You know the work don’t biggies—of course you wouldn’t talk to friends on the phone all day or chew gum during a client meeting. But other, more surprising actions that you think are NBD might be secretly pissing off your boss…and hurting your career. We asked higher-ups to spill the stuff they can’t freaking stand.
“I had an assistant who couldn’t speak a sentence without using ‘like.’ In the real estate business, selling people is our bread and butter, and when you say like in between every other word, you just don’t sound credible or smart.” –Dawn, real estate agent.
“There was one woman who would text me outside of work hours to say things like, ‘Can’t wait for your presentation tomorrow!’ While her enthusiasm was great, texting your boss is never appropriate unless you need to communicate vital info fast and don’t have access to e-mail.” –Ryan, entrepreneur.
“I can’t stand how all the paralegal assistants are on Gchat all day. Do you think we don’t notice? That’s not what we pay you for!” –Carla, lawyer.
“A former assistant constantly asked me things she could just find out for herself, like what the current exchange rate was or the value of a stock. Don’t waste my time with stupid questions you can just Google!” –David, financial analyst.
“As an event planner, we spend most of our nights out running parties, and then have to be back at the desk the next morning—it’s just the nature of the business. So when a former assistant would call in sick sometimes after events, I would get so annoyed. We were all there just as late as you last night!” –Trevor, event planner.
“Without fail, I always have to have a talk with new hires about appropriate e-mail and memo conduct because they make grammatical errors. Re-read your work, people!” –Lindsay, advertising executive.
“One employee of mine was great, but would always be five minutes late. It might not seem like a lot, but bottom line, I’m paying you for those five minutes and they add up. If you think we don’t notice, we do!” –Michael, veterinarian.
“My biggest pet peeve is when my assistants interrupt me with questions while I’m in the middle of explaining a project. Just let me finish and I’ll probably answer your question! Didn’t we all learn that in elementary school?” –Chelsea, publicist.
“As nurses, we need to always be upbeat and enthusiastic to keep our patients happy and motivated. I had one nurse-in-training who was annoyed whenever I asked her to get up from her chair. I think she’s in the wrong profession—and I’ll tell that to any future employer who calls asking.” –Alexandra, nurse.
“I hate when employees think their time is more valuable than mine. So when someone asks me to reschedule a meeting around their schedule, I always say no. I don’t want to be a hard-ass, but that’s not how it works.” –Marty, producer.