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Old 07-05-2011, 10:03 PM   #1  
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Unhappy Please tell me that its going to be OK? I am so stressed that I am binging again

I just started a new job at a prep school for kids-grades, classes and graduation-I have been looking for one for a year now. It is stressing me out so much. The former employee, my trainer, left for grad school after sorta training me for 6 days (she had to wrap up other stuff)
So now its me and the "big boss" no middleman, and she treats me like I've been there for 5 years. She brings in college interns and stuff and tells me to give them assignments, but I can't do that because I barely know what I am doing. She'll say stuff like "Didn't I tell you to give her that assignment?" but I have been working on other things that she told me because everything is taking me so slowly.
Or sometimes the trainer taught me stuff by just telling me, or showing me once but we have to move on to other things because the kids are graduating now. So then if I ask, Can you remind me how to do this? I sometimes get a "Well I already told you but..." its quite rude I think-I write things down, but I still get confused because I don't have a firm grasp on anything. Now that there is no one but this big boss, I am so freaked out, as she is kinda neurotic and will act like everything is the most important thing ever (but will forget the nonimportant stuff like a couple hours later). The trainer told me that even though she does that, to make sure that I just do what is actually important, but the problem is that I don't even know what the important stuff is in the first place, no one is there to tell me and I never worked in education, so I can't even guess. I am so distressed because I can't ask anyone for help-no one else did what my trainer did.
I am trying to rationalize this by telling myself that the worst thing that can happen is that I am jobless, and I have been jobless before and I do have savings, so it will not be horrible. So the worst result isn't that bad.
and yet, I still feel really sick, so sick that I have been binging this whole 4th of July weekend (and no bbq food either! my social life hasn't been great post-college ha)
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Old 07-05-2011, 10:44 PM   #2  
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I'm not 20-something, but your post caught my eye from the new post list. It will be ok. Sometimes it happens in jobs that you get thrown to the wolves, so to speak, with very little training, but just reading this I can tell you are on the ball and know what you're doing--or at least how to figure that out for yourself. Believe me, lots of people don't. Learning a job is partly learning the context, and you will get that with time. Is there a job description written somewhere? Can you find other descriptions for similar positions elsewhere? That might help you prioritize.

You will catch on soon. Maybe there will be a couple of mistakes, but you will learn from them. Hang in there. Don't be hard on yourself because you
think you should know stuff.
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Old 07-05-2011, 11:04 PM   #3  
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I know exactly what you mean. A little over a year ago I got hired at a day school. I was exptected to teach, and I'm still in college myself. I had never done it before...and I didn't get any training at all. On my first day they stuck me in a classroom with my own kids. It may seem like you're bothering your boss with all of the questions, but if they ever seem to get super annoyed just be sure they understand that you just want to make sure you're doing the job right and the way that they want you to do it. Most of the time bosses don't mind a few extra questions in the beginning as long as they get a good employee in the end.

Maybe you should try talking to your boss. Say that you don't feel you were trained very well and that you're not trying to be bothersome but that you just want to make sure that you understand your responsibilities and the procedures that you're supposed to be following. Maybe that would help your boss to understand that you really are trying to learn and do your best.

You CAN do this. Put the junk food down! You don't need that junk to help you get by. All you need is a little determination and a positive outlook. You CAN do this!
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Old 07-06-2011, 11:54 AM   #4  
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I was thrown to the wolves in my first job too, but my boss was a little more understanding. I felt really bad about it, but I would always go to him to ask how to do something or to get him to clarify something once...five...ten times until I was sure. I had him or the team lead proofread and double-check everything that I did. It's just part of the territory when you bring on someone new, she's just going to have to deal with it. I'd rather bug the **** out of my boss and do something right than not bug him and do something wrong...then it looks like I was just wasting time and don't care about the work. When you meet with her you could even preface it by saying 'I'm sorry about all the questions, I really just want to make sure I'm doing this right so I don't learn any bad habits.' You could even initiate coaching if you have one-on-one meetings with her, ask her how she perceives your performance, and say that you get the impression that you're weighing on her patience, and ask her where you can improve (even if you know the answers already, it shows that you're conscious of it and are dedicated to self-improvement).

The more face time you initiate with your boss, the better. They'll see that you're motivated and care about doing a good job. Long periods of time hiding at your desk working up the courage to approach them will look REALLY bad to them, even if all it means is you need help. I had an intern recently who did they'd ask a question about a certain step in a project at 9 AM, then I wouldn't see them the whole day and assume they were working on the project still with no problems, then at 4 PM they'd come and ask me another question about that same step of the project, a step which could have been done (even if they needed to ask me 50 questions about that step with me standing there watching over their shoulder) within an hour. They never ended up improving because they always waited to ask questions. When we spoke to them about it they said that they were too shy, and needed US to come to HIM, and that's just not how a job works...

Anywho, some people just aren't that great of managers and come off as snippy and too busy for you. If they want you to eventually be able to do work on your own, you gotta learn it. Make sure you ask if there are any training materials for your work online, as well! Once you're able to prove yourself, your manager will not only see you as a valuable asset, but they might also warm up to you a bit too. Some people have a complex where they subconsciously get impatient with people they feel are incompetent, and to them, everyone is incompetent until proven otherwise...

Best of luck!

Last edited by mimi86; 07-06-2011 at 12:01 PM.
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Old 07-06-2011, 03:06 PM   #5  
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Others have given you great suggestions about the work aspect of your problem and I can't add anything there.

As for the bingeing, can you stock up on things that are reasonably tasty but not really fattening? I keep the real bad stuff out of the house and have on hand puffed rice that I eat one by one like chips, Crystal Light for a sweet drink, baby carrots to dip in low cal dip, rice cakes that I spread jam and a smear of peanut butter on, and I make veggie soup that I can eat lots of, fruit yogurt etc.

You will get through your situation. You have lost 19 pounds--yaaaay!--and I hope you keep going at it, as the success you continue to have there will balance off the aggravation at work. Good luck!
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