’s a pile of laundry a mile high that I need to take care of, and mud in my carpet from my dumb ass dog who ran outside during a thunderstorm while we were out grocery shopping last night.  (If you’ve kept up, you’ll know this it not the first time she has done this.  We got home late last night to her pile of mud in the living room.  She was covered in mud herself.  I could have killed her.  Time to come up with a different solution to the dog door.  It’s my fault, I know.)

I’m looking forward to writing more about my crazy parents (I know, I promised!) and my life as a mother here soon.  It seems that the rest of my life is currently interfering with my ability to do that.

Happy Sunday.

All the best,

Someone’s mom


One response to “Mean Girls and a sick husband.

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  1. Hi there. This is my first visit to your blog, led by pissykittylitter’s blogroll. I have vertigo, and was diagnosed for reals last November, but I’d known I had it for ten or more years. It got worse and scary, as I thought about falling over backwards in the shower and cracking my head open, as I live alone. It wasn’t so much dying alone that worries me. It’s the cops showing up and taking my picture. Naked. And me, too dead or unconcious to stop the bastards. So I got an MMR.

    I have the ear pressure, but I also have TMJ, so I think that’s the source of that. Diabetes runs in my mothers side of the family, but I don’t think about it. Keep my weight down, watch sugars, etc. I also get the sore throats, but that has been going on for years, sometimes related to alergy medicines. Some of my symptoms were pointing to MS, which my aunt had. Vertigo can be a symptom, plus other nuerological stuff. Final answer is, I still don’t know. They offer therapy of some sort for vertigo, is all I know. Good luck there. No matter what it is, faith and love is the best healer.

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