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Workwear sales of note for 3.31.23:
- Ann Taylor – 30% off full-price tops and sweaters; up to 40% off all sale styles
- Athleta – All sale up to 60% off
- Banana Republic Factory – 50% off everything; extra 15% off purchase
- Boden – Up to 50% off; 20% off sale & new-season styles
- Brooks Brothers – Friends & Family Event: 30% off almost everything
- Express – All women’s jeans $49 + styles from $20
- Everlane – Up to 30% off spring essentials
- J.Crew – 40% off your purchase; swim from $24.50
- J.Crew Factory – 40% off entire site & storewide, plus extra 20% off orders $125+ with code
- Loft – $29 everyday shirts
- Sephora – Up to 50% off select beauty
- Talbots – Buy one get one 50% off! Free shipping on $150+
Some of our latest posts here at Corporette…
And some of our latest threadjacks here at Corporette (reader questions and commentary) — see more here!
- What are your favorite parts of a typical day?
- At what point in your life (age, income level, whatever) were you able to take an annual vacation?
- What shoes can I keep at the office to go for mid-day walks (that go with everything)?
- How do you release stress or trauma that’s stored in the body?
- What are the best “networking for women events” you’ve ever been to?
- I feel like we’re burning through any savings we acquire…
- I hate my job and make 30% of what DH makes – should I quit?
- What do you keep in your office?
Poll time! I’m a second year junior litigator in biglaw daydreaming about something that doesn’t require obscene hours. Not really passionate at all about law, although I don’t hate it, and I’ve decided I would rather make significantly less money and have time for Everything Else in my life. My firm does not typically do reduced-time arrangements for juniors, so I’m looking around at other options (e.g., reduced-time positions at other private firms, staff positions at state court, etc.). Do any of you have a legal job with a solid paycheck (>$60k in my area) and normal (<55 hour) workweeks? If so, what do you do, and how do I get your job? Also, bonus points if the job is not crazy high stress.
Does your firm have staff attorneys? Mine does. They are full-time employees with benefits and more regular hours than associates, but their work is primarily related to discovery tasks (e.g., doc review). I know the salary starts at the low 6 figures but doesn’t rise much over time. The job is low stress, but there’s not much growth potential if you ever decide you want to leave and “practice real law” again.
I’m a doc review attorney and in my experience staff attorneys that run reviews with doc review attorneys can be pretty stressed out. Likely less than associates but not as low stress as you might think. I’m less familiar with staff attorneys that don’t run reviews with teams of temps though so that might be different.
staff attys at our firm often work as hard/much as associates. they just have less responsibility and therefore less pay
Seriously, I would rather not be an attorney than be a doc review attorney. In my opinion, in most firms, doc review attorneys (at my firm they are called “coders”) are treated as second class citizens (worse than legal assistants, who are invited to firm events), and their jobs are incredibly boring and tedious, and no one even know who they are or what they are working on. They are trapped in a windowless room and have no privacy and they can have their jobs eliminated with no notice.
Yeah it sucks. I wasn’t trying to suggest it as a career path, just as context for my view of staff attorneys.
I’m lucky enough to be on a good project right now. Trying to pay off my loans then planning to figure out what my career should be. The joy of being a 2009 graduate from a regional school.
Boutique regulatory practice in D.C. at a firm with about 20 lawyers. Pay is low-to-mid 100s for associates. It’s challenging, interesting, and only occasionally very high stress. I think mid-size firms that specialize in certain areas can do very high quality work without a lot of the downsides of big firms–though, of course, some do low quality work and/or have all the downsides of big firms, so it’s important to screen carefully.
Can I ask what this work typically entails? I’m not that familiar with what regulatory practice looks like at a firm (though I work in that area at a non-profit organization).
I think it depends a lot on the specific subject area. In my area, we represent clients all over the country at the agency that we focus on. Our agency, unlike some, does a lot of relatively formal adjudicatory work, but it’s still a lot less formal than work before courts and a lot is decided on the papers. So we do a lot of briefing, attend a lot of technical conferences and settlement conferences, and spend a lot of time advising clients on how to comply with our agency’s rules. We don’t spend a lot of time in formal hearings or at appellate courts, but both things happen (and that’s when hours do get less predictable and more crazy). It’s highly technical and requires staying on top of industry developments, but that can be really interesting.
Thanks, that’s really helpful. Sounds like interesting work!
In house at a large global company. Pay is mid-100’s, hours vary but are generally reasonable and flexible (only in the office 9-5, work from home as necessary). I work a mix of large, challenging deals and smaller, more routine contracts. I enjoy being a part of the team driving the business forward and being able to see the big picture, not just my small role in a deal. I also enjoy my coworkers and internal clients. Although there are exceptions, you’re probably too junior to move in house at the moment. If that’s something you’d like to work toward, I’d definitely recommend getting some transnational experience if possible.
I’m also in-house at a large global company, and I wanted to respond to the “too junior” comment. Although I generally agree, this may be flexible if you speak a second language and want to work for a global company. We have several in-house attorneys who started more junior than conventionally-understood because they had critical language skills.
Federal government. My work is very interesting and challenging. I never work over 40 hours per week. I can telework occasionally. Pay is not law firm, of course, but enough for me. (GS-14) How to get my job? Spend years applying for postings on USAjobs; know someone at the agency who can put in a good word for you; get lucky.
Caveat: Federal jobs vary widely from Agency to Agency, office to office, and supervisor to supervisor. I know feds who work tons of hours and have a lot of stress, so do your homework on any particular position.
Another Fed here. If you can swing it financially, it helps to be willing to start at a GS level that’s lower than your qualifications, because sometimes agencies only have more entry-level openings. IMHO, it’s worth taking a pay cut for a few years to get your foot in the door, if it’s an agency you like. Once you’re hired, a good manager will accelerate your promotions.
Yup. I do litigation at a regional law firm- a good firm in our area but no national presence. $140k, mostly reasonable hours, got the job by looking for other firms in my area and selling myself (honestly) as someone who wanted to get out and really do things and not be stuck in an office for the next 5 years.
I was at a midsized firm in NYC and probably what you’re looking for — the hours were less 90% of the time, but there were times of the year when it could be just as bad hours, without the biglaw support, but at 90% of biglaw pay, may be what you are looking for. At my specific firm, the personalities made it such that it was high stress for me despite the “better” hours.
This sounds similar to my job – I’m a third year litigation associate at a ~100 attorney firm in a flyover state that has no biglaw presence (also, very low cost of living). Associates make $120,000+ and bill 1900 hours a year (as in that’s what people actually bill… there’s no incentive to bill more and if you do go way over [for a trial or something] you can credit it towards next year’s billables) while partners make more (up to about $400,000 in salary, plus profit distributions) and bill less (1700-1800 hours a year). The overwhelming majority of associates eventually become partner. Stress levels depend on whether you work for partners who get stuff done early or whether you work for partners who put things off until the last possible minute, but its generally not too bad outside the occasional fire-drill or over-demanding client. The legal community is small enough that everyone knows everyone else, which I think helps a lot with civility and, in turn, reduces the stress of practice.
This sounds like a unicorn job!
This sounds just like my firm…..
Yep! This is very consistent with Portland law firms and the Portland legal community also.
In house at a trade association in DC coming off of several years in Biglaw. Trade association is smaller, and a niche area of law. Pay is lowish for the area (but is higher than your noted range), but it’s truly part-time (set # hours per week) and I have three littles at home right now. When I’m ready to go back to full-time, I can probably find something else in the field.
At least in my experience, the key is living in a location where you have more options than very traditional law firms. In DC, you have law firms, government, trade associations, non-profits, etc. etc. It’s competitive, but at least from what I can tell, as you become more senior and/or specialized, you can more easily avail yourself of the options.
desi inside and out
I work for county government, and I am in a low COL city. I work 40 hours a week (regular hours, no weekends/evenings, rarely stay late), and I am in that price range. Good benefits, and a lot of stability. Trade offs for work that it is a little boring, very little possibility of advancement (but raises happen), and a lot of administrative red tape on anything and everything.
Very similar here – state govt at a small agency (mandatory/unified state bar), medium COL area, I make mid-70s but people who started earlier, when there were more regular raises, make mid-high 80s. No one works over 40 hours a week except management. Lots of vacation time and easy to take it. Very little opportunity for advancement though regardless of quality of work.
I feel like litigation is part of the problem. I’m at a small firm and when things are normal, I can leave at a reasonable hour and have approx a 50 hour work week. BUT when there’s a deadline coming up, I’m at work 16+ hours a day, 7 days a week until the deadline has passed.
Are you happy with litigation? Can you move into a more regulatory/transactional practice? Are you willing to work crazy hours occasionally for better balance on the whole? Maybe litigation at a smaller firm is the answer?
I think you might be me, except that for the last few months at my small first there is always a deadline coming up :(
I’m not sure a transactional practice (at least not a deal-based one) will fix this problem – at least at large firms, the hours are typically even more unpredictable on the deal side than in litigation.
