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I’m Karen at work

(189 Posts)
CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 07:15:52

Late 40s woman in an organisation full of 20 somethings - and I’m just failing to bite my tongue when they’re WRONG.

At the point where I’m just going to refuse to do it their way any longer.

And yes, I have written multi-paragraph letters of complaint and requested to see the manager.

How does one operate smoothly as a woman of certain age and wisdom in a world which is set up to not hear you ( I always presume because my qualification is different to everyone else in the office - but also maybe because of generation divide).

I don’t want to just walk out. I like the work. And everyone would scarcely be less eye-rolly to me if I bailed at 11th hour. Though yes I am job hunting for the future. Anyone know any good openings for a prime Karen?

OP’s posts: |
Sara2000 Sat 26-Sep-20 07:25:19

What do you mean you're a Karen at work? I think you need to describe what's going on. Are they calling you a Karen every time you say something?

veryvery Sat 26-Sep-20 07:27:46

Stop using the name Karen to describe that sort of behaviour to start with. Stop defining yourself by that pattern of behaviour.

Focus on individual challenges and offer solutions rather than criticising personalities. A course of action may be unwise or even incorrect (if there is an established process) rather than a person being wrong. Frame everything positively, say 'If you/we did this' rather than ' Don't do that' so you can be positive about solutions instead of focusing on berating mistakes.

Gizlotsmum Sat 26-Sep-20 07:28:55

If all of them are doing it the same way are you sure they're the ones doing it wrong?

You say you have made complaints, have you had any response?

If you want to stay you may need to do it their way for now..

022828MAN Sat 26-Sep-20 07:29:26

Stop using sexist slurs for what is essentially being assertive and standing your ground on things.

CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 07:35:20

Well - I can stop using the sexist/ageist slurs - and hence disguise that I fundamentally think that I would have an easier time if my face fitted better in the culture.

Police my language to avoid generalisations, and in that take all the blame on my own shoulders personally.

OP’s posts: |
Imratherwellied Sat 26-Sep-20 07:45:51

My name is Karen. Find a different term. Bored of seeing my name used as a slur on here hmm

Sorry didn’t actually get passed the ‘I’m a Karen’ smile

CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 07:46:29

It’s a job that we deliver individually but with a standardised pattern iykwim. And the pattern is very fixed to fit someone who has a different qualification and demographic to me.

So the upshot of my grievance is
1) to be allowed to flex the template a bit so I’m not doing stuff I’m unqualified for - but can do more of what my specialty is
2) If they are serious about recruiting more people with my qualification into the organisation, to develop a separate template which fits for that specialty.

I have been doing it their way. But it feels like I’m short changing the service users by essentially faking that I have any knowledge in the other area - and not doing what I’m actually qualified to do (and what is apparently a shortage area).

I intellectually know I have to force myself to fit the format and work in the team. But the Karen in me is really pissed to not be able to make myself heard and with the bullshit logic of the whole thing.

I want to bring my best self into the role - but I can’t find a road that’s not either ‘moron doormat’ or ‘awkward mouthy woman’.

OP’s posts: |
CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 07:47:42

My middle name is Karen too.

🤷🏻‍♀️

It’s what they’re calling me behind my back - might as well own it.

OP’s posts: |
CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 07:51:46

( (FWIW - my appraisal was outstanding. Cos I’m very good at what I do. Largely because I actually deliver the service mostly my way and complete the paperwork their way. But the bullshit of it and the failure to be able to make a wider impact on the thinking explodes my head with frustration.)

OP’s posts: |
PaulinePetrovaPosey Sat 26-Sep-20 07:52:37

Your posts are confusing and vague. If you communicate in a similar way at work I'm not surprised your colleagues don't appreciate your 'wisdom'.

BessieSurtees Sat 26-Sep-20 07:53:00

Maybe they are not wrong and you are stuck in your ways?

Imratherwellied Sat 26-Sep-20 07:54:23

Not exactly the same if it’s your middle name 🤷🏼‍♀️🤷🏼‍♀️

Honestly find a new term. It is boring.

MimiSunshine Sat 26-Sep-20 07:54:34

CoronaCustard

It’s a job that we deliver individually but with a standardised pattern iykwim. And the pattern is very fixed to fit someone who has a different qualification and demographic to me.

