August 30, 2019 | Casey Fletcher

Employees Share The Frustrating Situation They're Dealing With At Work

When it comes to the workplace, it's important to find a job that keeps you happy. But bad work conditions, pay cuts, and poor relationships with management can leave you feeling underappreciated, underpaid, and often just not understood. These workers describe what's ticking them off in their jobs right now. If you've ever been in a similar situation, you'll be able to relate.


Don't forget to check the comment section below the article for more interesting stories!

#1 One Confusing Bar

The bar manager and about 20 percent of the staff quit at the same time. The owner hasn't hired anyone. It's been three months. No one can take unexpected days off or call in sick and inventory is at an all-time low. We keep running out of everything. The restaurant is expanding and we need more employees but my boss is too focused on having us dust, replace glassware with crystal, and set up training courses for the public to bother with actual management. Oh, and communication is non-existent, so I regularly show up to work and have no idea where stuff is or what the new procedures are.


#2 Boop Boop Beep Boop

Two of my coworkers were promoted out of the department and no one was hired to replace them, leaving me to do the work of three people. Upon expressing that my own hours weren't enough time to get the work done—even with overtime—I was told, "You have to get it done. If you can't get it done it means we'll have to find someone else who will." What you're looking for is a robot willing to work 24/7 for a terrible wage. Got it. Glad to know the company values my mental health.


#3 They Don't Work There

A customer keeps insisting that a person worked for my company when they've actually never been employed by us. We have searched absolutely everywhere in our files and tried everything. We have punched in every variation of their name, birthday, and social security number into our system. Nothing. The person that this customer says worked here never did. It's an ongoing battle because she's still insistent that they did. It's getting annoying.


#4 Friendship Or The Job

My girlfriend took one day off in advance to see a best friend that she hasn't seen in two years. Work is currently telling her that they're scheduling a mandatory employee meeting that everyone needs to go to. If she doesn't go, they say she will be fired. Nothing important is ever announced at these meetings so she believes they're just trying to ruin her holiday and keep her at work.


#5 Too Bad On Your Birthday

It's my boss's birthday and not a lot of people respect her. I'm new to the department and was asked by my coworker, Don, to collect money on Friday to get her flowers. He was going to bake a cake and bring it in, but he was sick yesterday so he didn't come to work. I collected a measly $19 from the others, which was awkward because no one even likes our boss. I topped it up with my own $10 to get a decent bunch of flowers. I bought them yesterday evening and brought them in this morning.

Today, Don said to me, "I couldn't find the money you collected, do you have it" I said, "I used it yesterday to buy the flowers, wasn't that the plan?" He replied with an attitude, "Well, no..." I asked why it mattered and he said, "Well, I couldn't bake the cake because I was sick so I don't know what we're going to do now if the money's used up, we can't get a cake now."

Another girl nicely chimed in that she would run out and grab a cake. Don's a snippy guy so I didn't bother asking him how I was to know he's too ridiculous to go get a cake himself. The others were running around asking me if I had seen the money because apparently Don was making it well known that I was supposed to collect money. I had to explain that I used the money, so I looked stupid. I did exactly what Don told me to do, but would it hurt him to communicate his change of plans to people?!


#6 Still Playing That Rock Music, Son?

I do sound for a cover band that feels like they're better than, or at least equal to, an act that sells out stadiums. These guys just play in a local hotel; they're not even very known, let alone famous. They're just your run-of-the-mill hotel band, but every night, I have to deal with five 60-year-old musicians with expectations that would make Mariah Carey say that's too freaking much. It' exhausting.


#7 The Internet Exists For A Reason

I submitted my Ph.D. as an astronomer and it turns out that part of the process in the country where this is happening (the Netherlands) is that I have to pay to get over one hundred copies of my thesis. Yes, one hundred copies. The department actually recommends 200-300, because “you’ll want to give one to everyone in the department and send them to luminaries in your field, and just save them in case someone wants one in the future...”

Meanwhile, everyone not from the Netherlands will stare at you funny if you say this. People from my country will maybe print out one copy for their parents and another for their adviser because, you know, we have the internet now. Which I 100% agree with. This mainly seems like a great way to kill trees. Unfortunately for the trees, though, I’ve realized getting your doctorate is a “their ball, their bat, their rules” situation, so I’m just gonna have to print the darn things. So stupid!


