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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: theonethatgotaway on March 02, 2015, 09:55:11 PM

Title: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 02, 2015, 09:55:11 PM
My husband works at one of the major tech companies. Big pay, big responsibility, ok great. He's used to be plugged into his email after hours till about midnight or so for the last several years. BUT.

His new boss apparently has no life. She emails him constantly throughout the night. She wakes us up (it's on vibrate in the bed) at 11, 12, 2, 3, apparently might go to sleep from 330 ish to 7 and then the emails wake us up for the day. It's INSANE.

Does anyone else have a boss like this?! He has asked her to hold off from 10 till 7 before because he's not awake but she apparently doesn't give a crap and wants answers right away.

I mean I don't know what to do about it as I'm just the observer that is being awoken by this working maniac to which he has to respond.

What would you do/ have you done?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: bacchi on March 02, 2015, 09:57:28 PM
Turn off the email notification sounds?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 02, 2015, 10:02:11 PM
It's not maintenance or oncall. He works as an advertising executive.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: The Beacon on March 02, 2015, 10:14:26 PM
My husband works at one of the major tech companies. Big pay, big responsibility, ok great. He's used to be plugged into his email after hours till about midnight or so for the last several years. BUT.

His new boss apparently has no life. She emails him constantly throughout the night. She wakes us up (it's on vibrate in the bed) at 11, 12, 2, 3, apparently might go to sleep from 330 ish to 7 and then the emails wake us up for the day. It's INSANE.

Does anyone else have a boss like this?! He has asked her to hold off from 10 till 7 before because he's not awake but she apparently doesn't give a crap and wants answers right away.

I mean I don't know what to do about it as I'm just the observer that is being awoken by this working maniac to which he has to respond.

What would you do/ have you done?

It is INSANE.  We have some psychotic people out there.  I turn off my BB at 11. if there is a prod issue, my boss would call my home phone. But that is only when there is a prod issue.  But he has never called me in the middle of a night.

If it were my boss, I would

1: try to communicate with her. A good night sleep will do wonders for the next day. Otherwise your DH can't be productive.

2: I guess 1 will fail because his boss seems like psycho.  So run run run.  I would run away in a heart beat in a situation like this because I love sleep... BTW sleep deprivation is a leading cause for cancer.  Google it.



Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MDM on March 02, 2015, 10:30:14 PM
Turn off the email notification sounds?
+1

It's fine if the boss wants to work strange hours.  She is welcome to send questions as she thinks of them.  But responding during normal business hours, from what you have described, should also be perfectly acceptable.

What will happen if DH turns off the e-mail when the two of you go to sleep, and doesn't turn it on again until he gets to work next morning?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Spondulix on March 03, 2015, 12:29:31 AM
I did therapy to learn how to better set boundaries at work. No joke. :) There's no such thing as unspoken expectations in jobs. There's job duties (job responsibilities), and then there's work culture.

My line of work (entertainment) has a similar culture some places - there are people who have no separation between work and life. To those types, their co-workers are their emotional support and best friends. Responding at night feeds into her f'ed up sense of self-worth, connection with people, and sense of authority. If she's up at night and doesn't have anyone to write to (or get responses from), she might be forced with (god forbid)... life.

Being firm about your personal time doesn't mean "I refuse to do my job." It's just setting a boundary. Direct seems to make her angry, so what happens if it's more discreet ("Thanks for this email - I'll talk to you in the morning about it. Have a good night!" or "I'm spending time with my wife now - we'll talk tomorrow!") Are there other people he could direct her attention to?

It's possible this is a passive-aggressive power move on her part, though, in which case he might want to make sure he's very clear over email about his boundaries, his actual job duties, and whether it's really necessary to answer emails at 3 am (in case he needs to make a case with HR).
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: shelivesthedream on March 03, 2015, 12:47:56 AM
Sometimes in my freelance work I get emails at 1am with requests for the next day. I stop responding to emails/texts at 7pm. Between 7pm and 10pm I read them in case it is something really important but I don't reply until the next day until I have to. Then I am not available (I.e. Asleep!) until the next morning.

Set a time as 'bedtime'. When your husband gets an email close to then, reply saying "Thanks for letting me know - I'll have a look at that in the morning." Then turn the phone OFF until you get up. Your boss may or may not realise that the final reply means bedtime, but it's fair warning and means you get your sleep. Nothing is happening that can't wait until the morning except his crazy boss needing attention - I am assuming he is not an on-call nuclear technician needing to deal with potentially fatal plant leaks...!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: kathrynd on March 03, 2015, 01:58:52 AM
As others have suggested, turn off the notification.

I send our employees emails, as I think of them.
They can reply, at their convenience, around their schedule.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: little_owl on March 03, 2015, 02:55:52 AM
This sounds like a classic case of an opportunity to set some expectations.

I have a boss who loves to email at all hours - he's a workaholic (and prefers to be that way), however when I log off for the day, I log off.  I don't keep my phone on vibrate by my bed - in fact, my work phone gets put away in my work bag all evening.  I confirmed with my boss over 10 years ago that my performance at work is not related to my replying to emails when they arrive - he and my teammates are fine with me replying during working hours.

From a supervisor perspective, I tend to be an early riser, so I sent a lot of emails early in the morning, and I don't expect my staff to reply to them until their workday starts (8:30am).

If he is in advertising, I can see absolutely no reason why he would need to immediately reply at 1am!?  Encourage him to read our replies & take control of his downtime!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: GizmoTX on March 03, 2015, 04:36:50 AM
Unlike a phone call, the beauty of email/text is that it can be sent on the sender's schedule without interrupting the recipient; unless marked urgent, there's no need to immediately read & reply, especially during non-working hours.

Turn the vibrate off. Do not respond to the emails until the daytime. If you are using an iPhone, it can be set to Do Not Disturb.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: DecD on March 03, 2015, 05:29:57 AM
I just sent a work email at 6am- it's actually 4am out on the west coast, where recipients are.  It never crossed my mind I might wake them up.

The solution to this problem just seems so obvious and simple....