Ditto this. In litigation, I know the court-imposed deadlines in advance, while transactional is much more dependent on client/other party whims/turnaround time.
I don’t know how possible this is where you are, but in high COL areas, paralegals routinely make six figures and do have control over how much OT they have to work. You could look into transitioning to a paralegal role, although you might consider that a step back. A lot of good paralegals have a ton of responsiblity.
Local gvt should get you those pay and hours too.
Yep, I’m local govt in a high COL city and this describes it pretty much exactly. I don’t remember the last time I sent/received an email after 6pm.
Killer Kitten Heels
I’m a litigation associate at a small-ish (around 35 attorneys) firm in the suburbs of a major metro. I make about 35% less than I could in a Biglaw position in the same metro area, but I’m still in 6 figures and I’m out the door by 6:30 pretty much every day, and I don’t work weekends.
It’s not like this at every small-ish suburban firm – in fact a number of our attorneys have come here from similarly-sized firms in the same suburbs that had much crazier hours, for the same or not much more money – but in general you’ll have better luck with hours/life-balance in smaller-ish firms, and also in firms not directly in the city center. I will say I previously worked at a teeny-tiny firm (less than 10 attorneys) and know a number of folks who still work at places that small, and their work-life balance is just as bad as Biglaw, so I think there’s a definite threshold for size – in my experience, firms with between 20ish and 50ish attorneys seem to have the best balance – they’re big enough to have the type of institutional clients that generate steady work (steady work = steady hours), but not so big as to generate the type of competition/aggression/whatever that leads to crazy BigLaw style hours.
Staff attorney or law clerk jobs in local, state, or federal government would also fit the bill, at least in my area, but these positions are incredibly difficult to get because they’re very desirable.
Also, look into staff attorney positions with insurance companies – the work is terribly rote and you’ll spend a lot of time in court, but overall the hours and pay seem reasonable for those attorneys (particularly the ones who have been doing it a while – seems like the kind of law you could do in your sleep once you know it).
State Court Attorney
You could go “in house” with a state or federal court. I work in a state court as a career law clerk of sorts. Pay starts off in the high 60s when you first graduate but rises steadily from there; right now I’ve been here about 7+ years and I am making a bit over $100K. The current max is in the high $130s for pool attorneys, I think $140s if you work with a judge directly, but increases come with new contracts usually. 2 years of experience gets you low 80s now, I think. Benefits are pretty great: pension, 20+ vacation days/year, sick leave, 12 paid federal holidays, and my official work week here is 35 hours and for the most part I rarely work more than 40-45, and many people definitely stick to just the 35, 9-5. You can work with a judge directly or in a pool of attorneys. Pool is easier if you want more independence but working with a judge is nice if you have a judge that you like. I think federal courts have some variation on this. Best of all, I really do love my job. It’s definitely research and writing heavy, which isn’t for everyone, but for me it’s really fulfilling to feel like I am doing justice in my own small way.
As for how to get it, that’s the harder part. You have to really network a lot unless you already know someone because a lot of hiring comes before anything is even posted, once something is posted there are usually thousands of applications. I would recommend applying for a year-long clerkship with an appellate court, for which I think your firm would even give you a leave of absence, and then trying to get a permanent position from there. That also gives you a good chance to see if you’d like the work. But keep an eye on postings too and if you see one, apply straight away. Most courts post theirs on their website.
I’m a state, appellate level career law clerk. I work 9-5, no nights or weekends. I came out of a big firm after 6 years and I made $62,500 at the court. After four years, I now make $72,500. Salary is determined based on number of years at the court (not number of years licensed) and how much money we get from the legislature.
My work is all research and writing. The issues are rarely new or interesting. Some of the work is very formulaic. But I like not having clients or partners, I work for an awesome judge, I leave at 5:00 and don’t think about my job until the next day, and I have a life. Leaving a law firm was the best decision for my life, although definitely not for my career prospects. And I’ve never regretted the move—although the job is definitely not for everyone.
State Court Attorney
I think maybe this depends on state/jurisdiction? Our salary is a mix of years of admission/years in court so that you are at most disadvantaged by 2 years. E.g., a salary grade might be “2 years in system or 4 years equivalent experience” and if you are working directly for a judge none of that matters. Also, where I am there is a fair amount of conferring/settling/discovery oversight that keeps the job social if you’re into that, so that’s definitely something to think about when you pick your court. I would also say that I have new and interesting issues frequently enough to keep the work challenging and fun, but I think that may be my courthouse too – we get a lot of specialized issues.
anon for work question
I work for a small firm, make mid $60k, work ~35-40 hours/week and have a flexible schedule, which in my case means that while I generally work set hours, I can come in late and leave early anytime I want. I have 10 years experience. This was the type of job I’ve been looking for since I left law school, so I have been aggressive in seeking opportunities to work places where I have challenging and meaningful work, but where seeking a good work-life balance is not frowned upon and is actually a real thing that employees enjoy. I was hired for this position by a founding partner of the firm who I had worked with at a previous firm. He already knew that I was a focused hard worker who was good at my job and good with clients.
Contracts administrator at a private company, hours are 8-5 Monday through Friday (with an hour lunch) and pay is $90k. My job is challenging and I am treated like a competent professional, but it’s not overly stressful and my coworkers are all pretty cool. I had to trade in the “attorney” title but it was the best trade I’ve made in my entire life because I went from a job I loathed to one I love. I am fully aware I have a unicorn job and you would have to pry it from my cold, dead hands.
I work for a tiny (three attorneys) boutique litigation firm; hours are around 9-5:30 -ish (some days a little earlier or later) Monday through Friday, making mid $80K. Hours increase a bit for trial, including a couple of weekends, but our type of case only goes to trial a couple times a year – and even the increased hours get me home in time for dinner. My coworkers are excellent, and I’m lucky in that even though I’m only in my second year of practice, my previous career (and a year clerking) gave me enough experience that I’m treated almost as an equal by the partners (I know I still have a lot to learn, but they value the input I give). And unless we’re in court or meeting clients, dress is casual (jeans and sneakers). It is a unicorn job and I will never ever leave.
I really like this top and wear the BR fitted non iron button down in a bunch of colors. That said, I really don’t get in what universe this is worth $80. I never buy them unless they’re on super sale, and I don’t see them being worth much more than that. Or maybe the fact that they fit me well without tailoring should make them worth it. *sigh* Everything is so expensive.
+1. Seriously. The expectation that we all want to spend $80 on a polyester shirt, sometimes one that doesn’t even come with sleeves, and is mass-manufactured somewhere is getting old.
Then… how much should a nice, collared button front shirt cost? What do you think is reasonable?
I don’t know, I’m not a shirt manufacturer. But I do know that I’ve been buying women’s clothing for a while and I’ve seen prices skyrocket in these brands (BR/AT/Jcrew/Express/the limited etc etc) and quality decline, and I think this is pretty common sentiment. People are starting to see through the constant 40% sale tactics that these sorts of stores are doing.
I disagree with the implied assumption that this shirt is “nice” simply because its BR or $80. Is this shirt really “nice”? How do we know? Plus, there are a lot of factors that go into what’s a reasonable price, and whether these factors are present in this shirt is not apparent from its picture or the fact that it is BR.
I have had a number of issues with BR/AT/Jcrew quality in recent years, including seams and hems coming undone after few wears, unlined dresses retailing at $160, terrible pilling….
I think BR increased their prices so they could run their fake sales.
I’ve seen this shirt and it is nice, but the windowpane design doesn’t line up neatly across seams. Also they had a cute black polka dot on white background button down shirt that I bought, only to find the colour ran….though it was a machine wash cold shirt. So I am not sure of quality though I loved the shirt I got, till colours ran.
My boyfriend just got a wedding invitation from his college friend who I’ve never met. We’re both invited and planning to attend (it’s a local wedding, about 45 minutes away). In this situation, who normally pays for the wedding gift? Should he cover the entire thing because it’s his friend and I don’t know them? Or should I offer to pay half?
For context, my boyfriend and I don’t live together yet but we’re planning to in the next few months. We make around the same salary and typically take turns picking up the check when we go out.
Open to any and all suggestions! Thanks Hive!
In my head that depends on how much it will cost each of you to attend the wedding. Do both of you own what you’ll need to wear, do you have to book transport/ a hotel, etc? If you’re incurring more of those costs then he should buy the gift, but if he is then split it (though maybe not 50.50, I don’t know)
Not an etiquette question. That’s just something you two resolve together. Personally I expect that the actual friend pays for the gift but I don’t think there are rules about this.
Agreed. Just talk to your boyfriend about it.
Agree. If you don’t mind shopping/ordering from the registry and would like to feel like you are contributing, you could offer to do the legwork if he foots the bill.
My fiancé and I split wedding gift costs / travel expenses by who’s friend it is (easy in most cases where it was someone from college – this would be hard for some friends we made together). This way, I can gift my friends the amount I want etc without having to discuss it. So far, it has worked out relatively even for us but YMMV. We live together, but only share major living expenses. Otherwise we don’t plan on combining money until we are married.
