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Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:13 AM   #1
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Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Or so I initially told my wife.

She and I were talking yesterday. She told me about her conversation with her assistant boss that went something like this:

Asst. Boss: "So, you don't really have to take three full months off for maternity leave do you? We really need you here, as we're a little thinly staffed at the moment." (DW goes on maternity leave in 1 wk.)

DW: "Actually, I'm planning on taking 5 months off, 3 of which will be paid leave and 2 months of unpaid leave, per company policies."

Asst. Boss: "Wow, you're killing us! How can you leave us high and dry like this?" (he was halfway joking, DW says)

DW: "Well, I only took this job because I was bored at home. I do this primarily for the social interaction. We don't need the income from me working here at all, since we live off of a part of my husband's paycheck and save all of mine."

At first I freaked out and started explaining how making statements like that could dampen her chances at promotions, raises, bonuses, and moving up the corporate ladder. I thought she should give the outward appearance of a "team player", that the job is of primary, vital, utmost importance to her (in other words, be more tactful).

Then I realized how incomprehensible and unbelievable her statement re: not needing the job must have appeared to her asst. boss. He must have assumed she was joking, because this day and age, how can anyone afford to live on a single income earner's wages, right? Our secret is still safe...



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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:33 AM   #2
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

neat little anecdote.

good luck with that one

i've been trying to get fired for months so i can collect some unemployment, but i cant seem to figure it out without being downright dirty
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:35 AM   #3
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Show up wearing nothing but your underpants. If and when the boss points it out, appear mystified and tell him you're wearing a full set of clothes.

Oh...i'm talking to 'thefed', not you justin.

But if the spirit moves ya...
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:36 AM   #4
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Show up wearing nothing but your underpants. If and when the boss points it out, appear mystified and tell him you're wearing a full set of clothes.

Oh...i'm talking to 'thefed', not you justin.

But if the spirit moves ya...
Underpants. Seems superfluous.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:44 AM   #5
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Well, Justin, not to be a-hole, but turn the situation around, and would you want to work with someone who took the job just because he/she is bored? Remember, he/she may not need the job, but you do. It's a delicate situation. On the one hand, I see your wife's point about taking the company-approved maternity leave, but everyone else around her may actually be crapping in their pants thinking how many weekends they'll have to pull for the next 5 months.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:45 AM   #6
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Quote:
Originally Posted by justin
Underpants. Seems superfluous.
Then wear some superfluous underwear.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 10:52 AM   #7
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Is it necessary to make these plans in advance, or could she leave the office for the minimum-allowed time and then renegotiate? *It'd be very easy to claim that a baby is causing plenty of disruption to one's carefully-laid plans but I don't know if an employer could handle the changes from the initial plan of a short absence modified to a three-month absence re-modified to a five-month absence.

Quote:
Originally Posted by justin
DW: "Well, I only took this job because I was bored at home.* I do this primarily for the social interaction.* We don't need the income from me working here at all, since we live off of a part of my husband's paycheck and save all of mine."
At first I freaked out and started explaining how making statements like that could dampen her chances at promotions, raises, bonuses, and moving up the corporate ladder.* I thought she should give the outward appearance of a "team player", that the job is of primary, vital, utmost importance to her (in other words, be more tactful).*
Then I realized how incomprehensible and unbelievable her statement re: not needing the job must have appeared to her asst. boss.* He must have assumed she was joking, because this day and age, how can anyone afford to live on a single income earner's wages, right?* ** Our secret is still safe...
OK, maybe she scores higher in the "truth" category than in "business tact", but you're right-- no one will believe her anyway. *However if your spouse is doing it for the social interaction then she doesn't need the pay, right?

My spouse used to take this approach at PACOM for Reserve duty: *"I don't have to work here, but I'm happy to work here as long as all the dissatisfiers are removed. *The commute's not too bad, I have a nice parking space, the people are great, and the work seems pretty good. *As long as we're treating each other well then I'll be back."

She won't be back. *The scary thing is that the particular division was regarded as one of the few "good" ones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by justin
Underpants. Seems superfluous.
Seems pretty important to me, especially without pants. There are some things just not meant to drag along the floor. Especially if it's cold out!
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:00 AM   #8
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

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Originally Posted by BunsOfVeal
Well, Justin, not to be a-hole, but turn the situation around, and would you want to work with someone who took the job just because he/she is bored? Remember, he/she may not need the job, but you do. It's a delicate situation. On the one hand, I see your wife's point about taking the company-approved maternity leave, but everyone else around her may actually be crapping in their pants thinking how many weekends they'll have to pull for the next 5 months.
They have been on notice of her impending leave for many months. They'll make do. They can shift around responsibilities. Some others are jumping ship to different divisions or different employers because of the B.S. going on right now. It's not her concern what occurs in the intervening 5 months (she's just a grunt - not paid to worry about high level "managerial level" stuff ). She does feel empathetic towards her coworkers who she will be abandoning, but when it is a question of the relative merits of abandoning your new baby versus megacorp coworkers, it is hardly a question.

