LPT Request: How can I tell my boss that I DO NOT HAVE TO answer the phones on my days off.

  1. My job recommends we don't install Slack or work email on our phones so we are actually uncontactable outside of work hours (in an actual emergency, HR has our telephone numbers, but that's for real emergencies). I install them on mine anyway (we're allowed, just recommended not to) as I like to be kept informed, but since the culture is not to have it then there's no pressure on me to reply

  2. Outlook also allows you to schedule a reply. So if you wanted you could write an email and schedule it to go out 9am Monday

  3. I also use family as an excuse for weekend/day off intrusions. “I’m with family this weekend and didn’t bring my laptop. feel free to send me an email so top of my inbox for Monday”

  4. Completely agree with this, except I wouldn't be apologising at all, boss or no. I've had this with many bosses, and when I was younger I was massively taken advantage of. Worked in a bar and the owner (who was and probably still is stealing around 25% of takings from his silent partner- alright Jonty hope you see this) would say that if he didn't get a response he assumes that whatever he's requesting is done.

  5. I agree with all of this except the "sorry". Never apologise for things you don't need to apologise for. It projects weakness, but also implies that you feel you were wrong in not responding sooner.

  6. Just one thing to add to this awesome response. You don’t even have to say you were busy. You can be lazy AF. its your time you do not have to apologize for using it for whatever reason you want. “I followed a snail for the entire day just to see where it went” is a very legit thing to do when you are not on the clock.

  7. I had a boss that expected me to drop everything day or night if she emailed me (her dictations were much too long for text messages). This was early 2000s and I couldn't find the software I wanted to hold her emails until work hours, so I wrote a little script that bounced all of her emails back after a certain time or on certain days with a message that said "Our apologies. Our client has installed Bounce Back (TM) messaging on this email account. Your message was not delivered because it included one or more phrases banned by the ICCC. Please remove those phrases from your email and try sending again."

  8. In addition to being busy during time off, tell the boss you are not getting paid during your time off, so you will not work.

  9. This is a great idea. It's professional, but also still very clear. You also don't even have to directly tell him.

  10. In addition to being on call. If you're on call, what is the rate of pay? Any communication outside of normal work hours will be overtime? This is where you make it worth your while with an exorbitant cost to him. Make sure you get it writing to hold him accountable.

  11. I would suggest (since you said he contacts you when he thinks of stuff for you to do - this kind of sounds like ADHD) that you ask him to write down these tasks in a list when he thinks of them and give you the list when you return to work so you can complete them.

  12. You can add that it's an automated reply, so he doesn't think you just typed it for him. Make it so it repeats every time too ;)

  13. Also if he calls your bluff and wants a new contract, the terms of the contract should state that you get paid time and a half for 1 hour of work every time you respond to an email or text outside of working hours. The response should always be, sorry, I’m unavailable, I’ll collect that 90 minutes of extra pay now.

  14. Indeed this. you are a product that he must pay for. If he wants out of hours effort tell him your rate (3x your normal day rate is a good start).

  15. As a former retail manager in multiple stores, 100% not replying is the best advice if you want them to leave you alone. Anyone that actually responded to my messages I was generally able to convince to come into work, and would be top of my list for next time as well, and anyone that didn't respond wouldn't hear from me again that day, and would be lower on my call order next time.

  16. I would tell him that I value my time away from work (without interruptions) and that being well rested is important to me as I perform better whilst at work.

  17. I was going to suggest this exact thing! My boss (who is awesome) has an email signature that says something like “Just because I am emailing you at odd hours, it does not mean you have to respond!” (He is an MD, FYI)

  18. This and also don’t talk about your free time at work either. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard “oh well (name) said they were hanging out by the pool this weekend they should be busy” “yea (name) said they were free this weekend you should call them in” People like that think free time for you is free time for them

  19. This is a bad call. Once you tell him you're busy, he has an avenue to question you. "Doing what?" "When do you expect to be finished?". You have to just say "it's my personal time". You have no obligation to tell him what you're doing with it. If he thinks you're lazy, that's not your problem.