This is what my husband and I did too, before marriage. Now that we have joint money, I’m in charge of picking something off the registry (regardless of which of us is the primary friend) that’s within our budget for the event.
That’s what I’d do.
This is how all my friends with serious/live in boyfriends have negotiated this.
Technically, because you’re on the invitation, you’re a guest of the groom, so would be expected to pay for a gift, but in reality, you’re your boyfriend’s date. In that light, your only real responsibility is to your boyfriend, to be a good date (ie dress and act appropriately) and keep him company. Personally, I would think it’s your boyfriend’s responsibility to pick out and pay for the gift, and since you’re in a committed relationship, split the costs of travel and lodging, but echoing what others have said, it’s up to you guys.
I’d be annoyed at having to split the costs of a gift for a wedding where I’m essentially a plus one. His friend, his gift. I didn’t take over picking out gifts from the registry for my DH’s friends until we were actually married.
S in Chicago
I’m married and still wouldn’t presume to do the present purchasing for my husband’s friends. If it’s your friend, it’s your burden to know how close you are and therefore how much you want to spend or what you want to spend it on.
Granted, DH usually just does cash. But I’d like to think there is still an opportunity to put thought into the gift–and that isn’t going to be done by someone with no relationship to the person getting married.
Killer Kitten Heels
We’re married and we still handle gifts separately – I deal with gifts for my family & friends, he deals with gifts for his family & friends. For friends we’re equally close to, or for situations where one of us is stumped, we’ll talk it over or possibly pick something out together, but mostly we manage our own “sides” because we find it to be easier that way.
Must be Tuesday
I usually buy the gifts for weddings my fiancé and I go to. If it’s his friend, I usually offer a certain amount that I’m willing to chip in for a gift, then he can determine how much he wants to spend, then I buy something from the registry that’s from both of us. I typically offer to chip in $50 for his friends that I know, and he either chips in the same (so we spend $100 total on the gift), or he puts in more if it’s a closer friend. For the wedding of one friend of his that I had never met, I didn’t offer to pay anything. For one of his sisters, we spent a lot more than $100 total and split it 50/50. He typically chips in $50 for wedding gifts for my friends.
Survey: you are a lawyer for a large state agency. Quarterly, your agency’s lawyers from around the state gather for a meeting. This time, for the first time ever, the meeting goes to the end of the day Friday. So everyone flies or drives home Friday after 5:00.
Q: do you or do you not mention that this means you will not be home for Shabbat? (If it matters, of the roughly two dozen lawyers, maybe 2 or 3 are Jewish. Even as a Reform Jew, you are probably the most observant, which means you are home/at services on Friday nights but drive on Saturdays.)
Thanks for your thoughts.
Are you organising the meeting? If not, could you contact the organiser and ask if the agenda can be set that you can slip out mid-afternoon and not miss too much crazy-important stuff? I’ve had to do that for catching trains back up to Scotland from London (so not a religious thing, just getting home at a reasonable time) and it’s usually been okay.
What’s your goal here? If this meeting runs into Shabbat will you just be late? Are you always home in time? Do you intend to leave early? Are you/the meeting important enough that it should be rescheduled to accommodate this? Do you want to mention it now because you’re okay with once a year but not once a quarter going forward?
I wouldn’t just mention oh this is kinda late because Shabbat without a clear understanding of what needs to happen for you (just you in the particular situation, not for Jews generally).
I agree with this. You may be in an area with a greater Jewish population where people are more familiar with the customs than I am, but I have to be honest and say that I have no real idea of what you’re talking about/needing here. (I’m saying that because I’m putting myself in the shoes of someone you might bring it up to, who might also not be clear, but might want to avoid looking ignorant or accidentally saying something offensive.) I think that most non-Jewish people have a general idea that there are restrictions that start on Friday nights, but probably don’t know what they really are or how much flexibility there is, and would never think of them without it being pointed out.
If you need an accommodation, I would simply state to the organizer that you have a religious obligation that would require X (leaving early, etc.) and see if it is a problem.
This. I really don’t know what the specifics are of the accommodation, but if I’m told that it’s a religious accommodation then, based on my very limited knowledge of Jewish tradition, that’s more than fine. But, tell me early.
Yes, I agree with Lyssa. Start with assuming the people you are talking about know absolutely nothing about Judiasm or the Sabbath and just present what you plan to do (leave early, etc), and be prepared for their follow up questions. If someone said to me “its the Sabbath” I wouldn’t know what you wanted.
Follow up question (you may or may not get) – are you ok with someone else driving you home on Friday? Could you carpool or take a cab? Or do you want to be in your house before sundown on Friday? Make that part clear – if the issue is really that you have to be home by sundown, say that.
I would not say anything.
Why not? If you’re observant then you need to be done sooner. A lot of organizations avoid scheduling into Friday evenings for this reason.
I would not say anything unless you are planning to leave early. If it is truly a problem for you, don’t stay until 5:00 and then make an issue of it. If you can’t stay, then you can’t stay. Just tell the organizers ahead of time that you will be leaving early and why.
I have a co-worker who routinely accepts inconvenient travel (sometimes conflicting with religious holidays) and then complains about it, sometimes for YEARS afterwards. It is unprofessional and whiny. I wish he would just stand up for himself and say no when he has a legitimate conflict.
Your co-workers and bosses don’t need to know the details of exactly how observant you are. Getting into the details of “well, this one thing is important to me personally but this other thing not so much” opens the door for requests to compromise. Just tell them clearly exactly what you need and that it is for religious reasons, and then be consistent.
My high school was about 1/4 Jewish and this never came up (I’m thinking of sports teams and Friday night games), so I’m surprised I haven’t seen this before.
Is staying over and driving home Saturday not an option?
Is it the not driving after sundown Friday that’s a problem? In that case, I would think it’s a choice b/w asking to leave early v staying overnight.
Is it that that there is a mandatory event on Friday that requires travel that’s the problem? In that case, it’s to ask to leave early b/c of a religious observance.
Maybe people are confused by how it seems that there is a bit of habit and preference (I spend this time with my family at home) lurking in this.
“Maybe people are confused by how it seems that there is a bit of habit and preference (I spend this time with my family at home) lurking in this.”
Exhibit A for why it seems that no one cares. Spending time at home with family is a way to celebrate Shabbat. Indeed, it is the way millions of Jews celebrate Shabbat every week. Let no one doubt we live in a Christian country after this.
Nah this is relating to how you phrased it. “Mention this means you won’t be home for Shabbat” indicates you aren’t going to leave early and don’t need to be home.
Yes, the issue is your phrasing and approach. If you need to be home for Shabbat, then be home for Shabbat, and make this known to the relevant people ahead of time. But in your first post, it sounds like you are planning not to go home (implying that you don’t really need to go home), then to tell everyone at the meeting that they are ignorant or prejudiced because they planned the meeting to last until 5:00 on Friday. This will just alienate people and make them question how serious your religious needs really are. If you actually leave, people will have to respect that.
If you would like to be home for Shabbat, then say you will need to leave early for religious reasons but you look forward to being able to stay until x time. I would not make a big deal of it in front of the entire group.
My response would in part depend on whether this is a religious holiday or a weekly religious obligation. I think for weekly obligations, it is fair of an employer to expect, in special circumstances, some type of compromise. I’ll use the more common “my family goes to church together on Sundays” example. If you have a big trial out of town you might have to be away from home for a Sunday. A fair accommodation in that situation would be you break away from the group to attend services or you agree that so long is the travel is less than 5 times/year, you will miss services those days. If it is a religious holiday, however, and comes up rarely, then I think it makes sense to say “this is important to me and I can’t miss it.”
I realize that my position isn’t the correct legal one because weekly religious obligations can be just as important as rare ones. I’m just saying what I would consider reasonable. I think anything that is a frequent obligation (not just religion) needs occasional compromise while once in awhile events (again, not just religious) are more appropriate for accommodation.
In my church example, there is a difference between I can never ever ever work Sundays and for religious reasons, I prefer to not work Sundays but will agree to in rare emergency situations.
I hope you realize how Christian centric this view of what is reasonable to request is. #thisiswhywelaws
This is actually a super important point – the Christian view of life being split into secular and religious spheres simply does not apply in many other religions, including Judaism and Islam. It makes a big difference in understanding “church/state” separations and religious accommodations in a liberal democracy.
I’d also like to note that all Christians should not be painted with the same brush.
Some of us are more observant than others, some of us do obey the sabbath, some of us don’t believe that the separation of church and state is possible. There is just as broad a spectrum of Christians as there are Jews and Muslims. These broad statements about the Christian view of life, or a willingness to compromise religious traditions being a Christian approach makes me feel a bit excluded as a more conservative Christian. I know that wasn’t anyone’s intent, I just wanted to express my perspective.
