the schedule for updates this year

Welcome to “where are you now?” season at Ask a Manager! Between now and the end of the year, I’ll be running updates from people who had their letters here answered in the past.

A heads-up about update season: for the next few weeks I’ll be posting at midnight, 11 am, 12:30 pm, 2 pm, 3:30 pm, and 5 pm (all times are Eastern)* … as a minimum. There will sometimes be additional posts at random times throughout the afternoon as well!

We have a lot of updates, including some of the letters that people were really clamoring to get updates on, like the employee who didn’t think they were doing enough about bears, the new hire who was putting fake mistakes in someone’s work, and more.

Also, if you’ve had your letter answered here in the past and would like to send in an update, there’s still time to include it so go ahead and email it to me!

* That’s Monday through Thursday. Friday will be unpredictable.

{ 60 comments… read them below }

    1. Ama*

      It’s not slow for me but my work this time of year includes a lot of tedious data entry and document formatting admin — I stay motivated by promising myself I can read an update if I get the next set of tasks done.

      1. Irish Teacher.*

        It should be slowing down for me, but unfortunately, we have an inspection next week, so instead it’s crazy.

    2. Yorkshire Tea Lady*

      Like Ama, not a quiet time for me, but I will use the updates as a reward for finishing a task. And be thankful that while there are annoyances at my workplace, it’s mostly functional.

    1. Chauncy Gardener*

      Joy to the world, it’s update time
      Let Alison receive them in
      Let every reader prepare their popcorn
      Let the commentariat rejoice and sing
      Let the commentariat rejoice and sing

  1. ZSD*

    I skimmed poorly and thought someone had been putting fake mustaches in other people’s work. Now I’m disappointed.

  2. Cheap Ass Rolls*

    *pulls out boombox*

    *presses play*

    *”It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year” starts playing*

    *Holds it over head*

  3. mb*

    I’m so happy (grins stupidly). Also, I think I need to set up alerts on my phone for these updates, because I just can’t wait. Is that pathetic?

    1. Irish Teacher.*

      Definitely not. I’ve very much of the opinion that if you want to do something and it causes no harm to anybody, you should do it.

    1. ZSD*

      “Well, I don’t have much of an update. I never had the chance to talk with Jane because by the time my letter was published, she had been eaten by a bear.”

      1. Yay! I’m a llama again!*

        I’d forgotten this letter. How lovely that the bears are actually the issue, and they didn’t substitute llamas for this one!

    2. Baloo*

      I am so hyped for the Bear Update. I work outside a lot and similar safety debates were a constant on crews since everybody’s comfort and training levels would be mismatched. Plus, I always forget and am like “wait, REAL BEARS?” every time I come across this letter.

  4. Warrior Princess Xena*

    I’m dying to hear updates about both of these, even if it’s as simple as “so my bear-fearing employee left/I quit my wild and crazy job and now I’m living happily with half a dozen cats”

  5. ferrina*

    Wow! This is amazing! Thank you Alison, for collecting and curating all of these updates! And thanks to everyone who wrote updates!

  6. Zombeyonce*

    One of my favorite things about this site is that Alison occasionally has to write out responses that include things like “My lack of bear knowledge makes it hard for me to assess that with any confidence”, a sentence I expect she never thought she’d type when she started answering letters.

  7. rayray*

    I wonder about the person who was so shocked and appalled at the employee who didn’t get paid on time and then firmly told payroll it couldn’t happen again. They were so livid that the employee was compensated with extra gift cards for groceries and gas and stuff. I wonder if they ever came to their senses.

  8. Victor WembanLlama*

    Note: The times listed above are in the Eastern Time Zone. If anyone needs conversion – Central is one hour back of ET, Pacific 3hrs back. There used to be another one called Mountain Time, which was two hours back but it was discontinued.

    1. Confused mountain dweller*

      Mountain time has most definitely not been discontinued… or at the very least, nobody let those of us living in the MT zone know!

    2. ThatGirl*

      Hahaha I’m sorry I’m just really amused by the idea that a time zone can be “discontinued” :D

      1. The Gollux, Not a Mere Device*

        That sounds weird, but it can and does happen. The time zone UTC+8:30 was in use in different parts of Asia from 1845-1899, 1918-1949, 1954-1961, and 2015-2018.

        This led me down a wiki rabbit hole to things like Nepal Standard Time (which is 15 minutes later than Indian Standard Time), and a couple of places that set their clocks forward by 24 hours, skipping a calendar day.

  9. Rachel 2: Electric Boogaloo*

    What a great early Hanukkah present! Yay!

    I really hope we get an update to “my company is pressuring me to donate huge amounts of money to a coworker.” That’s the one where “Jane” (who happens to be the CEO’s wife’s best friend) lost her husband, and the company gave her a few months bereavement leave, plus the team and the company solicited donations for her (the CEO tracked the company-wide drive and employees were pressured to donate $200 at minimum). Another employee lost her child and got none of that, just the standard 3 days bereavement leave. (That’s the nutshell version.)

  10. Worldwalker*

    There are SO many letters where I’m left wondering what happened next. Did they take Alison’s advice? Did it work? Did their flaky co-worker ragequit in the middle of a meeting? I look forward to this time of year.

  11. Tabby Baltimore*

    I’m sure this is so much editing/selection work for Alison, and I appreciate it. But what I’m really grateful for is all the Letter Writers who were willing to let us know how things worked out for them, so that we can continue learning from them. Thank you!

  12. Claire*

    I’m curious about the bear training one! I do live in bear country (have to have bear-resistant garbage containers, etc) and am a grad student studying mountain rivers, which means I spend a fair amount of time in remote locations where black and grizzly bears also congregate. When bear activity is “high” (meaning I will likely see at least one bear, hopefully at a good distance!) it means I take a field assistant, make a lot of noise, and take the bear spray’s safety Velcro off while I’m out working. I’m not even sure what extensive training would look like!

  13. Posilutely*

    I always really appreciate the midnight post as that’s 5am here which is when I’ve just sat down to eat breakfast before work – perfect timing! Then the rest appear late afternoon/evening which is perfect too.

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