Putting the ‘fun’ into dysfunctional

The company I work for is a bit weird. We’re kind of like a family where the kids are good (albeit a bit twisted) but the parents suck. The type of sucky parents that forget your birthday, display a picture of a Christmas tree instead of putting up a real tree and who you only talk to when you need something.

I’m reminded of this fact every Christmas and this year is particularly dreary because we’re not even having a half-assed Christmas party (that nobody really wants to attend) due to various reasons. I’m usually the one who organizes the Christmas party that the sucky parents rock up to (always late) and then bitch about afterwards, but instead I took it upon myself to purchase a Christmas tree for the office and put up some decorations so at least we look like we’re trying to be festive.

It’s interesting how apathy/disinterest filters down from the top and taints the culture of an entire office. This is an office of fifteen people who don’t do anything together but share the same air for 8-10 hours a day. We might exchange a half-assed “How was your weekend?” every other week and eat cake on someone’s birthday (that I always have to arrange) but having a drink together after work on a Friday is a monumental occasion that happens maybe 2-3 times a year and we don’t socialise in any way shape or form other than that.

I hear about other offices where the boss buys people Christmas presents or takes an interest in their life, where people will have a pot-luck party for someone’s birthday or will have a secret Santa and I’m a bit jealous. I wonder if that type of thing is the norm for companies or whether what I have is the norm and those fun places that seem to value their staff and treat them as something more than a number, are few and far between.

I’m generally the person who needs to have social things organised for them and then be cajoled and mollycoddled until I attend. The anti-social in me will immediately want to say no to any form of social activity, but if I get dragged along without an out and with no way to make excuses, I will generally enjoy myself. I guess that type of person is exhausting afer a while and that’s why I generally will get an invitation, or maybe two if I’m lucky, but then the invitations will stop coming because I’m just too much work.

I don’t feel like I’m among kindred spirits in the office and that’s why we don’t do anything together, I just feel like there is a general ‘why bother?’ attitude that comes from the top and seems to permeate everything underneath. There’s an ooze of apathy, a stink of listlessness and a smattering of disregard. Is there any point trying to do anything different when you’re being showered with indifference?


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