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Old 12-30-17, 11:13 PM
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Arrow Help me handle different personality types

I'm volunteering on a project and am learning how to handle my boss, who's an INFP. We spoke through text messaging tonight about some important things and eventually she said, "I'm taking the night off, remember?" I need advice from y'all on how to read the cues she's giving me in order to better meet her needs, because I didn't know that she was taking the night off.

She never mentioned that she was going to be off the grid. She explained that she had taken many calls during the day and needed to shut down. In addition to that, she did say "turn it off" in explaining her needs after a long day of calls, talking to people.

On these particular projects, I can work all hours, even past midnight. I love it. I understand that not everyone's like that so what kind of boundaries do I need to set for myself or discuss with the other person in order to alleviate this type of situation happening in the future?

I guess I need to remember that when she says that she needs to shut down, she means that she doesn't want to talk about the project or even at all.
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  #2  
Old 12-30-17, 11:21 PM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

Out of curiosity, what did you think she meant when she said "that she had taken many calls during the day and needed to shut down" and "turn it off"?
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Old 12-31-17, 12:19 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Out of curiosity, what did you think she meant when she said "that she had taken many calls during the day and needed to shut down" and "turn it off"?
Well, that was her response to me wanting to speak with her over the phone. I thought it was safe if we spoke through text.
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Old 12-31-17, 01:12 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

People are people, regardless of personality, and you don't handle anyone but yourself.

Be yourself and be respectful, kind, and engaging.

I've found that it is easy to navigate most any situation by respecting boundaries and people, and well and truly listening.


Cheers,
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  #5  
Old 12-31-17, 01:26 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

Quote:
Originally Posted by aeon View Post
People are people, regardless of personality, and you don't handle anyone but yourself.

Be yourself and be respectful, kind, and engaging.

I've found that it is easy to navigate most any situation by respecting boundaries and people, and well and truly listening.


Cheers,
Ian
Sometimes I don't know what those boundaries are. How late should I expect for someone to be up and answer my text? When are they available throughout the day?

No one ever talks about the fact that people need to have instructions laid out in exact detail.
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Old 12-31-17, 01:37 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

Do I need to ask her the dates and times that she's available? Should I have her fill out something that indicates when she's available to talk and when she's not?
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Old 12-31-17, 01:45 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Originally Posted by anonymouslyadd View Post
Sometimes I don't know what those boundaries are. How late should I expect for someone to be up and answer my text? When are they available throughout the day? No one ever talks about the fact that people need to have instructions laid out in exact detail.
If it's work-related and I want to contact someone, 7pm. A friend? 9pm, absent other understanding.

But don't expect anything at all. It only serves to set you up to be disappointed.

In general, no one talks about this because it is a cultural norm absorbed through osmosis.

If you want it laid out in detail, express that it would be helpful to you to have it laid out in detail, and ask for that...quite simple, really.


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  #8  
Old 12-31-17, 01:52 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Originally Posted by aeon View Post
If it's work-related and I want to contact someone, 7pm. A friend? 9pm, absent other understanding.

But don't expect anything at all. It only serves to set you up to be disappointed.

In general, no one talks about this because it is a cultural norm absorbed through osmosis.

If you want it laid out in detail, express that it would be helpful to you to have it laid out in detail, and ask for that...quite simple, really.
This project is different from other work situations. It's time sensitive, and we're behind.
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Old 12-31-17, 01:58 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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This project is different from other work situations. It's time sensitive, and we're behind.
Then you must be more productive in the time available to you.

Cultural norms and respect of boundaries are inviolate to the circumstances of work, unless specifically and consentually agreed upon.


Cheers,
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Old 12-31-17, 02:10 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Then you must be more productive in the time available to you.

Cultural norms and respect of boundaries are inviolate to the circumstances of work, unless specifically and consentually agreed upon.


Cheers,
Ian
You're right about being productive and efficient within the time given to us.
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Old 12-31-17, 02:40 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Out of curiosity, what did you think she meant when she said "that she had taken many calls during the day and needed to shut down" and "turn it off"?
I can absolutely relate to that;
It's just total sensory saturation. Your energy for the day is depleted. she has given every ounce she has, there is simply none left.
when i have a busy day and stay late, my mind is reeling, i must leave, must think about something else, even if I've enjoyed the work.
when i was translating full time i used to come home from work and turn on and then at some point look at the mail and flip through advertisements and i would start to translate them mentally and i would think, STOP!!! ENOUGH!

Anon, while you can work through the night, also she simply may be a morning person.
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Old 12-31-17, 03:10 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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I can absolutely relate to that;
It's just total sensory saturation. Your energy for the day is depleted. she has given every ounce she has, there is simply none left.
when i have a busy day and stay late, my mind is reeling, i must leave, must think about something else, even if I've enjoyed the work.
when i was translating full time i used to come home from work and turn on and then at some point look at the mail and flip through advertisements and i would start to translate them mentally and i would think, STOP!!! ENOUGH!

