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I probably ABU but I don't care!

(32 Posts)
momobiker Tue 23-Aug-11 12:18:47

I am partially deaf in my left ear, and try my hardest not to shout - especially in work.

My colleagues know this, and I have just been on the phone to an overseas client. I know I was louder than normal because the client in question speaks over me, can barely speak english and I certainly don't speak Spanish to the level were we can converse. I am about to lose this client and am doing my utmost to make them happy.

Whilst on the phone, my colleagues to either side of me started going on really loudly about me being a foghorn and they wish there was a volume control etc etc. I got really upset and held back tears while on the phone. As soon as the call was finished I got up and went for a break.

I am so cross and upset about their reaction/attitude towards a 'disability'. I am just trying to do my job!

alphabettyspagghetti Tue 23-Aug-11 12:21:32

You are having a stressful day, a stressful phonecall, trying not to loose a client. That in itself will make anyone on the verge of tears. Your collegues although mean, probable didnt mean to upset you.

You are having a shit day and they've put you over the edge. You are wound up, stressed, upset and angry.

Try again tomorrow

alphabettyspagghetti Tue 23-Aug-11 12:21:54

Probably* bloody phone.

momobiker Tue 23-Aug-11 12:30:15

You are probably right, I just thought it was so unneccesary - they know the difficulty I have had with this client, they know she is difficult to speak with over the phone, and they know I am deaf! To mock me and loudly at that whilst on this call was rather nasty I thought

Rowena8482 Tue 23-Aug-11 12:33:19

to mock loudly while you are on the phone with a client is bloody unprofessional, let alone mean to you personally! What if the client heard them and was offended by them, and it was their childishness that lost your firm the client? :-| They need to grow up!

alphabettyspagghetti Tue 23-Aug-11 12:33:57

It's insensitive granted, but you can expect them to remember everything you are going through all of the time.

Let it go and try not to let it get to you so much next time. Everyone takes the piss out of everyone else, rarely is it ment to offend in an office situation.

It may have seemed unecessary to you but to them they were just trying to have a giggle and poke a little fun. I doubt they realised exactly how upset and sensitive you are feeling today.

Would this have bothered you any other day? I doubt it.

alphabettyspagghetti Tue 23-Aug-11 12:34:52

cant* argghhhh!

Hassled Tue 23-Aug-11 12:35:17

If this is part of a bigger picture of the colleagues being horrible, then you need to talk to your line manager. If it's a one-off, put it down to them having a bad day/momentary lapse of niceness.

LoveBeingAtHomeOnMyOwn Tue 23-Aug-11 12:39:49

It is bang out of order. Have you spoken to your line manager to see if there are any adjustments they can make to help you in your job?

momobiker Tue 23-Aug-11 12:43:31

Yes, my line manager heard the whole thing and has emailed me to ask if I am ok. She has said to tell them again about being deaf, but i am ususally met with a sarcastic 'oh you don't say'

NevermindtheNargles Tue 23-Aug-11 12:51:55

To be fair it is very difficult to work in an office environment when people are really loud. I used to work with someone like this, it was impossible to have a phone conversation when he was talking and made my job incredibly hard.

I realise you have a reason for it, so perhaps they vent their frustrations in what they consider to be a playful/lighthearted way, as they know you can't help it. It sounds from your OP like you were being a bit louder than usual on this occasion, are they usually more supportive?

NevermindtheNargles Tue 23-Aug-11 12:51:56

To be fair it is very difficult to work in an office environment when people are really loud. I used to work with someone like this, it was impossible to have a phone conversation when he was talking and made my job incredibly hard.

I realise you have a reason for it, so perhaps they vent their frustrations in what they consider to be a playful/lighthearted way, as they know you can't help it. It sounds from your OP like you were being a bit louder than usual on this occasion, are they usually more supportive?

360DegreeHead Tue 23-Aug-11 13:14:56

I'd be furious. Needs confronting head on, or though your manager or actually with some venom, thanking them for their professionalism and support when trying to hold onto a key client - passive aggressive much?

Their comments suggest what? That they are having to accommodate your deafness in a way detrimental to themselves or that they are just bitches and it's work-place bullying? I'd want a frank airing of views with the manager present regarding those type of comments and to make sure that work had provided the right kind of phone equipment to minimise disruption for other workers (e.g. headset and microphone).

LaLaLaLayla Tue 23-Aug-11 13:16:52

What a nasty bunch of bitches. I think I would file a complaint.

worraliberty Tue 23-Aug-11 13:17:28

Can I ask why you don't hold the phone to your other ear?

I'm slightly deaf in my left ear, so I hold the phone to my right...even though it feels uncomfortable.

Callisto Tue 23-Aug-11 13:21:38

They were extremely unprofessional to behave in this way and your line manager should have taken them up on it. TBH emailing you to ask if you're ok is a bit pathetic - she should have fired a rocket up them as soon as you had finished on the phone.

onemoreminute Tue 23-Aug-11 13:31:23

They shouldn't have mocked you but it i agree with NevermindtheNargles maybe you were distracting them from what they were doing because you were so loud and they were trying to make a joke out of it hoping you would take the hint.

LolaRennt Tue 23-Aug-11 13:39:34

I think you should have warned them that you were calling someone who might be a potential problem. I worked with a friend's dad in the exact same situation he was so loud no one could talk in the same room with him and if anyone else had clients to deal with they had to leave the room and use their cell phone. So I can see it from both ends, you need to be fair on the people you work with as they have phone calls to make to I assume, but they in turn need to not be rude.

An0therName Tue 23-Aug-11 13:40:22

ynbu - it was very mean of them
I would look into procedures at your work - do you have a policy on work place bullying/greivences
then I would sit down with your manager and say that it it continues and it is not dealt with - ie she talk to them - you would look at following procdures eg raising a grevience

can you get any kind of equipment to help on the phone - I know there are special phones etc
and to be fair it is annoying when people are loud on the phone - I used to try and take client calls in a seperatre room if I could as I know I am loud too

LolaRennt Tue 23-Aug-11 13:42:03

Also while I understand you need to be heard by your client but the old trick of speaking very loudly to someone who speaks a different language to you, normally only succeeds in winding them up.

momobiker Tue 23-Aug-11 13:42:33

worraliberty I wear a headset, but I still struggle with both ears, just only actually partially deaf in left ear.

what gets me most is they were on a their break!

momobiker Tue 23-Aug-11 13:44:46

LolaRennt honestly, it has very little to do with the language barrier and a lot to do with the fact she is a very difficult client and talks over me a lot

diddl Tue 23-Aug-11 13:46:54

They do sound utter twats-why not just tell you that you were getting too loud?

I assume your client wouldn´t be happy about being shouted at.

WilsonFrickett Tue 23-Aug-11 13:50:44

Funny, I posted earlier where someone overheard people talking about her and advised her to wait till she'd calmed down a bit because I thought the conversation wouldn't go the way she wanted it to, IYSWIM, while she was feeling so fragile.

For this I feel differently because of the unprofessional aspect - I am very loud and have been told that a lot of times (no disability, just gobby grin). However, if I was on the phone to a client and colleagues were mouthing off about me in my hearing I would go completely ballistic. You need to go in and speak to your manager now and s/he needs to deal with the completely unprofessional behaviour. If you lose that client it will be their fault. FFS it's an office, not a playground!

LoveBeingAtHomeOnMyOwn Tue 23-Aug-11 14:01:22

Then your boss is a coward. If they are prepared to do that in front of your boss then maybe you should be making this a bit more formal.

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