Day 30: Monday Frustrations

I left last week on a high, and now, it’s Monday; the office has an AC problem (it’s warm and humid, but our individual ac units on our desks work wonderfully so it honestly isn’t a problem when sitting at your desk), and people are leaving rotten food in the fridge making it smell in the break room and basically the whole office room. I feel like I’m back in my freshman dorm hall about a month into my first semester at college where people are still adjusting to having to take care of themselves and be respectful to others in shared spaces. It’s one of those “really guys” moments where you question what people are like at home because they don’t seem to care to take care of common spaces, leaving you to feel like the mother nagging her kids to clean up after themselves (all of this in my head of course, I’m not in the power position to be doing any kind of scolding, I’m more likely to be the one it is blamed on by an older sibling).

Okay, mini rant over. Today is more about how to be a polite, respectful, professional person when faced with negative snarky criticism from other workers in the office. To set you up, I’m working on developing data for a LEED Dynamic Plaque and the data comes from the following categories: Energy, Water, Waste, Transportation, and Human Experience. Well water, energy, and waste can be done by working with our facilities guy who is awesome and extremely helpful. The last two require us to send out a survey to the office, and in an office of people who passionately work on environmental issues you’d think they’d be understanding about filling out a two question, yes just TWO question survey. Maybe it was the heat, the vague remains of the garbage smell in the air, or someone was riding the struggle bus this Monday, but I got a couple of complainers emailing me within five minutes of politely sending out that email. One figured he didn’t need to fill it out since he mostly worked in our other office…okay, very legitimate concern, actually very helpful and I agreed and sent out a correction email immediately after.

Then I get an email saying that given how the building is a mess we should have waited. Excuse me Mrs. Snarky, glad you think so, I appreciate your opinion and will take that into consideration next time. If you took the time to read my email you would have seen that this was a test situation, and that this is actually a survey that will be sent out every two weeks, so this was just the first one of many, because we all know how data collection works, it has to be collected over a period of time. Can I tell her that she was rude, and that I was just doing what I was told to do by my boss? …. No. I’m an intern, the bottom of the totem pole, so I have to take the blame for this, and have to respond in a non-offensive way because I’m here to serve them. So here’s how to not should fury and rage when responding to emails that do in fact make you wish you could fire bend….

Thank you for your input, I will certainly keep that in consideration next time I send this out to everyone

Or

Thanks, I appreciate your input, I didn’t think about it that way but you’re right, I will keep this in the back of my mind for next time.

Or

Good observation, I will forward you input along in our data notes.

Just acknowledge that they had valuable input and move on. It’s not worth dwelling on or pursuing further.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *