Unfiltered Story #56692

Unfiltered | January 6, 2016

We had an employee here at one time who had been the general manager’s pet. This was due to the fact that she presented herself as being extremely emotionally fragile and was very childlike in her appearance and behavior. Our GM honestly believed that she was just a young girl being forced to live on her own without the help of her parents and as such she cut her a lot, and I mean A LOT of slack. We were also very short staffed and didn’t have the best employee at the time, making this girl the best of a bad situation and in order to keep her from quitting, the GM decided it best not to correct or coach her and instead would correct her mistakes quietly and would go way overboard in praising her, exaggerating the few good things she did until this employee came to think that she was out best employee. It wasn’t until she announced that she was pregnant with her second child and going on maternity leave that our GM discovered that she was in fact a grown, married women with a house, a car and 2 other children. We also checked her social media pages and found that she was far more confident, outgoing and mature than she had been letting on. Our GM decided at that point not to cut her anymore slack and made it clear that from now on she would be held to the same standards as every other employee.

Upon returning from maternity leave, she discovers that not only is she not the boss’s pet anymore, but that nearly the entire staff has been replaced with competent, hard working employees who far exceed her in terms of quality of work. Annoyed, she threatens to quit and is surprised when the GM and I tell her we’re sorry to lose here and put out an add for a new employee rather than try to keep her. Since she’s been gone, she’s been trying everything in her power to make us “regret” losing her. She has made our lives interesting these past few months.

Today I answered the phone around 8am.

Me: Good morning, you’ve reached (hotel) this is (my name) speaking, how can I help you?

Customer: Good morning, I need to speak with (general manager) please.

Me: I’m sorry but she is off today and tomorrow, I am assistant general manager, can I help you with anything today?

Customer: Well, I was told by (old employee) to call here and speak to the general manager about getting back my necklace.

Me: Oh? ok, well you don’t really need to speak to a manager for something like that, the front desk staff are more than able to help with the lost and found but I’m absolutely able to help you here. When did you stay with us?

Customer: Well my daughter was the one who stayed here, it was for her wedding back in July (we are now December) She borrowed my necklace and I never got it back. she said she must have left it here. (old employee) is a family friend and she told me to speak to (general manager) about getting it back. She said it would still be there.

Me: This was in July, you say? Unfortunately madam we only keep lost and found items for 90 days before either disposing of them or giving them back to the employee or customer who found it. The law says we only have to keep it for 30 days but we extend that a little. I can tell you for a fact that anything from July would be long gone by now, in fact I wouldn’t even have the pages from the log book showing that we found it. I’m so sorry ma’am.

Customer: But (old employee) said it would be there, I don’t understand this.

Me: Well, that employee hasn’t worked here in some time now and she may not have realized that we don’t handle the lost and found the way we used to. It used to be that we kept it for as long as it took for someone to throw everything out but we ended up with a lot of clutter and misplaced items. We now have 3 separate bins, 1 for the current month and 2 for the previous 2 months. At the end of each month the oldest bin is discarded and everything is moved down to make room for the current month. I have no way of knowing if we even found a necklace.

Customer: Well why would (old employee) tell me you would have it? This is terrible customer service.

Me: I do apologize, (old employee) should not have given you this information. As I mentioned, she is no longer on staff and is not aware of how we conduct business, nor does she in any way represent our company or customer services.

Customer: That necklace was very valuable. Are you sure (general manager) can’t help me?

Me: Madam, I’m standing in the lost and found area of the office looking at the bins, we have October, November and

December. I’ve also got the log book in my hands and there are no logs for any kind of jewelry being found in the past 3 months. I’m so sorry but even if we had found your necklace it would be long gone by now.

Customer: Well this is unacceptable. I will be calling back to speak to (general; manager) in a few days to see if what you’re telling me is true, you’d better hope you’re not lying because otherwise I will have your job!

She hangs up the phone, I take a deep breath and sit at my desk. This is not the first time this employee has given incorrect information to customers and caused us grief as a result. I text to her to discuss the matter.

Me: Hey (old employee), so a woman just called here saying that you told her to speak to (GM) about a necklace she lost here back in July? Yeah, you may not remember but we changed the lost and found procedures when you were still here, we only keep things for 3 months. After that it’s garbage. She’s pretty upset now because you told her we could help and she thinks WE are giving her bad customer service now. This isn’t the first time I’ve had to bring this up with you but now that you are no longer working here I would appreciate if you wouldn’t give people information about the business. A lot has been changing since you’ve been gone. Service is improving and many procedures are completely different now. I’m not angry but it does make us look bad when someone tells a customer that we can help and we end up unable to do so. Thanks for understanding.

20 minutes later I get her reply

Old employee: Ok, whoa. I have done NOTHING WRONG here. Where do you get off talking to me this way? That woman is a close family friend of mine and all I told her was to call the hotel to see. I never told her to ask for (GM) or that it was still there. I have no idea what you are so worked up about. You know as well as I do that things have been falling apart since I left and now you just can’t keep track of your s**t. Whatever, I don’t need all this drama.

Against my better judgment I decide to reply to try to appease the situation.

Me: Ok, I’m sorry to upset you but as I said I’m not angry with you. All I’m saying is that this is not the first time a customer was told something by you about our business that was not correct and which caused us difficulty. She knew (GM)’s name and said that you told her we would still have it, I can only go based on what she told me and she told me that she got the information from you. In any event, all I’m asking is that in the future if anyone asks about the hotel, you just say I don’t know and let them call us directly for information. Give out the phone number if you want so they can call or direct them to our website but you have no business dealing with our clients regardless of how you know them. That’s all I’m asking of you (employee), a lot has changed since you were here and you are no longer familiar with how we operate. That’s all I wanted to ask of you.

Old employee: Well excuse me. I didn’t realize every thing about the hotel changed since YESTERDAY when I was JUST THERE helping your staff. Everything was the same still but ok if you say it all changed. I guess the whole hotel magically changed since YESTERDAY. You guys are all crazy, you won’t last a year without me. I don’t know how you managed to turn (GM) against me but she knows I was the best you all had. You guys will all be jobless by next summer without me and now you’re just jealous. F**k you all, I don’t need this drama. I’m out.

I didn’t bother responding to that but I did confirm that she was no where near the property the day before. As a side note, we DID in fact change all of our procedures and improve our service since she left and we are currently the number 1 hotel in our area. She is one employee that none of us miss.