to expect the boss to know that i meant to spell the word huge with an E on the end

(54 Posts)
finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 12:11:43

woke up yesterday and realisd that I had an emergency plumber coming in to fix a leak, a meeting with social services regarding ds1 and had promised to take my sister and BIL to the airport so I sent a text to the boss at 6 a.m asking for the morning off which ended up including a request for it as a "...favour. huug this time"... as I wa a little overwhelmed and should have planned better etc. Was contacted by the PA to let me know that he'd rather I just took the day off to sort things out instead and that we need to talk when I have things under control.

Have been avoiding him all day today but surely he must know that I was asking for a 'huge favour' not a hug as I am known for being the tough one in the office and let this one go. how to boldly approach the conversation...

LayMeDown Thu 06-Mar-14 12:17:19

What makes you think his issue is with your misspelling? I think it's far more likely he's annoyed with you wanting the morning off at short notice and/or texting him at 6 am.

Musicaltheatremum Thu 06-Mar-14 12:17:59

Are you sure he's not wanting to talk to you about taking the morning off at the last minute rather than the typo? You must have known about your morning's arrangements before 6am on the day.

Musicaltheatremum Thu 06-Mar-14 12:18:23

Oops cross post

Well it sounds like you had a lot planned so why you didn't just take the day off is a bit beyond me. Did you seriously wake up and think, shit I've a busy day, let's see if I can get the morning off work??

I don't blame your boss for wanting a word, stuff like that is what leave is for, not hug or huge favours.

LayMeDown Thu 06-Mar-14 12:19:43

As for approaching the conversation, just mail him and say 'x (PAs name) said you wanted to have a talk. Let me know when is a good time'

Ratbagcatbag Thu 06-Mar-14 12:23:53

Sorry, you don't just realise at 6am that you have an emergency plumber coming that morning, or a meeting with social services and you also don't just remember you have an airport run to do that morning too.

I would suggest you use your phone as a diary/organiser and note things in advance.

I agree with Laymedown, a 6am text is not good, you could have text at any point over the weekend. With regards to it being a huug rather than huge, I wouldn't worry it about, he will understand what you meant. unless you routinely hug him.

TwinklySprout Thu 06-Mar-14 12:26:26

I don't think your spelling of huge is the issue here.

It was 6am. You probably woke your boss up. You let him down by begging time off work with absolutely no notice. The fact that you seem - from your OP - to think this is an OK way to behave suggests you might have form for being unreliable.

Sorry to be harsh. And sorry if I've made an assumption too many and you've never before taken a single day off in the ten years you've worked there. But I know from experience that dealing with employees who do this sort of thing is really really difficult.

CoffeeTea103 Thu 06-Mar-14 13:09:35

You come across as very unaware in general if you actually think it's about your spelling. If I was your boss, i would also want a word being texted at 6am on short notice!
You knew you had all these things planned why didn't you make better arrangements?

MrMacadoo Thu 06-Mar-14 13:10:38

I don't think this is down to a typo. The fact that you have asked for a favour and followed it with the words "huge this time" suggests to me you might ask for quite a few favours

Samu2 Thu 06-Mar-14 13:13:56

you really thought this was down to a typo?

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 13:14:24

Do you work in an industry where your boss was already at work at 6.00am?

finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 13:16:38

to put it in context, we have an agreement about me flexing my time or working from home if I need to be free from distractions as long as I inform him by 7 am which has worked in the past so I'm fairly certain that's not the issue. unfortunately thats generally how my annual leave gets used up as I hardly get to take any proper time and am usually at risk of forfeiting by the end of the leave year.

it was the PA's response that he'd rather I took the day off instead. Instead of what? i wanted the morning off to begin with. He's very sensitive about issues which he perceives have to do with religion, sexuality or anyting remotely suggestive.