Thanks, Latte Tuesday – that’s a great point and I appreciate you adding in that nuance. 3 cheers for religious diversity :)
P.S. Is that a Second Cup reference? We all love latte Tuesdays at my office!
I actually thought this was a really great analogy. Say, “I can’t work after 1 hour before sundown on Friday to 1 hour after sundown on Saturday.” Then, don’t.
Conceded in my post and below that my position was legally wrong but that I was giving advice about what most employers FIND reasonable. There is the law and there is what employers/coworkers think regardless. For some, they don’t care. OP was seeking advice and should know what others may think. It is the same as when we are giving people advice about other legally protected classes like pregnancy or disability. You want to take your protected leave and still be seen as a hard worker.
I used a Christian example because I was not familiar with the occasion in question and thought I could analogize it to two I am familiar with. As Latte Tuesday pointed out compromise is not an assumed Christian trait – there are many that follow their religion strictly.
If my example is completely off base then I’m just showing and admitting my religious ignorance. I’m not really a practicing christian either so assumption central here. Again though, whoever OP is dealing with is likely someone equally ignorant so its good to know what you are up against.
I think you’re letting you own ignorance speak for the majority. Most employers do actually know they have an obligation to provide reasonable religious accommodations.
I don’t think OP should have to compromise her beliefs this way.
I actually don’t think this is how religious accomodation laws work in the U.S.–they don’t check on frequency or what day of the week. Your employer needs to accomodate you, if you’re in the U.S.
I’m sure you mean well, but what you’re suggesting is basically along the lines of suggesting that an observant Muslim or Jew should occasionally eat pork when needed.
It is a Christian country, and we all just live in it. I am surprised that in this day and ago of multi-culturalism and hours of educational sessions in the workplace about ethnic minorities, Judaism still gets short shrift.
Sorry Blonde Lawyer, ILU but you’re wrong about this: “I think for weekly obligations, it is fair of an employer to expect, in special circumstances, some type of compromise.” I leave early from work every Friday no matter what to be home in time for Shabbat. I am an observant (Orthodox) Jew and I make it clear to any manager I work for that this isn’t something I can change or compromise on. I work extra hours during the week to make up for the missed time and my managers always know I will stay late as needed any day except Friday. Now, I do leave a buffer – so let’s say I leave by 2 in winter when candle lighting is by 4:30, but that gives me time for subway shutdowns/last-minute cooking/etc – but if there is a real work emergency that no one can cover, I will cut into my buffer time.
I use my vacation days to cover religious holidays (which uses up most of my vacation time, so no extra paid vacation for me to jet off to Europe or whatever).
I concede that legally I am wrong. I was being honest about what I think elicits understanding and what doesn’t in the workplace. The OP asked for advice. There is the legal answer and then there is the what you do to be successful answer. Sometimes they are two different things. Everyone has to way the importance of their own commitments. It is just like how we discuss “should I tell my employer I’m pregnant” and other legally protected things. I’m really glad that you have an awesome employer that follows the law.
Honestly, your answer makes me sad. It’s not about having an awesome employer. It’s not out of the ordinary. It’s normal, it’s what’s required under human rights law, and it shouldn’t be a weird and special thing. It has not affected my success in the workplace and I know many other people who can say the same thing (but if it did, I would take that career hit). If anything, I can tell stories about outliers that are BAD employers that don’t get this – but they tend to be bad employers in other ways too. This kind of attitude is like what I get from the people that express jealousy that I leave early on Fridays – not getting that I’m rushing home for a religious obligation, that I stay late to make it up, that this sincere conviction also means I can’t eat their food or hang out with them on Friday nights. Once people meet someone who is really sincere in their beliefs and consistent in their practices, they usually get it and don’t raise issues anymore (unless they have their own anti-religious bias).
Re-reading my post, typos aside, I sound really sarcastic and that wasn’t my intent at all. You can absolutely be Orthodox and successful in the business world. You will just likely have to overcome more hurdles than others and that is very unfortunate. I was not trying to say I agree with people that don’t follow the law.
Thanks, I appreciate this clarification :)
In Blonde Lawyer’s defense, the OP’s description of her situation does not make her sound particularly observant – for example, she herself says that she drives on Saturdays. I believe in religious accomodations, but I also believe that the only way it can work is if individuals asking for the accomodations are honest about the depth of their conviction, and are not only religious in convenience. And as much as the Jewish participants in this forum like to kvetch about the Christian-centric way of the US, just try to live here when you’re outside the Judeo-Christian conventions. The way you feel about Blonde Lawyer is roughly the way I feel about all y’alls.
So I certainly agree that asking for religious accommodations needs to be based on sincere religious conviction and not convenience or a one-time thing (if only b/c it makes the rest of us look bad!) But I also think that there is a spectrum of observance within religions, and just b/c I’m Orthodox and keep Shabbat in a certain way, and believe that that’s really what “keeping Shabbat” means, doesn’t mean that the OP’s religious convictions as a Reform Jew are any less sincerely held. She has religious beliefs and practices – they’re just different from mine or from an Ultra Orthodox Jew’s. I think many people here are picking up on the fact that she hasn’t been terribly clear about what her practice/need really is and what she really wants from the meeting organizer, but just b/c she drives on Shabbat day doesn’t mean she doesn’t have some level of religious observance that she fully and sincerely adheres to on Friday nights.
And I do want to say that I think “Judeo-Christian” is a false term and really just means Christian but trying to appeal to a broader tradition.. but I can understand that religious communities that may be smaller in size or more recently arrived in North America may feel that religious Jews have more understanding/accommodations than they do. All I can say to that is that it’s an ongoing battle (especially outside big cities with big Jewish populations like NYC/TO/MTL) and that we need to work together across religious communities on this kind of stuff :)
For some people, “keeping Shabbat” includes driving for sabbath-related activities, like attending synagogue.
plus – Absolutely :)
Pretty common for people I’ve worked with to have Friday evening (sundown) and Saturday no-work policies for Shabbat (both in private and public employment). And not only does no one say anything, people actively work to accommodate their co-workers on this point.
I’d speak to the organizer and see what is planned at the end of the day on Friday, and find a good time that you can step away to head home or to services. I’d let them know it was for Shabbat (religious observation). Agree that the sooner you bring it up, the better, but don’t think you need to skip or be late for Shabbat.
Anon in NYC
I would say something. This is something that is important to you. If the date is not flexible, and you don’t want to miss Shabbat (totally reasonable), you just need to be upfront with the organizer/your boss/whomever you need to tell. And I would also explain that going forward, events that run post-sundown on a Friday will be a problem for you. If the agenda is still flexible, ask that meetings be arranged so that you can avoid missing the most important ones.
If you are willing to miss Shabbat (it doesn’t sound like you are), I would still say something about future events so that the organizer can plan accordingly. Personally, I wouldn’t make this accommodation because I think it would invite people to speculate on the sincerity of your beliefs. I have a few colleagues who observe Shabbat, regardless of deals/workload/trial, and everyone just deals with it.
e.g. Joe Lieberman – apparently never missed a Shabbat even while campaigning.
‘ I have a few colleagues who observe Shabbat, regardless of deals/workload/trial’
I’m curious – does that mean that you make sure between yourselves that everyone manages to have a 24 hour period each week without work? Or just those with a religious obligation?
Anon in NYC
Those colleagues that observe Shabbat are not disturbed from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday. They’re copied on emails, etc., but there is no expectation that they will get to any of that before Saturday night. Other people on the team will manage the best that they can. But there is no reciprocation for those people who don’t have the same religious observance.
“does that mean that you make sure between yourselves that everyone manages to have a 24 hour period each week without work?”
No, the law requires that an accommodation is only for a sincerely held religious belief. It may not be “fair,” but the person that truly observes Shabbat gets the 24 hours and the person that does not, does not.
This. Fair doesn’t necessarily mean equal. It is fair, and appropriate, to give anyone time away from work tasks for religious observance. Does it mean I get to take an equal amount of time because House of Cards just came out and I want to watch a marathon? No. Nor should it.
Compare the marathon to a religious holiday. Observant Judaism has up to 13 holidays per year when no work can be done, and some years, 12 of them fall on weekdays. Observant Jews take these days as PTO. If you want a House of Cards marathon, you can also take PTO.
I understand that Shabbat as a weekly no-work zone is not familiar to many, but since many people tend to have family/social/leisure obligations on weekends, it’s not that much different. Observant Jews address work emergencies on Saturday after sundown, and on Sundays.
Someone else might be at the beach on Saturday and unable to address an emergency until Saturday night. Someone else might be at a church or family dinner on Sunday and not be reachable.
FWIW, I know many strictly observant Jews who are successful biglaw partners, portfolio managers, etc. and they NEVER work on Friday nights or Saturdays. The moment Shabbat ends, they’re working.
Alanna of Trebond
So I am not very religious, and this is what always bothers me about religious accommodations–why should my religious colleagues get to spend a 24 hour day with with their family without any disturbances? I would like that as well.
