A reader writes:
What do I say to a woman I work with who is constantly falling asleep at her desk, in her office with the door wide open? She snores so loudly that it disrupts my work, and at first it scared me. I have told the manager and his suggestion was to drop a big book and make a loud noise to wake her up. He even witnessed her sleeping too. Our Executive Director does nothing either. I am so sick of working my butt off while she snores like a buzz saw because she has nothing to do. They are not addressing the situation at all! By the way, I would not be so upset if she would just shut her door!! She has an office, so I don’t understand why she just won’t shut her door.
I have resorted to documenting her naps with pictures and video. Would it be totally wrong to upload them to YouTube?
Yes, it would be wrong, which I’m pretty sure you already know. Uploading videos of people without their permission isn’t a nice thing to do, and moreover, uploading videos taken in your workplace could get you fired.
Look, your manager is the big problem here. The fact that both your manager and the executive director know that this woman is sleeping at work and don’t do anything about it is pretty damning. I’m going to take a wild guess here that this organization isn’t exactly run like a well-oiled machine, right?
So you’ve got management that sucks, all the way up to the highest levels. Your choices in that situation are to accept it or leave. I’d vote for leaving, because I’m a big believer that if you work in an environment like that long enough, it will start to bring your own work down too. Get out before that happens to you. (Frankly, it’s probably already happened if you’re spending your time videotaping her naps.)
But if you really mean it that you wouldn’t care as much if only she’d shut her door, then why not just ask her to? Or, even easier, just go over there and shut her door for her. I’ve certainly shut other people’s doors when they were having an especially loud phone conversation that was disrupting others’ ability to focus — and it’s hard to say that doing that would be more obnoxious than what she’s doing.