Women in the Workplace: How do you Guys Deal?Subscribe
I've had major issues with the opposite sex since entering the workforce. I wanted to share some of these problems and see if anyone can provide some guidance.
For example, a while back this new girl started at the office; Absolute Bombshell, 10/10 drop dead gorgeous knockout. She would regularly come by my desk and flirt with me, drop by my neighbors desk to chat, all the while staring at me and smiling.
I saw her at the Xmas party and she got really excited and waved me over. In my head I'm thinking "I'm taking this girl down tonight." We start chatting, all the while there is this ~6 foot 5, 230 lb dude hovering over us. So I ask him "Hey man who are you?" Answer: "I'm her fiance."
Whoops. Naturally I make my exit. A week later we're sent to New York together. We exchange cell phone numbers so we can stay in contact while we're there. She wants to go see the tree in Times Square, but after she wants me to go back to her hotel room with her. I decline because that's not how I roll. When we get back to our home office, I'm called into a meeting with HR saying I need to undergo sensitivity training - apparently "someone in the office" says I'm inconsiderate of other people's feelings.
Aside from Absolute Bombshell, there are 2 other girls in my office that seem to be attracted to me. We'll call them Grumpy, and Bashful.
They are friends with one another, however when one of them sees me speaking to another one of the group, or ESPECIALLY with Absolute Bombshell, I get nasty looks and sometimes hear rumors about me floating around the office. One of them has a brother who is 4 levels above me in the org chart, is well liked throughout the company, and now obviously despises me.
I try to keep things professional, however the girls are aggressive. This is a delicate situation.
At an after work event one day, we've all been drinking, and we're talking about our respective neighborhoods. So I ask, "Grumpy, what neighbourhood do you live in?" she gives me a dead stare and says: "Why Surferdude867, are you going to come over?"
One of the other girls laughs and I just stare back in silence. Grumpy sees me chatting up another girl later that evening, and when I go to say goodbye, she gives me quite possibly the most venomous look I've ever seen. Unfortunately, Grump is also my on the job "mentor," and is none too enthused about speaking to me and helping me out on a daily basis. My job is now exponentially more difficult.
At a similar event I'm getting a drink from the bar, when Bashful starts talking to me. I actually really enjoy talking with Bashful, she's very funny and I find her very pleasant to speak with. Unfortunately I don't realize that she's interested in more than just talking, because I ask "How is your boyfriend these days Bashful?"
Bashful turns bright red, gets visibly angry, starts speaking incredibly fast and incoherently, and then walks away quickly. The rest of the evening is VERY uncomfortable as she is either glaring at me with a venomous look on her face, or purposely avoiding eye contact.
Bashful's boyfriend, 1 level above me in the company, now dislikes me as well.
After being promoted my new boss is female (side note: Super pretty and friendly). Things are going good until one day I ask her "Boss, do you ever get to work from home?" A group conversations starts about the merits of working from home or not, and 5 minutes after I'm called into a room for a private meeting with my boss. Boss: "Surferdude867, It seems to me that you're becoming a Challenger, constantly questioning authority and I don't want this to hinder you come promotion time." Me: "Woah woah woah, first of all what's a challenger, and second what have I done to give you this impression?"
Apparently she didn't like how I disrupted the group harmony when I asked about working from home. I try to explain my reasoning, but it's clearly not getting through... So I change tactics, and immediately apologize: "My apologies boss, you're 100% correct. In fact, THANK YOU for pointing that out to me. I'll do my best to make sure that never happens again but if it does please just let me know because I'm absolutely not questioning your authority."
Her face changes, and she starts to cry a little bit, and thanks me for understanding. I see her walking down the street later, and when she sees me she starts to skip, and her face lights up as she says hello - it's almost like she's walking on a cloud. I'm a little awestruck and dumbfounded, but I nod and keep walking.
The rest of my time with this manager is completely bi-polar. Sometimes things are great, and other times things are unbelievably terrible, and I have ZERO clue why. I will literally say the exact same thing on two different occasions and get two completely different responses.
Lots of fun...
My old boss is promoted, and I get a new boss, also female (not attractive). Our first meeting: "Hey Surferdude867, this is my first time in management, and I was in your role just 2 years ago. I know everything that you're going through so just go ahead and tell me what's working and what isn't.
Sweet I think, she gets it. So I tell her 99% of things are great, but this one thing isn't going so well, but it's no big deal.
"Oh no" she says, "that 1% needs to be fixed immediately, that's not good at all." I explain to her that its really not a problem, the old manager and I dealt with it, no need to worry. "That's a terrible attitude" she retorts "Don't YOU want to be the one to fix the problem and have that sense of satisfaction?"
We go back and forth like this for 5 minutes or so until eventually I get frustrated and think screw it, I tell her "you're right, let's move on." The next day, a company wide re-org starts, so I ask her "New Boss, am I getting a new VP?" New Boss says "I don't know."
This is important and I need to know now, so I ask my director. The director tells me that our department is almost entirely unaffected, and everyone will roll up to their current VPs. I go and report back to my new boss this information.
The next day, my boss's laptop is being used to show the powerpoint preso. she gets an e-mail during that pops up with the title "Surferdude867 - Final Warning." 60 people in the room and 200 internationally see this. Several heads turn in my direction, and I know that I'm fucked.
I e-mail New Boss "Is there anything that I should know?" New boss "No that was a mistake, it's just a follow up from your previous manager." I see.................
3 hours later, I'm pulled into a room with New Boss, Old Boss, and 2 HR members. I'm presented with a letter that says: "During our first one on one Surferdude867 became aggressive to the point of pushing his chair away, turning red and using inappropriate language. Furthermore, he decided to go over my head to get information and then proceeded to publicly embarrass me when I didn't know the answer to his question immediately. He ran back to my desk once he found it who his new VP would be, and then started flailing his hands in the air and yelling to draw attention to himself."
They reference the previous meeting I had because of Absolute Bombshell so I'm fucked.
The letter is 3 pages long and I refuse to sign it. They tell me "Surferdude867 the problem is you're just not internalizing what she's feeling."
.. WTF does that mean?
The next meeting I have with her, she tells me that even though I didn't sign the letter, I'm bound by the terms stated. I'm looking away but I catch her smirk and chuckle a little as she says it... She screwed me on purpose.
4 weeks later, despise being ranked number 1 in my division based on my performance, I get a 0 on my performance review.
Hell hath no fury gentleman.
Now I've NEVER had an issue with a male boss, or really even with a male colleague.
When there is a problem, the bosses say "Surferdude867 this is a problem, fix it." and one of two things happen:
1. "Boss you're right, it's done." 3 days later we meet again - "Boss I fixed the problem" Boss responds "Good job Surferdude867, now let's move on."
2. "Boss you're wrong, and this is why" 3 days later we meet again - "Surferdude867 you were right it was my mistake, now let's move on.
Even with TeaBag, the gay recruiter who would hit on me discreetly (and sometimes openly) from time to time, he understood that we were in a professional environment and feelings did not enter into the equation.
So I ask you, how do you deal with women in the workplace? Because I have no clue.