Set phone to silent, or turn off the notification from the email if you don't want to silence the phone completely.  Problem solved.  As long as she isn't expecting a response immediately, what's the issue?  It's not fair to ask her to change her habits of sending emails all hours of the day.  Just like it wouldn't be fair for her to ask your husband to reply at 2am.  Perhaps she just sends stuff as she thinks of it.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: pbkmaine on March 03, 2015, 05:52:26 AM
Set boundaries. When I interviewed for a senior manager position at a large accounting firm, my future boss told me he went into the office most weekends. I said: "In the case of global nuclear annihilation, I will go into the office on weekends. Otherwise, I will check emails." I got the job and expectations were set. I had senior people emailing and calling me at all hours. I let them know that the phone and Internet got turned off at 10 pm and not turned on again until 6 am. I would let calls go to voicemail and emails sit unanswered when it was inconvenient. If questioned, I would say: "I was with my family." Unreasonable requests were met with humor and firmness. This did not negatively impact my career in any way. In fact, I got a lot of respect for standing my ground.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: chasesfish on March 03, 2015, 06:15:44 AM
I also get work email on my iPhone.

There's this really nice switch inside the Settings area that allows me to just turn that email off.

Your husband should try it between the hours of 9pm - 7am.  Its fine for his boss to email all night, as long as the boss doesn't expect an immediate response.  If its an absolute emergency, the boss will call. 
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: madgeylou on March 03, 2015, 06:20:20 AM
I also get work email on my iPhone.

There's this really nice switch inside the Settings area that allows me to just turn that email off.

Your husband should try it between the hours of 9pm - 7am.  Its fine for his boss to email all night, as long as the boss doesn't expect an immediate response.  If its an absolute emergency, the boss will call.

Yes, I do this most nights and every weekend. Otherwise, I know myself, I will check the email and get sucked into whatever drama/requests are waiting for me there, and then I don't ever get any parts of my life that are not about work.

Shut it off and turn it on the next morning -- the boss may not like it at first but they'll get used to it.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Ricky on March 03, 2015, 06:21:08 AM
I'm sure her husband has thought of turning the notifications off... That's a pretty simple fix. Sounds like something more going on here.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: James on March 03, 2015, 06:26:19 AM
The big issue is that it isn't you who has the job, you are asking advice for yourself dealing with a husband who doesn't set boundaries for work, you aren't directly dealing with the boss.


So I think you need to have a significant talk with your husband, letting him know what those alerts and him replying is doing to you. Let him know you understand the importance of his job, and that he might have a hard time dealing with this issue, but he has got to figure out a way to "turn work off" at night. Compromising on when those hours are depends on a lot of things, but he simply shouldn't be doing that to both of you all night.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: madgeylou on March 03, 2015, 06:31:59 AM
I'm sure her husband has thought of turning the notifications off... That's a pretty simple fix. Sounds like something more going on here.

I dunno ... I have seen situations like this happen many times. One worker busts their butt and devotes everything to the company while feeling taken advantage of, while another worker does a great job during regular hours but has healthy boundaries between work and life and doesn't treat every request like it's life and death to answer it right now.

The main difference between the two workers is that the first one doesn't draw any boundaries, then blames the company for taking advantage.

It's much, much, much, MUCH better to be the second worker. The second worker has more sanity and often makes more money, too, since they are seen as having their shit together and aren't afraid to negotiate.

"You know, you are working way too hard and not making enough money. Let's do something about that!" - said no boss ever. We need to be our own advocates here.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on March 03, 2015, 06:47:27 AM
It's much, much, much, MUCH better to be the second worker. The second worker has more sanity and often makes more money, too, since they are seen as having their shit together and aren't afraid to negotiate.

This. I turn off my email when I'm done for the day, though when things aren't going well I've sent emails at 2 AM because that's when I'm working. I don't expect anybody to respond. And I get more respect from my employer than my older colleagues who do sometimes respond at 2 AM.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: GuitarStv on March 03, 2015, 06:53:39 AM
Don't work for free.  Is your husband being paid for the time that he's checking email after regular working hours?  If not, why the fuck is he checking his email?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: JLee on March 03, 2015, 07:26:25 AM
I *am* on call (every third week). That means phone call, not email. I do nothing with email unless I am in the office. If somebody needs me bad enough to get in touch with me when I'm not at work, that's what the phone is for. This may not work for everyone, but it is absurd for an employer to require 24/7 email contact - and I find it unlikely to be expected. I would turn off notifications.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: ronrico77 on March 03, 2015, 07:35:53 AM
It may be that she's not expecting any responses during the night and she's just using email as a way to not lose her thoughts she's having in the middle of the night. As a night owl - I will sometimes send out emails to colleagues at all hours of the night, but i'm definitely not looking or expecting an immediate response. Any time tomorrow is fine. After reading this thread I'm going to be sure to make it clear to them thats my intention, I'd hate for people to be stressing out because I sent them an email at 3am.

Turn off your ringer, or put your phone into Do Not Disturb mode between the hours you want to be left alone, and don't worry about her emails. If she brings it up and wonders why there is/was no response: Then a talk would be warranted. As it stands now it's not clear to me she has any malicious intent.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: mskyle on March 03, 2015, 07:37:07 AM
So it sounds like he *is* responding to her emails in the middle of the night. You say he's asked her to stop emailing in the middle of the night, but if he's responding to the emails then he's demonstrating that he doesn't actually mean that seriously. He needs to say to her, "Look, if there's a real emergency you can call me, but I'm turning off email notifications from 10PM to 7AM." And then do it.

Maybe she'll think he's a bad employee for doing this, but in that case it's a real toxic workplace problem.

If your husband keeps responding to the emails, she's going to keep emailing him. If he refuses to draw this boundary with his boss, you have a husband problem as much as he has a boss problem.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: goodlife on March 03, 2015, 07:43:14 AM
Sorry, but no compassion from my side. I have a boss like that too, so what? Just put your phone on silent, problem solved. My boss emails me at 3am or whatever time of night...on weekends also...she clearly has no life...but I don't care, I don't answer (or even check) emails after 8pm and certainly not on weekends. People always take as much as you let them. Gotta learn to manage upwards.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Unique User on March 03, 2015, 07:46:36 AM
My husband works at one of the major tech companies. Big pay, big responsibility, ok great. He's used to be plugged into his email after hours till about midnight or so for the last several years. BUT.

His new boss apparently has no life. She emails him constantly throughout the night. She wakes us up (it's on vibrate in the bed) at 11, 12, 2, 3, apparently might go to sleep from 330 ish to 7 and then the emails wake us up for the day. It's INSANE.

Does anyone else have a boss like this?! He has asked her to hold off from 10 till 7 before because he's not awake but she apparently doesn't give a crap and wants answers right away.

I mean I don't know what to do about it as I'm just the observer that is being awoken by this working maniac to which he has to respond.

What would you do/ have you done?

