Ultimatum Results In Ultimate Victory

, , , , | Working | May 4, 2019

(I’m a sysadmin at a school. As I’m the only one taking care of IT, I’m responsible for everything concerning IT, from ordering toner cartridges for printers to server maintenance, and everything in between. I do, however, have two people to answer to: the vice principal and the principal of the school. The principal is easy. He told me when I was hired:)

Principal: “I don’t care what you do or when you do it. I only want you to take care of everything IT-ish. As long as everything runs smoothly, I’m good.”

(The vice principal is a different type of person who is always trying to boss me around and trying to interfere in my work. One day, I get complaints that computers randomly start temporarily losing their network connection. I soon discover that a network switch is having problems, but I have to wait until school’s out before I can replace it. I tell the principal what the problem is and that I can fix it, but not right now because that would mean that the entire network would go down. The principal understands, and we agree that’s it’s wiser to wait. So, when everyone’s gone, I start replacing the switch. This involves disconnecting a lot of cables, replacing the switch, patching the cables again, and configuring the switch, which takes me a couple of hours. This solves the problem, but I still have to sync some servers and do some tests. At three am, I go home, knowing that everything is fine. I leave a note on principal’s desk with what I’ve done and at what time I finished. I don’t clock in or out. I pretty much come and go as I please, usually. The next day, I show up at school around noon. As soon as the vice principal sees me:)

Vice Principal: “We need to talk.”

(In his office, he tells me:)

Vice Principal: “We don’t come and go as we please. You’re fired for being absent without my permission.”

Me: “I’ve had enough of you. It’s true that ‘we’ don’t come and go as ‘we’ please, but I do, and if you have a problem with that you should see the principal.”

(And off he goes, straight to the principal. Ten minutes later, the principal calls me into his office to tell me that I’m not fired and that the vice principal has decided to leave the school, so I can delete his account. The principal’s secretary later tells me that the vice principal had given the principal an ultimatum:)

Vice-Principal: “Either the IT-guy is out or I’m out.”

Principal: “I accept your resignation. You have fifteen minutes to clear your desk, hand in the keys to my secretary, and leave.”

(It turned out that a lot of teachers had complained about his behaviour to the principal and that the principal also didn’t get along with this guy.)

Shifty Behavior, Part 4

, , , , , | Working | May 3, 2019

(I am a teenager and have just gotten a job at the local supermarket. It’s a simple job, and I’m pretty good at it. So far, I haven’t missed any shifts, and I’ve only been late once — by about five minutes due to traffic. My manager, however, has taken a huge disliking to me. I always go out of my way to be kind to her. There is only one other teenager in the store — everyone else is older — and I notice that he’s treated poorly, too. I am not scheduled to work on Monday. I always take pictures of my schedule, as I have a pretty bad memory. My phone rings at seven am.)

Me: *drowsy* “Hello?”

Manager: “Where are you?! I’ve called you a hundred times! I know you teenagers like to party all night, but this is your job!

Me: *tired and confused* “What do you mean? I wasn’t scheduled to work today.”

Manager: “I’m sick of your lies. You know what? Don’t come in. [Older Coworker] came in today. I’ll have him cover your sorry a**.”

(Exhausted from a long week, I pass out, and when I wake up, I check my photo of the schedule. My older coworker was scheduled, not me. I come in for my shift the next day.)

Manager: “Looks like someone decided to show up. Get in my office!”

(I nervously comply; this is my first job and I have severe anxiety issues. I come into her office, and, surprisingly, my manager’s boss is at her desk.)

Manager’s Boss: “[Manager] told me you’ve been causing problems. A lot of them. She asked me to come and help her deal with you, as she was scared of your erratic behavior.”

Me: “What? I’m nothing but nice to her. She called me early in the morning yesterday to scream at me for not showing up to a shift I wasn’t scheduled for.”

(My manager smirks, as I’ve apparently given her the perfect opportunity to strike.)

