As the management, proprietor and CEO of my business, I have made an executive decision to formally write my one and only employee up. It’s a tough decision and one I know will have implications as far as his future productivity goes. But it’s gone too far.
You see, lately there has been nuisance behavior that I can no longer tolerate. Goes against company policy and throws a wrench into our daily work flow. Such violations have been occurring for the past few months but like any manager that relies on their staff – I’ve let some slide. But not any more. I’m getting out the triplicate form and copying human resources on this one. It’s disciplinary action and I’m thinking of sending my co-worker directly to his crate.
(my co-worker is my dog)
The other day I was doing my morning work. It involved a tricky balance of multitask; Skype-ing with one of my clients, foam rolling my legs and drinking coffee.
My co-worker got in the way.
First he started by licking my laptop. Totally inappropriate. Then he pressed his paws on my keyboard. Made for some interesting Skype dialogue. Next he started to walk all over me – literally. I am sitting there trying to have a professional conversation about race tactics and pacing with an 8 pound Chihuahua perched on my back. Thank goodness for online – no pictures – chat.
Once I shook him off, he sat by my laptop and stared at me. When that didn’t unnerve me, he sat there and raised his paws in an effort to engage me in his game. His game which is mostly to avoid helping me with any work and to instead just get in the way. He tossed squeaky carrot at my head. Last, he pulled out what I would call his ace in the hole – he made a beeline towards my coffee cup and licked it.
NOT THE COFFEE CUP!
He crossed the line when he followed me into the bathroom, sat on the mat on stared at me. Sexual harassment? That’s your call but it sure was creepy. As if that wasn’t enough, I finish Skype-ing and realize the co-worker has disappeared. Off on an usually long break on company time. This can mean only one thing – my co-worker has made his final point by crapping on the office floor. Speculation that I quickly confirm by looking near the fireplace.
I consider calling in the Building Services Technician (code for janitor) but then realize that really that is just….me. The pleasure of working from home.
After extracting and flushing the said violation, I sit the co-worker down on his red blanket that he has skillfully dragged from his crate to the floor.
“Boss, we need to have a talk.”
I start talking to him about company policy and referring to the employee manual that said thou shalt not shat on the office floor, thou shalt not lick office equipment, thou shalt under no circumstances approach management’s coffee cup but I realize it is falling upon deaf doggie ears.
My co-worker has fallen asleep on his red blanket. Another infraction – sleeping on company time.
I went upstairs to do a few tasks. Meanwhile my co-worker woke up (good timing) and set about to complete his own agenda. Back downstairs I realize something green is all over the floor. Shredded into tiny bits my co-worker has been eating the office plants. I’m not sure we have something in the employee manual that covers this but I think we should.
We should also have a talk about personal belongings. As the day wears on, my co-worker's belongings become scattered all over the office floor. Red blanket, squeaky carrot, monkey, blue dog, yellow giraffe, rawhide bone. OSHA would call it a hazard. I call it a lot of squeaky steps.
The day is nearly done and my co-worker sits in my lap. Don’t worry, it was a consensual move. I look at him and think for all of the trouble that my co-worker causes he keeps me good company. He listens to my small talk. He keeps me accountable. And all of his office shenanigans make for a good laugh.
Another story about Boss – I guess that’s two in one week for those keeping count. In my defense I am tapering. Not much else is going on in the area of training and the restless energy, well, it’s going around the office and soon enough I’m thinking of joining Boss in the living room for a round of his “crazy laps”.
Boss does his crazy laps every night. Usually about 11 pm when I have stayed up too late and really want to get to bed. I go to grab him and he bolts. Starts running giant circles - around the table, around the couch and squeezing in betwen the coffee table to start the lap again. While doing this he makes a little noise that is a cross between panting-barking-grunting. It's one of the funniest things I've ever seen and sometimes so fun that we run with him and shout CRAZY LAPS (this is what happens when you are in your early 30's and don't have kids yet but really should have kids you replace it with a dog and treat it like a kid and do all sorts of stupid things that you could justify if it was a kid but just make you look crazy because it's just a dog). Crazy laps are Boss' way to releasing a few hours worth of restless puppy energy in about 20 laps. That's how my legs are feeling after a taper. I'm ready to run my crazy laps. (I'll do without the pant-bark-grunt though).
For those of you stuck in an office today - don't be afraid to rip out a round of crazy laps or other squeaky behavior around your cubicle. After all, it's Friday. It's time for release. And it's worth the write-up. Trust me.