The “Loudspeaker” Syndrome – Office Diaries
Every office has an “office loudspeaker”. There is at least one, if not many. By “loudspeaker” I mean by the virtue of their loud voice/muscular throat or attitude they keep on loudly speaking on the phone from time to time. No, no, why should they bother that you are being disturbed, after all, they are doing their job and you are idling your time coming to the office everyday. You should mind your own Business and let me them not mind their tongue.
I think speaking clearly on the phone so that you are audible is definitely understood but shouting at the top of your voice to attract attention is totally uncool. I mean others are working too and you as a coworker need to respect their “Right to Work”. I agree you are not our Constitution to respect that but don’t you have any mercy?
I personally have a lot to thank these Loudspeakers. As a student of TISS HRM & LR (To those perplexed by the acronym: Tata Institute of Social Sciences Master’s in Human Resource Management & Labor Relations), I got the opportunity to Intern in 5 Organisations. I am currently Interning in my Fifth Fieldwork Organization so I do believe I have some authority to talk on the topic. By their “virtue” I often get accidentally entertained. I get to know what is happening in their Personal /Professional lives even if I do not know their name. Because out of the four offices that I Interned in; “Loudspeakers” were present in three. The reason why these people are nonchalant to the nuisance caused to other people can be many. But some which I can think of are summarised as below:
1. Their Vocal Chords are Muscular
In this case, I have nothing to complain against. In fact, I offer my sympathies because I know I might not be the first person to point it out and hey, who likes being mocked for something one doesn’t have any control over?
2. They are genuinely dedicated
Yes, and that shows. Or hears should I say?
3. They want to show off
(Hearing) Seeing is believing right? So I might show all those concerned before they announce my Mid-year performance appraisal.
4. They just don’t care
5. Blame it on the office setup
In the era of space crunching and time crunching, people have no space to waste. And that leads us to one of the two things:
-Stare uncomfortably at the person sitting in front of the desk (Or pretend you are engrossed in work despite being distracted by those eyes and that Dimple) and/or
-Listen to what they were doing on the weekend being narrated to their friend.
6. Attention seeking behaviour
I really want to see that sweet lady sitting in the corner cubicle to be impressed by my impeccable knowledge in Marketing which comes directly from one of the windows that I hide behind my so called Excel sheet. So what do I do? Yes, Loudspeaker of course! When she seems unimpressed by my intelligence, I assume that she is the Extrovert type. So I shift my gears to the wild night I had in the Andaman’s and the Scuba Diving in Pattaya. The only outcome is that she shifts her desk.
Love them or hate them, you just can’t ignore them.
About the Author:
Anuya Thorat is a Second year Student of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. She is a Dentist by Training and a HR professional by sheer luck. She enjoys singing while cooking. And yes she does cook up a lot of things. Everything except Tarot.