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On personal deliveries and laundry …

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Question: We have a couple of new managers who have their laundry & dry cleaning delivered to the office. While their assistants (who are much younger than I) don't seem to mind schlepping laundry around for these gentlemen, to me, it reeks of "back to the '50s."   

I just have a real problem with personal deliveries of ANY kind, particularly since our company will not let employees receive or send PERSONAL deliveries from UPS, FedEx, etc., on premises. 

I'm curious to know if other companies have policies that cover laundry, and any suggestions for how to handle this matter in a tactful way.  -- Anonymous


Comments

We have laundry/dry cleaning pick-up and delivery on the premises, but I don't know of any admins who handle that chore for their bosses. I do know that one of my bosses uses the service, but he has never asked me to either deposit or pick up his packages. I wouldn't mind going downstairs to pick up clean laundry, but I certainly would not want to carry dirty clothes to be dropped off. That being said, if it only affects admins who don't mind doing it, I don't see the problem.

Our company is certainly more realistic in terms of other types of pick-ups and deliveries. I have all packages delivered to the office rather than my home because I live in an apartment, and there is no one there to sign for deliveries. Our Receiving Dept. signs for them and then notifies me that I have a delivery to pick up. Often they deliver it to my desk, even if it's a personal purchase.

If the laundry becomes an issue for those directly involved, it might be time for the admins to meet as a group and draft some guidelines.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with having personal deliveries and laundry service (as long as these services are available to all employees.) We have our laundry service pickup and drop off at the reception area. The receptionist then notifies the individual to pickup their items. Tactfully keep quite and join in and have your own laundry done in the same fashion.

Your company policy needs to change to accommodate everyone. Many times, packages and even Fed Ex packages are stolen and some corporations need to relax with this type of service. After all, would corporations perfer to have employees have a longer lunch or leave work a bit earlier just to go home and check on their personal packages/deliveries. Many times the simple things in life are not so simple for "employees".

We allow all of these services to our employees and it has made life easier for everyone all around the office. When our employees receive their personal packages, there is a sigh of relief that their order was processed and received. Whom does it hurt to have packages delivered? We don't police our employees for this small benefits.


I can't believe that there are women in the year 2006 who would actually be "ok" with picking up their male boss's drycleaning even if it was from the front desk area. Better still, I truly can not believe that a woman would actually drop off her male boss's dirty clothes at the drycleaners as part of a job function!

Women - get yourselves together and realize that this is no longer tolerated in most companies. You don't have to get your boss coffee anymore and you definitely don't have to do their laundry and personal errands.

I would say unless your boss is your husband, you don't have to do personal errands for him. If your company has a corporate complaint 800 number, call it and report the situation in an anonymous way - no names, just describe the situation. Corporate will probably come up with a very detailed policy stating that personal errands are not the job of admin assistants.

I agree, not only do women need to wake up I think that having your laundry delivered to the office is unprofessional no matter who you are.

I understand your point precisely, however until those Assistants' say something themselves, there is noting that can be done. I had a similar problem with a managers at another firm I worked for years ago. He would be sitting at his desk and call me and say "hey can you come into my office?" When I would get there give me some money and say," Hey I'm real thirsty...can you go buy me a soda, or can you get me some coffee?" Well let me tell you on the third and last call…I said I'm sorry, Mr. So and So but I don't do "Maid Work and I will not get coffee for a person who is capable of getting it for himself. Don't get me wrong, I have done it here for my boss but he would only ask, which is not often if he absolutely could not leave his desk. He also did it with respect and showed his appreciation by saying, "thank you." That I don't mind! The other gentlemen was abusing his authority, and it made me feel degraded. He was mad at first, but he did learn to respect me by never asking again.

This is clearly a management problem and it needs to be addressed by someone on the senior management level who is higher then those managers who bring their person lives into a business environment. Schlepping laundry around for these gentlemen on company time is unethical.

Just as a note, I'm not sure if it has anything to do with being young, I was young as well but everyone must pick and choose their own battles. I wanted to be respected, not degraded.

Hope this helps!

Problem# 1...I understand your point precisely, however until those Assistants' say something themselves, there is noting that can be done. I had a problem with a managers at another firm I worked for years ago. He would be sitting at his desk and call me and say "hey can you come into my office?" When I would get there give me some money and say," Hey I'm real thirsty...can you go buy me a soda, or can you get me some coffee?" Well let me tell you on the third and last call...I said I'm sorry, Mr. So and So but I don't do "Maid Work and I will not get coffee for a person who is capable of getting it for himself. Don't get me wrong, I have done it here for my boss but he would only ask, which is not often if he absolutely could not leave his desk. He also did it with respect and showed his appreciation by saying, "thank you." That I don't mind! The other gentlemen was abusing his authority, and it made me feel degraded. He was mad at first, but he did learn to respect me by never asking again. The point is, I stood up for myself.

This is clearly a management problem and it needs to be addressed by someone on the senior management level who is higher then those managers who bring their person lives into a business environment. Schlepping laundry around for these gentlemen on company time is unethical and an abuse of authority.

Just as a note, I'm not sure if it has anything to do with being young, I was young as well but everyone must pick and choose their own battles. I wanted to be respected, not degraded.

Hope this helps!

I suppose I will show my age when I make comment on this topic; however, here goes! Women in the workplace as a group have worked very hard over the years to be respected for the intelligence they possess and abilities to make decisions and carry them out. The workplace is becoming more and more saturated with young women. I think they just don't understand where we (women in the workplace) have come from and how we got here. I recommend every woman to watch the movie "Mona Lisa Smile". If you pay attention, you will understand "where we have come from". Maybe we older women should take the younger women aside in a nice way and educate. In today's time, their are personal services that can provide all types of errands that an Executive management level personnel would need.

First, you must realize that wen some of us were hired as assistants or Executive Assistants for that matter, our job description said other duties as assigned. While this may not mean laundry and/or dry cleaning, one must remember that we are there to assist. It also depends what kind of Assistant you are. I am an Executive Assistant and support my boss' daily activities by doing many things for her. Instead of complaining, I view it as job security because no executive ever wants to give up an assistant who pampers them!

In response to Daniel's comment:

If you do personal errands for your boss and he or she is the owner of the company, then your title is "Personal Assistant".

"Admin Assistants" work for executives or managers who work for the owner of the company and should only do business related work.

Unless your boss is paying you out of their own pocket, you should never have to do personal errands for them.

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