In Need of Explanation or Education
4 weeks ago • Jan 31, 2024
Cognizant(sadist male) • Jan 31, 2024
Hello fellow Cage Dwellers.
I witnessed an event yesterday that has left me baffled and wanting information. I have never witnessed anything exactly like this and would like to try and understand what happened, and how it happened.
I manage a small branch office where a typical shift will have four to six workers in cubicles and me. We range in age from low 20's to close to 70. My two newest staff, both administrative are in their mid 20's . YES, most of the women on my staff exhibit strong submissive traits - that's partly why I hired them. NO - I don't get my meat where I get my bread.
Yesterday afternoon an established client came in and had to wait in the lobby for his appointment, since the one before his was running overtime. This client is a rather unique individual, but very non violent or intimidating. Yup, he has a mohawk hairstyle, sure he wears a leather jacket, Of course his personality is gregarious and confident. Neither of the fore mentioned staff popped out of their cublcle to see this client, they only heard him. He was talking about nepotism in the local music scene and discrimination by a local gym management, because of his appearance.
I see myself in this young man, albiet many years since I was in a punk/metal band, I still shake my fist in defiance of "The Man", and could easily relate to his colorful tale of smallish town redneckery clashing with alternative styles. If you aren't wearing the right version of camouflaged Carhartt you may be scrutinized by some good old boys. So I just happen to be manning the front desk when this client is on his rant, while out of the corner of my eye I notice one of the two young receptionists is struggling inside her cubicle, I can see her face palming, deep sighing and looking exasperated. At first I attribute her discomfort to tech problems we are facing with a new voip phone system. Meanwhile Mr. Punk Rocker that likes to stay in shape is mouthing his disapproval of booking practices of a couple local bars and griping about how management of a local gym has singled him out for harassment. I engage him lightly, and remind him we are a professional service so he may want to keep his cursing to a minimum.
Jump ahead an hour and the client has finished his appointment and left the building - Now these two young women come together in the first cubicle hug and break down sobbing. Snot spewing, body quivering, uncontrollable sobs and unable to talk clearly without gasping for air and stuttering. THE SADIST IN ME RECOGNIZES THIS REACTION and peaks my interest in whatever phenomenon just happened. My GAWD the implications here.
So, neither young office worker could offer me an explanation of any depth sufficient to help me understand what transpired. The first said "he reminded me of an ex", while the second said she reacted because her friend was in crisis - the two had been messaging each other via an intercompany chat and file sharing app. An hour later the first had gone home for the day and the second had approached me for assistance with her task. Standing a few feet away from me she again had a spasm and shook, closing her eyes tightly and sighing loudly claiming to still be upset about the talking man. - AGAIN MY INNER SADIST SAW CLEAR SIGNS that the scene is over and aftercare should be taking place. All these years I've wasted using impact toys, and painful torments to bring these reactions out of you, when all I needed to do was tell you a story. . . . . . . . . . .
Have any of you had a similar experience? What is your take? As the office manager, I know what HR would say, but from your perspective, what should I have done differently?