I agree, I think it should be for everyone.
Yup, this is like all the other work-life balance, mat leave, vacations, sick days etc discussions – it’s unfair to childless people that parental obligations are taken more seriously at work, but that’s not the fault of the people with kids, it’s the fault of the work culture we have that expects non-stop devotion to your job all day every day forever and ever without any flexibility.
Married to a Jew
I married into a (very) jewish family that generally has a friday shabbat dinner. That said, as a manager, I wouldn’t have thought twice about scheduling something on a friday if that was not something that a majority of my workforce observed. Given a group of this size, it’s impossible to find a date that would be fantastic for everyone. I would just tell the organizer that you will have to leave early for a religious observance or for a family event and then quietly leave at the appropriate time.
This doesn’t seem like a huge issue for you to ask for this as an accommodation. Also, I don’t particularly see this as an issue of their not being respectful of your religion. Not all Jews follow the same practices with the shabbat dinner.
If you always leave work on Friday in time for Shabbat, I see no difference whether you’re at a conference or not – leave early.
I’m not clear from what you wrote whether you intend to stay for the full event, and miss Shabbat dinner/services, or leave early to get home in time, and I think that matters.
In your place, if I had decided I would stay for the meeting, I don’t think I’d say anything then, but I’d probably reach out to the organizer afterwards and let him or her know that going until 5pm Friday is an issue because of religious reasons, and could they please keep that in mind for next time. If being home for Shabbat was non-negotiable for me, I would reach out to the organizer early, let them know I’d be leaving early Friday due to a religious obligation, and ask if there would be a recording of presentations, or materials I could get later to catch up on what I missed. I think you first have to decide whether you are going to stay or not (or find a place near the event to spend Shabbat, which would create other options, but from your post that doesn’t sound like an option you are considering), and then proceed from there.
I think the organizer, especially one not familiar with Jewish practices (and there are many ways to practice Judaism), would find it confusing to get an inquiry where you are not definite about your obligations. Are you treating this as a preference, based on religious traditions, where understanding would be appreciated, or are you observing religious requirements that trump your obligations to your employer?
Also in Academia
Not a lawyer, but I have regular statewide gatherings of people who do what I do. In my experience, people come in and out as needed, and no one would notice someone leaving early, or if they did they would just assume you had to be somewhere. If it would be a bigger deal in your workworld, then I think you are completely OK to say to your boss or whomever, “It’s Shabbat, I need to leave,” or “I have a religious obligation.”
Bergen vs Helsinki?
I’m traveling for work in Denmark and Sweden this spring. I have a weekend to myself and wanted to take a quick trip someplace, so far I am thinking Bergen or Helsinki. Anyone have any comments on either place or another recommendations? Thanks!
I can only speak for Helsinki, which I enjoyed. A weekend is the perfect amount of time to see the city. It’s very walkable and manageable. The architecture at the Upenski Orthodox Cathedral is stunning! And the design museum is fun to see.
Of all the European capitals I’ve visited, it’s probably lower on the list of must-sees, but I’m still glad I went. I wouldn’t have gone JUST to Helsinki on a trip, but it was a good add-on when we were already seeing Denmark, Sweden, and Estonia.
Happy to help with more specific questions if you have any!
I went to Bergen last summer, and it was beautiful. I would recommend it.
Bergen is on my bucket list. I haven’t been there, but everyone I know who has raves about it.
I’m from Finland so I’m biased towards Helsinki. It’s a capital city so it’s a bit more cosmopolitan and there is a lot to see and lots of great restaurants etc (if you’re into food, do the 18-course tasting menu of all local foods at Olo Restaurant). Also, the archipelago is very pretty.
Helsinki also has a bit of a Russian influence in the architecture as Finland was part of Russia for a long time, so it is a bit different from Denmark and Sweden than Norway is. You can get the overnight ferry from Sweden very easily which is actually easier even than flying as it’s city centre to city centre.
That said, I’ve never been to Bergen (and it’s on my list – fjords!!) and I’m it’s great. What I would say is Norway is very expensive, and much more expensive than the EU countries. Sweden and Denmark don’t have the Euro either, but the price difference isn’t so stark so if that’s a consideration, it might be something to keep in mind.
iPhone storage question
I have a 16GB iPhone 5c, and I’m struggling with ways to cut down on space. I have under 50 photos and no videos. The culprit seems to be the mail! Is there a way to only have, say, a week’s worth of mail show up instead of this seemingly endless inbox?
I guess I could also delete old text conversations. Beyond that, I’ve already cut down to only bare-bones apps. I still don’t have enough room to upgrade to iOS 8! Feeling frustrated with Apple…
Not sure on the older OS, because my iphone 6 is my first, but there’s a mail setting to choose how long to keep email.
yes. you can do this in the settings. I had to do it when I was upgrading to the new ios, and then I switched back afterwards. my husband did it for me though, so im no help in telling you how to actually do it.
I struggled with this. I have an 8GB iPhone, and I was stuck.
Did you know that your phone actually saves *everything* and there isn’t a way to easily delete it? I’m talking that low battery warning, alerts for emails, even (bizarrely) the error messages that say you don’t have enough room to take a picture. That’s all included in the ‘Other’ in the iTunes display of what is using your storage.
I downloaded PhoneClean (Google for a discount code, I found one that made it free) and got rid of 4GB of stuff like that in about 25 minutes. It has genuinely revolutionised my phone-owning life and I now run it every couple of weeks.
It’s my theory that Apple designs them this way on purpose to encourage you to upgrade sooner – my handset is nearly four years old.
Gail the Goldfish
Oh Apple undoubtedly designs them that way on purpose to encourage more frequent upgrades. The same reason they design them so you can’t change out the battery, or use a microUSB charger like everything else, or add an SD card. (Yes, I use android devices)
A couple tips. 1) figure out what is using up the storage by going to settings/general/usage/manage usage The culprit could be an app you never use. 2) go to settings/messages/message history and change to 30 days how long the phone will hold on to old texts. 3) you can also go into advanced settings for each email account and set when deleted messages should be removed.
some people may call it an Aden & Anais swaddle blanket. Today, I call it a scarf. Thank you, car-full-of-outdated-supplies for providing me with some extra warmth today.
The best part is the only people who will recognize it as a swaddle blanket are moms (or aunties). They are comfy!
They’re so soft (especially the bamboo ones). Very smart!
Been there, done that as a soft and pretty shawl (no patterns) on an unexpectedly chilly night out on the town.
This is awesome – I wonder if I could get away with doing this with my favorite owl printed one.
mine has stars on it today! I chuckled to myself when I saw a baby packed up in an infant seat, wearing my scarf at Chick Fil A.
I would absolutely wear an owl one. Or the lobster one, if I had it. (wasn’t there a lobster one? or was it a crab??)
super anon for this
I haven’t seen this discussed in awhile, but how does the hive recommend dealing with flirtations at work?
Backstory: I’m a consultant, very junior. I’m happily married. I traveled recently with coworker M, who is much senior to me, and who I admire professionally and got along with decently beforehand. Well, during the trip we were together pretty much 6am – 1 am every day working. He got pretty flirty (especially in text message form) and I realized, unfortunately, I was enjoying the attention and not shutting it down properly. He’s married too.
The thing is, I really want and need his mentoring/help professionally. He’s gone to bat for me with management, and worked to get me recognition for my work. I can’t ignore him entirely. And legitimately, we do get along well and enjoy each others’ company. I tried to tell myself he didn’t realize what was going on, but I read a few texts to my therapist and she was like, uh, no. He gets it. He’s enjoying this.
She proposed limiting texting to business hours and business matters, and suggesting that our spouses meet (“hey, why don’t we all have dinner sometime”). I’m doing that, but it’s tough. Last night he was texting me saying he wants me to come with him on another trip, and while I know I should IGNORE because, inappropriate, at the same time – it would be a great opportunity professionally!
I just don’t want to completely block him out or say anything to suggest I think he’s crossing the line, for fear it will backfire and he’ll screw me over.
I think you want to bang him. It’s actually not all that hard to ignore flirtatious messages from men you aren’t interested in. It’s easy. You like him, you like this. If you value your marriage, cut yourself off from him. Also pro tip, the subset of men who want you naked and men who are going to be great professional mentors does not tend to overlap. You’re being willfully naive about this and you’re going to get burned.
This isn’t being harsh, it’s true. It’s what I needed to hear.
It sounds like the professional opportunities you might gain here aren’t worth it. There will be other mentors.
Yay! Fruegel Friday’s! I love Fruegel Friday’s and Bannana Republic — but $79.50 for a shirt is not THAT fruegel! But anyway, I do like it, and will show Rosa, who can aford it on ED’s paycheck from Merill Lynch.
