how much can my dog bark in the office, my manager rewrote my work, and more

It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…

1. How much can my dog bark at work before it’s a problem?

I work at a very laid-back tech startup that not only allows, but encourages employees to bring their dogs in everyday. However, my own dog (Waffles) is very fearful and reactive towards most humans and dogs, so I didn’t bring him to work when I first adopted him. But now, after two years of working with Waffles to help him get over his anxieties, I think he’s ready to start coming to work with me. Currently I send him to doggy daycare 4-5 times a week, which he loves, but it’s very expensive and I would really like to get serious about saving money.

I’ve taken him to work a handful of times before I felt he was completely ready because of logistical reasons (like if someone needed to come fix something at my house before Waffles was ready for daycare), but it’s usually for half days and he would bark whenever anyone walked by my cubical or acknowledged me in any way. Now, however, I feel like he would be able to calm himself down enough and be happy with me at the office, but only after a week or so of coming in.

My concern is that the week of Waffles getting accommodated to this new routine will be torture on my coworkers. Especially for my boss who’s cubical is right next to mine, and has to talk to me daily. He’s been very understanding the times I’ve brought him in and I’ve talked to him about bringing Waffles to work more regularly and he hasn’t objected. I also have no doubt this would hurt my own productivity having to calm down a frightened dog whenever someone walks by. After the first week or so, if Waffles’ behavior doesn’t improve, I will definitely just accept that he’s not the kind of dog I can bring to work, but I really want to see if he’s capable. Do you think it would be alright to subject my coworkers to a week of a distracting dog for my own convenience?

If it’s a few barks a day, I’d say yes, as long as you’re clear with people about the situation (that you’re hoping he’ll acclimate after a week and if he doesn’t, you’ll stop bringing him in). But if the barking is going to be pretty frequent … I think a week of that is too much to inflict on people. I originally was going to say you could ask your nearby coworkers what they think, but there’s a pretty high chance that some people will say yes while they’re secretly thinking no, because people fear causing resentment. If it’s truly likely to be torture on your coworkers, as you say, I just don’t think you can do it. (However, if there’s ever a week when hardly anyone will be in — like if your office is a ghost town the week between Christmas and New Year’s — that might be an easier time to try it.)

2. My manager rewrote my work — did I do it badly?

My manager recently asked me to put together a document for a very specific and important purpose. Although it wasn’t an overly long document (maybe 3-4 pages) I put a lot of time and effort into perfecting it.

After submitting it to my boss, he basically re-wrote 75{986d44274747a5c76dc1672921bbe0dd933450491f05a8d42739aa242512160b} of it. Some of his additions are legitimate improvements but considering how much he changed the document I am wondering: was my work not at all satisfactory or does he just have a better grasp of how to complete this particular task? It’s worth noting that I have very little experience in creating this kind of document and he has vast amounts of experience in this area.

I guess I was figuring that if he wanted to make significant changes he’d take me aside first and explain them to me so I could learn? Is that wishful thinking?

In some cases, yes. Managers won’t always have the time to do that; it’s possible that the document just needed to get finished and out the door in less time than it would have taken to go back and forth with you.

It’s possible that he erred by not giving you enough information to produce what he was looking for originally and/or not checking to make sure that you understood what he wanted. Or it’s possible that you weren’t going to be able to produce exactly what he wanted, given your limited experience doing this — or if he wasn’t sure if you would, and figured he might as well find out. But it’s also possible that he was satisfied with what you did and really just needed a draft to work from, and you gave him that. (It’s often way easier/faster to fix a draft than to create one from scratch.)

Ideally he’d come back to you later and talk about why he made the changes he did, but not every manager is awesome at giving feedback. You can ask him about it though, by saying something like, “I saw you made a lot of changes to the X document, so I’m thinking I didn’t hit the mark. I’ve compared your version to mine to try to learn from what you changed, but is there any feedback you can give me that would help me do better next time?”

3. What to say if a coworker asks about my self harm scars

You preciously had someone write in asking if they should View Source