Does she really insist on answers at those times?  My husband has major insomnia and is awake at 2am every night.  He'll go work on his laptop for a couple hours then go back to sleep.  All of his reports have told him they no longer have their phones in their bedrooms because he is always emailing at that time.  But, he doesn't expect any response until normal working hours.  Maybe she is the same way?  I think everyone else has pointed out the obvious, turn off the email notifications, but I'd also suggest charging the phone elsewhere, like the kitchen?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: yandz on March 03, 2015, 08:01:59 AM
My boss emails at all times as well (as do I, to be honest, I work as I think of things which is sometimes at odd hours) but he doesn't expect responses immediately.  Typically, email means "I am sending this on my schedule, answer it on yours and by the deadline I state in the email if there is one."  Phone calls are more urgent, texts are most urgent of all. Boss and I agreed on this to best manage communications and it goes both ways.

Sounds like instead of asking boss NOT to email during certain hours (I would be pissed if someone said this to me), your DH should tell her that email will not be answered between certain hours, but to call or text if something is urgent.  If she starts calling at 2 and 3 am, I would consider finding a new job.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: RunHappy on March 03, 2015, 08:39:46 AM
It sounds like the boss emails the employees as part of a stream of consciousness.

Unless you husband is required to be oncall during certain hours, I would recommend he use his out of office automatic reply function.  He can set it to start every day at a certain time and end at a certain time.  In the out of office he should put something like "I'm out of the office between the hours of 9pm and 6am.  If this is an emergency please contact my home/mobile phone number, otherwise I will get back to you as soon as possible."  Then put the phone on silent, not vibrate.

in my experience most people will send an email hoping for a response but will not call someone after 10pm, especially on a home line.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MooseOutFront on March 03, 2015, 08:50:57 AM
Will you please clarify the issue of whether he knows how to make his phone sleep between the hours of X and Y?  I don't care who your husbands boss is, there's no way she expects a response past 11:00 pm or so.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: bogart on March 03, 2015, 09:10:24 AM
I'm mystified that this is an issue.  My phone has a sleep setting; I use it.  Problem solved.

Like others, I work (etc.) quirky hours, and don't hesitate to text or email people at odd hours.  But I certainly don't expect them to reply straight away!

Personally, I'd just turn the phone off (set it to sleep) and only address the topic with the boss if one arises (and I'd start by saying, "Right, I didn't see your email until I got to work, as I've adjusted my phone settings to preserve my evenings as private time," or words to that effect, and only make an issue of it if she tries to push beyond that).
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: slugline on March 03, 2015, 09:10:46 AM
Wow. Someone who works in advertising is having trouble keeping job/family balance?

There are some job fields that have legitimate reasons for needing to be on 24/7/365, but honestly, advertising? This is an anti-mustachian-shame-and-comedy-worthy situation begging for MMM facepunches!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Kris on March 03, 2015, 09:19:12 AM
I agree with others that this is a very simple solution.

Turn off notifications (or just don't have your phone in the same room as you sleep).

The boss is perfectly within her rights to work throughout the night if she wants to.  Your husband is perfectly within his rights not to.  Remove the notifications from your sleeping area.  QED.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: frugaliknowit on March 03, 2015, 09:47:08 AM
1.  Set boundaries with the boss.  Tell her that you will not respond to email between X and Y and please do not phone me between X and Y unless it is an emergency.

2.  If boundaries cannot be set, he needs to find another job.  This time, during the interview process, find out the details of what is expected.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: I'm a red panda on March 03, 2015, 09:51:22 AM
I've had a boss that emails all hours of the night.  The problem is a boss who expects a response all hours (I do not work an on-call job.)

I just have a "sleep" setting on my phone, and it doesn't buzz or ring over night.  (It will only ring if it is my husband, sister, or parent. Everyone else is silent.)

This is why email/voicemail is a good thing. They can leave messages when they are working, and you can do the task when you are working.

My boss works super late at night. I don't.  But I get to it as soon as I start working.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: johnstein on March 03, 2015, 10:11:19 AM
Well.. you said it, big pay, big responsibilities.  If your husband's boss is very influential in the company, he better answer his emails.  Otherwise, look for another job.

I once had a boss like that, some of the employees tried to fight this work-around-the-clock emails by not responding, or told him they need to rest!  It was clear soon enough that those who do not respond were painted as not responsive, given less responsibilities, etc.  The boss is still around in that company but many of the employees left (including myself).  He's a great leader and management has a good opinion of him. 

At the end of the day, what do you want more?  Pay or time off?
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: SantaFeSteve on March 03, 2015, 10:21:16 AM
Turn off the email notification sounds?

My new boss started out like this and I politely informed him that I do not answer any business communication between the hours of 10 pm and 6 am.  When he continued emailing at all hours of the night I simply changed my phone settings so that my email doesn't provide any kind of notification on my phone other than the icon. 

Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: mm1970 on March 03, 2015, 10:22:21 AM
My phone is not by the bed, it is in the living room. Sometimes, it is off.

So, that's what you do.  Make it so that she cannot contact him.  He can check before bed and when he gets up.

You have to set boundaries.  Companies and people will push until you break.

If he's good at his job and has had the job for awhile, he will NOT get fired.  If he had a more reasonable boss (who only emailed when it was important), that would be different.  I used to work at a 24/7 company, and I managed a group at another company with 24/7 employees.  If something broke at 3 am, I'd get a call.  That was rare, and it was fine.

4 times a night is NOT an emergency.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Philociraptor on March 03, 2015, 10:36:12 AM
This is a technology issue, not a boss issue. Most modern phones have a "quiet hours" setting. Disables all notifications but still allows phone calls. Have him set this up for when you like to sleep. Done.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MountainGal on March 03, 2015, 10:39:50 AM
I own and operate my own business.  My phone is set to quiet mode from 9 PM to 8 AM.  My emergency contacts (family) will still ring through if necessary.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Tyler on March 03, 2015, 11:17:25 AM
I once worked for a psychopath who contractually required all employees to answer their company-issued phone at all hours. He apparently did lots of drugs and never slept, and would regularly call and berate people at 3am. He was way beyond the setting boundaries limit, so I left in three months. I'm still amazed at the people who tolerate that kind of abuse for years.

Your husband's boss is simply leaving emails, which is nowhere near that level. I think there are a few levels of issues here.

The first question is why he has company email on his phone to begin with. If it's his personal phone then the problem isn't really the boss but his own addiction to work email. I've been there. Try what I did. Permanently turn off work email on all personal devices. On the iPhone (and I suspect other devices) you can still receive meeting invites even with the email off so that's no excuse. If he needs to read an email at home, take the time to login using a computer web browser. If he can't handle that and feels too cut off, deal with that core problem before blaming the boss. Personally, taking this step a few years ago was the best thing I ever did to reclaim my sense of self outside of work. I'll never go back.

