06 August 2009
Have you noticed how receptionists and secretaries have a way of being a really annoying species? Except, of course, to the boss.
I know one who is perpetually on the official phone through the day, gossiping and back-biting about anyone she cares to tittle-tattle about. Low voice, head turned towards the wall, looking serious…you get the picture. You tell her to hang up (partly because everyone around is sick to the bone transferring calls for her) and you get scowls, frowns and intense hate vibes…if looks could kill, you’d be burnt to ashes – and charcoal black ones at that! This one is very clever. You see, she doesn’t know her job. And, so, before anyone can point a finger, she goes on the offensive and reports it all to the boss, giving a real sob story. Wait, there’s more: she seems to be organizing people, giving them a dressing down each time the boss is in the hearing vicinity! What would the honcho think? That the woman is a conscientious, hard worker and the rest of the pack is like rats jumping around when the cat’s gone out.
Groan! The way everyone suffers! The phone is never available, her reports are done by another (tis easier to do them yourself than chase her and ask her to do them), she comes in late and alters the attendance time, calls are connected (if at all) to the wrong person, you want to be connected to so and so and that’s exactly when the person to be called will not take the call or his number would be busy, people calling in are treated like pests (they’ve disturbed her personal call, you see), their phone call is transferred without as much a please-be-on-hold-while-I-transfer-you to them or an xyz-has-called to you…the list is endless! Would you believe she deliberately makes mistakes so you don’t ask her to do the same work again? Oh! You are also asked deeply personal questions, rather nonchalantly in a group that could leave you redder than a beetroot and squirming and writhing in your chair. Worse: if you don’t answer, it’s repeated with a different style. THAT is something she never runs out of. Her love life is extremely happening and I doubt if there is anyone from the cantankerous errands boy to the dull accountant who is unaware of that!
The worst was last week when a manager was rudely told to “shoot me a mail” beforehand if they wanted to be connected on the phone to anyone! I wonder how much bigger this milk and food guzzling organism will become for her boots.