Anon, while you can work through the night, also she simply may be a morning person.
She said that about speaking over the phone and asked me to text her instead. Fine. We went to texting and after a while I was supposed to know that she meant all forms of communication, too?
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Old 12-31-17, 03:22 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

All of this occurred from about 7:02 p.m. - 8:44 p.m.:

Anon: Can you talk on the phone?
Lady: Is it nothing we can discuss over text?
Anon: Sure.
Lady: I'm out of pocket tonight.
Lady: I'm in hermit mode.
Texting continues...
Several texts later...
Lady: We can talk about it tomorrow. I'm taking the night off remember? Have a good Saturday night!
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Old 12-31-17, 03:29 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

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Sometimes I don't know what those boundaries are. How late should I expect for someone to be up and answer my text? When are they available throughout the day?
If it's after work hours, and they haven't explicitly told you that it's OK to contact them outside of work hours, you should not assume that it's OK to contact them directly by voice or text outside of her work hours.

Unless it's an emergency, you could try writing down your questions for tomorrow so you don't forget. Or maybe send an e-mail (but don't expect an immediate answer) -- that's usually less intrusive than a text or a series of texts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouslyadd
No one ever talks about the fact that people need to have instructions laid out in exact detail.
She said she needed to "shut down" and "turn it off". If her phone was (supposed to be) off, shut down, that usually means no texts, either. Now that she's made it clear that that's what she meant ("taking the night off"), you'll know for the future.

I agree with aeon that if you need instructions for contact hours (or other aspects of work) laid out in exact detail, then you will probably need to be the one to bring it up.

As I see it, it's not so much a personality conflict as you not understanding (and therefore not respecting) her stated need to stop working (or at least, communicating with you) for the day. She may be just as "intense" as you -- but maybe she works exceptionally hard during the day and plays hard (or rests, or takes care of other responsibilities) in the evening, and doesn't have time to be bothered about work things then. Maybe she needs uniterrupted time to catch up on the work that she'd have gotten done if she hadn't keept being interrupted. And like stef said, many people really need some "off" time to recharge.

You talk about "managing your boss" and "having her fill out something [about her availability]". But you're her subordinate, not the other way around. It's a semantic difference, but I think it matters in work relationships. It may be more fruitful to think about how to manage yourself, and how to identify and work most effectively within the constraints of the position.

So, practically speaking, if you know that you have trouble understanding boundaries and need clear instructions about when and how it's OK to communicate, then you'll need to ask for that explicitly. If you need to know what types of situations count as "work emergencies" where it might be OK to contact her outside of normal/agreed-upon work hours, ask that, too. If you know you can work happily and intensely past midnight, that's great, but since not everyone does, you may need to prioritize things that require input from others for earlier in the day and leave things you can do independently for the later hours when you're on your own.

Good luck with this project!

P.S. Consider not referring to your women bosses as "lady" -- it comes across as disrespect, even if that's not what you intend. Try "boss" instead.
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  #15  
Old 12-31-17, 03:40 AM
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Re: Help me handle different personality types

Quote:
Originally Posted by namazu View Post
If it's after work hours, and they haven't explicitly told you that it's OK to contact them outside of work hours, you should not assume that it's OK to contact them directly by voice or text outside of her work hours.
I think I need to find out what "work hours" are. It's not a traditional 9-5 job, and I'm volunteering.
Quote:
Unless it's an emergency, you could try writing down your questions for tomorrow so you don't forget. Or maybe send an e-mail (but don't expect an immediate answer) -- that's usually less intrusive than a text or a series of texts.
This is acceptable.
Quote:
She said she needed to "shut down" and "turn it off". If her phone was (supposed to be) off, shut down, that usually means no texts, either. Now that she's made it clear that that's what she meant ("taking the night off"), you'll know for the future.
Now, I know that "shut down" means "no texts." I guess it doesn't really matter, but take a look below and tell me if you don't think I had good reason to be confused.

All of this occurred from about 7:02 p.m. - 8:44 p.m.:

Anon: Can you talk on the phone?
Lady: Is it nothing we can discuss over text?
Anon: Sure.
Lady: I'm out of pocket tonight.
Lady: I'm in hermit mode.
Texting continues...
Several texts later...
Lady: We can talk about it tomorrow. I'm taking the night off remember? Have a good Saturday night!

Quote:
I agree with aeon that if you need instructions for contact hours (or other aspects of work) laid out in exact detail, then you will probably need to be the one to bring it up.
True. Does this make me an idiot?
Quote:
As I see it, it's not so much a personality conflict as you not understanding (and therefore not respecting) her stated need to stop working (or at least, communicating with you) for the day. She may be just as "intense" as you -- but maybe she works exceptionally hard during the day and plays hard (or rests, or takes care of other responsibilities) in the evening, and doesn't have time to be bothered about work things then. Like stef said, some people really need some "off" time to recharge.
There were multiple things going on including deadlines that were supposed to be met today. She's very intense. I have one of the most demanding positions on this project.
Quote:
You talk about "managing your boss" and "having her fill out something [about her availability]". But you're her subordinate, not the other way around. It's a semantic difference, but I think it matters in work relationships. It may be more fruitful to think about how to manage yourself, and how to identify and work most effectively within the constraints of the position.
That's what's most important and what I'm trying to figure out!
Quote:
So, practically speaking, if you know that you have trouble understanding boundaries and need clear instructions about when and how it's OK to communicate, then you'll need to ask for that explicitly. If you need to know what types of situations count as "work emergencies" where it might be OK to contact her outside of normal/agreed-upon work hours, ask that, too. If you know you can work happily and intensely past midnight, that's great, but since not everyone does, you may need to prioritize things that require input from others for earlier in the day and leave things you can do independently for the later hours when you're on your own.
I'm sure it seems like I'm not respecting the differences in our positions or that I'm expecting too much from her. I just hope to understand her needs and boundaries.
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