  20. Can you just respond to everything with "I'm not currently available. I will attend to this when I'm back in the office", and then stop responding?

  21. Why not just not respond? When my previous boss would text/call me on my days off, I just wouldn’t answer. Sometimes he’s confront me and say hey I called you on Saturday. I’d say oh yeah, I didn’t see that until Monday morning when I checked my work phone first thing.

  22. "Hey, I'm not in a place where I can talk about or respond to this right now. It's my personal time. Got your message, will review on Monday when I'm back at work."

  23. What I would do is say “hey sounds good re x task. Can it wait until Monday/tomorrow or do you think it’s urgent?” This will hopefully make him stop and think. If he says it’s urgent, say “Hey, i noticed it’s become a recurring occasion that I’m expected to work outside of work hours. I’m wondering if my role and compensation should change to reflect these new expectations.”

  24. First off, I wouldn't answer any more texts or call from him on your days off. If he thinks it's a problem, let him ask you why. Then tell him that you don't intend to address any work related issues on your own, personal time, you'll be happy to address it at the office. If he response as though he thinks you should be dealing with this on your time then tell him that being on call 24/7 was not part of your job description, but if he'd like to discuss it with HR you'd be happy to setup a meeting to discuss.

  25. Politely remind him you're off the clock and if he expects you to work you'll be charging him for the time you worked. There's not really a nice way to put it but you have to let him know.

  26. Right. There’s a real polite “Sounds good. I can get started on this when I’m in the office/back on day whatever.” way to go about this.

  27. I hate how this thing is "quiet quitting" in the US and news outlets frame it like some laziness epidemic that's costing money for businesses. It's actually workers just refusing to be taken advantage of anymore.

  28. I freelance and have a client like this. I let her messages pile up over the weekend with no response from me and then attend to them on Monday. No drama.

  29. Good answers here. You will have to grieve the disappointing fact that some people will really act like they are upset, or like you're really in the wrong, when you are just not doing what benefits them directly in that moment. Like they are shaking a vending machine to get their stuck snack out or something. You are going to have to risk disappointing him, or you will be violating your own personal boundaries.

  30. Just don’t respond. Ever. If asked later just say you were not available at the time. NEVER explain why you were not available. Period.

  31. INFO: What is your end goal? Is your end goal to 1) stop him from texting you at all on your time off (and instead use internal methods of communication that you normally only check during work hours), or 2) find a way to state that you won’t be responding to his work related texts on your time off, but that you’ll happily deal with the concerns in his messages first thing during your next work day even if you don’t respond to his messages on your time off?

  32. I set a standard with my boss and informed him if he calls or texts me about work outside of office hours he'll be met with "Am I receiving four hours of on call pay for this?" So far he's never bothered me outside of work. Ymmv.

  33. People like this get some sort of thrill out of seeing how far they can push you - it’s like a little game to them. The only way you can address this is to meet then head-on and clearly lay out your boundaries - ie “I’ve noticed you have been messaging me when I’m not at work about work-related tasks and I will not be responding out of my contracted work hours.” Don’t offer anything further in explanation- the rest is on him. Then block him when you are out of work and don’t check emails etc either. He will likely move on to someone else to target.

  34. It seems like the least confrontational option. If boss doesn't like it then let them be the ones to escalate it.

  35. This is the answer. For me, it wouldn’t be enough to ignore the messages until Monday, just seeing them come in and sitting there unanswered would take up mental space that I’m not being compensated for - block at end of day Friday, unblock at beginning of business day Monday.

  36. I would say don't respond except during working hours. His is diminishing the quality of your time off. Don't read his texts until you're back on the clock.

  37. He's not dumb. He knows what he's doing by texting you and not doing the request via a work email. This isn't his first rodeo. It's possible he's been written up for this before and he hasn't learned.

  38. Alternatively, he just gives out the tasks as he plans it and perfectly understand that they'd be done after employee comes into work.

