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Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Best of 'All in a day's work in Singapore'

Note: I'm doing a 'best of' compilation as I'm entering the Singapore Blog Awards 2015 and need to submit 'three recommended blog posts' as part of the criteria. This post is one of them.

 Actual conversations overheard

"Not speaking doesn't mean mute; not looking doesn't mean blind; not hearing doesn't mean deaf. Knowing the difference will separate the smart ones from the smart alecs."

"One's true colours will show after they leave the organisation and stop being your colleague. Either you gain a Best Friend Forever or you award that person with a Best Acting Award."

"When the boss addresses you as "friend" at the beginning of a conversation, what follows is usually not friendly."

"Feel like working in a farm in my company. I can never bring the horse to the water, the cows refused to come home, and my stubborn colleague insisted on putting all the eggs in one basket. I think Old MacDonald had a better life."

"Work can never be finished. We should always complete what we set out to do. Though both sayings are contradictory, they can be resolved by a third saying: Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life."  

"Common sense dictates that we should always clear the most important or urgent emails, but I always enjoy replying immediately to those without common sense."

 Actual conversations in meetings somewhere in Singapore:
(Looking at the yearly expenditure report)
Boss: what do these freelancers do?
Admin staff: Freelancing

 (Proposal on new facilities)
Boss: what's the purpose of this Relaxation Corner?
Staff: For employees to relax.

 World's best colleagues
"My colleague made me realised that I should cherish my quiet moments which I am at my most productive... whenever this colleague is not in the office."

"The only thing worse than a colleague who has forgotten your name is when she addresses you with the name of another colleague who you absolutely hate."

"I can read my colleague like a book simply because I don't think she ever reads."

"My colleague's car freshener scent smell exactly like the office toilet. Now whenever I'm in his car, I feel like peeing."

 "I've not spoken to my colleague for a month. Not that we are having a cold war, just that my Mum reminded me it is rude to interrupt."


Five questions we often ask departing colleagues (and our real reasons behind them)

1. Where are you going? (so that I can laugh at that company's misfortune in hiring you)
2. Why are you leaving? (only now when you should have left a year ago and save us the misery)
3. Let's keep in touch (virtually so that I can block you on Facebook and email)
4. You will be missed (since we wouldn't have new fodder to gossip behind your back)
5. All the best in your future endeavour (in looking for another job 6 months down the road when your new employer realised their mistake in hiring you)


" My Untried and Untested Office Survival tips when the Boss is on leave"

1. Email all projects that need your boss's approval and you will be effectively free for the rest of the day, unless if your boss happened to be on-the-ball and replies emails, in which case, you will need to repeat this step until he gets fed-up/ impressed by your 'hard work'.

2. Plan dept or inter-dept lunches so that there will be at least one common gossip agenda item.

3. Make [Alt+Tab] your best friend to switch screen should some idiots turn up at your cubicle and disrupt your full-time Facebooking or doing holiday research. Said idiots are most likely not your colleagues since they will be as busy as you doing the same thing.

4. Learn the delay/scheduled email sending function to give the illusion of your omnipresence at your desk where in fact, you are out for extended brunch cum lunch or gone for the day to catch the 6pm movie.


"My tried and tested tips on surviving happily in the office"

1. While you can steal a peek at your colleagues' screen, don't be a busybody and comment whatever is on their screen, unless initiated by the colleague.

2. If your colleague buy snacks or cheapsake souvenirs from overseas, accept them graciously even if you are faking it.

3. If you are leaving your computer for extended period of time and can't be bothered to lock your screen, at least show your desktop or email programme and not face-palm sites like Facebook or travel sites researching for your next holiday.

4. If you are goofing during working hours by watching YouTube videos or playing online games, don't be an idiot and announce to the whole dept by blasting your speakers.

5. Don't compare salary or working hours. Life is unfair, get over it. You win some, you lose some.

6. Make common enemy from other departments amongst your colleagues, great for bonding.



"shorthand reply to answer inquisitive cleaning ladies should you ever go to work earlier than usual for whatever reasons. This "meeting" will be understood immediately and you can be on your way to whatever stupid shit work that require you to wake up so damn early."

Work-Life Balance:
"As long as you finished all the work assigned to you on time, your boss' life will be balanced."
The said piece of work shall be performed by the one:
- who lost to everyone in the taichi tournament,
- needs the work to be completed the earliest,
- and has the highest stake to lose should some brown stuff hit the rotating blades.

Angel vs Devil

Daily battle treading the fine line in office. The wisdom comes in knowing when to be the angel or the devil. It is survival of the fittest living in the jungle.
1. Value-add /vs / busybody
2. Delegate /vs /  Taichi
3. Prompt email reply /vs /  giving the impression that one has nothing else to do
4. Involve the whole department /vs / spread the workload
5. Collective agreement /vs /  all to shoulder blame
6. Suggest ideas /vs / sabo others


Irate caller

Had a rough day at work and the last thing I needed was a phone call from an irate caller who managed to get my direct line and complained about the bad customer service and launched into a personal attack that I'm as "lousy" as the company that I'm working in. Maintaining my utmost professionalism, I replied to this elderly lady that I'll convey her feedback to my CEO. And I ended the conversation by saying "Yes, I'll be back for dinner tonight Mum."


Letter exchanges between Father Ant and me

Dear Winston,
Thank you for being an animal-lover and taking care of my family with your biscuit crumbs, honey, coffee and tea spills at your office cubicle. Your kind gesture for not cleaning up has fed my extended family. And word has spread far and wide and my colony will brave the hostile long march to join me here. We are eternally in your debt.

Father Ant

Dear Father Ant

Please do not circulate this! Your hostile long march is via my colleague's cubicle and she is adopting a 'press-to-kill' policy and has been giving me nasty looks. I might have to clean up my act very soon. Please look for another benefactor. No, don't come to my house, I'm already supporting a lizard family.



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