ILiveInAPineappleCoveredInSnow Thu 06-Mar-14 13:18:04

I think a 6am text because you've just thrown up everywhere and won't be at work is fine.
It's not fine to text at 6am to ask for time off for preplanned stuff. I guess that's what he wants to talk to you about, rather than a typo.

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 13:18:22

ITA sorry. You need to be better organised and book time off in advance - eg leave etc.

You obviously knew about the airport trip and the social services visit.

The emergency plumber is a bit of a curve-ball but you could have asked your DH/DP about this.

Sometimes being scatty is forgiven, sometimes it's not but I know I've been either told or got the impression if I've - taken too much time off, been late a few times etc and then it's the time to pull your socks up and get organised. people get tired of having to carry the can or saying 'ohfinefatmama's' always doing this, taking unplanned time off etc.

ILiveInAPineappleCoveredInSnow Thu 06-Mar-14 13:18:47

X- post

In that case, why not just go and see him then?

squeakytoy Thu 06-Mar-14 13:20:21

" that he'd rather I took the day off instead. Instead of what?"

instead of half a day obviously.. and you need to manage your time better as the appointment was hardly last minute, nor was agreeing to take someone to the airport

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 13:20:41

OK - seeing your reply (which I hadn't seen just now).

You REALLY need to speak to your boss to see if it's STILL ok to do what you do now, flexi time, text by 7am etc - as it sounds as if just maybe he's not happy with this or the way you do this and wants to do it another way.

there's no way it's down to the misspelling but me if I were your boss wouldn't be happy with how you've planned this and the 6am text.

BrandNewIggi Thu 06-Mar-14 13:21:53

Re the typo. Email him to say "thank for helping me out with that huge favour yesterday".
Job done.

ILiveInAPineappleCoveredInSnow Thu 06-Mar-14 13:22:34

^^ what iggi said about emailing

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 13:22:52

also your last sentence - how has this got ANYTHING to do with religion, sexuality or remotely suggestive?!

I think you'd do well to remember that he's your BOSS. He can word or tell you to do what he likes within reason especially re your taking time off unplanned and not part of holiday etc.

MrMacadoo Thu 06-Mar-14 13:23:30

maybe this arrangement isn't working for him anymore? just bite the bullet and see what he wants

TippiShagpile Thu 06-Mar-14 13:27:01

I suspect you've hit the nail on the head with your comments about using up you annual leave with days off here and there.

It is so incredibly frustrating employing someone who may or may not work that day and it's incredibly disruptive.

I suspect your boss wants to say "Look, it's not working. You can't chose to work only on the days you don't have anything else to do. You need to commit to be a part of the team. I was happy with you not working the odd day here and there (2 or 3 times a year) but not on a completely piecemeal and unreliable basis"

MsMarvel Thu 06-Mar-14 13:28:58

Bit surely you see a difference between flexi working and working at home, to asking for time off to do obviously planned in advance appointments hat have nothing to do with work?

flowery Thu 06-Mar-14 13:30:29

If his PA has said he wants to speak to you, why are you avoiding him? Instead of musing on here as to whether he's concerned about your spelling or (probably) your unreliability, go and see him and find out.

Well I imagine by flexi time it is for stuff like an appointment....OR...a plumber.....OR an airport drop where can easily make the time up after hours. You would be working till midnight surely if you plan on making the time up to do all three things?

JeanSeberg Thu 06-Mar-14 13:34:15

Have been avoiding him all day today

This doesn't look good either. You should have gone in first thing and asked when he was free. Then apologised for yesterday and assured him it was a one-off and you'll be more organised in future.

If I were you boss I would be extremely unimpressed that you knew I wanted to see you yet had not bothered to contact me.

we need to talk when I have things under control

If I received a message like that from my boss or his assistant, I would read it as a massive wake-up call.

flowery Thu 06-Mar-14 13:35:55

"If I received a message like that from my boss or his assistant, I would read it as a massive wake-up call."

