Today was an interesting one. I made a decision. I'm going to stay with my new company until I find another job. Then I'll segue over to that one, making the transition as smooth and easy for everyone as possible. Could be a month, could be a year.
My boss snapped at me today. Not wholly undeservedly, but I felt the intensity wasn't warranted. Nor did my co-workers who were there at the time. The old office manager has made my job very difficult indeed. And I've done a damn fine job of both carrying on and fixing her mistakes. She literally wasn't doing her job. Tried to hide it, and made things worse. If she had worked with me, we could have made sure everything went smoothly. But she's so intent on pretending I don't exist, she couldn't bring herself to do that.
I've not complained at all. Merely answered, when asked, that she wasn't getting back to me with questions. My boss knows just how bad it's been, though I he doesn't know she literally refuses to look at me when I'm standing in the room, asking a question. She'll answer, without turning around, but very briefly and never completely. I think it got to me more that I realized. During the weekly staff meeting, one of the management team asked my why I didn't just ask her where a file I was. I admit, I answered rather warmly that it was because she refused to answer questions, and pretended I didn't exist. That's when my boss snapped, "That's enough!" The words weren't so bad, but the tone was vicious. I apologized and moved on. And thought, "I'm angry! I'm finally angry!" Not embarrassed, perhaps a little hurt. But mostly angry. Boundaries people! They're there in full force, protecting me.
I deserve better treatment. I've worked for difficult men before. And I'm done with it. I get where he's coming from. She doesn't pull that shit on him. At least he doesn't realize that she's not "forgetting" to do stuff. She's passive-aggressively not doing things, then pretending she forgot. It comes from a place of insecurity and fear. I sense her vulnerability rather than the power she's trying to project. (Doesn't make it less aggravating though.) And, she has done good work for him over the years. I don't discount that. Intellectually she's very competent. But her emotional issues get in the way of her ability to do her job fully.
I see why he trusts her and wants her in his company. Nonetheless, I don't want to be part of that dynamic. So I waited a couple of hours (plus, I was busy with a big project.) Then I emailed the staffing agency I still work for and told them that though my company had offered me a permanent position, I wasn't sure it was the right fit, and to keep an eye out for me.
Who knows? This could be a great thing in the end. All I know is that for once I didn't try to make myself "okay" with how I was being treated. I like my boss. He has many fine qualities. But I'm just not into dealing long-term with people who aren't on top of their emotions. That doesn't mean not expressing them, but there are ways to do that respectfully. He was not respectful.
In a way, I was glad. I felt freer after I decided to hedge my bets. I realized I didn't have to give my loyalty. I'll still give my best to the job. It's the way I operate. But I now know it's not one I want for a long time.
When people tell you who they are, believe them. I'm doing just that. This job is fine. I'm grateful for it. I like some of the work and most of the people. That's a great thing. But I don't feel that I can be fully and authentically myself there. I don't want to be tiptoeing past emotional landmines all the time. Been there, done that in a work environment. I was miserable, despite loving my actual job. Never again.
So really, he did me a favor. (And, I did send him an email apologizing for my comments, once I calmed down. Didn't hear back, but I didn't expect to.) The world looks a lot bigger again. I am free. Still in my lane.