Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Horrible Bosses

I actually haven’t worked that many jobs to accumulate a collection of horrible bosses. My first job was at a law office answering phones for two lawyers who were pretty much total sweethearts. They didn’t get mad at me for mangling the names of clients who called. Instead, they’d try to guess who I meant. It sort of became a game. The job itself was cake. I was in high school at the time and at the end of the school day, I literally crossed the street and arrived at that law office. I worked from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. every other day and made enough money to gas my white Nissan 200SX.

My second job was at a women’s clothing store, Hit or Miss, which is no longer in business. It sold mostly pieces for the career-oriented woman and not much that I would ever consider wearing despite the 30% discount. Most of my bosses here were also nice even though I sucked at putting outfits together. If it wasn’t already matched on a hanger, I had no idea what to pair with what or what would look good on certain body types. Not a clue. But I could smile, ring people up at the register, and fold sweaters on the display tables like only an obsessive-compulsive sufferer can.
I did have one boss at Hit or Miss, however, who scored me low on a review in the category of “professional appearance.” She stated she wanted me to wear more of the store’s clothing and improve my style of dress. Hey, lady, have you seen my paycheck? I only worked three times a week, maximum, and for a few hours each time. Again, I made enough to gas my car and eat Taco Bell with my friends. I didn’t have cash to spend on clothing, let alone stuffy business-type outfits made of uncomfortable fabrics like linen. God, I’m getting hives just thinking of those scratchy spring blazers we used to have in colors like “chartreuse” and “plum.” Hi, I prefer black and…black.

I had a few stints working for summer camps and those were just miserable, but not because of the bosses. It was the general disorganization of the programs and the vast range in ages of the campers that made those jobs unbearable. One boss did make me take kids to a lake for a field trip though. I thought she was coming along and at the last minute, she decided to stay behind and “do paperwork.” I had to be in charge of twenty-something kids ages 4 to 12 by the water.
Did I mention I can’t swim? Yeah.

Once I started teaching, my bosses were at a different level. I’ve had the good fortune of working under the direction of two professional, educated, competent principals, both of which have been extremely supportive. **Insert I still work under one of them at present and think it in my best interest not to say anything horrible.**
Every editor, publisher, and cover artist I’ve worked with in my writing career has been wonderful too. I can honestly say I haven’t had any problems with any of them.

I don’t know where my working life will take me next, but hopefully my string of good luck in the bosses department will continue.

If not, perhaps I’ll give them a horrible employee story they can share. I can be evil if necessary.

What would your dream boss be like?

If you want to read about some horrible bosses, one of my books has a questionable one for you. KISSES TO REMEMBER includes a boss that not only makes passes at the hero, but she also…well, pick it up and you’ll see.

Barnes & Noble     




Betsy Ashton said...

Wonderful tour of early jobs, Christine. I love working at Hit or Miss. Nothing like a student having to deal with linen jackets. Brings back bad memories for me as well. Wearing them, not matching and selling them.

Margo Hoornstra said...

You have been fortunate in the bosses department, Chris. May that good luck continue in your writing career as well.

Jannine Gallant said...

The best boss would have to be no boss. I'm excellent at finding jobs with little input from the powers that be!

Leah St. James said...

I remember Hit or Miss! I've never worked in a clothing store, but I have no fashion sense, no artistic ability, so I can relate. Actually, I have my dream boss right now. She's the editor at the paper where I work (in charge of the news content for three publications). I was hired as an administrative coordinator, and when she saw that I write, she asked if I'd ever be interested in moving beyond admin. I said, "Uh...YES." I now write a weekly column and blog, and although the stress is pretty high (working like crazy to get it all done), I'm so grateful for her support, and her willingness to let me move beyond that traditional role. I'm blessed.

Alicia Dean said...

Ha, I enjoyed hearing about your early jobs. So funny that you weren't all that great at them, but you persevered. :) Your book sounds great...a female boss making a pass at the hero? How can I NOT take a look! :)