By Lynn Parsons
During the past couple of weeks, two different friends asked for favors. Without revealing too many details, here are the facts:
Friend A needed a project done quickly. She was pretty panicked about this, so Friend B & I changed our plans for after work and worked on this task. We tried to call Friend A four times that evening to ask for her opinions and input, but Friend A was too busy with other calls to talk.
The next day, Friend A sent an email listing all the things wrong with this project. There was a short thanks, but no appreciation for our efforts, recognition that we had dropped everything to help her out, or expressions of regret that she had been too busy to collaborate. I explained to Friend B (they don't know each other) that Friend A was stressed. We decided to take it in stride and make the changes.
You guessed it-- the following day an email detailed further changes. These were made grudgingly, but they were done. Friend B and I were glad to be "finished."
Until the next email a few days later, demanding still more changes. Friend B is a professional in this field, but was doing this for free . . . on her own time . . . and with her own equipment. Now totally frustrated, she doesn't want anything more do to with this project. Understandable. Neither do I.
Now, on to Friend C. I had been helping her out at work, arranging and rearranging my schedule to help her out. Suddenly she needed my "help" constantly. Although she outranks me, I refused to let day after day be taken up with work that could be easily done by others. I think my eagerness to help put me in the position of doormat.
I didn't confront Friend A, but did with Friend C. Still wondering which was right. . . .
I'm taking a vacation from favors . . . .