Tuesday, December 09, 2008

happy holidays...

I may come across as a bit of a Grinch sometimes around the holidays, but only because I think the commercialization of what should be a celebration of togetherness adds too much stress to everyone's life. That being said, it is really nice to see someone open a gift you know they will like.

However, at work, I'm constantly annoyed by one thing.... Allow me to indulge myself.

We have administrative assistants at my office under the guise of "Support Associates." I generally avoid asking them for help, as I have no problem doing these small tasks for myself. I don't even really like my support person, and I've received rolling eyes and an over-acted sigh each time I've asked for help accomplishing something "below my pay grade" (yes - it's never said, but it's implied around here).

I'm already irritated by the fact that we buy them flowers and gifts on "Administrative Assistant Day"- a day that recognizes these employees as something by which we are all told NOT to refer to them (plus, are they not just DOING THEIR JOB??? I don't get chocolates for showing up every day).

Now we are taking up collections to buy them Christmas presents!!! We already do a Yankee Gift Swap, which is inclusive and great and is "in the spirit." How many gifts should one get for doing their job every day? On top of that, I don't even use their "services" and I don't even like the person to whom I am now giving a gift.

Maybe, Dear Reader, you'll say that I'm just a Scrooge. But I hate the hypocrisy and the double standards and the unspoken game of domination and superiority.

Rant over.


Oak said...

Mr. Grinch;

Agreed...to a point. I realize that it's silly to give someone flowers or have a 'day' that recognizes them differently than the rest of the professional employees within a company. Especially because, as you say, they are merely doing their job. Something we do without complaint Something we don't expect to get flowers for doing.

Note that the observance was created in the early 50's, perhaps a way to quell the growing number of disgruntled and most probably discriminated majority of women in the workplace.

It's antiquated and silly, as are the ads for diamonds (they're not rare and are certainly not women's best friends, St. Valentine's day, and the over commercialization of nearly every Holiday known to mankind.

These 'Support Associates' are similar in my experiences no matter where you look. Annoyed, sarcastic and complaining so much that you need to tip-toe gently with any standard requests.

That being said what we need to realize is that they are probably used to being beraded by management. Ask one. They deal with more crap than anyone in the office. So let them have their day and say thanks. It may irritate you to do so, but know that your positive words and a spectacular bouquet of (non-tax exempt) FTD roses and a silly sentimental card oozing of ass-kissing may just end up getting your help to do just that.

As far as the additional Christmas gift goes, that's ridiculous, unless of course I get one too.

Why not me? That's as American as it gets.

Don't get me started on double standards...

PS-my word verification was 'beard' ...how appropriate

Regan said...

Robert - there is also boss' day, I am crossing my fingers for Hallmark to declare middle-management day!!!