If it's a company issued phone, that's the second layer. When there are core hours and it's not an on-call situation, disabling email away from the office is a good option. The stronger solution is to simply leave the phone at the office. Force them to call him on a personal number if it's really that important, and force him to physically leave work at work. Again, if he can't handle that and feels too cut off, deal with that core problem before blaming the boss.

If it's a company phone and he's required to have it active and with him and immediately respond at all times even in a non-critical role, then we're finally to the abusive boss phase. At that point the issue of boundaries and potential new jobs comes up. He needs to push back. But if it's really just more about your husband's inability to mentally leave the office, then even changing jobs may not fix the problem.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MrFrugalChicago on March 03, 2015, 01:02:43 PM
Ya I see this as a more a husband problem then a boss problem.

Husband needs to set boundaries. A fair boundary is "I won't check work email after 6pm. If there is an emergency, call me. But I won't always be able to take these, and only a few times a month, so use them wisely.

Maybe the boundaries book would be a good read?


http://www.amazon.com/Boundaries-When-Say-Yes-How-ebook/dp/B000FC2K9W/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1425412946&sr=8-1&keywords=boundaries
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: hdatontodo on March 03, 2015, 01:18:40 PM
I get emails from all over at all hours on my work phone. I do not set it to vibrate or sound.

Email is asynchronous. If they want me now, they can text me or call me.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MooseOutFront on March 03, 2015, 01:38:34 PM
I get emails from all over at all hours on my work phone. I do not set it to vibrate or sound.

Email is asynchronous. If they want me now, they can text me or call me.
A great point and a good word.  I don't even expect quick response to email during work hours. 
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: begood on March 03, 2015, 02:19:26 PM
She wakes us up (it's on vibrate in the bed) at 11, 12, 2, 3, apparently might go to sleep from 330 ish to 7 and then the emails wake us up for the day. It's INSANE.

Wait, the phone is IN THE BED? I'm on the wrong end of crazy when it comes to my phone, but at least it's on the nightstand.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: hodedofome on March 03, 2015, 03:24:48 PM
My boss also has no life. He tried calling and emailing/texting at all hours of the day an night when I first took the job. I just didn't respond. Eventually he got the hint that I have a life and I don't work after hours unless it's an emergency (which it never is). He still tries every now and again, but I never answer.

I either have my phone on silent, turned off, or I just don't answer.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Spondulix on March 03, 2015, 03:29:47 PM
The first question is why he has company email on his phone to begin with. If it's his personal phone then the problem isn't really the boss but his own addiction to work email. I've been there. Try what I did. Permanently turn off work email on all personal devices. On the iPhone (and I suspect other devices) you can still receive meeting invites even with the email off so that's no excuse. If he needs to read an email at home, take the time to login using a computer web browser. If he can't handle that and feels too cut off, deal with that core problem before blaming the boss. Personally, taking this step a few years ago was the best thing I ever did to reclaim my sense of self outside of work. I'll never go back.
+1000. In my current job, I can't access my email outside of work and it's amazing what it's done for my quality of life. If anyone calls me when I'm out of the office, there's actually a union penalty! Work legitimately needs to get done 24 hours a day, but the difference is that there is someone available during the day, and someone else at night. That in itself helps you realize that it's not YOU that is needed to get the job done - it's a team of people.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: I'm a red panda on March 04, 2015, 06:47:32 AM
She wakes us up (it's on vibrate in the bed) at 11, 12, 2, 3, apparently might go to sleep from 330 ish to 7 and then the emails wake us up for the day. It's INSANE.

Wait, the phone is IN THE BED? I'm on the wrong end of crazy when it comes to my phone, but at least it's on the nightstand.

Seriously, this is not the boss's issue.  Boss is not waking you up.  The fact that your phone is not only set to alert, but is IN THE BED is waking you up.

Turn the alerts off, and get the phone out of your bed.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Retire-Canada on March 04, 2015, 06:51:02 AM
Turn off the email notification sounds?

+1 - my phone won't ring from 10pm to 6am and I don't have work email on my phone.

My clients are welcome to call me or text me anytime they want, but I won't get a notification between 10pm to 6am.

I let my clients know this.

Just get your hubby to shut the phone off at night. There are very few situations where getting info at 3am will lead to meaningful action before 6-7am.

-- Vik
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 18, 2015, 12:19:12 PM
Hi Everyone,

Thanks so much for your feedback and tips. I feel very overwhelmed with the situation.

Here's the update:

I told my husband that I can't sleep and it has to stop. Move the phone/ sleep in another room for now/ set better boundaries.
He has had a couple of conversations with his boss since about a) he has a life outside of work and b) don't expect him to respond at all hours of the night. SHE DID NOT LIKE THIS.
Her response, I kid you not: "So, and so in our department (Her boss) has a baby and he is sure to be back on email 30 minutes from when he arrives at his house- do you not have a DAYCARE to put your children?" (!!!! What?! She also knows he has a stay at home wife- aka me)

He said he was so shocked my that response, and her stupidity, he wasn't sure what to say.

Normal etiquette, as you all pointed out, would seem it is appropriate to stop answering emails (turn on silent mode) and respond in the morning.
She wants a response as soon as she wants it, basically as soon as she sends the emails throughout the night.
She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
He delivers and does an excellent job in his work, but this woman is impossible. I've suggested that he goes to her boss and has a chat about it, because frankly he is getting close to resigning, but he says that since it's not a 'business' problem they can't do much. I think this is a business problem.

In short, nothing has changed right now.....
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on March 18, 2015, 12:29:41 PM
Time to get a different job.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: dividendman on March 18, 2015, 12:31:15 PM
Time for some good ol' passive aggression (aka just slacking off and doing nothing while saying you are), let the boss not get any of the work your husband has slated done and look for a new gig.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Numbers Man on March 18, 2015, 12:37:33 PM
Sounds like your husband has the skills to pay the bills so it should be fairly easy to get another comparable job without the email baggage..
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Retire-Canada on March 18, 2015, 12:46:52 PM
Time to get a different job.

Most definitely!

-- Vik
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MDM on March 18, 2015, 12:52:07 PM
Normal etiquette, as you all pointed out, would seem it is appropriate to stop answering emails (turn on silent mode) and respond in the morning.
She wants a response as soon as she wants it, basically as soon as she sends the emails throughout the night.
She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
He delivers and does an excellent job in his work, but this woman is impossible. I've suggested that he goes to her boss and has a chat about it, because frankly he is getting close to resigning, but he says that since it's not a 'business' problem they can't do much. I think this is a business problem.
From the perspective of a long career with a multinational company: this is a business problem.

