The Write-Up Is Complimentary

, , , , | Working | June 23, 2017

(Two young girls approach me and ask to use our store phone to call their parents since their phone died. I let them dial but since they are calling long distance it doesn’t work. The only way to contact their parents is on their dead cell phones so I give the girls my phone charger and let them charge it behind the counter. They go on a few rides and come back, thanking me profoundly. A few days later my team lead approaches me.)

Team Lead: “Two girls left you a good reviews on Tuesday.”

Me: “Oh, really? Wow, I’ve never gotten that before.”

Team Lead: “Yes, but they say you let them charge their phone behind the counter?”

Me: “Oh, yes.” *explains situation*

Team Lead: “Okay, I see, but we’re still not allowed to do that. I’m going to have to write you up!”

Me: “But what about their compliments? No harm was done and I made their day!”

Team Lead: “It’s the rules, sorry.”

(So I was written up BUT I was also awarded by my supervisor two free tickets as a reward for the compliments. Way to confuse your workers.)

Can’t Put This Deli-cately

, , , , , | Working | June 23, 2017

(I work in the deli department in a retail chain. For months now, our staffing has been slowly getting less and less, making each of our individual workloads heavier while management puts pressure on us to get even more done, even scolding us in front of customers. What few and far between new hires we do see are out the door very quickly due to the intense workload and lack of respect from management and all requests to transfer to other departments are ignored. Eventually, we’re down to just four people total per day in our department as the business picks up due to warmer weather. As a result, the morale of the department is pretty much non-existent. Finally, after months of everyone not getting everything management is asking done each day, two managers get behind the counter themselves to “show us how easy our department is.” This is the conversation that followed.)

Manager: “So, after working deli today, I absolutely hate it. Even we couldn’t get everything you need to do done with who we have. Honestly, I’d never work this job for what we’re paying you.”

Me: *feeling so relieved* “Thank you! So, you’ll put a higher priority on hiring and show more understanding for when we can’t get it all done, right?”

Manager: “Well, we’ll see what we can do about hiring, but the fact is, not many people are applying to be in deli, so you’ll just have to make do. As for getting it done, we get emails from corporate about our numbers and when that happens, we have to hold people accountable.”

Me: “Wait, what?! You and [Other Manager] just said you couldn’t figure out how to get it all done, and with you both there, that was with two more people that we’re used to having. If you two, whose job it is to ensure the place runs properly, cannot make it run properly yourselves, why are the employees being held accountable?”

Manager: “You gotta understand; when we walk over and see empty shelves because nobody stocked it, that’s sales we’re losing!”

Me: “Did you and [Other Manager] manage to stock all the shelves yesterday?”

Manager: “Well, no, but you just gotta communicate with your coworkers and figure it out. While we’re at it, everyone in the deli seems miserable!”

Me: “Because we all are. The work conditions you just dealt with are the conditions we’ve been dealing with every day for months! We all tried our best to stay hopeful, but we’ve been warning you about the decreasing conditions this whole time, you’ve done little to nothing about it and now, as human beings, we’ve just reached our limit!”

Manager: “Well, if you’re going to be here, you’re going to act happier. The customers can’t see you all so miserable. If you don’t like that, then nobody is being forced to keep the job. The door’s always open for you all to leave.”

(On that note, I realized I wasn’t getting through to her. After going home that night, I thought long and hard on it and decided to accept her generous offer to leave. I gave my two week’s notice very shortly after and am currently much happier and less stressed. Unfortunately, most of my coworkers did not follow me out the door.)

The Number One Problem Here Is The Manager

, , , , | Working | June 21, 2017

(We’ve had a little accident with a five-year-old who has wet himself. He’s crying quite a bit as his mum tries to sort him out. We have a cleaner sorting out the mess. After he is tended to, he and his mum come out and see our manager glaring at them. He speaks to the boy first.)

Manager: “You should be ASHAMED OF YOURSELF! HAVE YOU NO SELF CONTROL, YOU ANIMAL?!”

Mother: “Excuse me; that’s my son. He’s only five!”

Manager: “AND HAVE YOU ANY PRIDE, WOMAN?! BRINGING AN UNDISCIPLINED MAGGOT INTO MY SHOP, PISSING EVERYWHERE. GET OUT NOW, BEFORE I HAVE BOTH OF YOU ARRESTED!”

(The mother looks horrified as she rushes her son out of the store, while our manager follows her out, screaming louder with every sentence. After they leave, he addresses us.)

Manager: “That is how you handle white trash. The lowest most despicable vermin of our society. In future, if you ever see people like that again, you have my permission to drag them out.”

(I’m too petrified to speak, but am eyeing the door and considering just leaving and never coming back. The feeling seems to be hanging on everyone’s head, but a head supervisor is the first to speak.)

Supervisor: “I may as well pack my bags now then.”

Manager: “What? But you’re my best!”

Supervisor: “I also have a maggot who also wets himself. Yes, I said it. WETS HIMSELF! I hope your mother wasn’t too harsh on you to think it is all right to scream at a five-year-old for an accident. I’m off!”