I agree. Your boss thinking you don't have things under control is not a good thing, and something you should be trying to rectify, not avoid.

finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 13:38:43

The boss gets to work at 7am, some of us at 7.30am and everyone else officially start at 8am but they get to work before that. absence notification is latest 7.30am to me and if i am unavialble he has to assign the task to one of two other people.

i suppose iggy's post is right. will thank him for it. he's always said he didnt mind and prefers to play things by ear so we evolved into this last minute time off thing. Flexibility is both ways so he agreed because he works mmost weekends and contacts me to ask for things and i oblige.

well HelloBoys - he once jokingly responded to my mention of of ensuring good relationships with the boss by stating that I didnt have the right 'apparatus to attract him like that' and later apologised and mentioned his sensitivities so i am hoping this is not along those lines. i was clear at the time that we could do with not having conversations like that and we drew a line under it so I dont want to appear to be requesting a hug.

FoxesRevenge Thu 06-Mar-14 13:38:48

I would be majorly pissed off if someone text me at 6am.

MarshaBrady Thu 06-Mar-14 13:40:19

Did you list all those things? He wouldn't want to know, just wants you to take the day off and not fill him in with the details.

I'd imagine it's that rather than the misspelling.

TippiShagpile Thu 06-Mar-14 13:41:18

Finefatmama - I'm sorry to say this but I think you're living in cloud cuckoo land. You need to see your boss as soon as possible.

flowery Thu 06-Mar-14 13:42:10

Seriously, you are not appearing to be requesting a hug. The longer you leave it to speak to him as per his request, the more you are really not doing yourself any favours.

finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 14:57:52

saw him. thanked for the time off, promised to be more organised. PA came in to take notes. Asked for clarification about the text. i said it wasnt a hug I wanted, PA snorted, boss did not look too convinced. got told off for lack of attention to detail. could have got in trouble if it was another member of staff etc. Asked if I was calm and in control - yes. Asked if I was prepared and able to cope with tonite's board meeting - yes. Asked if i felt fully able to take any tough decisions required, have some difficult conversations and follow through - yes. did not ask if i needed support or my PA reinstated.

I asked whether the flexi arrangement was an issue because if it was I would be happy to discuss further, and he said not yet but he wanted to be assured of my committment and availablity at short notice and on weekends at no extra remuneration as per arrangment. flexibility must work both ways. I said yes and that was that.

Tippi, i will admit to having the odd cuckoo moment possibly even being the mad woman on the block but I assure you this isnt one of them. it was the hug that done it.

JeanSeberg Thu 06-Mar-14 15:02:09

It sounds like that was a disciplinary meeting or certainly a precursor to one. In any case your boss certainly has some serious concerns about your performance.

I would request to see the notes that the PA took in the meeting, make sure you agree with what was recorded and ask for a copy. (Will a copy be placed on your personnel record?)

I would then work extra hard to restore his faith in you and ask for a follow-up meeting in a month's time when hopefully he will not that progress has been made.

TippiShagpile Thu 06-Mar-14 15:25:25

Agreed with the pp - that sounds like a warning to me. You might just want to check the minutes of the meeting.

WottaTheOdds Thu 06-Mar-14 15:30:26

it was the hug that done it

Don't be naïve! A boss who would banter about your having (or not) the "right apparatus" would be skating on very thin ice indeed to take issue with you on what was very clearly a typo. This, as others have said, is a very clear warning shot across the bows and you would do yourself a lot of favours by taking control of the situation right now. Again, as others have said, requesting a follow up meeting would be a good start. And join a union if there is one and you haven't already.

Oh yes, and get organised!

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 15:30:51

I don't think it's a warning per se. But I think it could easily escalate into disciplinary.

Your final comment OP - and generally your attitude in your last post seems to not be taking this very seriously. I agree with Tippi and JeanSeberg on warning etc.

Just because the boss appears to be lenient towards you re if it were other member of staff don't think it doesn't apply to you.... I'd be very very careful and really like Jean says work harder and get another follow-up meeting etc.

