I don’t like liars.
I know, not exactly a profund or unique stance, but I guess it gets to me when someone I know and like lies right to my face. Damn. It just totally bugs.
Bess and I have worked in the same office for a few years now. Until about a year ago, we were just acquaintances, really. We didn’t share any projects so our conversations were mostly just small talk. I thought she was a pleasant enough girl, though she always struck me as somewhat immature.
When she was initially hired, she had her own application to support and keep her busy. But, like a lot of other applications, hers was soon replaced and she was left without a whole lot of work to do. Our boss then started sticking her on my projects as a “back up”. Fine, great. Everyone can use a back up. If it meant my boss would feel more comfortable OKing my vacation requests, I was all for it.
When she started working with me, we were in the middle of a big deployment which was on a very tight timeline. It was not a good time to get someone completely up to speed, but she helped where she could. However, I did start to notice that she had a big tendency to plead ignorance whenever faced with a more complex task that required a little brain power or asking others for some guidance. But, I felt some responsibility for that since I hadn’t taken the time to train her thoroughly. Besides, I had started to like her personally and she was fun to hang out with. And I can’t say that for many others in my department.
Once all the drama of deployment had died down there was time to get her up to speed. However, whenever I would ask if she wanted to review some functions, she said she was busy helping someone else of their project. OK, fine. No problem. No rush. Wanna go to lunch? She was always available for a long lunch.
A few months later, my manager gave her a chunk of my work and informed me that she was the lead. I told my manager I didn’t think it was a good idea as that was one of the more complex projects and she simply did not have the experience, nor from what I could tell, the interest. Yet, he persisted. This would be my “big opportunity” to mentor Bess. Gee, thanks. But frankly, I was pissed. I was looking forward to that project because I knew that the complexity would be a challenge. Besides, I had been the lead on it for years, and was regarded as the expert. But, OK, sure, It’s just work. I got over the blow to my ego.
Bess was told she was now in charge and that I was available to train, mentor, help, etc. Again, I tried to set up some working sessions, but she was always busy with something else. OK, no problem. I understand the impulse to try and muddle through something on your own. Maybe that is just how she works. After a while I stopped checking because I knew she wasn’t going to bite.
As the time ticked down towards the deployment, Bess still had not done anything. My boss told me I needed to try harder to mentor her. What the . . .? I told him he needed to do his job since she wasn’t listening to me. But all his attempts to manage her had failed, just as my attempts to mentor failed, so he finally told me just to finish the damn project. For the next three weeks I busted my hump to finish a project she had been given three months to do. And I did, because I’m good like that.
I had assumed, as had everyone else, that the lead position was back in my hands. Wrong. When it came time for revisions, my manager told me that Bess was the lead and that I needed to once again “mentor” her. Sigh. So, for the last few weeks it’s been the same old game. She’s always busy when I’m available to help, and will never ask me for help without prompting. Yet, I still liked her for some reason. That was until yesterday.
Another colleague, for whom Bess was supposedly doing work, told me that Bess hadn’t been doing any work for her for a while, and as far as she knew, no one else was giving her work. Oh? Then what has she been working on? “Oh, didn’t you know? Bess lies. Bess lies a lot. I’ve caught her in all kinds of lies.” I didn’t want to believe she had been lying to me all this time, but it did explain quite a few things.
If I had any doubts, this morning they have disappeared. The project manager, who had her own concerns about working with Bess, sent me a copy of an email where Bess said her revisions were just about done with the note to me “is this true?”. And no, no it is not true. Not even close to true. The girl is a liar, an unmitigated liar.
I’m not bailing her out this time. If my manager asks me to again, I will be honest with him about her dishonesty. I’m not going to be used again.
I don’t like liars.