Now, there can be complexities to the story.  E.g., how much is he being paid and at what level in the company is he?  The higher the answer to both those questions, the more he has traded away expectations for work/life balance.  E.g., if he's being paid <$100K/yr and there are 5 or more management levels between him and the CEO then he should turn off the phone and sleep.  If however he's paid $300K/yr and is a global director with maybe 2 people between him and the CEO, well, different expectations come with that territory.

I agree with the folks saying he should look for another job.  Look, but not quit, until he has found something that could be acceptable. 

Then have a conversation with the boss's boss.  These conversations are practically never confidential: the boss's boss decides whether to tell the boss who said what.  So this can work well - or not.  E.g., the boss's boss could say "wait a couple of weeks" and the boss gets fired/reassigned, or the boss's boss could say "what do you expect?  That's what comes with the job you have."  That's why it's good to have a plan B....
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Tyler on March 18, 2015, 01:10:32 PM
It's absolutely a business problem to the extent that they lose good people for preventable reasons.  It boils down to company culture.  If his boss is truly the bad egg then talking to HR should fix it.  But if the company expects this level of "commitment" from all employees at your husband's level, then raising the issue may hurt more than help.

All judgement aside (a company is free to operate any way they like within the law, just like you're free to leave), it's very important to work for a company whose culture matches your personal values.  If this is simply a bad fit, then move on.

 
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: irishbear99 on March 18, 2015, 01:22:38 PM
She wants a response as soon as she wants it, basically as soon as she sends the emails throughout the night.

Wow, this is just insane. In my organization, there is a 19 hour time difference between our most remote office and us. There's another 6 hour time difference between us and our HQ. I couldn't imagine being required to immediately respond to all emails. I'd go nuts. If it's an emergency (and I mean a literal emergency, like an earthquake), work will call us in. People NEED to sleep.

She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
 

I'd suggest still setting a boundary (say, turning the phone off at midnight and back on at 6 ish?), while polishing up his resume and reaching out through his network to find another opportunity. It certainly sounds like he's good at what he does and is probably very employable elsewhere.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Stachetastic on March 18, 2015, 01:40:08 PM
When I started my current job, my boss stated that it's not unusual for her to text employees at 5 or 6am. The look on my face must've given me away, because she quickly followed up with "I don't expect you to answer--I just need to get the info to you before I forget." I informed her that it is just as easy for her to send me an email as it is to text from her smartphone. I check my work email first thing when I clock in, so I will be sure to see it. It seemed to have mostly worked, as the earliest I've heard from her has been 7am. (I work 8-4)  I did not respond, as I was driving to the office at that time. I work in public service, with absolutely ZERO emergencies requiring my attention before 8.

If I were him, I would be job hunting ASAP.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 18, 2015, 02:36:36 PM
good ol' passive aggression (aka just slacking off and doing nothing while saying you are)

Yeah, he wouldn't ever do this.

The way she approaches him about this night email thing is really hurting his self-confidence. I can tell. He prides himself on working hard and delivering. She has little else to complain about and really hammers this down. I think it's a flimsy form of control (he's already mentioned shes a really 'fake' person -says one thing does another etc). He was warned about her micromanaging behavior by colleagues as soon as he joined and it's come to fruition, unfortunately. I can see this game being played as he's describing it to me and he's just trying to get through it. I have asked him if all of this is worth it?

 At what point do you say, I quit because xyz? I had a long discussion last night with him (while he was working and I was cooking) and now he's minimizing it, saying it's not a big deal in the grand scheme (my daily anxiety over it is a big deal to me). I told him I'd support if he quit because who cares? He can make a great salary somewhere else/ ramp his side gig/ etc...

He really wanted this job when he was offered it/we relocated etc. (It took them 11 months to fill his role)

That's the other thing: no one quits this company (one of the major tech firms). They had their first big resignation out of their office the other day and everyone made a huge deal out of it.

I'm thinking I'll give it one more month. In 4 weeks, if he hasn't figured out to 'handle' her , is still feeling the burn out (he's up at 4am working everyday besides this email thing!), and our family is overall still suffering I'm going to push for the resignation. The salary is just not high enough to justify living like this for 1-2 years.

Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MooseOutFront on March 18, 2015, 02:39:43 PM
But still, there's no reason in the world for that phone to get touched between 12:00 and 6:00AM no matter what the boss said.  Time for husband to stand up for himself, even if silently.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 18, 2015, 02:45:46 PM
Normal etiquette, as you all pointed out, would seem it is appropriate to stop answering emails (turn on silent mode) and respond in the morning.
She wants a response as soon as she wants it, basically as soon as she sends the emails throughout the night.
She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
He delivers and does an excellent job in his work, but this woman is impossible. I've suggested that he goes to her boss and has a chat about it, because frankly he is getting close to resigning, but he says that since it's not a 'business' problem they can't do much. I think this is a business problem.
From the perspective of a long career with a multinational company: this is a business problem.

Now, there can be complexities to the story.  E.g., how much is he being paid and at what level in the company is he?  The higher the answer to both those questions, the more he has traded away expectations for work/life balance.  E.g., if he's being paid <$100K/yr and there are 5 or more management levels between him and the CEO then he should turn off the phone and sleep.  If however he's paid $300K/yr and is a global director with maybe 2 people between him and the CEO, well, different expectations come with that territory.

I agree with the folks saying he should look for another job.  Look, but not quit, until he has found something that could be acceptable. 

Then have a conversation with the boss's boss.  These conversations are practically never confidential: the boss's boss decides whether to tell the boss who said what.  So this can work well - or not.  E.g., the boss's boss could say "wait a couple of weeks" and the boss gets fired/reassigned, or the boss's boss could say "what do you expect?  That's what comes with the job you have."  That's why it's good to have a plan B....


This is really great advice, thank you. He fought hard for this position and I try to remember that. I understand that you are giving up so much in your life to do some of these jobs and maybe I am having a hard time adjusting to it, as well. He is only 3 degrees separated from the CEO- far enough that I question this level of work and close enough that I see the need. I don't think the salary matches what he brings to the table, though.

Plan B before reaching out the the Boss' boss is a point taken. I'll pass it along and encourage this.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 18, 2015, 02:52:50 PM
But still, there's no reason in the world for that phone to get touched between 12:00 and 6:00AM no matter what the boss said.  Time for husband to stand up for himself, even if silently.

