How would you handle this situation...

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  1. #1 Jan 28, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2014
    Keep in mind, I am applying for new jobs, so this may not end up being an issue, but let's put that aside and assume I'll be here for awhile longer (since other than sending out apps, I have no prospects interviewing me at the moment)...

    I currently have a private office in the back of our service lot (work at a car dealership). It's decent size, probably 20x10 feet, maybe bigger. We are going to be remodeling and my office is part of "phase 1"... I'll be losing a foot of it, and it will be turned into an office for two. The person moving in with me is a wretched person though, my boss and I worked with her at our previous dealership where she was HR. She's not totally hate-able, she can be quite pleasant and funny, but her bad points far outweigh her good. She sh** talks every lady in the business office (people I really like, and she did so at our last dealership too). She sh** talks the service advisers (the people I work closest with and also like). She has not one nice thing to say about her own 8 year old son (whom she sometimes brings to work). She also constantly *****es about her ex bf who won't stop texting her after three months of being broken up and is still pining over her (apparently). She has already come in saying that the tech in the bay that backs up to my office will have to turn his music down and that I will have to use headphones if I want to listen to my music because she needs a quiet space and she "absolutely will not listen to country crap." Keep in mind, I've been here almost two years, the tech next to me has been here longer than that, and she's been here about 8 months. She is not in a management position. She's the warranty clerk and even then she is not a hired employee, she falls into an "independent contractor" category. She rarely even shows up to work, so I'm really hoping she's digging her own hole (my boss may tolerate it and keep her on, but I already know my GM is getting fed up).

    There are a few things wrong with this whole situation.
    1) You don't come into someone's space and tell them they will need to change their entire working habits to accommodate you. Am I wrong? I also have to be on the phone off and on, it's not feasible for me to be taking headphones in and out. She's supposed to help with the phones and my boss has gotten mad at her for not doing so, but she still doesn't. My boss is more than fine with me having some sort of background noise. Shouldn't she perhaps need to invest in headphones and adjust to the tech next door and myself? I personally wouldn't even dare go into someone's work space who's been there longer and be like "I need this this and this and you're gonna have to adjust to my needs." Oh heck no.
    2) I will absolutely not sit here and listen to her ***** about everyone and everything.
    3) I will not, for one second, tolerate her bringing her child in here while I'm trying to work.
    4) The next thing she'll start *****ing about is how far she'll have to walk to get to the printer when she prints things. She'll also ***** about the tools the tech next to me uses (trust me, the first time he uses his riveter, which sounds like a jack hammer, she is going to lose her sh**). Bottom line, she ain't gonna get a quiet space back here even if they re-enforce the walls or something. I won't be subject to her complaining the 3 days a week I'm in this office. I don't mind having a noisy office, I prefer it. Too much quiet drives me nuts.

    How do I handle this? Do I go to my boss (who, and this is the dinger, has been friends with her for 10 years and according to her, is trying to date her... I shouldn't even know that! But of course she ran her mouth to me about it) and tell him this won't work and the reasons why? Or do I wait until it happens and bring it up with her? Or do I go over everyone's head to the GM and express my concerns?

  2. Oh, to add, she's already admitted it's going to be annoying for her while I'm making my phone calls. Gee, I'm sorry, this is what I get paid to do. I'm sorry my job will be an annoyance to you. UGH!
  3. I think you need to sit tight and wait until something with her actually happens. Until then, you're just getting worked up over a situation that isn't even occurring yet.
  4. You might be right. I just don't like how she came in here on Friday and threw her weight around like she did. And the kid thing didn't even occur to me till this morning (that shouldn't be acceptable anyway in the workplace).
  5. Yes, absolutely! She should be the one to apply for a new job.
  6. She sounds brutal! Hopefully she digs her own hole and gets fired before this becomes an issue.

    That being said, I think that in a shared office space, if someone wants to be listening to music, they should be the one wearing headphones. If I'm in a shared space and someone else is listening to music without headphones, I get really annoyed - I think the default should be quiet unless both parties agree to music. I understand that it was your office first and you've been there longer, but wearing headphones seems like such a small thing to do to smooth the waters. As a bonus, if you have headphones in, you won't have to listen to her *****ing, because you can either pretend you can't hear her, or turn up the music so loud that you actually can't hear her, haha.

    I'm not saying she was ok in barging into your office and ordering you around (I'd be super mad too if that happened to me), and I'm sure it's brutal to work with someone like that. Just saying that I think headphones are a fairly easy solution to a couple of those issues.

  7. The actually having music playing isn't the issue, her issue is she listens to rap and I listen to country and her thing is "I won't be listening to that crap." Well I shouldn't have to listen to her "crap" if I don't want to. The headphones for me wouldn't be an issue if I didn't have to be on the phone, which I do answering calls and making calls. She doesn't have to be on the phone at all. And she's expecting not just me to be quiet but the tech next door to turn his music down as well. So, common sense in my mind says since she does not have to be on the phone (and she has said it will be annoying for her when I am even though I have to be, that's kinda part of my job), then she needs to get the headphones. I guess she made a joke the same day she came in here with my boss that she won't listen to my "country crap" (he listens to country too) and she said he told her to put headphones in (haha) to which she said "Um, no"... Well, then find a different office. It's not just me she's expecting to become dead silent, it's the tech next door as well. Given our jobs, it's not possible she'll get silence from either of us. KWIM? The music issue is just a drop in the bucket in comparison to the other things though.

    Just another example... I went to lunch with her a while back because she seemed like she was in a good mood that day and might actually have things to talk about other than her ex and our boss. She complained the whole time about the service, complained to the manager, complained about her food. I was so tense the whole time the second I returned to work I had a hideous stomach ache. The woman needs some serious therapy.