Category Archives: Corporate America

Where the Lines Overlap

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I felt wuzzy twice today.

And in case you are asking yourself, ‘what are you even talking about?!’ Wuzzy = warm + fuzzy. That’s not a word? Well it is now so booyahhhh.

Anyway, work was kinda crazy today. In case you don’t know what I do, I work for a human resource company. I specialize in payroll taxes and yes, I am pretty awesome at my job. This morning, I was doing some approvals and checking payments and stuff; I had handed back some paperwork to be redone and the girl who had to redo it is relatively new. She seemed frazzled — I could already tell she had been working with the branch partners a lot with it.

So when she handed the corrected paperwork back, I processed it and sent it on to be mailed. I IM’ed her…nearly instantaneously, she reacted with, ‘did I miss something again?’ And instead of bringing her down, I simply said, ‘no. I just wanted to say good job.’ I assured her that what we do is not a walk in the park; there will be stuff she has to do that is difficult and she just has to get through it. I also let her know that instead of being so hard on herself, she needs to remember that she has potential to be great at her job…a little patience is all that is needed.

This reminded me of why I was promoted. I like mentoring; I like seeing people succeed. This was one of the many wonderful things that made me stand out when I went for my promotion. I help approve work of more than 24 specialists…I don’t want to be that person who only interacts with them when they do something wrong. I think that at some point in the past month or so, I lost sight of that. 😦

Later in the afternoon, I went to talk to one of the girls that management had swapped our job roles and she had just gotten off the phone with support. So I went into her cube after I heard her hang up the phone just in time to see her completely break down in tears. I knew that the transition was a bit harder for them than it was for me…I just didn’t know that it had gotten that overwhelming.

I have never seen anyone in my department reach that breaking point. So I let her cry and vent to me. I listened as she told me how the work that came with the switch was just too much — how she had been with the department for 9 years and never wanted to walk out more than she did today.

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And all the while, I was trying to comfort her. I had my hand on her back soothing her. I even gave her a few hugs. Then I told her if she needed to talk, I would be there in a heartbeat.

I was thinking about it a little bit after. Was it unwise to go in for a hug or soothe her? Did it go against the company’s Right Way training? I was taught that in the work place, the safest option is to just keep out of others’ personal bubbles…honor boundaries.

I think that we’re so caught up in the deadlines and trying to keep it professional that we sometimes forget that we are working with people. I spend as nearly as much time during the week with my co-workers as I do with my own family. I see the people at the office everyday but all the rules about right and wrong interactions make us to be more like robots than humans.

I just found myself in that gray area where I am doing right as a human but wrong as a slave to Corporate America. Idk. Maybe it’s necessary for these lines to have overlapped. And honestly, if given the chance to do it over I would not do it any differently.

Agree or disagree, either is fine. I would just rather take the more human approach is all. I mean, what would you all have done?

Let me know 🙂

“I got this new glow in the dark thing. You can’t really see it right now unless you go like this…”

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I feel like Carl from Yes Man right now. I hardly slept last night and I kind of feel like I downed about 6 cases of Redbull. (I haven’t so don’t be worried that my heart could explode at any moment)

Have you ever felt so tired that you tricked yourself into thinking you weren’t at all? This used to happen to me a lot during college. I think it is happening now. Last night I tossed and turned til two in the morning then woke up three hours later for work like fml.

Today wasn’t the best either. It rained pretty much all day while the A/C was cranking inside…turned us all into ice cubes (get it? Cuz we all work in cubicles?  Eh? Eh? *crickets*)

-_-*

No one understands me…

Anyway, today felt backwards and all wrong — kinda like my office joke.

I will be going to sleep in 45 minutes though. No if, ands or…

…zzz.

I am in a weird place lately…

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Not like physically. I’m not just like in a dark alley somewhere or ramdomly standing in a corn field in Nebraska like “what’s up Nebraska?”

No, I just feel like my life has kind of plateaued. Just thinking about it, I came up with this sort-of graph in my head to illustrate…

7 years ago, graduated high school = up two.

