29 Apr Kids Make Shitty Co-Workers
Working from home with kids is tough. Generally, I go to the library or they have school or day care. I am currently imagining my family as work colleagues, and the kids make shitty co-workers.
Daniel Smith, photography creative, content producer and educator, and close friend of Monica Clare Recruitment is our guest blogger with his deep and hilarious insight into working from home with kids around. Strap in…
Kids Make Shitty Co-Workers – Day 1
Two of my colleagues just wrestled until one of them sat on the other’s head, got knocked to the ground then yelled “Mummy!” They are both currently crying at the lady who I assume is the boss.
I was typing an email to some external stakeholders when a junior colleague in my office jumped onto my back and shouted “Iggle Piggle, Iggle Piggle”. He, the trainee, was pointing at the TV. I tried to take a photo as proof but he shouted “no photo, no photo”; I assuming he has had trouble with HR before.
Someone ate my lunch at work again, evidenced by some crusts smooshed next to the lounge.
There is no breakroom here and the open office workspace does not lead to productivity. Is someone banging a drum?
Can only assume he drinks.
Everyone in the office decided that we should all sit within the same 2-square-metres. Is this some sort of team building exercise? One of them, Miss A, started crying because I wasn’t sitting close enough. After a short walk to the office fridge I came back to find someone driving a Hot Wheels across the laptop keyboard. Always lock your screen.
That short guy, the trainee, is funny, though is quite strange. Never gets much work done and he randomly took his pants off earlier in the day. Walking around with just a shirt on. Can only assume he drinks. My young female co-worker is currently head-butting the smaller guy in the butt and saying “smelly!”
Looks like the boss is about to have a mental breakdown.
Can nobody in this office focus on a single task for more than 4 minutes? I’m having trouble.
Shit, someone just fell out of the trampoline.
Kids Make Shitty Co-Workers – Day 2
So, my day started like any other: a carpool with my two junior colleagues to get some hotcakes. Not sure if I have mentioned Miss A before, I don’t even know what her role is in the company – she seems to come and go as she pleases. Probably a contractor? She was whining at the door for me to open it. I guess she forgot her swipe card. I went outside to let her in, she had vomited the hotcakes from smoko on the trampoline. Seriously this place is unbelievable, I should not be scooping up vomit at work.
I took a call from one of our partners in the backyard – assuming he was in his backyard too. Part way through the call our newest junior staff member (aka the trainee) starts saying “mower, see mower!?” over and over, he is getting increasingly agitated.
I am not one to shut down ideas – some of the best work is born from strange places.
Is this a test?
Being a smaller guy, well shorter, more junior… not sure of the correct language here [note to self: check with HR], he cannot reach the mower handle. I start the mower and we start just walking around, pushing the mower in circles. Again, I query if this is within the scope of my role. But at least the mower has drowned out the noise from my colleagues.
We are nearly complete; the circle of remaining grass is getting smaller and smaller and our trainee just loses it – something to do with the mower switch – I am not even sure but he is not using effective language to convey his feelings… another issue for HR I suppose. Perhaps I can organise a mediation.
The trainee just finished his meeting with the boss, and again back out to the mower. He wants to mow but I am not allowed to start it… he is too small to start it. Is this a test? Currently searching for a toy mower online with quick delivery. Do you think they’d run it over now?
He sees a scooter and decides he wants to ride it; I get the scooter out then he decides immediately that he doesn’t want to ride it, actually he hates it and is annoyed that I put it near him.
The trainee has a confidence that borders on arrogance. I am reminded me of a younger me, climbing that corporate ladder, chasing the next big thing. He is hungry… actually hungry. So we are heading inside to have a devon sandwich.
“I am a walking onion! I am a walking onion! A walking onion!”
Speaking to the Director of my company on the phone, I am actually outside in the laundry, the trainee is crying “Daaaddy, Daaaddy” at the screen door. The boss seems to be able to talk him away from the door, she speaks the hip language of the junior workforce. Perhaps she had to bribe him with the possibility of a raise or the corner office that Miss A currently has?
Turns out they are watching Aladdin on the boss’s laptop. Smart move.
OK, just fired up Asana, let’s get some work done! So, a 25-minute block of focused work time. “I am a walking onion! I am a walking onion! A walking onion!” Miss A has a plastic garlic from the office toy-kitchen and is making it walk across her dresser. It’s not even an onion! It is a garlic! My focus has dropped completely. I am only in Miss A’s office because we had to pretend to be going to sleep so that the trainee would have his afternoon nap (are we in Spain?!). Seriously, did other business leaders have to put up with this; Richard Branson, what would he do? So I channel Elon Musk, revolutionary thinker, there is surely a tweet I could put out there to turn this around?
Checking out for the day. I will read “The Art of War” tonight, I’ve heard it described as the corporate bible. Failing that I will binge watch eight episodes of Mad Men; look to the masters in tough times.
Kids Make Shitty Co-Workers – Day 3
I have put in an official complaint to management, because the trainee was licking my phone! That’s right licking my phone! And, when I asked him to stop he cried. I am currently laying on the floor answering emails on my laptop. The trainee is trying to feed me; he is calling me “Horsie”.
Close of business; 5:30pm, sitting with a spoon eating a jar of stuffed olives. 3 days down, ~177 to go.
Staying sane whilst working at home with kids is manageable, we think… through distraction that involves art and craft over hearing Peppa Pig all day.