Now Reading
Intern Life: My Colleagues Fat Shamed Me And Excluded Me From Meetings. My Boss Said, It’s Not A Big Deal. 

Intern Life: My Colleagues Fat Shamed Me And Excluded Me From Meetings. My Boss Said, It’s Not A Big Deal. 

I hate this job. But I’m not confident enough to find a better job. 

I work at a big MNC company as a Data Analyst. I converted to a contract basis right after my intern attachment in my polytechnic. I would describe the working environment as brutal. A lot of us need to work overtime. And a lot of them are working outside their working hours – not to gain compensation but to keep their job. Which to me, when I factor in all together, it doesn’t add up. It just doesn’t make sense to me.

No matter how shitty I feel, when I compare my situation with my friends, it seems like we’re kind of all in the same place. They complained that the demand is too high and their companies are always short of manpower. Apart from the medical and hospital benefits, we have to work long hours and we don’t get compensated for our work. 

So yeah, I am at the point where I’m not happy with this, but at the same time, I don’t know whether this is the best I could get.

He asked, ‘What’s your weight?’ I felt very seen in all the wrong ways.

When I first onboarded, they preached a lot about diversity and inclusivity at work. They have zero tolerance for discrimination against anyone and welcome any feedback. So of course, I felt very reassured.

But, now it feels like it was all for show. On my first day as an intern, obviously I still had not found my voice yet in the company. This boomer guy, came up to me and commented about my hair and he went on to ask, “What’s your weight?” I felt very seen in all the wrong ways.

And then he and his group of other colleagues started to guess my weight out loud while the whole canteen could hear them. I felt really uncomfortable. I thought something would happen when I reported the issue to my boss. But in a very diplomatic way, he told me that ‘It’s not that big of a deal’. 

I hated the experience. 

Exit interviews are just for them to save their ass.

In the interview, they will ask for feedback for them to work on. But most of the time when we report to HR they’re like, “oh, it’s because of this, because of that.” And then we don’t know where the feedback goes. There will be no follow up. 

There was one time I was caught sleeping. Because I have obstructive sleep apnea. One of the symptoms is daytime sleepiness and I got a complaint against me for that. They concluded that I wasn’t performing well at work and didn’t exemplify good work ethics. There was little to no analysis of my mental diagnosis or check-ins on my well-being.  

I feel like hierarchy is important to place a system inside a company but not to the point where interns feel like they are slaves.

The seniors don’t give us respect. There are times that I get stood up on during meetings and I have to spend time going to their desks one by one and get them to come for the meeting! Yes, they are more experienced and have a higher position but not to the point where the subordinates feel like they’re slaves. Not to the point where we feel dehumanised. 

More hours doesn’t mean more productivity.

I take mental health very seriously. So I understand why people are stressed and get  burned out so easily. I feel like one of the best ways to take care of our mental well-being is having a reasonable time and duration at work. More hours doesn’t mean more productivity. In fact, with my 830 am – 6 pm job and overtime, I feel more unproductive and I get lethargic really fast. I also feel like having meaningful check-ins and small group meetings with follow ups would really make employees feel seen and valued.  

Giving us a day off isn’t going to release our stress. It didn’t work for me. Because it’s hard to come back to more workload the next day. We are only snowballing our on-going tasks.

We spend so much more time at work than anything else when you’re a working adult. But no! We are young. We should spend the majority of our life doing something that’s at least meaningful to us. 

They expect Gen Zs to also be like – just don’t f****** do this, just f****** do that.

Leading is more serving. I feel like with boomers,  they’ve been expected to do things from young without them understanding it. So they expect Gen Zs to also do the same. No questions asked. But that’s not how we f****** do things! So if you want us to stay at your workplace – understand us. Align your team accordingly. That way, we can contribute more meaningfully. 

We are tech savvy, we are fresh, we are creative and we have a much stronger sense of self. And I believe that that’s everything that you need in a workspace. You need to learn from us as much as we need to learn from you. We have a lot to offer too. 

To all Gen Zs stepping into working life…

The first thing you must do is observe and do the sh*t you need to do first. But don’t think that just because you’re young and you don’t have much experience that you need to feel inferior.

Rely on your sense of self identity – know where you stand, what you’re good at and what you need to improve on. Showcase the skills you’re good at but continue to be humble and work on your weaknesses to continue to grow holistically. You won’t keep being bad at something if you always believe in yourself. 

Have you been looked down on and discriminated against at work? Share your story with us today! 

What's Your Reaction?
I don’t relate at all
I feel you a lot
I have a different opinion
I want to know more
Thank you for sharing your story
Share your raw thoughts with others!
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

© Copyright 2022.

What are your thoughts? Let us know.x