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    An Acrimonious Acronym

    | USA | Coworkers, Ignoring/Inattentive, Language & Words

    (I manage a retail boutique. I have been looking to hire a replacement for a keyholder who is leaving, and I have to be fairly picky about who I hire in those positions, as they’re responsible for opening and closing the store by themselves when my assistant or I are off, as well as handling deposits, taking $1000 custom orders, etc. Meanwhile, I have a seasonal associate who has no interest in talking with customers and has difficulty following instructions on tasks.)

    Seasonal Associate: “What’s a [acronym for sales performance goals]?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, what?”

    Seasonal Associate: “A [acronym for sales performance goals]. What is that?”

    Me: “You’re joking, right?”

    Seasonal Associate: “…no? [District manager] just sent an email about that and I didn’t know what it meant.”

    Me: “[Seasonal Associate], I know for a fact that [Assistant Manager] and I both explained it to you when we interviewed you for the job, as well as during it your first couple shifts. It was explained in the orientation video that I witnessed you watch and take a quiz on. We’ve used that term every single day, multiple times a day, since you started five months ago. There’s a huge chart, at eye level, on the door to the sales floor that tracks everyone’s [acronym for sales performance goals] each week. How do you not know this?”

    Seasonal Associate: *shrug*

    Me: “You do realize that [acronym for sales performance goals] is literally the only way the company judges how our store is performing, right?”

    Seasonal Associate: “I didn’t realize that. By the way, if you can’t find another key-holder, I can do it!”

    Been Over-Demanding Of Late

    | The Netherlands | Bosses & Owners, Coworkers, Ignoring/Inattentive

    (Every Saturday from eight until five I work in a small flower shop which has two stores, one in my hometown and one in a nearby town. I switch shops every week. This is two months before a party of a very good friend of mine, which will take place on a Friday night in a place two and a half hours away by car. Since I will have to be at work very early the next morning, I decide to ask if it’s okay to come in a little later the morning after the party.)

    Me: “Hey, [Boss], is it okay for me to come in a little later on [date two months away]?”

    Boss: “You’re working in [store in the other town] that day, right? It’s fine by me, but you’ll have to discuss that with your coworker for that day”

    (So, the next Saturday, I ask my coworker the same question.)

    Coworker: “Of course! I’ll put it on the calendar, so everyone knows, and it’ll be fine. There’s hardly any customers in the morning anyways, and I can deal with those on my own for two hours.”

    (Happy, I text my friend I’ll be able to come over. The Tuesday before the party, however, I get a text message from my boss.)

    Text: “Hello, [My Name], this calendar here says you’ll be coming in late this Saturday. I’ve never approved of this, so you’re just going to have to be here at eight am. It’s going to be a very busy day, and you better not be late.”

    (Having everything ready for the party and not wanting to disappoint anyone, I decided to go anyway, and just drive back very early the next morning. When I got to work my boss was actually waiting for me to show up late, and, after seeing that I was there on time, left without a word. The kicker? I didn’t have a single customer until one pm!)

    Got No Beef With Chicken

    | Tukwila, WA, USA | Coworkers, Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

    (I’m sitting in the break-room at work. A group of three of my coworkers are sitting nearby sharing a chicken pizza that Coworker #1 bought. The pizza inspires a conversation on the fact that some religious ban pork or beef.)

    Coworker #1: *starts listing types of meat* “Beef, pork, lamb, venison, chicken…”

    Coworker #2: “Goat is really good.”

    Coworker #3: “Wait, if you don’t consider chicken beef, then what do you consider beef?”

    (All three of us just stare at him for a long moment.)

    Me: “Beef comes from a cow, dear…”

    Giving Currency To Your Argument

    | England, UK | Coworkers, Lazy/Unhelpful, Money

    (The finance department is notoriously cheap with anyone they see as not-important.

    If my boss books a hire car, it will be a luxury sedan, when I try to book for the same trip it is a small engine diesel, etc…)

    Me: “Morning, I am here to pick up some currency.”

    Finance: “Well, yes, this is all I have.” *hands me a wad of small bills*

    (I leave to work out the figures, when I find a big problem. I return.)

    Me: “It says here that I have to pay for the hotel.”

    Finance: “Yes.”

    Me: “You have given me 300. The hotel is 200; I will have to take two trains at €5 each and pay for five meals. That is before any travel or emergency.”

    Finance: *stares at me blankly*

    Me: “…It isn’t nearly enough; if I do have to take a taxi then I can’t eat.”

    Finance: “Well, you will have to pay with your own money, then!”

    (This was made all the worse, as I found out later that the flight did not provide any food. As far as just paying for it myself, I was due to fly out on holiday the day after I returned so I had nothing left to spend! I later told my boss what happened. He overruled the department and gave me a company credit card.)

    (Very) Bad Translation

    | Singapore | Bosses & Owners, Coworkers, Language & Words, Rude & Risque

    (I have a new colleague who can only speak English and Korean. She wants, very much, to get along with everyone at the front office, including the chief concierge, who is a middle-aged, very proper Malay gentleman. She enlists the bellhops to teach her greetings in Malay. They oblige, not knowing that she was going to use what she would learn on their boss, the chief concierge. Unbeknownst to her, all they taught her were curse words. This happens one morning when she is assured that she is fluent in the language.)

    Colleague: “Mr [Chief Concierge], [swear word]!”

    Chief Concierge: *shocked* “Who taught you that?!”

    Colleague: *innocently* “[Bellhop #1] and [Bellhop #2]. I asked them to teach me how to say ‘Good Morning’ in Malay. Did I pronounce it wrongly?”

    Chief Concierge: *angrily* “What else did they teach you?”

    Colleague: *taken aback by his reaction* “Well, some other greetings, like [lots of foul language].”

    Chief Concierge: “Nice girls like you shouldn’t know such bad words! How dare [Bellhop #1] and [Bellhop #2] teach you such nasty stuff? Don’t ever say all that again!”

    Colleague: “What?! They taught me bad words?! I might have said it to a guest!”

    (The two bellhops were standing nearby, horrified, when this incident happened. They were reprimanded severely by the chief concierge.)


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