As a full-time freelance writer the one great freedom I have is the ability not to work in an office. This different working lifestyle has freed me from certain situations that are often confusing and disconcerting to recent graduates and young professionals everywhere. We all have at least one story. Something that didn’t go right, a boss who was way too difficult to work with, a questionable situation we’ve been put into. Below, Pamela Golamco offers her current situation about work-place politics and being asked to do things outside of your job description. – Katie

As my friends and I launch into our careers, I have noticed that the nine-to-five life is not as glamorous and fun-filled as my naive imagination told me it would be. Playing the game of office politics; long – and I mean long – hours; doing jobs that have nothing to do with the degree that you have put sweat and blood into; and hours of work being brushed aside because the company has decided to take a different direction. None of this measures up to what I had in mind when I graduated.

At times you tell yourself that this is what all graduates have to go through, and you just need to grin and bear it until it passes over and you are able to step up the ladder. After all, in this economic crisis a grad should be happy to have any job — shouldn’t they? How else do you cope with it? How do you know when to draw the line and say, “I am not doing this.”? Can you ever do that?

Let’s look at a concrete example. I work as an advertising assistant at a small to medium online advertising agency. We are having a meeting with some important clients. The boss asks me if I can get into the company kitchen and bake something for the meeting. Should I say no? It doesn’t happen every day, but in any case I do not recall baking being part of my job description. If I do this now, what else is he going to get me to do?

Recent grads and young professionals have you run into other similar situations? I’d love to hear your story and post it on Tiger Print. Send me an email