#8 The Name Game

My assistant forwarded me a call from a friend/colleague of mine. She got one syllable of my friend’s name wrong, which wasn’t a big deal. The friend and I are currently working on a big deal so she has called multiple times since then. My assistant has got her name wrong every single time and despite me correcting her each time, the corruptions are getting further from the mark.  It happened again yesterday—the worst butchering of the name yet.

I wanted to yell at her, but I took a breath and I said “her name is XX. When you consistently say her name wrong it sounds like you’re insulting her. I know you’re not trying to insult her, but she is a personal friend and she brings us a lot of business so please do try to get it right.” I don’t think I could have handled that better, but she flipped out at me, then told a bunch of the other staff about what a jerk I am. Ugh.


#9 Live Long And Prosper

I'm a busser and I had a dishwasher tell me how to stack dishes and such for him. I was like, okay, cool. Whatever. Then he defined the methodology for me because he assumed I didn’t know what it meant when he was talking about his "dishwashing methodology." Later, he talked about how much he hated the new Star Trek show because it wasn’t as scientifically accurate as the original and the science wasn’t right. Man, it’s science fiction.


#10 Wearing Many Hats

I work at a retail store as a mundane cashier, but I'm also expected to stock the shelves, clean the floor, make sure the quantity they sent from the warehouse is correct (though they're mainly useless objects no one ever buys and never the things we need refilled), and pay for my uniform. Most of this I don't mind dealing with—except for paying for my uniform. They change uniforms every three months.


#11 A Dent In The Machine

I may be working with an idiot, or at least someone who pretends to be. I have to explain everything to her multiple times before she gets it and then she still does it wrong. Within a few weeks, she usually stops doing it altogether. Then it has to be explained to her all over again. She usually apologizes profusely and says it's a one-off mistake or that she's having an off day or whatever.

I had to have a long talk with her on Friday after she sent an incorrect report off to a client without going through protocol because she didn't think it mattered (her words). The rest of us ended up looking like idiots because she thought she knew better. Before she was hired, we had little to no issues with people following protocol and incorrect reports being sent out. But ever since she showed up, it's been absolutely terrible. Our team used to work like a well-oiled machine but she just doesn't get it. I can't stand willing incompetence.


#12 Working In Horrendous Conditions

I work in a warehouse for a company that sells clothing online. A new CEO was hired a few months ago. They decided they wanted the company to run back to back to back sales without stopping and they also put a hiring freeze into place. We were already short staffed as it is. We’ve been working overtime every day since Memorial Day and it doesn’t look like it’s going to stop anytime soon.

The company decided to bring in a ton of temps to try to alleviate some of the workload. Now we’re completely saturated with temps, 95% of which are totally clueless because they either don’t care or weren’t properly trained. The entire floor is littered with people who are overcrowding each other trying to do four different jobs at once. And with all of this, the overtime continues... in a stuffy, dusty warehouse with no A/C. In July. Fun times.


#13 Six Months At A Time

I currently live on six-month contracts and cannot pick up a permanent position at my work. There's an increase in stress levels every time the contract end date is looming. I stay because it's a well-paying job that has good benefits and is close to home. I've been there two and a half years now. On top of this, I'm expected to drop all of my other work to get tasks done for colleagues who decide to shaft me with short deadlines because they're unorganized.


#14 A Friend Like Ben

This guy named Ben was hired at my food mart in October of last year. I had nothing but praise for this guy. He was three months into his job and one day, he just stopped trying. He's begun to watch loud videos on his phone that sound like inappropriate movies. He takes his lighters and makes fireballs with axe and hand sanitizer even though the manager has told him to knock it off. And don't get me started on his body odor.

He smells like a rotten outhouse in a construction site with a Taco Bell nearby. His infamous quote is, “Why wash your clothes when they just get dirty again?" He literally has never worn deodorant before. He is also beyond rude to customers. He never says a word. If the odor hasn’t scared them away, they usually get mad with how rude he is to them and don’t come back. When the manager talks to him, he's fine for a few days and then he starts being rude again.

