Interruption, Interrupted

, , , , , | Working | May 11, 2018

(Through my job, I need to coordinate with a representative from another organization. After they twice cancel meetings with me at the very last minute, I finally get to sit down with the representative. She is almost an hour late to our third try. The meeting turns out to be almost entirely useless. The entire time, she frequently interrupts me and outright ignores questions I ask her. The only thing I manage to get out of her that we were supposed to discuss is potential to use her organization’s office space. She tells me she will get me in touch with her office manager. After two weeks of not hearing from anyone, I give her a call.)

Me: “Hey, I wanted to touch base with you about using the office space and—”

Representative: “Do you have some kind of problem with me?”

Me: “I… What?”

Representative: “I CC’d you on an email weeks ago about that, and you never responded.”

Me: “I never saw that email. Let me see if I can find it. When was—”

Representative: “It has been two weeks! Why are you calling me now?! It isn’t my job to manage you!”

Me: *going through my emails* “I’m not seeing this email anywhere. Are you sure that—”

Representative: “I just don’t know what your problem is!”

(She continues to interrupt me, claiming that I’ve been avoiding talking to her because I apparently have a problem with her. I search through my email, spam folder, and everywhere else, looking for this email she supposedly CC’d me on. Still unable to get a word in edgewise to try and figure out what is going on, I look at my phone and realize the call has now been going on for over ten minutes, during which I have not said a single full sentence.)

Me: *yelling out of frustration* “ENOUGH! It is not f****** okay for you to speak to me or anyone else the way you are right now. As I have been trying to say for the past ten minutes, I did not receive—”

Representative: “But I—”

Me: “Stop interrupting me! I didn’t receive this—”

Representative: “I’m not interrupting you!”

Me: “You literally just did again! How can you not understand that?! If I am in the middle of a sentence, don’t speak until I have finished it! I did not receive this email you say you CC’d me on. Can you open your email and check for it?”

Representative: “I… I don’t know if it is okay to speak.”

Me: “You’ve got to be kidding me. For the remainder of this conversation, please only speak when I ask you a question.”

(At this point, I can to hear her begin to cry, and I start to feel bad, so I soften my tone.)

Me: “Did you find the email?”

Representative: “Yeah, I’m looking at it right now.”

Me: “Was I CC’d on it?”

Representative: “No, but you should have let me know that you didn’t get it. It isn’t my job to manage you!”

Me: “This is you not managing yourself. If I don’t respond to you about something, it is up to you to reach out to me and find out why.”

Representative: “Well, I figured you had some kind of problem with me and just didn’t want to respond!”

Me: “Just forward me the email now. I’m sorry this conversation got heated, but it is really not okay for you to ever speak to me the way you just were, ever again, if we are going to be working together. Is that understood?”

Representative: “I… Okay!”

(She never did forward me the email. I had to contact her organization directly to get their office info. Coincidentally, that particular representative was never in the office whenever I was in there working. Luckily, I was off that project not long after and never had to deal with her again after that phone call.)

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