I am about to explode with my boss(176 Posts)
I am feeling stabby and want to kill him. Several weeks ago, he asked me and a colleague to organise an awayday for our team. He said it should build on the last one. OK, we said, we can do that, but people will want some fun activities as well. He, and another colleague, have emailed us a vast list of "helpful" suggestions as to what we might do on the awayday. We realised there were some politics here, so said yes, how helpful, we will look at these and see what we can come up with.
We came up with several options for the day using the Shit Sandwich approach - a fun, team building warm up exercise, which will take around 45 minutes, then a quick coffee break, and onto the next exercise, which is his serious work one, finishing with a fun, but relevant activity after lunch.
He has vetoed every single fucking suggestion we have come up with, both for the fun activities and the serious bit in the middle. We are now a week away from the awayday, and I cannot tell you how much time we have wasted on this, as he won't consider ideas, but wants concrete plans, set out in writing.
We have come up with what we thought was a good plan, still using the Shit Sandwich approach. I have emailed him to tell him our latest suggestion which is exactly what he said he wanted for the serious bit. I have said that I don't want to divulge details of the two "fun" exercises, as it is important that everyone comes at these "blind" and doesn't have time to think about them.
I've just got an email (yes, sent this evening). He has vetoed our serious activity and has said we don't seem to have thought about Susan's suggestions. We did think about them, but Susan is as mad as a box of frogs and her suggestions were too. He has also vetoed our "fun" parts to the day, unless we can tell him concretely what they involve.
We have one week to go.
AIBU to tell him to shove the whole thing up his arse and he and Susan can come up with something between them.
And then to crack his fucking head open with an axe and leave the building?
Oh, and another thing... Write the email tonight / first thing BUT DO NOT SEND IT!
Leave it in your drafts for at least 2 hours and then look at it again. Remove any and all emotion and clearly list facts. Putting it in writing means you have it on record your tried to be party to the solution but keeping it factual means it can never be used against you...
I had a similar issue with my boss on Tuesday evening, in a meeting scheduled to start outside my normal hours (I'm PT).
I basically got a bollocking for not doing what they wanted, even though I did what they originally asked for and then they changed their mind.
I had being uming and arring for awhile about how happy I was with my job, so I bit the bullet and resigned. Right there and then.
That will fecking teach 'em.
I don't suggest you do the same, but your welcome to share my glory of having the final laugh
Ifancyashandy - I have done just that! It is in my drafts, ready to send tomorrow if I still feel the same. I think it is quite reasonable. His email to me, which he has also copied to Susan and my other colleague, plus the head honcho, makes him look like some unhinged control freak, from his insistence to be told exactly what is in the exercises. I have promised him no balloons, and no compulsory removal of clothing. My colleague I am supposed to be organising this thing with emailed me to say "what a fecking arse he is." Susan is strangely silent. I wonder if she is thinking that this is all going to end up on her head soon.
I fantasize about doing that, Bobyan! Big respect.
I'm now fantasizing about finding a new job, not so much respect!
susan has not read the email as she is round at the bosses' and they are ..ahem.. busy...
yy, I suppose that's the downside! Wasn't it massively cathartic telling them to stuff it though? Surely it must be worth the penury! Good luck finding a new job - do you want mine?
Good for you. And since he has copied Head Honcho in, you do know you're at massive liberty to do likewise?! Foolish, foolish man!!
you could always call in sick...
Susan and the boss, sitting in a tree.....?
btw, ifancyashandy, you are a genius! Good luck, fww.
Oh dear OP, I have been there with a client like this. Asks for a Management Information application and when asked what it needs to show just get the "I want something with the Wow Factor". This translates to "I haven't got a feckin clue and I need you to do my job as well as your own".
No suggestions I'm afraid, just accept that you will disappoint him, maybe that's what he wants so he can promote the mad Susan who he is probably sleeping with.
Christ I hate awaydays. Every one I have ever been on starts with some cock announcing the most important thing is that they are "FUN". God knows I have a very different definition of fun. My idea of fun is getting roaringly pissed and coming out of a nightclub on Brighton seafront and running to the sea and dancing in the waves under the moonlight and snogging unsuitable men. Their idea is sitting in a windowless crappy hotel conference suite with only a pathetic bowl of mints to eat listening to colleagues moaning about the same things they droned on about at last year's awayday and the one before that.... Thank fuck I'm on maternity leave and get to miss this year's effort.
Should have said, am sure your "fun" ideas are better than average <don't want to offend> but how much more fun would it be to kill your boss with an axe, as you suggest. That sounds like proper fun. It could be the climax of the day.
Think Susan might be a bit huffy because she wasn't asked to do it anyway
Susan may yet solve all your problems...Scorned Susan in the Conference Room with the lead pipe. Awayday for work will be following the hearse and some delicious sausage rolls afterwards. There's your perfect shit sandwich OP
And salmon sandwiches (tinned salmon, red, not pink) - that's what we always have at a funeral. And a nice bit of fruit cake. And a bucket of gin. But no shit sandwiches.
My idea of fun is along the lines of Fryingpanalley's. Disturbingly close, in fact. Un fortunately we've been told no alcohol. Susan likes a drink. Perhaps we could get her tanked up before it starts, and gently thrust the lead piping into her hand.
I've still had no reply on who is paying for lunch.
smimlopinko why thank you! <blushes>.
I've had to write many such emails In my time - I work in an industry with many 'creative' people who get royally pissed off when you can't read their bloody minds!!
Right, I have sent it. I have said that we will revisit some of his and Susan's earlier suggestions, and see if we can incorporate them in what we are doing for the main exercise. I have also said (again) that it is important that everyone comes at the fun parts from the point of no prior knowledge, and have asked, rather passive-aggressively, if he can live with this. And finally, I have commented that given the amount of time this has taken to do and research, I can see why it has been left to professional companies in the past. And I have copied in the Head Honcho and Susan to our exchange.
If he comes back and insists on knowing what is in the fun activities, this is when I will reply to all, saying "do it your fucking self, I'm pulling out of this."
Interestingly, in the feedback for his annual review, almost everyone commented that he appears to have little idea of the impact of his behaviour on others... personally, I think this is deliberate, and he enjoys pissing people off.
It's a shame you can't email Susan and tell her she's now project manager (this is based on a scenario at work where people had their project manager role taken off them and given to someone else. However this only emerged at their appraisal, which was the first they had heard about being supposed to do the project manager role.
Can I pick your brains as to what the fun activities are? In a similar situation and my day is totally dry. Need shit sandwich approach (forgot about that!!)
No need to sweat this - you still have plenty of time and DH has the perfect solution.
As suggested upthread, kill the bastard. Then use his body to make the sandwiches.
Is there any way at all you can say ok look, this clearly isn't working. I am going to hand over to you now. You can organise it. Nothing I suggest is acceptable and I have no more ideas. I will not be organising this day.
A boss of mine once took us away to a hotel for two days for one of these ridiculous efforts.
We did maybe an hour's actual work the whole time. The highlights were:
(1) Cringing through the boss's ppt presentation on "Change". It was obvious she had googled the word then copied and pasted what she found.
(2) The Elefun and Twister "ice-breakers".
(3) The compulsory "fun" activities, which were all very physical and not remotely suitable for my colleague with arthritis. Two of us blagged passes to the adults-only swimming pool instead.
(4) One colleague falling off a horse and having to be air-lifted to hospital.
(5) Another colleague getting drunk, emotional, then aggressive.
These things are patronising and an utter waste of time and money.
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