Manager:Here is the schedule for yesterday, sir. As you can see, [My Name] is lying.”

Me: “You changed it… Here, I have a picture on my phone.”

(I show it to him, and he glances at it. I also show him the date. It was taken several days ago. He dismisses me, and leaves soon after as I go back to work. My manager spends the entire day glaring at me, not doing much of anything, but it seems like he yelled at her, as she doesn’t punish me. As leaving, she stops me at the door.)

Manager: “Don’t pull any s*** like that again. You lazy f****** teenagers think you can get away with this?”

(The next morning, she announces that, due to unruly employees, we cannot take pictures of the schedule. She glares directly at me while saying it, and the rest of the day I feel weird, as I’m getting looks. To this day, I don’t know how someone being unruly could put such a rule in place, but oh, well. Due to my anxiety, I have to choose between disobeying my manager or taking a picture just in case. I decide to continue taking pictures. Shockingly, two months later, I’m called into her office again. This time, I wasn’t even called the day before, when I was off. We have a similar conversation as before.)

Manager: “And this is only one of many missing shifts!”

Me: “Ma’am, I’m cutting you off right there. All you have done since I’ve gotten here is bully and lie. I’m sick of it. You never do any work because you’re chatting to your friends all day. We all hear it! While I’m working my a** off! Just because I’m a teenager, that doesn’t mean I’m incompetent. Sir, here is another picture of the schedule. Just like two months ago, she made a new one to frame me. I’m sick of this.”

(Again, I’m dismissed, and I proceed to have a panic attack in a bathroom stall, as my anxiety has been very bad due to my manager’s constant harassment. About an hour later, her boss speaks to me.)

Boss: “I think you’ve proven well enough that your manager has been faking schedules. I apologize. This will be taken care of.”

(My manager fired me the next day, and was let go by the company herself a few weeks later. Her boss offered me the job back after she was gone, as the firing was for no reason, but I declined. He was very kind and apologetic and even offered me a raise to return. My anxiety was just too bad while working there.)

Related:
Shifty Behavior, Part 3
Shifty Behavior, Part 2
Shifty Behavior

In The Heat Of The Moment

, , , | Working | May 2, 2019

(I work in an office as a receptionist. When the company got this building, there was no reception, but when one was made, it turned out that this one point was the coldest point in the building, and there was no way the climate system could get it warm. So, we got a mobile heater and it works like a charm. In the summer, it’s the coolest place of the building. One day, the CEO and one of the high-ranked managers come inside after borrowing the company bikes. They hand in the keys.)

Manager: “Man, it’s cold outside; look at my hands!” *shows red hands*

Me: “I can imag— Oh, wait, I believe you! Those keys are cold!”

CEO: “My hands are freezing!”

Me: *jokingly* “You poor things!” *pulls out mobile heater* “Why don’t you warm up your hands here?”

(I expect them to decline or walk around the reception and warm their hands. Instead, they lunge over my desk and both put their hands on top of the heater! They are now laying on top of my reception desk, not caring about their expensive business suits, and they release a relieved “Aaaaaah” of sweet contentment.)

CEO: “Next time we take the bikes, this thing is coming along!”

Manager: “How long is our longest extension cord?”

(My CEO and manager are pretty cool people.)

Be Thankful You Dodged That Bullet

, , , , , , , | Working | May 2, 2019

A few months after finishing my degree, I decide to apply to some seasonal retail positions to help pay the bills while looking for more permanent work. One well-known department store invites me for a phone interview. It goes very well, and the employee offers me a 20- to 25-hour-per-week sales position on the spot.

When we talk about availability, she tells me that the regional store I’ll be working in isn’t asking seasonal workers in this role to come in on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day; as long as I can come in on Black Friday and December 26, that’s fine. In fact, if I’ll be traveling, she can even make a note on my file that I want to work later shifts on those days! I was hoping to visit family a few hours away on Thanksgiving, so I say that’s perfect, and she puts me down as available anytime between ten am and midnight on Black Friday. I also tell her that, for religious reasons, I would prefer not to work Saturday mornings but can work every Sunday and Saturday afternoons if needed, and she assures me that is fine and she will make a note of that, too.