3 years ago, graduated college = up seven **including negative three per the thousands of dollars I put myself in debt for a degree which is seemingly useless**

2 years ago, completed a year of AmeriCorps VISTA service = up two.

1.75 years ago, unemployment = down three.

1.5 years ago, started my career at the company in which I am currently employed = up five.

1.5 months ago, was promoted = up five.

Two weeks ago, no change. One week ago, no change. Today, no change.

Maybe I am just being silly or coming down from the high of my promotion. But on top of that, stuff at home has kind of gone sour. Work has become weird — I am in the middle of a transition to another part of my department. Money is just being itself and complicating everything as normal.

Just this past weekend I was laying in bed, browsing apps on my phone when the questions surfaced…

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This question mark has a face in it…mind officially blown.

…who am I?

And what am I doing with my life? Where am I supposed to be headed? How did I even know that Nebraska had a lot of corn fields?

I am not even sure. And I am finding myself just…lost? Maybe.

Idk. Perhaps I have just have to wait it out. I imagine that this has happened before, this cannot be the first time…right? *sigh*

I wish I had a different tone to end this with…perhaps a last note about what I might learn from this or a joke even. But I suppose I will just finish here, leaving you all feeling a little weird, maybe a bit perplexed, and definitely tempted to google how much acreage of corn field Nebraska really has.

xoxo

Should have read the small print…

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Oh hey there.

Hey, so sorry for totally going all dashboard confessional on you all today after like, months of no updates. It’s just that everything is coming out like word vomit and I figured I would piece it all together for you before the e-janitor comes to clean it all up with that sawdust looking stuff (oh, you know what I’m talking about right…right?!).

Anyway…about a week after my birthday, at the end of March, I interviewed for a promotion within my department. And yes, I did get it. I had fulfilled a goal I had set for myself about 6 months of working. I was ecstatic and found out that I was staying on my original team…it honestly could not have been any better.

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Just a pawn in the grand scheme of things…

About a month ago, word spread that management had decided to do some rocking of the boat…long story short, I have been told that I am relocating within the department to do a job that is completely different than what I have been doing for about two years.

I am trying to stay positive about it but I can’t help but shake the feeling of having to start all over again, ya know. And it bothers me a little bit that my job and I are like chess pieces being played with by management. It’s kinda like I am being traded like a baseball card…it feels that way anyway.

I don’t know. Perhaps I am overreacting or overthinking it. Everyone I have talked to says that they think I will be great on the other side. I guess we will just have to see.

Road Karma

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Dear driver of the Silver-White Chrysler,

For months you have been bullying all the other commuters of John Street. You  race us from the red light, you cut us off by jutting yourself into traffic and you ride our bumpers as though your car wants to procreate with ours.

And yes, we appease you on the road. We slam on our breaks, reassuring ourselves that we probably just came out of nowhere; we let you pass us because we all remind ourselves that your wife is probably in labor…

By golly, sometimes I just cannot decipher what this is telling me to do!

Gee willikers, sometimes I just cannot decipher what this is telling me to do!

Today, dear driver, we all partook in our daily afternoon ritual of clocking out, getting into our cars and making our way to the commune known as John Street. However, like always, you decided to run that darned red sign jutting out of the ground — you know, the one that has that intricate word STOP — except today, you cut off a police officer.

Now I knew he was a visitor of our fair commune known as John Street so he did not understand that your wife was in labor like she is everyday!

Silly, I know.

And as I saw those fated red and blue lights flicker on, I knew that today was not going to be the day you made it to that delivery room.

As I passed you, I did not gesture or even glance over as you slowly rolled your window down to greet the police officer you’d just cut off. I just slightly grinned, squinted my eyes and nodded in sweet, sweet victory.

I hope we can move past this, dear driver. I know that darn sign just sometimes makes no sense…but I’m sure bringing your car to a complete halt behind it won’t hurt every once in a while.

I will see you tomorrow!

Your fellow John Street Commuter,

-Ashley