As for the OP, I have to agree with Anonmous–men who are flirty want to have sex with you, and if you give them any oportunity, such as workeing from 6am to 1am, like you did, you could find yourself in a compromiseing position — and you know what I mean. You MUST NOT let him into your hotel room or he could be on top of you b/f you know it and you do NOT want to have to bring sexueal relation’s into the mix with this older man. I have enough troubel with the manageing partner’s brother’s doubel entender’s about his sexueal activities and being viral, and what he has done with other women, etc., etc. (as if I want such an expereinced winkie? NO WAY HOZE, I want a guy who I do NOT have to exclaim how wonderful he is). At least with Alan, he was NOT good in bed, so I did NOT have to praise him. FOOEY!
With this guy, I have to say that he may be a mentor, but if you do NOT want him menting you with his winkie, you must NOT respond to his dirty texteing messages. Sure they are onley text’s, but the next thing you know, he will be attacheing picture’s to his text’s, if not emojii’s, and those picutres could get riskee very quickley. The last thing you need to see (or your husband see’s) is selfie picture’s of this schmoe in a compromising position on the couch or whereever. If he asks you for a selfie, do NOT give him one, b/c he can manipulate it to have your face on a body of a woman with no clotheing on, even if you had clotheing on to begin with! DOUBEL FOOEY!
Myrna and I are meeting tonite after I finish my billeing to celebrate the end of the month! Next month at this time is my Birtheday, and I need to find a guy to MARRY me now b/c I will be 34. FOOEY!
“if you do NOT want him menting you with his winkie…”
I am actually laughing out loud. Which is something I really needed to do after this week. Thanks!
Yes, that part in particular was pretty great! Usually I skim past Ellen’s comments–er, “p’osts”–but I love when she gives relationship advice.
Ellen, you are fantastic! This is a big reason why I come to read the posts on Corporette. Keep up the great work!
Honestly, he’s not in a position to mentor you in the way you say you want. He’s crossed a line and you haven’t challenged him on it – you’ve enabled it and disrespected your marriage.
If you’re honest to god looking to end this (I’m in agreement with Anonymous above, however harsh….) find another mentor and end the relationship, or limit it to professional interactions at all costs.
I don’t understand how you could turn down a trip – isn’t that your job, to fly to client locations each week?
I get it that when you’re with colleagues that you enjoy for hours and hours every day, you end up with inside jokes and whatnot, which makes everything feel very cozy. Especially if you’re flattered that a senior coworker thinks you’re smart and doing a good job. Just pull it back to friendly and move on before this turns into a bigger problem!
Good idea, btw, to have the spouses meet.
I think spouses meeting is an absolutely terrible idea. It just further comingles professional/personal life.
Mmmmmm. And it opens the door to talking about your spouses. Which is a dangerous door.
Who was it the other day that said sunshine is the best disinfectant? Having a dinner with spouses can also remove any of the excitement that could come along with a secret flirtation, and remind the OP that she shouldn’t be saying anything to colleague that she wouldn’t want her husband to hear.
Re: the trip, it’s something where only the senior partners were going and he was saying he wished I could come (no one else at my level is going, and it would never be approved by management). I was being naive as everyone has mentioned thinking, “Oh wow, he thinks I’m so great and important to this project, he thinks I should be there” when really, he probably just wants me there so he can spend more time with me.
oh – then I think you could gracefully say something like “I appreciate the vote of confidence but would my participation be appropriate given the other attendees?”
ETA – or if it was clearly just a “wish you could come” message, feel free to IGNORE
Killer Kitten Heels
Umm, yeah, he’s grooming you for later inappropriateness. He already tested a boundary with the flirty texts, and you were cool with it. So he’s testing more of them. Shut it down hard, and shut it down NOW.
If his professional mentorship and sponsorship of you is contingent on him being able to maintain the belief that he might one day have the opportunity to bang you, is that the kind of mentorship/sponsorship you really want or need?
I think there is a way to shut it down and continue to operate professionally. Do a bit of a slow fade. Don’t respond to messages that aren’t work related. Or, write back “busy right now, see you at work tomorrow.” Try to keep others around when you guys travel together. If the work is done and you start just hanging out, say you are tired/want to read/surf the net and go back to your room. Don’t respond to texts. Say you were asleep and didn’t get them until the next morning.
Mention your husband in conversation frequently and in a positive way. If you are just chatting say something like “I can’t wait to get back, my husband and I are going to (concert, play, restaurant).” Give off the impression of the happily married not interested in anything else vibe while still doing your job.
This is great advice. Also try to kill the crush by noticing things you don’t like about him. Start with the fact that he is a skeevy married guy who acts inappropriately with a subordinate at work.
LOL! I totally agree.
Agree!! Our culture/generation/professions reinforces immediate responses to electronic messages. It helps to remind yourself that you do not *have* to respond immediately or at all, and doing so sends a particular message. It also heightens the anticipation of waiting for a ping back. It might be hard to train yourself away from the immediate rush of sending a witty or heartfelt response, and seeing it immediately rewarded with a message appropriately appreciating your witty/heartfelt text (I swear it’s almost a chemical response), but the longer you wait to say something, the more it will push out of your brain. Eventually it will feel more normal to not respond and engage in the back-and-forths, even if it’s forced at first.
This is so true. Thanks.
Lady, I’ve been where you are now except I’m not married. I held out hope that my boss/mentor who was texting me outside of work was actually a good guy who just liked me and was in a lonely marriage and would respect my boundaries. FALSE. Full-stop. He pushed boundaries, and he did it in such a slow, careful, planned way that it was difficult for me to call him on it. It’s like the frog that’s in water that slowly starts boiling- he doesn’t realize till its too late. I’d question whether the texting/hanging out was actually inappropriate or whether I was being paranoid. I’d question whether it was right to call him out because, well, “maybe he didn’t mean it that way and if I call him out I’ll make things awkward and he’ll punish me.” This was his design- years later I came to learn that he’s done this with other women as well. This is a man abusing his power. This is not acceptable and makes me rage like no other, but this is the set of facts we’re dealing with.
Remind yourself that this person has shown you that he is willing to be inappropriate with you and put you in an awkward position (because he is your boss). Remind yourself that he is willing to push boundaries. This is not a safe person for you and he will not be a good mentor. Your choices are not a) him being a good mentor and appropriate with you or b) you cutting him off and he’s not your mentor. That’s what you want (and what I wanted), but that set of choices is not available. Your choices are actually a) him acting like your mentor while wanting to touch you, which is not a good mentor or b) you cut him off and he’s not your mentor.
Recommendation: Like blond lawyer said, slow fade him. Tell him your busy/with your family. Don’t respond to non-work stuff. Take it back down to professional level only. If this creates a sacrifice of professional benefits, so be it. Think about the alternative risk: it gets out of hand and truly risks your professional standing. You owe it to yourself, your career, and your marriage to cut this off before it does more damage.
Best of luck to you. I know that this sucks.
Srsly + 1,000,000
Thank you so much for this well written response. It was really, really helpful. This is basically exactly what I needed to hear.
It hurts because I wish that he did value me for my work/intelligence. And I really wanted to believe he is a good person who cares about me in a totally non-creepy way.
To OP- I’m glad I could help. I feel for you and I hate how common this situation is. I wish I’d been in a better/stronger place where I could have handled my own situation better, but at least I can use my experience to help others!
“It hurts because I wish that he did value me for my work/intelligence. And I really wanted to believe he is a good person who cares about me in a totally non-creepy way.”
This was almost word for word what I said to myself and to the one or two people I confided in.
If it helps, after I came to terms with the reality of the situation, I felt so much better and totally free. I wish he valued me like I wanted him to, but that’s his BS, not mine. 99 problems and he isn’t one.
Plus: if he’s done it with you, he’s done it before
He probably has a reputation already, which means that you may be getting a reputation as Wandering Eye Married Guy’s Most Recent Conquest (who goes along to things not b/c she’s qualified, but b/c she’s putting out). Even if it’s not true, that’s not what you want being associated with your work reputation (must less your over-all reputation).
We have one in our office (female though) who moves from New Guy to Newer Guy to Newest Guy. I’m sure they’re flattered at first. But then they get to watch when they’re cast off for the next guy.
+100–this totally happened to me with a partner at my old firm (while I was a 1st-3rd year). I naively gave him the benefit of the doubt for way too long. I also, if I’m being honest, probably enjoyed the positive attention (though I was single at the time and definitely not attracted to him at all). He did act as a mentor (so that’s possible) but it often creeped into an uncomfortable area for me. I called him out once or twice–saying that while I was SURE he didn’t mean anything by it, that I was worried others might get the wrong impression by how familiar he was with me. Left that job and am MUCH happier not having to navigate what I now see as a really manipulative and inappropriate power dynamic.
Random tech question – does anyone have the Surface Pro? And, can it really replace your laptop? My personal laptop is slowly dying and I’m trying to decide whether to get another or do a tablet (I will still have my work laptop for heavy duty lifting). 90% of what I do, I know I can do on a tablet, but once in a while I might need to make simple documents (resumes, ppts, no big spreadsheets or anything). Any advice?
