Thursday, June 9, 2011

Today I Told My Boss... calm down. She came into the lab this morning in a panic, saying that we needed to spend $50,000 by June 30. She told me to stop what I was doing (my data analysis) and start ordering stuff immediately. She started shrieking and circling the lab bench and saying that today, right now, I had to order a laptop, a water shaker incubator, a refrigerator, 5 cases of petri dishes, and whatever else I could think of.

I am having some problems with high blood pressure because of all of the stress I am experiencing due to stuff like this. Every day there's a crisis over something. So, this morning I took a deep breath and told her to calm down, have a seat, let's do the math, we've already spent a lot of money, I don't think its $50,000. I got out our budget and went over it with her. As it turned out the amount that we had remaining to spend was $6000. So she calmed down and then went off to her other lab. And I was left to deal with trying to calm myself down.

I shouldn't be doing the ordering at all. I am suppose to be doing my research 100% of the time. But she asked me to take on most of the lab management duties because the person that she hired to do that isn't fit for the job. So, now I'm practically doing the work of two people. I work every day. Monday to Friday, I work about 10.5 hrs a day and on weekends I work about 6 hrs a day. I don't take breaks and I don't get paid for overtime.

I need to get out of this job. A person can only handle stuff like this for so long. One post-doc in the lab is leaving after only having worked for a few months and another one that hasn't been in the lab very long is actively searching for another position. I wish I had the time and energy to conduct a job search, but I don't. I feel stuck.

This experience hasn't turned me against doing scientific research. I love science and I love doing research. I just need to be doing it somewhere else. It will be very interesting to see what the future brings for me.

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