Sadly, he’s very annoying. He won’t leave our side. He makes noises and says the same jokes. One girl thought she was in trouble because she was on the same shift as him for days. He’s that bad. He plays horrible immature jokes on all of our staff members and always explains how he loves a job where he can do nothing. To top it all off, whenever he closes, our store door becomes magically unlocked. He claims it isn’t him leaving the store unlocked. We have had homeless people come into the food mart and we’ve had to chase them out. It’s a small town, but still. He has a job. He just has fewer hours now.


#15 Someone Forgot To Read

I do technical support for Apple products over the phone from home, so it's not a terrible gig, really. I was called out by my new supervisor today because I received a bad survey from a customer who was mad that the phone they just had repaired at the Apple store was still messing up. The problem was that the screen wasn’t turning on. We have knowledge articles that give step by step instructions for how to solve issues, and I followed the article for this issue exactly.

She called me into a meeting and started talking to me about how I need to read the article because I told them to charge their phone for an hour and call us back. She said you need to read the article, so I pulled up the article and literally the first sentence in the article was exactly what I told the customer. That shut her up. It's not my fault the retail store didn’t fix their phone. I can’t prevent every bad survey, but somehow, there’s always something to “improve."


#16 Stuck Working In The Office

I asked if I could work from home because my partner wanted to take a job two hours away. They said yes and moved me to a work from home team. We made living arrangements and commitments in the new city, broke our lease here, and as soon as we moved, they revoked my work from home privilege. They wouldn't budge on accommodating me at all. Currently, they won't change my schedule or let me post out to a higher paying job a month early so that I can afford to rent a room here. Nothing.


#17 Can't Get It Through Their Skull

My manager barely understands a crucial new software platform I’ve been setting up, despite me showing him several times and offering training. He wants to run large scale, very disruptive testing. But the outcomes that he is looking for can all be determined using this software I set up without bothering anyone. He doesn’t understand this and is bumbling ahead with the test. He wants me to put the test together.


#18 We Promised Bonuses?

It’s bonus time. We've been talking about them since early April and the managers have been saying that we will all get our bonuses soon. The other day, the part-owner walked around showing everyone their amount... except me. She put her phone away and that’s that. A bit later, when no one was around, I said, “Hey, I didn’t get to see my amount.” She told me, “ don’t qualify.”

Apparently, I had to have been at the company a full calendar year before I qualify for a bonus. At this point, I would have accepted a misunderstanding, except for the fact that the person who started a week after me got a bonus. I brought that up and she made some excuse about why she got one and I didn’t. Now, I did say that I understood and left her office because, well, what else am I supposed to do?

I didn’t really understand because she said it was just something to do with paperwork. Well, a bit later my boss told me that they decided to cut me a check. I decided to go to the part-owner and thank her. I told her I know they don’t owe me anything. She said, “I didn’t know it was on your radar. I don’t remember saying anything to you about bonuses. If you hadn’t have known we wouldn’t be here.” I was floored. I literally just said thanks again and walked out. So now, I see how little they actually think of me. This one was a low blow and it really hurt my feelings.


#19 Ramp It Up

At work, I'm currently loading a bunch of steel ramps on containers. A full load is 8,000-10,000 kg. The ramps are in three stacks, about head-high with five centimeters to each side. In the middle of the ramps, there are two square holes that need to be filled with all the supporting beams and boxes of bolts. Everything needs to be hand lifted on top of the stack, moved to the middle, lifted down on the bottom, and stacked neatly. Each day, I'm doing 10 trips from the pile to the loading area by crouching on the ramps all alone in a sweltering hot container because my boss is too cheap to pay for a subcontractor. The hours it will take me will cost at least triple what our subcontractor quoted for a two-man team to finish. It's absolutely ridiculous.


#20 Let Them Eat Cake

I work in the bakery of a grocery store and my manager went on maternity leave four months earlier than planned. There is one baker, one cake decorator, and one clerk at any given moment. And then there is me. My title is clerk but I'm really a cake decorator. I get paid minimum wage to do a job that gives me tendonitis/carpal tunnel. When I ask my managers about getting a raise for what I do, they say no. They are only allowed one cake decorator, but I know that isn't true because in the last year, there were two of them. I just want to get paid for what I do, it that too much to ask?


