I am an exempt employee and have never really given much thought as to when I can go to lunch or when I use the bathroom. However, I have a new boss who I think is going on a “power trip” and she sent an email edict requiring everyone to tell her of our comings and goings. Our staff is now required to tell her when we go on lunch or when we go to the bathroom. I would like to know if this is legal? Is there something that can be done?
It’s legal, but it’s stupid. The lunch thing is somewhat logical because it’s sometimes good to know if people will be out of pocket for an hour or so, but to tell her before you go to the bathroom? That’s NUTS.
I’d go to her and say, “Jane, can you explain to me what problem you’re trying to solve here? It feels really intrusive to have to tell my boss when I need to pee.”
She’s probably one of those managers who is trying to solve a problem with a specific employee but is too scared to actually speak to the employee so is making a blanket rule. Or she’s simply a power hungry jerk who is trying to assert her authority.
If that doesn’t solve it, and if you have a good relationship with her boss, I’d bring it up to her boss. “Jane’s kind of gone off the deep end. She wants us to tell her each time we go to the bathroom. Is there anything you can do about it?” If this person is at all logical, she’ll put a stop to it.
Now, none of this is true if you’re, like, a front end manager at a grocery store and there always has to be a manager available so you need someone to cover for you while you run to the bathroom. But, since you haven’t had a problem in the past, I doubt you’re in a situation like that.