I completely agree and this is the crux of the issue. His boss does what she wants, when she wants, and wants everyone to bend to her. He's had conversations about it and it seems like she sees it as questioning her authority (immature if you ask me) and the retaliates by commenting on his 'work-ethic', while then building him up and praising him for his excellent presentations and work. She makes sure to emphasize the email thing, though (i.e the bad is outweighing the good).


Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Schaefer Light on March 18, 2015, 02:55:08 PM
His boss needs to learn not to let the urgent get in the way of the important.  It's extremely rare for a business problem to arise that needs to be treated like a life or death situation.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: mm1970 on March 18, 2015, 03:04:13 PM
Quote
She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
He delivers and does an excellent job in his work, but this woman is impossible. I've suggested that he goes to her boss and has a chat about it, because frankly he is getting close to resigning, but he says that since it's not a 'business' problem they can't do much. I think this is a business problem.

Step 1: go to her supervisor
Step 2: find a new job

There's nothing you can do to change someone else into being reasonable.  See, I personally would not have asked her to stop emailing at night. I  simply would have turned off the phone and stopped responding, and left it up to HER to bring it up.  Many people?  Would not have the balls to do that.

And if she did bring it up, I would tell her that "I don't respond to emails at night".  Sometimes, I answer a statement or request with something vague like "I understand", which means "I understand that you want me to answer emails" not "I will answer emails", but she may not know that.  You are SORT OF agreeing, but will still do what you want.

I've worked for places that make implicit or explicit the need for people to work overtime, or weekends, or whatever - my friends and I tend to be vague about that.  I understand what you WANT from me, but you aren't going to GET that from me.  When the sh*t hits the fan, truly, I do what it takes, but that cannot be an every day thing.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: mm1970 on March 18, 2015, 03:09:43 PM
Quote
good ol' passive aggression (aka just slacking off and doing nothing while saying you are)

Yeah, he wouldn't ever do this.

From wikipedia:
Passive-aggressive behavior is the indirect expression of hostility, such as through procrastination, stubbornness, sullenness, or deliberate or repeated failure to accomplish requested tasks for which one is (often explicitly) responsible.

I don't see what he's trying to do as passive aggressive though - because he's NOT slacking off.  And he's not INDIRECTLY failing to accomplish things.  He's doing a job, quite a good one I expect, and he's setting reasonable, clear, DIRECT boundaries.  So, his boss's boundaries are different. Oh well.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: begood on March 18, 2015, 03:21:03 PM
I think his boss's judgment is clouded by her own poor sleep patterns. No one can function well for long without getting stretches of decent sleep. The fact that SHE is choosing not to sleep should only affect her.

Looking in at this from the outside, even if your husband was literally curing cancer, he still should not be expected to work 24 hours a day, every day, every week, all year long... and oh, is he expected to sleep with his phone IN THE BED while he's on vacation too?

My mister was at the fly-on-the-company-jet executive level for several years, some VPish title, but he never ever had to take his phone to bed with him so he could answer e-mails at o'dark thirty.

You say he gets up at 4:00 a.m. So there's his boundary: he turns the phone off between midnight and 4:00 a.m.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: electriceagle on March 18, 2015, 04:38:36 PM

This is really great advice, thank you. He fought hard for this position and I try to remember that. I understand that you are giving up so much in your life to do some of these jobs and maybe I am having a hard time adjusting to it, as well. He is only 3 degrees separated from the CEO- far enough that I question this level of work and close enough that I see the need. I don't think the salary matches what he brings to the table, though.

Plan B before reaching out the the Boss' boss is a point taken. I'll pass it along and encourage this.

Just how much is he making? There are some folks pulling down $300k/yr in IT. If that kind of money is flowing, absurd hours and crazy committments (as well as ass kissing and politics) are expected. If this is a 100-150k job, fugettaboutit.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: dividendman on March 18, 2015, 08:27:18 PM
Quote
good ol' passive aggression (aka just slacking off and doing nothing while saying you are)

Yeah, he wouldn't ever do this.

From wikipedia:
Passive-aggressive behavior is the indirect expression of hostility, such as through procrastination, stubbornness, sullenness, or deliberate or repeated failure to accomplish requested tasks for which one is (often explicitly) responsible.

I don't see what he's trying to do as passive aggressive though - because he's NOT slacking off.  And he's not INDIRECTLY failing to accomplish things.  He's doing a job, quite a good one I expect, and he's setting reasonable, clear, DIRECT boundaries.  So, his boss's boundaries are different. Oh well.

I wasn't saying he was being passive aggressive.  I meant to say he should be passive aggressive while looking for a job, somewhat in jest.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Spondulix on March 18, 2015, 11:58:17 PM
He has had a couple of conversations with his boss since about a) he has a life outside of work and b) don't expect him to respond at all hours of the night. SHE DID NOT LIKE THIS.
Her response, I kid you not: "So, and so in our department (Her boss) has a baby and he is sure to be back on email 30 minutes from when he arrives at his house- do you not have a DAYCARE to put your children?" (!!!! What?! She also knows he has a stay at home wife- aka me)
She has alluded that his performance is lacking because of this particular issue - constant working hours/ non stop email communcation etc.
Can you imagine this woman in a relationship? Yikes.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Schaefer Light on March 19, 2015, 05:50:54 AM
He should print this article and put a copy on her desk.

https://hbr.org/2015/03/your-late-night-emails-are-hurting-your-team (https://hbr.org/2015/03/your-late-night-emails-are-hurting-your-team)
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Greg on March 19, 2015, 10:39:51 AM
I don't work in IT or anything near it, I own a design-build pair of small companies.  I've only had a smart phone for 1.5 years.  I get emails, voicemails and texts from existing, potential and past clients at various times of the day. 

My phone is off, I mean really off, from 10pm until 6am.  Unless there's a plumbing or other safety emergency, I don't respond except between 8am and 6pm.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Ftao93 on March 19, 2015, 11:07:43 AM
I struggled with this too.

I find that actual emergencies are so rare that I just told my boss that I would get a phone call, but email gets turned off at a reasonable hour.  I don't check it until I'm about to embark for the day.   He remarked that some people expect blah blah, you should check before bed blah blah.

Also note that during warmer months it's not uncommon for us to be zipping around the State on scooters or motorcycles.  I don't answer then either.

It's worked out so far.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: partgypsy on March 19, 2015, 11:14:19 AM
Not to be harsh, but it sounds like his boss has a time management problem.  Emails and texts can be big time eaters.
http://www.taskcracker.com/stephen-covey-time-management-method-outlook-productivity/

And as other people said, she is confusing urgent with important. If everything is urgent to her, then it means she is doing something wrong with her organization ability. It also seems like she wants him to be her "brain" dump whenever is convenient with her, rather than her consolidating requests or having meetings to address multiple things in one go.