So the upshot of my grievance is
1) to be allowed to flex the template a bit so I’m not doing stuff I’m unqualified for - but can do more of what my specialty is
2) If they are serious about recruiting more people with my qualification into the organisation, to develop a separate template which fits for that specialty.

I have been doing it their way. But it feels like I’m short changing the service users by essentially faking that I have any knowledge in the other area - and not doing what I’m actually qualified to do (and what is apparently a shortage area).

I intellectually know I have to force myself to fit the format and work in the team. But the Karen in me is really pissed to not be able to make myself heard and with the bullshit logic of the whole thing.

I want to bring my best self into the role - but I can’t find a road that’s not either ‘moron doormat’ or ‘awkward mouthy woman’.

So they’re not actually wrong then and you are being objectionable and Probably seem to the others as being rigid and disruptive.

Instead of complaining, talk to your manager about how to Upskill yourself In order to be able to use the system at the same time as how to actually use the skills you were hired for.

022828MAN Sat 26-Sep-20 07:57:03

Police my language to avoid generalisations, and in that take all the blame on my own shoulders personally.

I've no idea what you mean by this, but yes - stop using the name Karen to describe your behaviour or personality and just tell us what you mean.

Dozer Sat 26-Sep-20 08:01:44

Your posts are unclear, but you seem to be saying that you don’t want to perform some of your job responsibilities, due to this not requiring your specific knowledge/skills, you not having other knowledge/skills needed for the responsibilities , and your view that their resourcing arrangements are affecting quality of services for service users?

Sara2000 Sat 26-Sep-20 08:12:20

You sound like a PITA.

CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 08:14:23

As an analogy - imagine a catering company diversifying into Indian weddings & recruiting an Indian chef ... then insisting that every event gets a shepherds pie and a trifle provided.

At the event, everybody looks at the chef like they’ve lost their mind when they are making space on the table for the substandard shepherds pie & quietly grumbles why there aren’t more types of curry.

Back at head office they dig in that not everybody likes spicy food (and indeed that all Indian food is by definition blow-your-head off hot).

Yeah - that makes you kind of awkward. And the point of being qualified in something is that you learn a particular way of doing things (which people expect when they recruit your qualification).

OP’s posts: |
Dozer Sat 26-Sep-20 08:17:57

Your choices are to stay and accept the deal, stay and seek to convince the senior people to change hoq they’re doing things (v hard, if your opinions are in the minority and you’re not in a senior role), or leave!

022828MAN Sat 26-Sep-20 08:21:44

I have no idea what you're on about

iMatter Sat 26-Sep-20 08:24:13

You would definitely win Corporate Speak Bingo in the meetings I attend smile

SueEllenMishke Sat 26-Sep-20 08:26:20

What hope have we got when women are using sexist and ageist slurs to describe themselves.

CoronaCustard Sat 26-Sep-20 08:29:26

I can reframe my OP as “I’m frustrated at work”. And everyone can give me advice on how to be a better CoronaCustard.

But at least part of the problem is that assertive women of a certain age are dismissed.

Real Karens policing me in the use of the term Karen to describe myself doesn’t stop people who don’t care using the term in a belittling way - it just takes away a vocabulary to help me have this conversation in a wider way than “Corona is a rigid and disruptive PITA who should just leave”.

OP’s posts: |
Pobblebonk Sat 26-Sep-20 08:30:35

I don't think you understand what a Karen is: when used in a derogatory sense, it's not what you describe.

LolaSmiles Sat 26-Sep-20 08:34:35

Ignoring the Karen reference, you just sound like a PITA at work and someone who likes to complain rather than be proactive.

And the point of being qualified in something is that you learn a particular way of doing things (which people expect when they recruit your qualification).
I disagree. The point of being qualified in an area is you've demonstrated professional competency and an ability to learn about that area. Sometimes workplaces evolve and focuses shift and people have to upskill.

You sound like you've decided you're older and have a qualification so are automatically right on all things and all these little young'uns won't acknowledge how brilliant you are.

I've worked with people like this who hated the fact our Head of Department was younger than them. As a result they felt the need to challenge everything, be awkward at every change, complain about anything that wasn't letting them do things their way. It was draining to be around them.

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