#21 The Wheels On The Bus Go...Nowhere

I'm working at an elementary school right now in a summer school program. The busses are up to an hour late every single day. There's not really anyone else to stay behind to watch the kids, so I must stay (without pay, as I'm only paid until the time when the busses are supposed to show up and the kids are scheduled to leave) in an un-airconditioned building with a dozen rambunctious four to six-year-old kids waiting for a bus that never seems to come. All the while, I'm trying to keep calm and keep the children entertained. I feel bad about complaining, but no matter who I call or what I say, this issue has not yet been resolved. It's very frustrating.


#22 Let's Get Loud

A colleague in my office won't put her phone on silent or vibrate. It makes noises all day long. I've asked her several times to put it on silent and I even sent an email out to everyone asking to be considerate of coworkers and to put phones on silent or vibrate. She still has her phone on loud. She may turn it off for a day and then she goes right back to her old ways. I think she's quite possibly the most obtuse person on the planet.


#23 A Flood Of Complaints

A client of mine had a full 10 months to review a demo site that we had up. They made a couple of nitpicks and claimed they were happy with it. The site went into staging a few weeks ago and they immediately came up with a list of 50 issues and demanded it be fixed or they wouldn't renew the contract. We're still fixing the "issues" and waiting to see if they'll renew.


#24 A Constant Reminder

I received an inbox full of emails followed by text messages asking if I got the email two minutes after it was sent. This was followed by a phone call asking if I got the text message just as the text message notification popped up. The phone call then covered all of the information from the email and the text message. Calm down. Why didn't you just call me in the first place?


#25 What To Do?

I finish my work a little early nearly every day. I sometimes get bored and frustrated because there is nothing to really do that will take up four, or more, hours of my time. My boss tells me to read a book, draw, knit, go online and read, or go and play some basketball. Another time, he proposed that I work just three days a week and was then said, “Leave early if you have nothing to do." Before this, he said that I couldn’t leave early. He wouldn’t give me four 10-hour workdays instead of five 8-hour ones.

He often makes quips about how my downtime is expensive even though he said I should fill the time up instead of going home, just in case the phones ring (I don’t even pick up the phone). Today, I left 15 minutes early and left some tasks to complete tomorrow because if I don’t, I won’t have anything to do. One of the tasks was procuring a form, and I asked the person who needed it done if I could take care of it first thing tomorrow morning. They said yes. I was sternly talked to about how it should be done as soon as it’s received, even though I was given the okay to complete it tomorrow. So many double standards. There's also no HR. I’m so frustrated.


#26 It Was An Error To Hire Him

We have an older man in the office who makes a lot of typos and number errors on reports. My supervisor had the idea that I would act as a middle man to check for mistakes, and then send my supervisor my revised version. It’s been working out well so far, except for last week. I am now never allowed to make a mistake. With my filtering, we rarely see reports kicked back for errors but on the rare occasion that I also miss something, it’s now completely my fault, and the older man isn’t even spoken to. Instead of the boss telling this man, they’ve just created a new job for me to do so that he can continue to do things incorrectly and get paid for it.


#27 No Raise For You

I have my own personal sales targets and my branch also has an overall target to hit. My yearly sales target is around $1.2 million and with less than a month to go, I am currently at $1.8 million. The branch has fell short 800,000. Every time my branch's sales team hits their personal targets too, the branch heavily relies on the other sector's sales for the remainder. So, due to other areas of the company not pulling their weight, my team now looks like we're not doing our jobs even though the figures are there in black and white. Overall, this means that there is no 20% pay rise and I'll have to keep scraping the barrel for another year just to keep living.

181025-f-jv466-1013-1563884486995.jpgU.S. Air Force

#28 You're Not The Janitor

I work in clinical research. The guys before me barely did anything for our studies paperwork-wise. Now I'm realizing that they actually missed a ton of required paperwork, some of which needed to be signed by the patients. There are huge protocol deviations because these jerks couldn't be bothered to read and follow the protocol correctly. Now I'm stuck cleaning up their mess.


#29 Forever And Always, I'm Always Here

I supervise lifeguards. There has never been a major incident at our pool for about 15 years. We hired a new advisor this year to assist with our coordinator. She made a new rule that we must put a third lifeguard up if we have over 20 people in the shallow end. For the past 14 years, it was always 50 people in the pool total. Not only does this new rule have zero benefits, but it also lowers the morale of all of the lifeguards because they get a much shorter break between rotations and have to work more. It's really makes me angry.


