Work – Phone Home

There has been a consistent issue the whole time I have been at this firm regarding my boss which involves communication. It is an odd dichotomy because it is both too little, and far too much.

As with everyone in an office environment my boss has a phone sitting on his desk which is equipped with voicemail… which they staunchly refuse to use. Why doesn’t he want to use the office phone? Well, because the office records phone calls, and he is fantastically paranoid because he thinks they are out to get him (which he’s actually correct about as it turns out, more on that later). Instead my boss has 2 cell phones and therefore he never picks up the office phone unless absolutely necessary… as in the name flashing on the caller-id is the top boss is calling. He will by preference not ever call on his office phone; even in the office; even if his cellphone is almost out of power and the short charging cord leaves him stuck in a hunched position near an outlet like Golem caressing his precious… it must still be a call through his cellphone. He carries both cell phones at all times, but almost never uses the firm provided cell phone because of his paranoia, which brings up the excellent question of why he has it, or carries it around. I’ve been told multiple times by him that the firm has GPS tracking enabled on the phones to keep tabs on their employees, which although possible, starts to hint at the state of mind with regard to my boss.

He asked me at one point how to check his voicemail on his desk phone, which I showed him how to do hovering over his shoulder with the speakerphone on, only to find over 60+ messages from as far back as 8 months prior (now closer to a year). As soon as he heard the date on the first voicemail from 8 months ago he immediately hung up the speakerphone, and looked away and said he would take care of it later. The voicemail light is still blinking on his phone to this day. He knows, hell everyone knows, that is a huge ethical breach to do this, but he decides to ignore it anyway. His opinion is that anyone who matters has his cell phone number(s). He also hates calling other peoples offices for the same paranoid reasoning, thinking the conversations are being recorded. Thus I end up in uncomfortable conversations with OC offices trying to convince a secretary or paralegal to hand over their boss’ cell phone number to me… because obviously this is normal.

Which brings us to the flip side of the communication with him.  If you provide him with your cellphone number… may lord have mercy on you. I have text messages which are not merely multiple text messages in length… no, they are literally pages upon pages of text. You will get phone calls at all hours. Text messages appear almost daily after midnight and at odd hours asking about random matters and scheduling (as if I have the firm calendar in front of me), because I guess he thinks that’s acceptable and that everyone who works for him is on call 24 hours a day.

Oh yeah, its not like its just me he or the paralegals he does this too either. Opposing Counsel has actually stated on the record that they were getting messages from my boss on their phone at 3 in the morning. We had another OC who told him point blank to stop calling and texting their phone or they would complain to the judge about the harassment. If you are a client, you don’t exist unless you have his cell number, mostly because you will only ever be routed to his office phone by the secretary, and we all know it will be a cold day in hell before he answers that phone.

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