I firmly believe people need "down-time" as well as full nights rest in order to function at peak. Otherwise you are burning your reserves and it will ultimately impact your resilience, productivity, and creativity, which are the reasons he was hired to do the job.

Is there a way to bring this up with higher ups, if not directly in the guise of increasing efficiency and time management? To have some seminars about time management, etc. I attended a covey seminar and I thought it was good for what it covered, and may give this woman insight, that even if she is crazy busy, she is not being efficient and effective with her time (and others).   

Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 19, 2015, 12:16:05 PM

We might be making progress:

Yesterday he had a meeting with this lady (the boss), and another co-worker who is mid 40's with twin toddlers at home about a current project-
The boss basically started talking about my husband while he was present, but without acknowledging him to the co-worker (! bit rude in the first place). She turns the conversation and exclaims how co-worker has twins, so why doesn't the coworker give my husband ADVICE ON TIME MANAGEMENT AT HOME. (side note: once again my husband was at a loss for this lady's social ineptitude)
Well, to my husbands delight (small wins people) and the boss' shock the co-worker instead went on an absolute no-holds-bared tirade about the company culture that allows bullying to hold employees to this kind of all hours work to dominate the home life/ why children do need their parents/ whats really important/ and how she is drowning under constant communication demands even though she is an ultra-performer.

Boss didn't say anything. Husband started presentation.

Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: RootofGood on March 19, 2015, 12:37:45 PM
WTF.  You'd have to pay me literally a million dollars a year to work under those conditions.  On call 24/7 to an annoying bedside device waking you up and interrupting your sleep patterns?  Some light torture is less damaging than that. 

I would turn that phone off some time in the evening before bed time, leave it downstairs so it can charge, and then check it first thing when I got up if that's what's required to keep a high profile job.  Triage any responses and take care of non-critical issues once in the office at a regular keyboard.  Otherwise, F that mess. 
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Numbers Man on March 19, 2015, 05:25:51 PM

We might be making progress:

Yesterday he had a meeting with this lady (the boss), and another co-worker who is mid 40's with twin toddlers at home about a current project-
The boss basically started talking about my husband while he was present, but without acknowledging him to the co-worker (! bit rude in the first place). She turns the conversation and exclaims how co-worker has twins, so why doesn't the coworker give my husband ADVICE ON TIME MANAGEMENT AT HOME. (side note: once again my husband was at a loss for this lady's social ineptitude)
Well, to my husbands delight (small wins people) and the boss' shock the co-worker instead went on an absolute no-holds-bared tirade about the company culture that allows bullying to hold employees to this kind of all hours work to dominate the home life/ why children do need their parents/ whats really important/ and how she is drowning under constant communication demands even though she is an ultra-performer.

Boss didn't say anything. Husband started presentation.

This meeting reminds me of a Bruce Lee movie. Where one of the martial artists was so amped about breaking a board. Bruce Lee said that boards don't hit back. In other words, if no one verbally hits back, then the boss keeps talking her koolaide without any fear of mutiny.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: NoraLenderbee on March 19, 2015, 05:29:44 PM
I've been in management, though not as high up. It's pretty normal to check e-mail in the evenings and to reply to some (if necessary, you give a brief answer and say you'll follow up in the AM). This was especially important when I worked with people in other time zones, like India (12 hours difference). But it stops at bedtime. If the boss and you are in the same time zone, it is completely absurd for her to expect 24/7 response. ABSURD. Even if she were the CEO and your husband were a VP. Your husband could be working 16 hours a day, and that's not enough???

It's pretty revealing of the boss's own inability to prioritize, organize, and manage her own time, too.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on March 19, 2015, 05:58:40 PM

We might be making progress:

Yesterday he had a meeting with this lady (the boss), and another co-worker who is mid 40's with twin toddlers at home about a current project-
The boss basically started talking about my husband while he was present, but without acknowledging him to the co-worker (! bit rude in the first place). She turns the conversation and exclaims how co-worker has twins, so why doesn't the coworker give my husband ADVICE ON TIME MANAGEMENT AT HOME. (side note: once again my husband was at a loss for this lady's social ineptitude)
Well, to my husbands delight (small wins people) and the boss' shock the co-worker instead went on an absolute no-holds-bared tirade about the company culture that allows bullying to hold employees to this kind of all hours work to dominate the home life/ why children do need their parents/ whats really important/ and how she is drowning under constant communication demands even though she is an ultra-performer.

Boss didn't say anything. Husband started presentation.

Wow! That sounds satisfying to monkey-brain, but probably not productive in terms of making the company culture less toxic.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: GuitarStv on March 23, 2015, 02:00:59 PM

We might be making progress:

Yesterday he had a meeting with this lady (the boss), and another co-worker who is mid 40's with twin toddlers at home about a current project-
The boss basically started talking about my husband while he was present, but without acknowledging him to the co-worker (! bit rude in the first place). She turns the conversation and exclaims how co-worker has twins, so why doesn't the coworker give my husband ADVICE ON TIME MANAGEMENT AT HOME. (side note: once again my husband was at a loss for this lady's social ineptitude)
Well, to my husbands delight (small wins people) and the boss' shock the co-worker instead went on an absolute no-holds-bared tirade about the company culture that allows bullying to hold employees to this kind of all hours work to dominate the home life/ why children do need their parents/ whats really important/ and how she is drowning under constant communication demands even though she is an ultra-performer.

Boss didn't say anything. Husband started presentation.

This meeting reminds me of a Bruce Lee movie. Where one of the martial artists was so amped about breaking a board. Bruce Lee said that boards don't hit back. In other words, if no one verbally hits back, then the boss keeps talking her koolaide without any fear of mutiny.


Q - What's Bruce Lee's favourite drink?


A - WWWAAAATTTTTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: zinnie on March 23, 2015, 06:00:09 PM
OP, I am sorry your husband is going through this. 2AM emails on a regular basis? I can't imagine what warrants this beyond rare emergencies. You know, like when BP discovered millions of gallons of oil were leaking into the oceans they probably called their legal peeps at 2am. That seems reasonable. 

If this were me: I would be direct yet professional with the boss. Schedule a meeting to discuss her expectations about communication. Let her know that the all-night expectations are affecting my productivity during the day and that I would like to see if we can come up with a compromise that allows me to sleep. If that doesn't work, go one manager up or to HR, whichever he is more comfortable with. Sure, being direct could affect how people see him but if he is considering leaving over this I don't see the harm in trying to resolve it first.

