- 6 years ago
I need to use this new account since my real account has some pictures…thanks.
I am in a difficult situation with my office assistant. She was recently hired and is supposed to support me and one other colleagues. She is supposed to do meeting scheduling, arrange travel, do large mailings etc.
In the nearly six months she has been with us, I would rank her work as fair to poor. While some of this is due to being new and needing to learn specific processes, much of it has been due to just in my opinion, laziness and a lack of care about the work. For instance, I asked her to put several binders together with a number of documents in a particular order. The documents were not in the correct order. I asked her to schedule a meeting with seven people. I emailed the names and addresses to her-she fails to include one of the people. I could list dozens of examples like these. Just shoddy careless work.
I have asked her how she is feeling, does she have questions, is she overwhelmed etc. I have been very patient and gracious towards her. She sort of grunts her responses and says “ok” about everything, and then things don’t get done or get done poorly. She rarely responds to emails, I have to go to her desk to ask her if she has done the things I email her. All of this to say, a few weeks ago, after one of her mistakes that I had to fix to some great degree, I decided to stop asking for her assistance. I decided that her mistakes are costing me too much: time, productivity, and to some degree face with our partners. I still walk by every morning and politely make small talk, I am polite and friendly whenever I see her, but I have not asked for anything from her (that she is not already required to do by the department).
Well, the head of our department feels she does not have enough work to do, and has asked me and my colleague to develop workplans with her. He says that he sees her “literally twittling her thumbs” most of the day and when he sat down with her and asked her what she is working on she said that me and my colleague never give her anything to do. (I guess he is on the same wave as me and pulled work.)
I really don’t know how to navigate this. If she were my direct report, I would go through a performance process with her. But since she isn’t I am not inclined to dump all this on our department director. I would rather just do my work, use my interns for some assistance and although unfortunate, not deal with this hassle of an assistant.
Has anyone been in this situation? How’d you deal?