(This is what broke the silence and we all voiced our disapproval before leaving. The manager sputtered out an attempt at back-pedaling, but it fell on deaf ears. He had to call HR and explain why he needed replacement staff, and according to the other management, got a stern talking to from his manager, who just so happened to have a son around the same age as the boy.)

Burn Your Return

, , , , , | Right | June 18, 2017

Customer: “I would like to return these pants.”

Me: “Okay, do you have your receipt?”

Customer: “Yes, I do.” *hands the receipt to me* “I’m returning them because the girl blew her nose and picked up a receipt off the floor and didn’t wash her hands. I think they are contaminated.  They are dirty now. You need to train your employees to be sanitary.”

Me: “Aren’t you the woman who used to come in the dry cleaners I used to work at and always complain and try to get a free order? Then I went to working at [Local Drug Store] and you had issues there, too. Let me tell you something. We are sales associates who try to do our jobs and make other people happy. But you are one customer who I know well, and nothing satisfies you.”

Customer: “I want to see a manager.”

(Manager comes up to the register.)

Manager: “How may I help you?”

Customer: “This employee is back-talking me.”

Manager: *holding up the pants* “What is your reason for returning this now? Let me tell you something, miss. Every week, you are in here returning something, sometimes more than once a week.”

Customer: “Well, your sales associates are disrespectful and this item was touched by someone who didn’t wash their hands after they rang me up and they blew their nose. They also picked up a slip off the floor. I can’t shop in a store so dirty.”

Manager: “I can return the pants, but honestly, I don’t like to lose customers. In your case, however, your returns are far outweighing your purchases and we feel you are abusing our return policy. This is the last return we are processing for you. I am asking you to not come back in this store, as you’ve had a history of harassing associates.”

(The customer took the completed return and left, clearly in shock. That’s the last time I saw the Watertown Retail Bully ever around my area.)

Managers, Fridges, And Cats, Oh My!

, , , , , | Working | June 16, 2017

(I work for the Manager-from-Hell, in a service department for a firm that sells and maintained industrial fridges/freezers, cooker ranges, massive toasters, etc. The service department is arranged so that the three administrators (I and two others) divide up the customers between us. Some of our customers only have the one walk-in freezer or industrial toaster, so their livelihood is affected if we don’t get out there and fix the problems. Our manager loves himself so much, always sees himself as ‘in’ with the directors, and is always a bit too fast to jump at you for mistakes.)

Manager: “[My Name]! You know what you’ve done? We’re going to lose this customer because of you! DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH CRAP THE MANAGING DIRECTOR JUST GAVE ME BECAUSE OF YOU? WELL, DO YOU?!”

Me: *getting flustered, because I haven’t been there long and it is hot in that office* “What’s the customer’s name? I’ll get the paperwork out and see what’s—”

Manager: “Never MIND what the customer’s called! You know D*** WELL know what they’re called! You spoke to them twice today, so don’t give me that!”

(This ‘conversation’ is taking place in full view and hearing of my colleagues, and the other offices go strangely quiet; they can hear him, too.)

Me: “[Manager], unless you tell me who it is, I can’t do anything about it, so—”

Manager: “GOD ALMIGHTY, [My Name], you’re just so d***ed useless! I don’t know why we took you on! Bloody useless!” *storms off to the MD’s office*

Me: *to the office in general* “Does anyone know who he’s talking about?”

(My colleagues just shrug, so we get back to work. But now I’m getting angry, and wondering if I’ve taken a problem job. Ten minutes later, the manager asks me to come into the kitchen; he even asks in a nice, polite way. When we get there, he closes the door after us, smiles and says:)

Manager: “[My Name], I’m really sorry for shouting at you like that. The mistake wasn’t yours; it was actually [Other Department]’s fault. It was them who’d talked to the client. I’m sorry for blaming you.”

Me: “Wow, thanks for the apology! But I won’t accept it until you come with me.” *takes him back to our office* “[Manager], would you mind repeating what you said in the kitchen, please?”

Manager: “Really, [My Name]? You’re going to make me embarrass myself?” *gives a jolly hahaho – an obviously fake laugh*

Me: “Yes, [Manager]. I think it’s only right, seeing as you ripped a piece off me without any idea what was going on. ‘New girl gets the blame.’ Is that your style? Anyway, who was the customer?”

Manager: “It was one of [Coworker]’s accounts. Sorry.”

(So, he did apologise — mechanically and monotonously, but he did. That was the first run-in I had with him, and I had many more in the three years I was there. The only reason I was there so long is that I promised myself I’d see him gone before I did. We absolutely hated each other’s guts. When he left, I handed in my notice. I got a better revenge, though. He insisted on giving me a lift home one night in his new car, to show off. I accepted, seeing as it was pouring down. When we got there, he asked if my husband was in (for more bragging), so I took him into the flat. Our little cat was having a bit of a bad tummy reaction to a cat food I’d given her, and she also liked to sit on strangers’ laps. She bounced up onto my manager’s lap, curled up, fell asleep and then farted the smelliest fart I’d ever smelled her do. It was gross, and I loved it a lot. The manager’s face was a picture. Perfect timing, Fuzzball!)

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