In a year and a month I will be turning 40, so I have been using this time to figure out “what is my purpose”, although I have done quite a bit, I would like to meet my maker being remembered here on earth for something more than purchasing make-up and taking crap when said make-up doesn’t turn up on time so end up chasing my tale so that the company doesn’t lose money. But hey ho, that is the life of a supply chain planner. I am still on that mission, but in the meantime I can’t stay silent forever while I find it.
Its been just over half a year and I am starting to get to know the personalities in my office. The more I get to know them, the more I realise that we come from two different worlds. Today I am going to give you an insight into the people I deal with.
First of all there is Elsie, she is my manager and she suffers from short person syndrome. I got a feeling of her personality at her interview, I would ask her a question and she would answer what she thinks she has heard but not what I actually asked. When this happens I have to admit, I get confused and then wonder if I didn’t articulate the question well. By the time I realise I did, the moment has passed and so I let it go. Unfortunately, it has been 7 months of this and I am having to use trial and error to make the job work for me as I don’t get a straight answer from her. Not that she is not knowledgeable, on the contrary, but it’s all in her head and I guess she thinks we should all read her mind.
She doesn’t really do people, on a number of occasions she has told me that she doesn’t really relate to people and would rather be at home with a glass of wine, although she does do a lot of church activities, but who am I to judge.
She is one of those people who can be really nice to your face, but over the phone or email can be quite scathing, all I can think about is that I have had worse, at least she can insult you with a smile.
Then there is Florence. You know that person who when you start a conversation, either she, her husband, her sister or her mother has gone through the same thing and then proceed to take over the conversation. She is one of those. The other day we were having a conversation about Japanese and Chinese food (a rather random conversation), she says “speaking of Chinese”, then she pulls out a dress she bought on line and complained about the fit. Florence is 50 this year and is going to marry her 3rd husband who is 10 years her junior so she is “down with the kids”. I say that because she always wants to show how with it she is with contemporary music, Rhianna, NWA, Beyonce. I am thinking, girl, you know you listen to cheesy 80s pop, stop trying to deceive yourself.
Serena, what can I say about her, I have the misfortune to manage her. Don’t get me wrong, when it comes to the job, she is on it. She has been here too long so she does her work without even thinking about it. But ask the girl to help you with something and it’s a bit like pulling teeth. I find her very passive aggressive and while we are getting on a bit better, I still get the feeling that she is on a quest to prove that she should have been hired in my position. I am trying to get her to see the bigger picture, it’s not about the amount of work you do but what you bring to the table, but she doesn’t want to hear me though. Unlike Africans, the people here feel that you should earn their respect, in fact they give you none and when they start to give you a little, it is like they are doing you a favour. At the moment we are at the doing me a favour stage.
Lastly there is Francine, she is a bubbly young lady, and love her to bits. However, like a little sister she does give me cause for concern. She is that loose cannon that if you lose guard has gone on a frolic on her own and can disgrace you simply because she feels she knows better. We can have a meeting, make decisions, and then I expect that we are all agreed so she would just execute, but I don’t know if she has an epiphany in the night but I can come back and does her own thing. I am all for risk taking but if it results in one of Elsie’s attack, my friend, please don’t test me.
Francine, unlike the rest of the group, does have black friends. I know this because when we have a conversation, she doesn’t look at me like what I have said is totally alien. But sometimes, she can say something that makes me say “oh my lord”. For example, she does love her mixed race men, and on Martin Luther King Day she said “if it wasn’t for MLK, I wouldn’t be allowed to date my boyfriend”. Sometimes in times like this it is better to stay silent, so I did. Francine uses the word “literally” a lot. Like she literally went out on the weekend and she literally gets to the office by 9. I let a lot of it slide because I actually like her.
There is a lot of use of the word 100% in the office. There is a lot of “like totally, 100%”. I don’t know where this turn of phrase came from but it literally sends me up the wall. Totally, like 100%.
But as I say, it could be worse, and it’s all an experience.