I ended up going with a Lenovo Yoga – you can flip the screen all the way around so you just work on the screen (like a tablet), but still have the laptop option when you want it. When I was looking, the issue I had with the Surface is that it wasn’t running a full version of Windows (and maybe Office?) so that cut down on the versatility that I wanted for my home computer. The Pro may have resolved some of those issues though. Have you checked out the reviews on CNet?
FWIW I know several people in college using the pro version as their computer. They are able to use excel and such on it, so it sounds like a good fit.
I’ve had one for two months and am happy overall. Get at least the mid-range version to have enough RAM to run windows efficiently. But it does run the same exact version of Windows 8 and Office, which is great. I also have a docking station and hook it to a full sized keyboard and monitor at my office desk, which I would recommend. The biggest downside is that it doesn’t work great as a “laptop” in the truest sense of the word – i.e. if I am on the train catching up on work and have it on my lap it’s not as supportive as a standalone laptop. But it’s great for meetings and taking notes with the stylus
I have a Surface Pro that I used to replace my personal laptop. I do a fair bit of photography, batch editing, uploading to the web, etc. on it, in addition to all the typical laptop stuff. I LOVE it. If you buy a folio case for it, it’s much easier to put it in your lap as an actual “laptop” to work off of. It does run a full Windows version, and you can toggle between the touchscreen Windows and the traditional Windows desktop interface. I haven’t had any issues with processing power with doing a lot of picture editing, so I think it could easily handle what you need it to.
Agreed with all this. I was stunned at how much I liked the Surface Pro and what it was able to handle. It can be a desktop replacement unless you are doing heavy-duty quant stuff, a graphic designer or a gamer. But get the biggest hard drive and the most memory you can.
Thanks to everyone for the house-buying advice yesterday, particularly AIMS and It Must Be Tuesday for their late (for me) advice on a follow-up question.
What is everyone looking forward to this weekend? Me: showing off my newly acquired creme brulee skills when my SO comes to visit this weekend. I haven’t seen him in two weeks, so I’m really excited! I made three creme brulees in the past week, and I FINALLY got it right, and I’m so proud of myself! Also, I get to play with a butane torch.
Jellz!!! I loooooooooooove creme brulee. I have always wanted to try making it. Any chance you could mail me one? :)
Sure! It might not be very delicious by the time it gets to you, though.
my dad. He’s coming to visit, albeit just till tomorrow. I haven’t seen him in a while, and while I love him dearly, he’s quirky. But, I’m happy to see him, and I know my kids can’t wait.
Other than that–nothing. Replacing some broken fixtures, not shoveling snow, maybe some crafts with the kids.
Nice! I registered for a torch because I really want to attempt making creme brûlée.
We are spending the weekend unpacking. Probably trying to buy a new couch too. Thanks everyone for the suggestions! I think we found a Raymour & Flannigan one. Just need to go sit on it and make sure it’s comfy.
House of Cards Season 3 (!!!) + DH + couch + wine.
yes. yes. yes.
A full day of above freezing weather and snow melting on Sunday!
Movie date with dh. Going to see Kingsmen. Should be good. Also, need to do a bunch of housework.
Must be Tuesday
House of Cards and a few glasses of wine!
Glad you found the answer helpful yesterday. Good luck with your house search!
House of Cards + winter hike in tolerable temperatures for a change + a mess of cooking to restock the freezer! :)
Best pizza in Atlanta (Antico!) and wine with friends, then House of Cards and more wine with SO! Plus the weather is sunny and 40’s and I actually have my windows open!
A heap of snow accidentally fell into our car’s trunk during the last storm and we didn’t notice it until it was wet and melted the next day. The trunk is still very damp days later and we’ve done many rounds of mopping it up with paper towels and rags. There is no sun to speak of so leaving the trunk open to dry out is not an option. Any suggestions? I don’t want to just leave it during this bitter cold and have it get moldy when it warms up days or weeks later. Thanks!
Could you try newspaper? I’m thinking like a thick layer of newspaper all along the bottom, then weigh it down as uniformly as possible (bricks, free weights), and keep subbing out the newspaper when it draws out the water.
Maybe put a space heater in it for a bit? I would sit out there with it. A hair dryer might also work, although it would take longer.
Blowdryer, remove the floor of the trunk if you can, and that damp rid stuff you get in a jar at Home Depot.
Kitty litter or silica to act as a desiccant and soak up the moisture? Indoor garage and a fan?
Do the back seats fold down and open in the trunk space so that the next time you drive around (and the car warms up) you can circulate some air in to the trunk?
Silica, yes, kitty litter, no. When it’s my upstairs neighbor’s turn to buy ice melt, she buys cheap kitty litter instead, which dissolves slightly into the carpet when it gets wet. Even after regular vacuuming, we were still finding kitty litter stuck in the carpet in July. Unless you get that expensive crystal litter? Maybe that would work.
Kitty litter is the worst. It gives traction but makes a mess. But ice melt is also bad because it damages sidewalks, steps, shoes, the environment, you name it. I hate them both.
Is there a nearby outlet to use a hairdryer?
ETA: I really need to refresh before I think I’m the first commenter. :)
Thanks for the ideas so far — we live in an apt. and park on the street so blow drier, fan etc. are not options.
You know when you go through a drive through car wash how there is a big air dryer at the end? Maybe if you talk to a car wash place there would be a way to bring your car in and open the trunk just for the giant dryer part. No idea of those things only work in sequence or can work individually.
I would take it to a detail place and have them deal with it, if you live in an apt and park on the street. My SUV got really soaked in the tailgate/trunk area over Christmas two winters ago (2013) and I had mold issues forever. Like my car smelled nasty well into April. You are right to worry about this.
For me–I mopped everything. tried newspaper, kitty litter and had a giant bowl of baking soda in my car that I changed every week for weeks–and it finally went away.
Out of Place Engineer
I would remove the carpet and hang it to dry in the bathtub. And then put in a tub of Damp Rid for a while?
Must be Tuesday
Do you have a friend who will let you park in their garage for a day or 2 so you can leave the trunk open to dry out?
So sorry in advance for the long TJ but I need some perspective. I’ve been job hunting for a while and have suddenly been put in a very bad position. Earlier this month, I interviewed with two companies that I really wanted to work for. I would have been happy with an offer from either. Company A turned me down and hired someone else, Company B hired me and is expecting me to start next week. Yesterday, A called to say they made the wrong decision in not hiring me at the time and that they want me on board, even though another person took the role I applied to. They are growing and were intending to hire again later this year, and apparently decided they would rather just hire me now than risk me going somewhere else.
I feel very strongly that reneging on an offer is extremely unprofessional and told them so, so in an attempt to sway me they outbid the other company by roughly 10-15% (meaningful, but not life changing). I’m quite upset about the situation and don’t really know what to do. I was careful to make sure the timing on both would not leave me with this kind of problem, but who could have known they would change their mind? Job A is a research role that I would probably be pretty content with but neither love nor hate. Job B is a client facing role, which I’ve never done before, and I guess at equal odds that I will either love or hate it (with no real way to know until I’ve given it a chance. I’m an introvert but do like helping people and feel pretty comfortable with one-on-one type interaction).
Both companies are growing quickly, but One is definitely the more successful firm in terms of revenue. One was also not originally willing to pay as much as they have offered now, so if I decide down the road to apply again it will likely pay less than Two. I am also 100% burning the bridge at Two if I back out now. I’m not actually starting until Tuesday of next week, so I need to make up my mind by Monday. I know in perspective I need to appreciate that both companies liked me and that either way I’ll have a job soon, but I am having trouble looking at this clearly right now. Probably leaning towards Two just because I really hate the idea of backing out, but if both offers were made today with no commitments I would probably have let salary choose for me. Any thoughts or similar experiences would be super appreciated!
Turn one down. They’re disorganized and they didn’t want you right away. If you go there later they won’t pay you less than two because you’ll negotiate better than that.
This. Go with Two/B, and see how it is. If you don’t like it, you know that One/A will be there, is growing, etc. Just because B doesn’t have a lot of people with experience doesn’t mean someone “paid them to leave” and it sounds like A is not treating you fairly right now, when you were perfectly up front with them.
It’s not as bad as you think to pull out at the last second. 2 probably has a #2 candidate they’ll call to offer the job to since you just interviewed and they’ll forget about you pretty quickly. What 1 did is also pretty normal. I’d take the job you have the best feeling about and not worry so much about the timing – it’s pretty typical.
+1. Pick the job that you think best fits your goals (stable company, type of work you want to be doing, potential for advancement, whatever), and go with it. Changing your mind re. a job acceptance at the last minute is not really such a big deal. It would be worse to stick with company #2 purely out of a sense of obligation and then leave a few months later–that would look like job-hopping on your resume.
+1 There is nothing wrong with turning down Job 2. This is about you and your happiness, not theirs.
+ 1 Some of the best advice I’ve ever heard is not to make job (taking/leaving) choices personal, because your employee most likely won’t. They are looking out for their best interest so you better look out for your’s.