The training itself consists of six hours of watching instructional videos, 50 minutes of silently watching a busy cashier handle transactions without talking to me, and 10 minutes of the cashier actually training me. I am a little nervous that I won’t be prepared for the job, but as it turns out, I don’t have to worry.

Schedules are handled in an online system. When I am getting set up, I notice that Saturdays are listed as a “must work” with no option for me to make myself unavailable, even for a few hours. I ask one of the office managers and she says not to worry, and that once I am assigned to a manager, they will be able to alter it. I will “definitely” have shifts on the schedule before Thanksgiving — about three weeks away, at this point — and when I arrive for my shifts I will be assigned a manager.

A week goes by. The website says that all employees should now be scheduled for their entire holiday season, but my calendar is still blank. I call the office manager and she says the website was wrong; schedules would be up by Tuesday, and the schedule will only cover the next two weeks. On Thursday, the schedule goes up. I am scheduled for only one shift in two weeks, and it starts at four pm Thanksgiving Day. There is supposed to be an option for me to advertise the shift for other employees to pick up, but it isn’t working. I call the office manager again and explain the mixup. She says, again, that more shifts will definitely be added to my schedule, and that the option to swap shifts only comes up one week before the date.

The Friday before Thanksgiving, I still can’t swap that shift and my “20- to 25-hour-a-week” job still has me scheduled for only eight hours in two weeks. Annoyed, I call the office and tell the second office manager — the one who answers the call — that I would like to quit effective immediately. She asks for my name, which I give, and the name of my manager. I tell her I never got one, and she says, “Okay, thank you,” and hangs up.

Five weeks later, I get a call from the original office manager. She says, “Hi, [My Name]. Are you available to pick up a shift this week?” When I tell her that I quit over a month ago, she asks if I signed any paperwork. I tell her no one ever asked me to. She says, “Okay, thank you,” and hangs up.

But hey, I made $48 from my training shifts that they never asked me to pay back, so I guess it wasn’t a complete waste of time?

Get Your Fax Straight

, , , , , | Working | May 1, 2019

(My manager hangs up the phone and starts mocking a customer he was just talking to about faxing prices. Note, we are in Canada.)

Manager: “SIX DOLLARS TO FAX TO THE STATES?!”

Me: “No, it’s two bucks; it’s only long distance to the States.”

Manager: “But it’s a different country. It’s out of our nation, so it’s international.”

Me: “But we have the same country code, so it’s long distance. I’ve also helped people dial to the states before and they didn’t have to put 011 in first. If it was international it wouldn’t have worked without dialing 011 first.”

Manager: “It’s still international. It doesn’t matter if it needs the 011 or not; it’s a different country.”

Me: “But I think it does matter. Just like the fax machine won’t dial a long distance number without the 1, it won’t dial an international number without the 011.”

Manager: “The 011 is needed when you’re sending to different continents. It still counts as international to send to the states.”

Me: *not wanting to argue anymore* “Then yes, it’s six dollars to fax to the states.”

(After he leaves, I Google it because I’m sure it’s only long distance. Another coworker starts to defend my manager.)

Coworker: “But what about my phone plan? I have unlimited Canada-wide calling. So, if I called the states, it would count as international.”

Me: “It would count as long distance. You can call long distance numbers within Canada for free, but if you call outside of Canada then it’s long distance unless your cell phone company just has an extra charge for outside of Canada.”

(I find it on Google and it says it counts as domestic long distance. My manager comes back out and I start to tell him I was right but he cuts me off.)

Manager: “I was actually coming out here to tell you that I called my old store, and they actually have a pricing break down of all the different types of faxing…” *long pause while he stares at me* “Aaand it’s long distance.”

Me: “HA! I knew it! I’m sorry that you’re wrong, but also I’m not actually sorry.”

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