#30 Time To Let Them Go

I'm mentally preparing to fire my assistant tomorrow because she continues to lie about completing work, shows up late (even though I let her pick her schedule), and always has an excuse for why she can't communicate with me. My bosses agree that it's time for her to go as well, but it still sucks to have to deliver the news since it's my first time in a supervisory position.


#31 That's A Lot Of Hours

I work in a small retail food franchise with just 10 employees. In any given week, there are roughly 250 total hours of work that needs to be divided between part-time and full-time employees. That's about 25 hours each, but obviously, the full-time employees get more. For the next two weeks, five of our employees are out of town. This leaves 50 hours per person—regardless of whether or not you are part-time. It's a inconvenient coincidence, but I have no idea how they allowed five people to be off work at the same time.


#32 Not A Great Combination

I recently dated a coworker, but I've known her personally for over a decade. When we separated, I found out she's moved on with our boss who she has a history with. Fast forward a month and the boss is out of the office for an extended period of time on holiday. My coworker has lost her mind because he's gone for a couple of weeks. She needs to calm down.


#33 Catching Up On Their Shows

The store I currently work at is dying because the owner refuses to properly advertise the company and, as a result, there's absolutely no business. Like, none. Today and yesterday I have been paid for probably 14 cumulative hours (we're open 10 hours a day) where I'm literally doing nothing but sitting around and watching TV shows and YouTube. It's the easiest job in the world, but it's so, so boring.


#34 Agree To Disagree

Our chief of medicine is old and delusional. He doesn't really do anything so he isn't harming patients, but it is impossible to get him to agree to any procedural improvements that would help us out greatly. He also argues about everything at committee meetings and rejects the idea of using newer medications because of "pharmaceutical industry propaganda." He needs to retire but doesn't plan on doing it any time soon and there is no one I can complain to about him.


#35 Uncertain About The Future

My tiny company is getting absorbed by a larger entity and so my future employment is hanging in the air through no fault of my own. I have no idea if I will have a job in a month, let alone in the next couple of days. Will I be eligible for unemployment and severance after all the time I have given to this company? Probably, but not a lot. Good times.


#36 A Tough Decision To Make

My boss keeps making me come in on Sundays. I work nights and my boyfriend works a regular 9-5 job so I leave for work before he gets home and I’m asleep when he leaves for work. From my first interview, I made it clear that I would not work Sundays, but I’ve still been scheduled to work the past two Sundays and the next four upcoming. My bosses don’t care, my boyfriend is upset, and it’s clearly putting stress on our relationship. I talked to my bosses and they don’t really seem to understand or care. I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. Eventually, I feel like I’ll be forced to choose between my job and my relationship. It’s extremely stressful.


#37 That Escalated Quickly

I'm a 28-year-old dog groomer working out of a pet supply store. I groomed one client's dog for a couple of years. The client is a little weird. He was a Vietnam veteran who is obsessed with Aerosmith, but he's harmless nonetheless. When I used to groom his dog, he would come into my salon every other day to chat but never talked about much more than his dog or Aerosmith. Then, one day, several months back, he came in to chat.

This time, he was telling me his whole life story. And then, mid-story, mid-sentence, he looked into my eyes and said, "I love you, truly." I immediately recoiled, shocked, and he said, "I'm sorry, I don't know why I said that." He then continued talking as if he didn't just profess his love for me. He had an appointment a couple of days later, during which he tried to lure me out of the salon to watch a "Don't Wanna Miss A Thing" video on his phone with him.

It was around this time that I decided I was no longer comfortable having him as a client. I was told by management that he was banned from the salon, but not the store, which I was willing to live with. He has since tried unsuccessfully to make grooming appointments several times. But today, I came in and looked at the book, and guess who has an appointment tomorrow morning?


#38 Any Air Freshener Around?

I had a very awkward conversation with my manager today. He said I'm using the bathroom too much, apparently. Is that anyone's business but mine? No, but they seem to think it's a problem. I have a sneaky suspicion that they think I am only going in there to use my phone but actually, I just need to use the bathroom a lot! Surely they can't fire me for needing to go often.


#39 Keeping Your Money Hostage

I was meant to be paid my salary by the end of June but I'm still waiting on it. The boss threw a fit because we asked to be paid so we could pay our bills. Can you believe that? Apparently, as the contract says we'll be paid on or around the end of the month, it means he can pretty much pay us whenever he wants, yet he is rolling in about $10 million annually. How does that make any sense?


