Cover Uncovered

| Working | July 15, 2014

(I’m the only guy in my entire department, and I’m also the newest business analyst in my group. I tend to stop working around noon and then just waste the rest of my day. About a year and a half into the job, we find out we’re all being laid off in about six months. I don’t want to let my vacation time go to waste, so I schedule it and get other analysts to cover my workload for those two weeks. My supervisor comes to my desk.)

Supervisor: “Who did you get to cover you, so I know where to send any updates on your accounts?”

Me: “[Coworker #1] is covering these accounts. [Coworker #2] has taken all of these. [Coworker #3] offered to take these—”

Supervisor: “Usually we have just one person covering for people. How many do you have?”

Me: “Five. I didn’t think any one person would want to cover me.”

Supervisor: “Five! Why do you need five people to cover you? You spend half of your day doing nothing. How could need five people to cover your accounts?”

(My supervisor brought up the work assignments. It turned out that I was assigned a third of my entire 15-employee department’s workload, and still finished quickly enough to be done for the day by lunch time. When I came back from vacation they offered to retain me after the layoff, but I’d spent that two weeks finding a new job, and ended up with one paying double.)

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