I review job postings for tech and startup companies frequently and am surprised by how many explain in the job posting that you need to be available whenever they need you. Who is ok with this? Working 40-50 hours a week is hard enough when you have evenings/weekends to yourself.

Sending good vibes that you get the outcome you want in this situation. That sounds just terrible.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Apples on March 24, 2015, 08:50:09 AM
+1 to turning off the notifications, and time to look for a new job.

If in the meantime he wants to talk to upper management about it, or generally give his boss as few (legitimate) reasons to complain, he can answer any emails she sends him overnight FIRST THING when he gets to work.  So the talk with an upper manager is "I don't think it's a reasonable expectation for me to deal with this at 3 am, when it can wait until the workday.  Upon entering the office/commuting to work and checking email/whatever, I have prioritized boss's nighttime emails first.  These now take priority over client emails from just after work hours yesterday, and updates from other staff.  Her emails are taken care of as soon as it is reasonable to do so.  That's what she seems to want."  So then your husband is setting the boundary of not answering at night, but still "prioritizing" the crazy lady's email when you sit down and get to looking through all of your email.  So if anyone else cares about his performance reviews he can show how he's certainly paying attention to her, is dedicated, yadda yadda, but also sleep at night.  Seriously though, turn off the notifications.  3 am emails are not usually know to be long drawn-out things to respond to, and I bet he can get most of them taken care of in 5 minutes in the morning.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: theonethatgotaway on March 24, 2015, 09:44:21 AM
Yes. One of the big corporate people in our division at work had that exact issue. They finally put rules up for her: no emails after 7pm to 7am M-F, no emails after 5p on Fridays and no email, zilch on the weekends. She complains about it all time in meetings how she's been restricted. ha.

This is brilliant.

Update:

He's pining for a promotion to be equal to her, or leaving (has a plan B).

Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: mm1970 on March 24, 2015, 02:59:05 PM

We might be making progress:

Yesterday he had a meeting with this lady (the boss), and another co-worker who is mid 40's with twin toddlers at home about a current project-
The boss basically started talking about my husband while he was present, but without acknowledging him to the co-worker (! bit rude in the first place). She turns the conversation and exclaims how co-worker has twins, so why doesn't the coworker give my husband ADVICE ON TIME MANAGEMENT AT HOME. (side note: once again my husband was at a loss for this lady's social ineptitude)
Well, to my husbands delight (small wins people) and the boss' shock the co-worker instead went on an absolute no-holds-bared tirade about the company culture that allows bullying to hold employees to this kind of all hours work to dominate the home life/ why children do need their parents/ whats really important/ and how she is drowning under constant communication demands even though she is an ultra-performer.

Boss didn't say anything. Husband started presentation.

SWEET!!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: The_path_less_taken on March 24, 2015, 09:13:33 PM
Yes. One of the big corporate people in our division at work had that exact issue. They finally put rules up for her: no emails after 7pm to 7am M-F, no emails after 5p on Fridays and no email, zilch on the weekends. She complains about it all time in meetings how she's been restricted. ha.

This is brilliant.

Update:

He's pining for a promotion to be equal to her, or leaving (has a plan B).




I hope he gets another job or becomes HER boss!

I just started a job where the other person who does mine gets all of these alerts and sales leads on her smart phone...all throughout her lunch, with people walking into the break room and asking about deals, etc.

I showed them my 2005 pay-as-you-go flip phone...the look on their faces was priceless. I've already warned my boss that on my days off I literally have no idea where my phone is...the chicken coop? On the tractor? Where I was planting the new peach tree? Blew their little minds.

We'll see how it goes I guess. But your poor husband and you are really suffering with the middle of the night crap.

I don't care how much money they wrapped that in: I couldn't/wouldn't do it. Good luck!!!
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: Josiecat on March 25, 2015, 02:08:19 PM
This is bullshit.  You husband is allowing this to happen.  Turn off the frickin' cellphone at night.  Also, he will not FIX this boss.  He needs to find another job right away.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: jeromedawg on March 25, 2015, 02:58:34 PM
Unacceptable and unreasonable (and immature) behavior from his boss. She's obviously a control-freak but is way overstepping. Your husband needs to put his foot down. First comes the understanding on his part that family comes *first* absolutely and utmost no "ifs, ands, or buts"

As far as "managing" his boss, if he's scared of her or of the outcome, things will never change for the good. As others said, look for another job so he has something in the back-pocket. Obviously, he can't be all that picky about it but sounds like his skill set commands a competitive salary negotiation. He should try to time hopefully getting the offer so that it coincides with him talking to his boss' boss (is he on good terms with anyone above his boss?). If they can't work something out at the current place, then peace out with your back-pocket offer(s). The sooner he starts this process, the sooner the problem will be dealt with (rather than waiting several weeks to months for something to change). On top of that, even if he does bring it up as a problem with the intention of staying, it's likely going to result in more passive-aggressiveness from that extreme micro-managing supervisor of his (even if say he gets promoted and they become peers - she'll likely be all hostile towards him and try to sabotage him in other ways). As what others have been pointing out already, it seems like moving on might be the best option. Remember, it's for the sake of your family and that's the number one priority. It seems you both are trying to maintain this perspective and it's probably a lot harder for the husband, as the "bread-winner" to forfeit the means of income for his family. But it doesn't mean quitting flat out - he should have enough confidence in himself now to say "screw it, I'm looking elsewhere" and really commit to that direction without fear or anxiety over what his supervisor thinks (sounds like she's really gotten into his head). If he's concerned about "burning bridges," she's already done all that IMHO.
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: zolotiyeruki on March 26, 2015, 01:26:10 PM
I know someone who's in a similar position.  This person has a strict "radio silence" policy for themselves on Sundays and during the night, and will only respond on Saturday if there's a client appointment that needs to be filled.  At one point, their boss complained about their "lack of availability" (i.e. "you don't answer my emails") on weekends and nights.  After thinking about how to respond, they finally met with their boss face to face and said something to this effect:

"I can do a much better job of meeting your needs in a face-to-face setting."

So take the same approach.  Tell DH to tell his boss something like this:

"I can provide you with much better responses and be a much more productive employee, when I'm in the office, rather than having just woken up in the middle of the night."
Title: Re: My husbands boss emails throughout the night. Help.
Post by: MDM on March 26, 2015, 02:36:21 PM
Appears the OP has left us: theonethatgotaway = Guest?

Too bad if so - hoping to hear a happy ending....