  39. My old boss was the same. Any time she had a thought about something I was working on she'd want to send me an email or call me. She didn't expect me to drop everything and start working though. She just wanted to send it to me while it was on her mind, so she wouldn't forget about it before the next time we spoke.

  40. Yeah how did it get to that? I work 24 hours a week (I also like being a mom) but somehow my team expects me to be available 24/7 and looks like all other people I work with agree…yet call me old fashioned but I get paid for 24, not more. And I don’t mind doing some work now and then or staying late but I do have a problem with it being expected…

  41. "My current contract does not compensate me for off-hours work, so I'm happy to offer my service as a consultant on the weekend. My rate is $150/h. I'll bring my service agreement over on Monday for you to sign and we can start next weekend. I think this will be a great opportunity for both of us!"

  42. “You are messaging me off hours where I am an independent contractor and working my second job if you want me to respond or complete the task you require, I charge $300 per hour with a minimum 4 hour block reservation. If you want to make a reservation please let me know 24 hours in advance.”

  43. It's easy. You don't explain it to them, cause you don't have to and you just continue to not answer on your days off.

  44. So what's the problem so far? It sounds like he's messaging you, but you're not replying, and everyone is still happy? I agree he shouldn't message you on your time off, but it also seems like he doesn't have the expectation you're going to reply so far.

  45. Respectfully, I love this response with the exception of all forms of "I'm sorry." There is no reason to apologize, and it softens/weakens the boundary. It feels rude & awkward to not apologize, but in this case it comes across stronger and more definitive without the apology.

  46. Just for clarification here, are these "when you are back in the office" requests or please take a few minutes from your time off requests?

  47. Fight fire with fire. Blow his phone up at 3 am about something that can absolutely wait until the workday starts. You stop when he stops./s lol

  48. Put in writing: When I am on the clock, my pay is $xx per hour. When I am off the clock, my pay is 3X $XX per hour. That should stop his behavior.....

  49. You could say, "I would be happy to help for a full day of double overtime just to do this task for you :D" He'd probably drop it.

  50. You can also engineer this out completely by getting a Google Voice number and making it your official work number, then route it to your cell. You can turn off all notifications from that number when not actually working.

  51. Just literally don't respond, answer, or read anything until you're back on the clock. If they ask say you weren't on the clock.

  52. Start adding 15min to your time card for each text that your boss sends you that is related to work. When they inevitably ask why you have all this extra time on your card tell them why. They need to pay you if they expect you to work.

  53. Ask him how his day off was. When he responds and asks about yours, say you don't know, you didn't have one.

  54. Don't answer. Really not hard. One of my site managers is a workaholic and tries to do the same grap. As soon as inleave the job site I put my work phone on silent and put it in my center console till the next morning.

  55. I know this sounds funny but whenever my adult kids text me to ask for something that I don’t want to do, I text back:

  56. You can set an away message for his # or if you're up for it, you can reply by reminding him to approve your overtime for whatever it is. Either of those should be a cordial yet effective way to get your boss to stop.

  57. If you are able to clock in remotely just let him know you will be clocking in every time he texts or calls you. Every text results in minimum 15 minutes. If he has to pay overtime he will stop real quick

  58. Is it possible that your boss is sending the stuff when it occurs to him, so it’s off his plate and on yours while he’s thinking of it?

  59. Let him know that you have your time scheduled tightly outside of working hours, so you're not able to handle anything work-related outside of work-related hours.

  60. You could respond with a text that says something along the lines of "I'm unable to handle anything work related until xxxxx (day you're back at work), as I'm handling personal business/things.

  61. Put your phone on DND over the weekend and only allow friends list to bypass. Then only put people you know personally in the friends list.

  62. If you're required to have your phone on for business at all times with the expectation of answering, then your employer should be paying for your phone and plan.

  63. If they want to contact you for work purposes tell them to give you a work phone, and then lock it in a drawer for the weekend.

