When will I learn? Kind of venting

I’m on a 5 man janitorial crew. I work in an Army Reserve office building. It’s pretty basic work; vacuuming, cleaning restrooms, emptying trash, and some other odd jobs. It’s only janitorial work but I take pride in my work; I pull my own weight.
About a month ago we got a new guy on our crew. I’ve been there 4 years and seen several people come and go.
About 1 1/2 years ago we got a new guy who was a professional janitor. My boss told me he was fast and my boss was right. I stared doubting my work. This guy SEEMED like such a good worker that I felt that maybe I wasn’t doing a good job.I even got a little depressed. But one day after the guy had been there about a month and a half my boss walked up to me and told me to vacuum the South Wing of the building, a rather large area. But the new guy had just finished doing it and I told my boss that. My boss replied" Well do it again anyway, the new guy is fast but he doesn’t do a good job. And I perked up. Things are not always as they seem. I don’t want to play on someones weaknesses but this guy had me intimidated but here was the boss relying on me to clean up the new workers mess. And I thought about it and I kicked myself for being down on myself. I should have known better, I was doing a fine job. That was 1 1/2 years ago. So this NEW guy we got a month ago was all gung-ho. Nothing wrong with that. His first day my boss told me he was quick. I thought, maybe I should speed up. Maybe my boss thought I wasn’t doing a good enough job. I’m not saying I HAVE to be the best worker. I just want to be as GOOD AS everyone else and if I’m better that’s just a bonus. But again I was a little worried. Well the next day the new guy got in a huge argument with my co-worker who’s been here a year. The new guy wanted things HIS way but he didn’t know the system . My co-worker yelled at him and scared him.Bottom line: they couldn’t work together. They had to work separately. The next day I was teaching this guy our vacuuming procedure. It’s not rocket science but again this guy wanted to do things HIS way and he started fast-talking and confusing me and made me look bad in front of my boss.So I accepted that. And two days later I was supposed to train him. I kept telling him to vacuum lightly, don’t spend to much time in each cubicle or office. We call it “spot cleaning” But he wanted to move EVERY chair or box or cord when he didn’t have to… And it took him twice as long as me. He just wouldn’t listen. But he got on the good side of our parent company boss, the head cheese, the assistant CEO. So i was telling myself to just follow my own game plan and do the job my bosses way and don’t get intimidated by this guy. By this time he had pissed off our whole crew. And it was affecting me. Well, wouldn’t you know it? I was sick last week and missed a day and when I got back they told me this guy had walked off the job and quit. So it is a good lesson for me not to doubt myself or put too much faith in other peoples appearances.I wasted my time trying to help the guy do things right and he thanked me by making me look bad and he didn’t even last a month.


I learn a lesson. Humble person will have better life. I am quite similar to that new worker (who has left) as I always need things to be done my way. And I have bad temper in the workplace. And I often quit job easily and not for long service period. Thank you for sharing this.

Good for you Nick… you know the system and the young bucks that come in don’t. You pull your weight… you stick to the system that is laid down and you do the job. That is why you’re still there and the old boss used to put you in charge.

I’ve had a few on my crew who try to mix it up… and it never turns out well.

We had a new guy pull up a lot plants he was sure were dying… only to finally get it through his head that they are going dormant and next year… will bloom again. He had re-plant every thing he just disturbed.


Well wow, you held a job for 5 years. That’s pretty mighty by it self. The longest I’ve ever worked at 1 job is 1 year, and I sucked at my job. Hmm, I’m not being critical, but like in my shoes… I always suck at my jobs and everyone always makes sure I know I suck because I’m too slow and I don’t do a good enough job simply because its not in my ability. And when ppl find out they’re working with me they get all upset with the boss for scheduling them with me because everyone knows I suck at the job. I’m just saying I’d give anything to be you, lol. You were probably in my shoes before, but just look back and be thankful you’ve come such a long way. I’m still fighting for basic needs to be met, haha. And you’re worried about status!!! Someday I hope I’m able to recover as well as you did. You’re the man, nick. Count your blessings while you still can!!!

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I sometimes do the vacuuming at my job and the dishes. It’s a small office, and it doesn’t get vacuumed often, so I try to get into some of the nooks and crannies. I never lift cords though.

It is hard work and I respect you for it. I couldn’t (and I don’t ha ha) do it all the time.

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Good going Nick - You know your worth - when I worked for many years at the same position I survived by basically minding my own business - like you I worked hard and I also knew my worth :smiley:

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