This is disquieting, a coworker "borrowed" my file

by AlmostAtheist 16 Replies latest jw friends

  • AlmostAtheist

    I keep a manila folder for each project I'm working on in a wire rack on my desk. It's a stairstep kinda dealy do I can easily see all their little tabs poking up, volunteering information about their contents. Quite cool, I love it.

    A coworker stopped by my desk just now and mentioned that he'd grabbed one of my folders and gave it to a tester. The tester needed some of the card stock that he knew I had in the folder. I'm the first person to say get all obstructions out of the way and the last person to obey rules when they stand in the way of getting the job done. But this is my *file*, man! This is where I keep that part of my brain that knows what I know about the project. Without that file, I might as well have never worked on it.

    It's likely that I'll get it back. But it torques me to no end that this was done. Am I being overly sensitive? I don't want to be a "This is MY stuff! Backoff!" kinda guy, I'm all about team players and all that. And yet I feel really violated here. And terribly exposed! Will he nab another one?

    He was so blase' about it that he clearly didn't see a problem. He mentioned it and apologized for it like you might mention to someone that you'd stolen a tissue from their box while they were gone. If I now say anything to him, I think I'll look like an ass. And maybe even BE an ass.

    I have a locking desk that the wire frame doodad would probably fit in, but that would defeat the ready-access purpose of using it in the first place. I'd never remember to lock it, and if I did, I'd forget the key.

    As a side note, he just returned the file (in response to a friendly instant message) but noted on it that certain items are missing -- including the requirements for the project! Argh!!! Why couldn't these things be copied?!?

    Ok, ok. I *am* making too much of this, aren't I? It's just a project, and it's HIS project for god's sake. It's only reasonable that he would feel some level of ownership over the artifacts of the project. Right?

    All the same, I'm leaving a line of salt along the entrance to my cube. Perhaps it will keep him away?

    Dave of the "whining over nothing" class

  • IP_SEC

    Naw thats bullsh!t dave. I'd be pissed too. He needs a talkin to about personal space and privacy.

  • Frannie Banannie
    Frannie Banannie

    It's a legitimate complaint, AA. Especially since he's benefiting from YOUR work on the file.

    Frannie (of the JMHO class)

  • luna2

    I hate it when people screw around with stuff on my desk. I have everything where I want it to be and some stuff is organized in such a way that I know what I've looked and and handled and what I haven't gotten to yet. My father thinks he knows my system and shoves things where they don't belong on the days I'm not here all the damn time. Pisses me off like you wouldn't believe. In my opinion, people should keep their hands off the things on another person's desk unless a) there's an emergency or b) you've given them permission!

  • Scully

    No you're not "whining over nothing". That would bug me too. I guess that's part of what I like about my job - the projects that I take on [in addition to my regular patient assignment] are things that nobody else would want to touch with a 10 foot barge pole. LOL

    What you do about it kind of depends on where you and your coworker are in the office heirarchy. If you're equals, you can kind of get your point across in a joke... like if you're having lunch with a group saying "Hey, if anyone's missing any of their files, ask XXXX first... har har har" But from the sounds of things, he's a little higher up the totem pole, so you can say "I'd like to get back to that project ASAP, so if you could return those missing bits from the file, that would help me a lot."

    You could always booby trap your little filing system to make the whole thing fall apart if the wrong person touches it. Or create a "duplicate" filing system with all the crucial information in it that you keep in your desk drawer, and the accessible ones on your desktop that are missing key items.

  • AlmostAtheist

    Thanks for the perspective, guys. Hard to know when you're being an ass and when you're just taking it up the ....

    Here's the instant message conversation we had that led to my precious, precious file's return:

    Me: Hey Dude, who's kneecaps will I need to contract a busting for to get my file back?

    Him: that would be me

    Me: Oh good! I know where you live, this should be easy!

    He dropped by my desk moments later, file in hand, and smilingly apologized. I had hoped that the 90% "just kidding" would also carry the 10% "stay the hell away from my stuff", but I don't think it did. Ah well, we don't work together THAT much, it probably isn't worth making bad blood over. Especially since he's in a different work group, so I'd manage to build a wall in the eyes of all those folks, too.

    Scully, this guy and I are equals. We have a very loose "lead" role in our projects, any idiot could wind up in that role. Which is not to say he's an idiot, he's quite bright. Another good reason not to tick him off, I'll need him some time!

    Thanks again. I have my baby back, marred and missing vital documents though she is.


  • Scully

    You could always hang a baseball bat (a Nerf one!!) above your filing space, and put a notice up that says:

    If you need to borrow anything from this area, please contact Dave first. Otherwise you'll have to meet his new friend. (Arrow points to baseball bat) Have a great day!

  • Soledad

    that was not cool what your co-worker did.

    I had that problem several years ago, where sales reps would rifle through my desk after I had gone for the day to get their orders (and steal others as well).

    The problem was solved by implementing two things: 1. A stern verbal warning from the management and 2. A lock and key for the drawer. I also kept duplicates of everything I did in a separate box labeled "feminine napkins." No one ever dared to look in there.

  • IP_SEC
    No one ever dared to look in there.

    Now thats funny

  • DanTheMan

    hmmmm, I don't know the guy and didn't witness the situation directly, but it seems odd to say the least.

    The thing is, is if the guy's really an asshole, and you say anything at all to the effect of "hey, please don't do that again" then he'll put on a big show like you're the jerk.

    "Hell is other people" - Sartre (I think)

    I'm a beta male, so I have to be on guard against more aggressive males in the workplace, and in general.

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