  64. Set up auto responses for 3 am the following day…. Or multiple ones. He text in day off, auto respond 3 am I am out of the office but will be back… follow up message if this is urgent please contact (insert his contact info).

  65. When my boss messages me on weekends, and it does sometimes happen, I say "no problem, I'll look into this on monday" He usually acknowledges that he didn't expect it dealt with immediately.

  66. My boss knows I am into hiking, camping, etc. I just use the excuse that I was out of cell service and the message/call/email didn't come through until I got home late last night and thought it better to wait until morning to talk to them about it. I don't lose cell service as often as they think...

  67. I 200% agree with everyone saying that your free time is your own, you have no obligation to answer work messages outside of contracted hours, etc.

  68. “Hey boss, thanks for texting me on my day off. Since it is my day off and this is a work related task, I’ll have to get to this when I am working. Thanks.”

  69. Have a direct conversation and don't assume they will be confrontational or expect you to respond. If I send an email or text after hours, it states not to reply until normal business hours. If something is an emergency, I state that and never abuse it. There are times I think of something and need to fire off an email or text or else I will forget. However I make it very clear that their time is theirs and not to respond out of obligation or fear.

  70. Not the same but when I worked at Walmart they would try to call me into work often. That is until everytime they called I'd tell them I'm drunk and would be more than happy to come in turnt up. They stopped calling haha.

  71. On an iPhone you can set your focus to Do Not Disturb for customized hours. You can then allow calls to come through from select friends and family.

  72. Step 1: continue taking his calls to see what he wants. He obviously is not the sort who takes a voice memo or asks Siri to put it on a 'things to do' list. He just calls you.

  73. I added a spare line to my wireless plan specifically for work. Sure, it's annoying carrying two phones Mon-Fri, 9-5 BUT... I get to set it on silent and ignore it as soon as I'm off work. I don't even know if I received messages until the next work day.

  74. I spent 20+ years working in a union environment, most of it as a manager. This is exactly the kind of BS that a union protects you from. The union contract will define working conditions above and beyond the local laws so that it makes it harder for the business to steal your time/labor from you. It makes the rules clear to both parties and will pay you for OT, even intermittent on call type stuff. If you aren’t volunteering AND being compensated they are taking advantage of you.

  75. Fill up your calendar with arbitrary events and things to do. Any given Saturday, your calendar should be full from 8am - 6pm basically, this will be the grounds for you being reasonable and showing your boss that you are busy. For example:

  76. My boss was like this. I don't text her back right away. I text her back at the end of the day or even the next day. And I would say something like "oh I'm sorry I was out all day." I use my kids as an excuse too (not really lying cuz it's true). "Oh sorry I just saw your text. I was running around with the kids." Eventually she stopped texting me on my days off cuz I was so hard to get a hold of. Just give your boss the idea that you're actually busy on your days off.

  77. Try redirecting him every time he does that. You could say “great, let’s talk about it Monday!“ You’re showing interest and deflate his request in a respectful way. You’re letting him know when he should talk to you.

  78. “I don’t have to answer my private phone and do work related tasks on my private time. as you should know, it is against the local law and if you’ll not respect that, I will report you to HR” simple enough

  79. Easiest way to tell somebody is to not tell them so just don’t answer the phone on the weekend it’s a simple as that. And when he asks you why you don’t answer his calls you say I was in the bathroom each time you called me I was pooping make it so uncomfortable that you double down on his stupidity!?

  80. Sorry for the long previous reply. To answer your question let him know it is unaccepteble to be contacted to work on YOUR time off unless you contractually obligated to do so. Or agreed to do so beforehand.

  81. Don’t answer. Make sure your work email isn’t on your phone too. State your boundaries politely and objectively if questioned at work, you will not be actioning work tasks outside of contracted days/hours.

  82. "Cool, I've been hoping to pick up some of that sweet time and half overtime. I'll text you when I'm done..."