She does her job diligently and applies herself while at work.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:05 AM   #9
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
There are some things just not meant to drag along the floor. Especially if it's cold out!
Eh, if its cold out, I find that after 5-10 minutes it stops dragging. Barely.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:08 AM   #10
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
Is it necessary to make these plans in advance, or could she leave the office for the minimum-allowed time and then renegotiate? It'd be very easy to claim that a baby is causing plenty of disruption to one's carefully-laid plans but I don't know if an employer could handle the changes from the initial plan of a short absence modified to a three-month absence re-modified to a five-month absence.
The latter is her thinking. She told them she'll be off for 5 months, and they can/should plan accordingly. If, after her 3 months of paid leave are over, she decides she's ready for work, then megacorp would love to have her back early to pick up some of the workload. If she had said she'll take off 3 months, then changed it to 5 mid-stream, it may have caused more problems.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
OK, maybe she scores higher in the "truth" category than in "business tact", but you're right-- no one will believe her anyway. However if your spouse is doing it for the social interaction then she doesn't need the pay, right?

My spouse used to take this approach at PACOM for Reserve duty: "I don't have to work here, but I'm happy to work here as long as all the dissatisfiers are removed. The commute's not too bad, I have a nice parking space, the people are great, and the work seems pretty good. As long as we're treating each other well then I'll be back."
We still "need" the money, as in we aren't FIRE yet. Her income should chop 20 years of me working alone down to 10 years of US working. We also live higher on the hog with the extra income coming in each month (something she likes more than me I guess).

But it is true that if she never gets more than a COLA/CPI raise on average over the next 10 years, we'll still reach our financial goals. Everything above that is just gravy.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:14 AM   #11
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Isn't management paid more than workers to handle things like employee maternity leave? Is it just too obvious to go to their management with the case for hiring a temp/contractor for a few months? sheesh :
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:17 AM   #12
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Oh and on a serious note, make sure you document who said what and the dates, times, and any witnesses. Just in case there is any funny business down the road, it'd be nice to have documented the attempt to (perhaps) intimidate an employee who was seeking to take legal and appropriate leave...
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:19 AM   #13
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

This kind of crap corporations pull like inducing guilt on an employee for maternity leave pissess me off to no end. *The fact that they are thinly staffed is NOT her problem. *I assume she's taking maternity leave within the confines of company policy and state law. *I applaud your wife for seeing the situation for what it is and explaining her *side* with a *twist* * *She sounds like a crack-up. *
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:20 AM   #14
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Oh and on a serious note, make sure you document who said what and the dates, times, and any witnesses.* Just in case there is any funny business down the road, it'd be nice to have documented the attempt to (perhaps) intimidate an employee who was seeking to take legal and appropriate leave...
I concur!!* My boss was suprised yesterday when I pulled out a copy of an email from 8 months ago.* She said I should go promptly to the shredder and deposit it quitely.* Yeah, umm, okay I'll go shred it.* NOT!
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 11:26 AM   #15
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

My wife sort of did the same thing, only with better leverage.

She told them she was taking six months off. Loved the job and was looking forward to coming back when she was good and god damn ready. But of course due to being independently wealthy she didnt need the paycheck, so wanted the extra time off.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 12:01 PM   #16
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Cube, Lock your desk! She knows you save things now, they could disappear.
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 12:17 PM   #17
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 02:20 PM   #18
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Having been on the other side, I can assure you that the boss was fully aware of the pending leave and was just trying to make her feel needed to ensure that she would actually come back in 5 months. Many mothers get used to the home child rearing routine and decide not to return at all.

And congratulations. For someone who does not need the money, you have obviously made a substantial contribution. And especially good luck with your "next project"!
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 02:31 PM   #19
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

If the company policy states one can take 3-5 months for a leave then they have to abide by it. *She is only following company rules and management must also follow the same policies and in fact, must inforce them. *A manage who is trying to get her to cut short her allowed leave is either stupid, ignorant of company policy or both. *This might make a very nice legal issue if one wanted to push it that far. *

As for her discussion with the manager.....

I guess I see it differently. *Her statement could affect her career/job sometime in the future. *If faced with a decsion on who's increase to limit or who to not promote or who to lay off your wife's comments might be used againts her. *

What would motivate the boss to go the extra mile for her if he knows:

1. She does not really need a raise. since you are saving all her check...therefore, the minimum will be given while more will be given to other people in the office.

2. Her job is not really needed it is just a hobby so she won''t get bored. *Why should I go out on a limb to protect her when she could care less if she works or not? *

3. Have the gonads to say something like that to your boss can be intimidating to the boss and he/she may go out of their way to make life tough on your DW.

Don't discount the personal side of management. *Given a set of conditions where one group stands to gain from the loss of another, the group that will gain will be those that most closely align with what the boss expects or needs. *Being perceived as independent, overpaid, arrogant and not really needing a job puts one on the back burner in the boss's mind. *
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!
Old 07-27-2006, 03:21 PM   #20
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Re: Oh my god, you're going to get fired!

Those were my fears too, Steve. However my main point in my original post is that I wouldn't be too concerned for DW's future since I don't think, objectively speaking, the asst. boss would even believe her story! He probably took it as a joke/wishful thinking.

But I definitely see where you are coming from, and I was concerned too (at first). Her comments, if taken seriously, could cause the bossmen to put extra scrutiny on her in the future.
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