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 15:32:51

Wotta - I think the OP was not verbally warned (she needs to be told that it's verbal, written etc warning) just spoken to.

But besides that point, she doesn't appear to be taking this seriously, the next thing WILL BE disciplinary action, and proper warnings. if she so chooses to ignore our advice and laugh it off and eventually be dismissed then so be it.

WottaTheOdds Thu 06-Mar-14 15:38:31

Hello I agree...I was using warning shot across the bows in the figurative sense rather than the employment law sense, but as you say, it's a clear pointer as to the way things are heading and if it were me I would be a lot more concerned than Mama appears to be.

mercibucket Thu 06-Mar-14 15:40:44

a meeting where notes were taken . . why were notes taken? sounds like the start of something. ask to see tge notes

starfishmummy Thu 06-Mar-14 15:54:14

If I was your bkss I would want to be talking to you about your lack of organisational skills and the negative impact they are having on your ability to do your job.

Silverfoxballs Thu 06-Mar-14 16:04:04

Flexi time is great but that was nothing to do with flexi time it was very bad planning or lack of it on your part. You sound horrendously disorganised. I am a bit confused by the hug comment but it would never be appropriate.

You could be on the slippery slope to a verbal warning, also the way you write is rather manic and over excited, are you especially stressed at the moment? I'm assuming as you can have a PA you are quite senior.

SelectAUserName Thu 06-Mar-14 16:16:24

OP, that was an unofficial / informal warning. Your boss has concerns about your commitment and performance and you would be very silly to ignore this or to dismiss it as a minor reprimand about a typo.

I would have a discussion with a member of my team in that way if I hoped to turn them around with a wake-up call and head off formal inefficiency action.

If it were a member of the team with whom I had no other concerns, my reply to your original text would have been "okay, thanks for letting me know" and this morning I would have asked you if you had got everything sorted.

Take a metaphorical step back, put yourself in your boss's shoes and think about how your performance and attitude may have been coming across to him. From what you have said, you seem to be presenting yourself as flaky, unprepared and unreliable. Think about how you can change that. If you don't, your future there might turn out to be shorter than you might want it to be.

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 17:12:54

OP Also the PA snorting and boss not looking convinced is likely (given your almost admitted lax manner re time off etc) to be not humour but rather getting fed up with you and treating you in a scathing manner.

Really to be fair to you - as you ARE senior and DON'T appear to be coping - just request your PA back. This is what they're there for to organise you. Don't feel you can "do it/have it all" because with the best will in the world you're not coping. If you took this stance maybe you could delay any further disciplinary treatment.

HelloBoys Thu 06-Mar-14 17:14:19

oh and ASK for support or to have your PA reinstated. Don't wait for them to offer it to you on a plate. be proactive and assertive.

WilsonFrickett Thu 06-Mar-14 17:41:11

I agree, you're on a slippery wicket here I fear, take it seriously. I agree it wasn't the hug that done it, it was probably the airport run actually.

Plumber coming in - no problem, you can work through that
Meeting to do with DCs - hmm, not too great but it's DCs and these things happen
Fecking off in your car for a couple of hours to drop people at the airport - proper taking the piss and would have been a disciplinary in my old work. If you were flexi working from home you were expected to be working, not providing a taxi service for someone else.

lougle Thu 06-Mar-14 17:58:27

"woke up yesterday and realisd that I had an emergency plumber coming in to fix a leak, a meeting with social services regarding ds1 and had promised to take my sister and BIL to the airport"

How can you 'realise' you have 3 massive commitments on one day? Seriously - they are huge things to forget.

Do you use a calendar system? My life has been turned around organisationally since using google calendar. I can share it with my DH, who has his own calendar, and I have another one for the children, so in the end I end up with 3 colour coded entries.