  83. Easy. Let calls go to VM and don't respond to text messages until you back on the clock. No exceptions.

  84. Apologies, but I am out of the office. I will attend to this message during regular business hours. Thank you for your understanding.

  85. If you do something just log the time working on it and turn it in for hours. then you have a log of time spent for a lawyer as well if it comes to that

  86. “Thanks for letting me know, I’ll make sure to make this a priority on [insert day you’re back at the office]”

  87. Are you certain your boss knows the applicable wage & hour laws? Why not seize the opportunity and ask for a meeting where you can address your respective expectations? If there's no mutual understanding, you can then escalate to HR. Seems like a more constructive approach than just ignoring your boss or telling him or her your rules without some dialog first.

  88. Here's how I would say it to your boss if I were you: "On the clock, I work for your pay scale. Off the clock, I work for my pay scale. And my pay scale is 5x what you currently pay me per hour." And be sure to log every text or call he makes to you and send him a notarized bill via registered mail so he has to sign for it.

  89. Get a work phone. Don’t look at it outside work. It becomes a burden for him to contact you when you are off work.

  90. “Busy…being driven nuts by an over zealous boss that doesn’t know how boundaries work” seems like an appropriate response

  91. I usually just didn’t answer if I was contacted off hours. Or said I was not near my computer. Like one time at a work from home job I literally stepped outside and texted back “Sorry not in the house right now” when they tried to get me to hop on, on a day off

  92. If you are paid hourly, start doing punch corrections for every request while off the clock. Most punches have to be for a minimum of 15 minutes. The companies that don’t like their employees getting overtime, will put a stop to your boss off hour communications. Source: been there done that, and it’s the only way I could get them to stop

  93. I’ve had a boss like this. Luckily they also did payroll for our department, so I messaged her and let her know that I was into overtime for the hours that I worked over the weekend and would need her to add them to my timesheet. After a couple weeks she asked my thoughts on how to keep myself from over time. I let her know that it was the weekend work and she agreed that I needed to not work those extra hours.

  94. Idk why yall making it so direct. I would handle this with passive aggression. Bring up the fact he always working / reaching out a lot during weekends as a joke. 1 to 1 or even in your team huddles if your not the only one you does it to. Make him feel public shame for doing it. People tend to keep their word when multiple people hear the commitment.

  95. Remind them it’s your personal phone and you don’t constantly have it on you/nor do you check your messages from work contacts when you’re off. Even if I see colleagues messaging me on my days off I let them know when I next see them or reply on a working day ‘Sorry, I saw your messages late- when I’m not working I switch off and don’t tend to reply or answer phone calls’. I’ve done it enough that I get them less frequently.

  96. Set your phone to non-alert for your bosses phone number and don’t look at the texts until the next day you work. when your boss wants to know why you didn’t answer the texts tell them that was because you weren’t working, and you have important things to do on your days off. You don’t need to tell him what they are, and relaxing is at the top of my list on my day off.

  97. 💡Quasi-auto-response: Choose your favorite among the many good responses here. Then use text replacement, so you can type in a short non-word and the lengthier answer will auto populate in your text field.

  98. Ask your boss how much overtime they will be offering and whether it's double pay. If it's not in your contract, it's not your responsibility.

  99. If you are hourly, clock in for every text responded to. Not sure about your country, but in the US by law, any work must be paid (yes it’s often overlooked).

  100. Put your out of office on and let people know exactly when you are out of the office and when you will return. This is important for you to document in case you ever have a problem. I would try and add the same message to my cell phone voicemail and text messaging, even if you have to cut and paste it. It may take some time, but you are just laying out the rules. There is nothing wrong with saying you are staying away from all your devices during time off for your mental health. If he starts to challenge you, escalate it for "clarification" to your HR department and make sure you everything documented. And, finally, DO NOT RESPOND when he contacts you.

  101. Ignore it until the first minute of your next shift. Rinse and repeat. It’s how I train people at work to not cross my boundaries without having to have a confrontation. But I’m capable of confrontation if they want that smoke 💨.

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