Jobs to Say “Buh-Bye” to in 2013

By on January 1, 2013

By Melodee K. Currier –

The best days at a job are always the first and the last. The anticipation of working for a new employer can be exhilarating, but the last day is often filled with anger and resentment.

In over forty years of working mostly for attorneys, I’ve had my share of grief. Many times I felt like a hostage. I could have wallowed in the luxury of anxiety, but I decided instead to take a proactive approach and “fire” them first. The perpetrators will all remain anonymous for obvious reasons.

My very first job was in New York City working as secretary for five oil company executives. On my first day of work, they each gave me $5 for the coffee wagon which came around twice a day. At 25¢ for coffee twice a day, I went through their money in ten days. After that I was too shy to ask them for more money and so I paid for their coffee out of my own pocket. When I was finally forced to ask them for the money I spent, only one executive paid me. That made me so angry I found a new job and was out of there within two weeks. Buh-bye!

On my first day as a temporary secretary for a large advertising agency in NYC, two account executives threw their money on my desk and told me get them a pack of cigarettes. They also had me run various personal errands for them. At the end of the day, I decided I was not going to run any personal errands for them again. The first thing the next morning one of them threw his money on my desk and said, “Get me a pack of Kents.” To which I matter of factly replied “No.” He waited about 15 minutes and then asked me to come into his office. He said if I wasn’t kidding about not getting his cigarettes, then I might as well leave. I called my agency and they told me I wasn’t sent there to be their personal slave and that I should go home and they would get me another assignment. Of course I was out the door before they could say Jack Robinson – Buh-bye!

Although the next 25 years weren’t idyllic work wise, I didn’t leave anywhere abruptly. However, after I moved to Columbus, Ohio in 1990 I found many workplaces to have hostile environments. My first experience was working for a senior attorney at a large law firm. Within a couple days I realized I made a huge mistake. The attorney I was working for was extremely difficult. When I told my cousin, also an attorney there, who I was working for he told me they called him “Pitbull” behind his back. Enough said. I’m out of there! Buh-bye!

Next I worked in a large corporate legal department. After a year of working there, I realized my married boss liked me on a different level when he became jealous because I had a boyfriend. Things escalated until I could no longer tolerate it. I asked for a few days off to go to an out of state wedding. While there I decided to write a termination letter. When I returned home I dropped it off at the company’s security desk. I never returned, no I never returned. Buh-bye!

My next stop on this whirlwind ride of dysfunctional workplaces in Columbus was the HR department of a corporation I worked for in Toledo for twelve years. I was happy to be getting my service back and had high hopes for this job. Again, it didn’t take me long to figure out this job was not for me. After working there nine months I slowly started taking my personal items home until I was down to one coffee mug. Then IT happened. My supervisor tried to corner me in a meeting with another HR woman and when I told them I wanted someone to represent me, they balked. I was told if I didn’t meet with them, I could leave. Mug in hand, out the door I went. Buh-bye!

A communications business was my next try. It wasn’t until I started working for the President of the business that one of my coworkers told me the secretary before me lasted six weeks because of the President’s eccentric behavior. And the one before her was a quick learner and also didn’t stay. At least this time I had been given advance notice. I had been there about two weeks when IT happened. Mr. President decided to humiliate me in front of the whole office and a visitor by screaming at me because of the way I had written a phone message. I knew when I went home that day that I would never be back. The next day my husband delivered a letter I wrote to the Office Manager and gathered my personal things. Buh-bye!

After that I decided to try temping through the local bar association. My assignment was at the home of a probate attorney. He was pleasant enough, but he didn’t ask me to do any work the entire day. The only thing I did was get him a cigarette. He had me sit and watch the phone in his basement, which never rang, while he and his wife went out for the day. He asked me to come back, but I said – probate THIS – Buh-bye!

Then I temped for a real estate magnate. I was told it was a long term assignment that would possibly lead to permanent – I was even given the office key. On my first day, Mr. X decided he wanted to give me a lesson on filing papers. He took each paper, told me where it was to be filed, then threw it on the floor. You read right, threw it on the floor! As far as I know those papers are still there because I left that day, returned the key to my agency and didn’t pick them up. Buh-bye!

Another temping assignment was for an engineering firm. Things were pretty nice there for two weeks and then the HR man angrily reprimanded me for writing on a piece of plain white copy paper – and it went downhill from there. Next assignment. Buh-bye!

Thinking temping wasn’t for me, I decided to enter into the “permanent job” arena again. This time I worked for a workers’ compensation attorney. When he interviewed me he said his office was like family. That couldn’t have been further from the truth. It was the most hostile work environment of all. On his birthday, I put a note on his desk asking him if I could meet with him that afternoon. He left the office at noon and ignored my note. Big mistake! I wrote him a letter letting him know what I thought of his office and where he could mail my last check, put the letter on his desk and walked out the door. Buh-bye!

Just when I thought I had seen it all, I was sideswiped by what happened at my next job at a very large corporation. I was looking forward to working there because it had a great reputation. From day one, my supervisor expected me to perform miracles on tight schedules and with lots of overtime. My stress level got so bad, I ended up seeing my doctor and taking time off. I never went back and filed a discrimination claim with the EEOC. I was victorious as they gave me a “right to sue” letter. Good money for bad. I let it go. Buh-bye!

A few years later I was hired to work for the Legal Department of another large corporation. Everything went well for the first six years. Then my supervisor recommended me for a promotion. Usually that’s a good thing, but not in my case. For the next four years my supervisor’s boss would tell him that in order for me to get the promotion, I would need to perform more substantive law. Each year I would fulfill that requirement and much more. Finally after four years, I was told my promotion was going through. A month later when I still hadn’t received the promotion I could wait no longer! The day I decided to do IT, my supervisor happened to be out of town, so I gave his boss my termination letter giving two weeks’ notice – and quit while my promotion was supposedly being processed. Two weeks later as I drove away after my exit interview I let out a blood curdling scream. Free at last! Buh-bye!

That was the last time I worked for “the man.” It’s a very good thing I don’t plan to look for another job in Columbus, Ohio. For if they read this chronicle of my jobs from hell, I’m sure they would tell me – Buh- Bye!

 

Melodee Currier lives in Dublin, Ohio with her husband, Doug and two Siamese cats, Suki and Seiko. She left corporate America in 2008 where she worked as an intellectual property paralegal. Since then she has devoted her time to writing and has had articles published on a wide variety of topics. Her website: www.melodeecurrier.com.

Melodee Currier

About Melodee Currier

Melodee Currier lives in Dublin, Ohio with her husband, Doug and two Siamese cats, Suki and Seiko. She left corporate America in 2008 where she worked as an intellectual property paralegal. Since then she has devoted her time to writing and has had numerous articles published on a wide variety of topics. Her Website: http://www.melodeecurrier.com/.

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Jobs to Say “Buh-Bye” to in 2013