#40 Always Getting Protected

My co-manager (who is technically above me) is on her last warning before being fired, but HR is always coming up with excuses for blocking her final write-up. She has the most tardies out of any store employee, comes in hungover often, always has to be talked to about her work performance, is always on her phone, and has recently started bringing in drama from outside our job in an attempt to make others look bad to boost herself up. If HR didn't make it nearly impossible to fire someone, she'd be long gone by now. I can't wait for the day that she leaves.


#41 Stuck In A Rut

I used tuition assistance from my company and I'm required to stay a year at the company after graduating, but job applications for elsewhere in the company have been stuck in limbo for the past several months and HR isn't any help at all. Apparently, the one-year service requirement wasn't always necessary but people kept leaving the company soon after graduating, so maybe it was because there was nowhere to go without leaving? It feels more and more punitive as the days go on and I'm stuck in a dead-end position doing thankless office work.


#42 No Purpose In Staying

Department is in desperate need of more team members. However, the company doesn't understand that the revolving door they've created is because they don't offer any incentives for employees to stay. One request that multiple employees have made is the ability to work remote, even just once a week. That request is denied every time. The most they do for us is provide bagels and let us wear jeans on Friday.

Recently, they even said we could wear jeans all week if we paid $5 per day (which is absurd). People are leaving left and right and they continue to question what's going wrong. I'll never work for a family-owned business again, especially one so large. All of the top people have the same last name regardless of qualification. It starts at the top, and you can tell when the top has no idea what they're doing.

Blue JeansPexels

#43 No Respect For A Pregnant Woman

My staff joked that for Halloween we should all dress up as the Christmas nativity scene. Now, once Halloween rolls around, I'll be heavily pregnant, so obviously I assumed I would be the pregnant star of the show. But recently, I was informed that I would instead be playing the camel if I can do the backbend the whole time. This is the respect that my staff has for me.


#44 I Love Candy

I'm currently dealing with three people who have no business working with kids. The latest bit of stupidity came when my coworker decided to give the kids candy: chocolate and nut candy bars. Is she not aware that you shouldn't just give kids candy without first knowing if they have allergies, diabetes, etc.? Maybe they're just plain not allowed to have candy! You should always ask the parents first.


#45 Don't Sit So Close To Me

We're moving buildings and I just got the office seating chart today, which has me next to the most talkative person in the office. This person once talked to me for an hour and a half one time while I kept saying, "Well, I've got a deadline by the end of the day, so I really have to get back to work..." So I told my manager to see if they can change the seating but now I feel like I'm being too sensitive and shouldn't have asked.



Gets Worse Experiences

The Plot Thickens: People Share Their “But, Wait, It Gets Worse” Stories

There are bad days—then there are absolute nightmare scenarios like these where things just keep getting worse and worse.
May 14, 2024 J. Hunter
They Did What?!: These Rude People Are The Absolute Worst

They Did What?!: These Rude People Are The Absolute Worst

Unfair teachers. Brutal customers. Tyrannical bosses. Unfortunately for us, it turns out that rude people come in all shapes and sizes.
May 14, 2024 Scott Mazza
Overheard Behemoth

Overheard Once, Forgotten Never: These Hurtful Comments Crushed Us

Even the best of us can't help but eavesdrop every now and again—but sometimes, we hear things that we never wanted to know.
May 7, 2024 Miles Brucker
Epic Comebacks

Finish Him!: The Most Scalding, Epic Comebacks Of All Time

There are few things in life that are certain, but the immense satisfaction of these expertly-executed, epic comebacks is one.
May 7, 2024 Scott Mazza
shocked nurse looking at the camera

The Weirdest Things Seen In The ER

The ER can be a wild place. From hilarious mishaps to dumb self-diagnoses, here are 50 bizarre and entertaining stories from doctors, nurses, and even some patients.
May 7, 2024 Allison Robertson
Terrible Teenagers

I Was A Terrible Teenager

Oh the carefree days of our teen years. Unfortunately, some teens make the worst mistakes of their lives in their youth—and these stories are proof.
May 7, 2024 Laura Bergen

Want to learn something new every day?

Stories that matter — delivered straight to your inbox.

Thank you!

Error, please try again.