Another possibly meaningful point: Two currently has zero people on the team that have been there more than 5 years. The best answer I could get from them on that was that “bad luck” with it being implied that other companies paid them to leave. One has several people that have been with the company for double digit years. I really want somewhere I’ll be happy for at least five years, so this does give me some pause.
This is seriously meaningful. Previous team: less than 1 year tenure. Miserable. Current team: average 2-3 year tenure. Fantastic coworkers, great managers, much better workload. I don’t know how to get out of job Two without burning bridges, though.
This cuts both ways–if there are very long-tenured people at a job, there may be less opportunity for you to move up because there will always be people far more senior than you. IME, this can also lead to lack of energy at a job–people take the job/organization for granted and don’t give it their all because they feel very secure. So I would look at this in two lights.
Being poached from a company is not a terribly bad thing–you’d likely gain skills and then get a raise if you leave. So don’t put this as a wholly negative point in terms of Company B/Two.
Meaningful, but maybe not as meaningful as you think. My company has a ton of long-haul people in it and is riddled with dysfunction. I was in two meetings this week where people were yelling at each other, and witnessed a third instance. Ick.
Personally, I would say to Company A that you have already accepted job B, are keeping it, but are pleased that they thought highly of you, that you also think they are great, and that you hope they will keep you in mind for future openings. Then stay in touch with your contact there, and if you hate job B after a year, give them a call.
I wouldn’t burn the bridge unless Job A was a dream job that I’ve been waiting on forever.
I have done something similar. Many years ago when I was graduating from law school, I accepted a job in a nearby city. Complications ensued with my then-husband and I ended up staying in town and reneging on my acceptance of the job in the other city. I won’t lie: It was awful. I still remember what the hiring partner said: “I hope you don’t expect me to be gracious and understanding about this, because I’m not.” Ouch. And I probably burned my bridges not only with that firm, but in that whole town.
But you know what? I did what I had to do, I lived to tell the tale, and I am quite sure the Other City Law Firm went on to have a long and happy life as well.
The only thing that worries me about your predicament is that you never know whether a job will be a good fit until you start (as Company A found out with its previous hire). If you burn the bridge with Job B and Job A doesn’t work out, where will that leave you?
Killer Kitten Heels
If you were really in love with the job/company at Company A over Company B, I’d say consider it, but since you seem kind of lukewarm about both, I’d say stick with B. If these are two major, growing companies in your area, do you really want to burn a bridge with one of them, probably permanently? Because that’s what will happen with B if you renege. A will understand and will get over it if you decline. I doubt that bridge will be permanently burned by “I appreciate your enthusiasm for my candidacy but I can’t in good conscience renege on my agreement with B,” and I would guess the door to A will still be open to you at a later date if B doesn’t work out and you find yourself reapplying. There’s no way to gracefully renege on B. Given that calculus, I wouldn’t feel comfortable reneging on B unless I felt reasonably confident that I would never be interested in any employment with B ever again.
In-house cover letter advice
I know we’ve discussed cover letters for in-house positions before, and I often see the advice that the letter should focus on why the candidate is excited about the company as well as why the candidate is a good fit. But what if the company isn’t the type of company that one would be passionate about (e.g., a large, national bank)? What does a good cover letter look like in that situation?
I would argue that you should be passionate about the function — compliance, OTC derivatives, litigation relating to [X] segment at the bank. I’ve worked in-house at a TBTF bank, and the people there are genuinely passionate about their work, if not the fact that they work at a bank/banking industry as a whole. Hope that helps.
I’d 100% agree with this. I work in a specific industry, but my function is not at all related to that industry, it’s a legal function that all companies would have. When we look at applications, general interest in the industry is nice, but you also need to care about the specific function more than the industry. Going on and on about X sector is kind of pointless because none of your work would touch on that, except peripherally.
Agreed. I’m not particularly passionate about ‘banking’ as a while but I’m really passionate about insurance (as bizarre as my parents find that).
In-house cover letter advice
Thanks. I really do enjoy the area of law I practice (and that I would continue to practice in-house), but I was worried that I needed to say more.
I had a general cover letter that I used for most jobs and then I’d tailor it, if there was something specific about the job that I wanted to say.
Here is a sample:
I am submitting my application for the [XXXXX] position.
Currently, I work as a [Job Title] for a large [Industry] company. I believe my extensive experience with [Various Skills] makes me a good candidate for this opportunity.
I look forward to hearing from you. You may contact me by phone at xxx.xxx.xxxx or by email at [email protected].
Period panties PSA
Sorry, TMI alert- but for anyone like me with a superheavy flow- I discovered Dear Kate and VV Skivvys panties a couple years ago, and wish I had known about them sooner. these are basically waterproof panties to give you extra leak protection. I use these in addition to every “super” product in the hygiene aisle, just to be sure- I hated backing out of a conference room after a meeting that ran long, and just the extra worry. Also for overnight it’s been a blessing- both brands work, the particular Dear Kates I bought are just like bikini bottoms- just slightly thicker than average panty. A really life changing stress reducer.
Yes, Dear Kates are awesome. So comfy and cute too.
I am perimenopausal and never know when I am going to start bleeding. So I wear them most days.
I also bought my 13 year old daughter some, as several of her classmates have started their periods for the first time this year at school and she was a bit freaked out that might happen. I got her the XS bikini types ones, they are sporty looking, just black undies with neon trim at the legs and waist.
Wow — I got my first period when I was 11. And I was really skinny. I had heard that 11 is now average to late in my (large southern) city.
She is in Gr 7, so some of the kids have just turned 12 recently and some of the kids are now turning 13. For sure, some of her friends got it in Gr 6.
I was 14 years old (and 2 months), so I suspect she will be getting it while she is still 13, but maybe closer to 14.
The average is different for different ethnicities too I believe. Some are earlier than others.
I think I read that the north american average is now 12.2 years.
She is very slender but also is more developed than I was at her age, so who knows. I am glad she has the Dear Kates, just in case!
Her two best friends: 1 got it shortly after she turned 11, the other has no signs of puberty whatsoever. My daughter seems in between.
Have either of you ladies tried a Diva Cup? Ooked me out at first but I find it actually holds up much longer to a heavy flow than a tampon and after the first month (there is a slight learning curve to placing it correctly) I have never had to worry about leakage again!
Definitely a learning curve. For sure holds more than a tampon. I will buy one for my daughter when she starts.
My issue is more irregularity and no warning signs it is coming. I am on day 71 with no period now so I am sure this next one will be a doozy. I am more normally (now) anywhere between 20 and 45 days, and the further apart ones are heavier.
By the way thanks for the extra info- I’m perimenopausal also- nothing for three months then Wham 2 days ago. This is why I’m super thankful I have these right now! I’m a little relieved this is not too unusual.
I’ve never gone this long, my longest previously was 45 days. But, my doc warned me it could be like this and that is perfectly normal.
My husband is worried “something is really wrong, or you are pregnant”.
She did remind me to keep using birth control, LOL.
Are you having any other symptoms? I can definitely get a little overheated at night, but not like I have heard a lot of other women describe. I just need to put my leg out or turn the covers down to my waist.
Exact same as you describe. 3 mos is a record- I thought maybe I was done forever! I’m not on BC, as DH had a vasectomy years ago. I’m 48.
Two years ago I had a crazy flow that I went to ER with! My Ob/gyn checked me out and said is normal fluctuations – fun!
Last year I had a really stressful two months and I had constant flow or spotting the whole time. I think it is just stress etc. make it easier to knock things out of whack now.
I am also 48.
I haven’t had any spotting lately but 2 years ago, I was getting it pretty regularly between periods. Then I just moved to sometimes having 15-20 day cycles every third period or so.
I am freaked out about how this cycle is going to end. Did you bleed an enormous amount after your 90 day one?
Oh, the joys! :)
Almost double of normal, for this one after 90 days. It’s always been heavy for me so almost double would have scared me, if it hadn’t been for the crazy episode 2 yrs ago. I will say I had cramping too which I usually never have. Normal duration though I think (hoping!)
I am thinking irregular pre-teens, perimenopausal women, and heavy flowers are the real market for these fantastic undies!
I had not heard of these, but I’m definitely intrigued. Would the full lining ones help protect against sweating, uh, through the backside of pants on swampy days? Or at the gym, I suppose.
And I love their use of models of all sizes!!
Yes, I think they mention on their website that many women use them at the gym.
I drafted a general letter for my org in support of one of our state orgs projects. Now they’re taking that letter and running with it as though national org is on board. In my phone calls, I’ve stated we’re not, and put this in writing and flagged it for my boss. They’re now going to put in an approval for the project. I’m worried when we say no, the state chapter is going to throw the first letter back in their face and I’m going to get into trouble. Granted, all parties approved it before it went out the door, and our state folks are basically changing their language to match the letter so they can claim it’s one in the same, but I’m still afraid I’m going to get in trouble. Thoughts? just wait for the other shoe to drop?
Must be Tuesday
I like the window pane pattern.