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Disrespected at work

Okay, so I'm going to try to give as much back story as I can... I'd be happy to answer any questions if I've missed something.

I'm a receptionist at a printing company. I've been here about 5 and a half months. I work on the main floor, and the majority of the rest of the office staff work upstairs. I don't even see most of them in a day. I see sales reps, as they come and go a lot... but aside from that, anyone else coming down here is rare.

About two months ago, we got a new accountant upstairs. Part of her job is to cover my breaks. So of all of the upstairs staff I have to put up with her the most. Down in my little Land of Reception, I have a huge desk, tons of space to work (when there's actually work to be done) and everything has it's place.

But this accountant is completely disrespectful of me. At first I just thought it was because she's a moron (a few other people here agree with me there) but now it feels like she's being blatantly rude to me.

Here's what she does:

- She refers to me as Receptionist, like it's my name. Not THE receptionist. Just Receptionist. It's fine if you're bad with names... but that's not right. I consider it pretty disrespectful to basically refer to me like I don't matter at all... not to mention not even TRYING to remember my name.

- I knit at work (I have a very quiet job most days). When I come back from my breaks, my project is often shoved off to the side. This really frustrates me because I move it off to the side before I go - it's never actually in the way.

- I've come back more than a few times to see the framed picture I have of my fiance and son on my desk actually FACE DOWN.

- I stayed home sick for a couple of days last week. She took it upon herself, in those two days, to completely rearrange my desk. I'm not messy.

- She rearranges things even when I'm just gone for 15 minutes. I come back to things knocked over, or just in a completely different spot. She doesn't bring work down with her most of the time - she usually just goes on facebook, which clearly does not require moving my stuff around.

My fiance thinks I need to talk to her about this. But since I'm not the only one who thinks she's got a screw loose, I doubt she would even register what I'm saying. And either she doesn't even KNOW she's messing with my stuff, or she has boundary issues and doesn't see a problem. I even have a note taped up under the ledge on my desk where I keep my knitting asking her to keep her hands off - but hey maybe she can't even READ.

I've mentioned my issues in passing with the woman who is directly above her in the food chain. But apparently she's really good upstairs (the kid we had before was terrible, so anything is an improvement) so they don't give a shit what she's like down here. I know they obviously won't FIRE her over something as minimal as pissing off the receptionist, but sending someone else to cover me would be amazing. She's gotten worse since I last mentioned it to the other woman, so I suppose bringing it up again wouldn't hurt.

I'm just at a complete loss, really. I tend to avoid confrontation, so talking to her directly about this is something I'd prefer to avoid - however, messing with my stuff and my space is getting really frustrating really fast.


Asked by AdensMama0308 at 5:42 PM on Nov. 29, 2013 in Money & Work

Level 24 (18,609 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (5)
  • I feel that she has a big problem with you!! i would tell her with a calm voice all the things that she does that bother you! because it seems like she wants a reaction from you because of the things, she does to get under your skin!! ill tell you something that works for me!!! when the other person gets upset and gets loud and you show that your calm , the other person feels like an idiot!! plus it calms them down!!!

    Answer by starlite204 at 8:37 PM on Dec. 2, 2013

  • Start by calling her "accountant" to her face and have a little chat with her. Sounds like she's a little passive-aggressive so she will avoid behavior that will bring her a straight out confrontation. Call her out on it all and get it all out in the open.

    Answer by Crafty26 at 6:02 PM on Nov. 29, 2013

  • I agree with crafty, call her accountant. Especially when she says it to you, just respond with 'yes, accountant?'

    She sounds like she is passively- aggressively trying to get you to avoid having her fill in for you, regardless of whether you are in control of that.

    Usually I suggest killing them with kindness. She probably wouldn't get the subtlety of that tactic.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 6:13 PM on Nov. 29, 2013

  • Honestly, I would probably just ignore it. When I used to work as a receptionist, the woman who covered for me for breaks and lunch was really, super busy. It was a hassle for her to cover for me, and though she didn't begrudge me or blame me, I know she would have preferred not to have to do it. Maybe that's what's going on here, and she's taking it out on you even though it's not really your fault. Just keep putting your stuff back the way it should be, and asking her to stop. Maybe she'll get so sick of you asking that she'll finally stop. And if she calls you receptionist, just tell her "My name is Susie." Every time she calls you receptionist, tell her your name.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 6:04 PM on Nov. 29, 2013

  • Who is you immediate supervisor? That is who I would speak to, first.
    It sounds as though you are big enough to have an HR person and that is the next operson to talk to. Take pictures before you leave and as soon as you get back.

    Answer by Dardenella at 8:56 PM on Nov. 29, 2013