Now, when I have notifications of an appointment, the first thing I do is enter it into google calendar. I can set a reminder for a particular time before the appointment (e.g. the day before, or two days before, an hour before, etc.) so that this sort of thing can't happen.

finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 18:21:27

lougle to be honest the days just run into one another for me and i need to schedule better. I tend to agree to all requests and then recap at some point at the end of the day or start of the next day.

maybe I am not taking it seriously enough but

- my performance management concluded 2 weeks ago and it was very good. recommending a payrise at tonight's board meeting

- i am the only person at this level who has not been off with stress or exhaustion. the outcome of the others situations has usually resulted in my taking on some of their responsibilities hopefully for a short while. that was commended at pm.

- as a result of additional responsibilities, I cannot really take plan for any annual leave and we decided on this flexi thing where i can ask on the day i need it or before and if there are no warning signs that i am needed that day, i get it.

- i think i may have ended up doing many things and possibly none of it very well rather than the few very good things i used to do.

- i thot it was the hug because he said that had i sent the text to someone else about the hug, there could have been trouble before he double checked that I was still available as per flexi which tends to involve to involved the 8-10pm Saturday night instruction and getting back to him by midnight.

PowderMum Thu 06-Mar-14 19:37:01

I have no idea of your job or how important/senior it is but I wouldn't want you on my Senior Management Team. You are showing yourself to be a disorganised disaster. I fear your boss is beginning to feel the same.

Yes flexible working needs to work both ways and if a member of my SMT called to say that they had a plumbing emergency and would be in once sorted I'd be ok. If they called to say they had forgotten an appointment or airport run I would be pissed off and also it would raise flags as to whether they were being genuine.

Sorry but planning and calendar management is what you need.

Nerfmother Thu 06-Mar-14 19:48:03

Hello op.
In your shoes now, I would stop sharing any personal life stuff with your boss or team, just in case they start thinking you can't manage or are under stress and look for evidence?
In a previous job I shared a lot with my colleagues and I really really wish I hadn't. Now, I share a bit and some of my traumas but I'm always aware of the need to be and look in control.
Do you think maybe people think the social services involvement, rushing after others is getting to you? Even if it's positive from ds (support for disability say) not everyone will know that. If be trying to separate home from work at the moment and be really efficient with record keeping time wise, when I'm at home I keep a diary of start time what I do, breaks etc.
hope this is just a blip.

TippiShagpile Thu 06-Mar-14 19:49:11

I have never come across anyone at senior level who can flit in and out of work the way you describe OP. I always found that the more senior I became the more commitment I had to show. I have my own business now and I can honestly say that I simply could not afford to employ someone like you.

Take this shot across the bows as an opportunity to reassess what you need/want from your job.

Good luck OP.

finefatmama Thu 06-Mar-14 23:26:53

nerf I think you hit the nail on the head and I think that's the wisest thing I'm coming away with. I need to separate the 2 and find a good system for keeping home organised.

asked for access to the notes this evening. apparently it was a wellbeing meeting to ensure that I was coping. he's dealing with a threat of legal challenge for work related stress from a colleague and we have all been advised to take notes more often so my guess is that this is one of such.

Tippi and Powder, although I will admit to being scatter brained at home, it doesn't extend to work, I have many compensating skills and qualities so I'm not worried about losing my job - having just been given business continuity as part on my responsibility this evening and I once again said yes. or maybe I am being set up to keel over and quit.

The boss idea of commitment is what he gets - annual leave on a whim in exchange for complex matters being resolved over the weekend, at midnight and sometimes during said time off. I barely switched off since starting this job and would rather be allowed to book annual leave but I cant so I've stopped trying. and the flexi thing was his idea partly in response to my resignation in January. You seem to assume that he's not happy with the arrangement because you wouldn't be. He's fussy about germs and branding and words and white spaces on paper but less bothered about other things.

Nerfmother Fri 07-Mar-14 07:07:58

Glad it's less sinister then you thought. But yes, make the changes you can make, and don't let yourself feel like they all know everything.
Good luck smile

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