Do you ever feel like you have the “Milton Red Swingline Stapler” syndrome from Mike Judge’s cult classic – Office Space? You know, The “syndrome” that no matter when you leave your office space for the day or go on a break; there is the mysterious office ghost or phantom the tends to swipe or “permanently” borrow things from your beloved desk or cubicle.
I have had almost everything imaginable known to mankind borrowed from me. Lets take a look at what is borrowed:
Office Supplies – stapler, pens, paper pads, Post-Its, paper clips, empty notebooks, push pins, ruler
Food – sodas, lunch, cookies, candy
Clothing – winter gloves, wool scarf, wool cap
Can you name some odd or unique items that have magically disappeared from your beloved desk drawers or neatly organized cubicle desk top? Feel free to enlighten the other members of OfficeRave with your “disappearances”.
As with may companies and/or employers, money is ever so tight and we have to rely on ourselves to purchase some of the simplest necessities. The simple things that make our jobs easier to perform; have to come out of our penniless pockets. I know that I am sounding pretty petty on this subject but now days money is ever so tight and some of us are barely making ends meet. And we purchase office supplies to make our “cubicle farm lives” easier and more productive.
As I sit here in my beloved space, I question and ponder on how I can keep my fellow employee’s grubby little fingers and hands out of my “space”. I ponder on how some of my fellow employees have solved this; not saying that I have done this before.
One is the food issue. I have heard that some of my fellow employees have mixed EXLAX with the candy and left it on the desk top just to catch the perpetrator in the act of “stealing” the candy or chocolate chip cookies sitting out in plain view. With this, you would know simply by watching to see who goes to the restroom often during the day. Or by knowing who calls in sick from an upset stomach the very next day. I know that this sounds awful crude but it fixed their dilemma.
Next would be the borrowing of all the neat and special pen you buy to bring to work. Just like some of the department sores, you can take those giant plastic flowers or toys to the top of the pen. I have also seen the ones where they have Super Glued the flower to the top so that it couldn’t be removed. With this, you can literally see who barrowed your pen.
Last it is the stigma of barrowing the big items like Milton’s Red Swingline Stapler. The simplest and most logical solution is to Velcro the item to your desk. Use the Velcro that is produced for use outdoors because it is produced for heavy long lasting strength. That way you can still be able to use it yourself. If someone else wants it, they are going to have to “wrestle” it to make a clean swipe.
I know a lot of this is sounding pretty harsh, but we have to respect our fellow workers. Lets be considerate and make the days pass more peacefully. Just remember how Milton felt, do you want to feel like that too?