Not Going To Vouch For This Purchase

, , , | Working | June 6, 2017

(A coworker is on break and has decided to do some shopping. She comes to my register with the biggest haul I have ever seen.)

Coworker: “There should be a booklet underneath the reception desk. Can you get it for me?”

(I start searching with the receptionist, who has taken an interest. We finally find the booklet.)

Receptionist: “Isn’t that…?”

Me: “Yes. Call the manager down.”

(The booklet holds a set of vouchers which are used for helping children and young adults from poor backgrounds with education and basic living (clothes, stationery, etc.). They don’t have a monetary value stated as they are linked to the budgets the local charities and schools involved in the scheme are allocated. No one except for senior staff are allowed to even touch them, and [Coworker] isn’t senior staff.)

Me: “Umm, I think we need a manager to approve these, as they aren’t meant to be for some of the things you’re trying to buy.”

Coworker: “Oh, you don’t have to get him involved. You just need to scan one whole column and it should be fine. If it doesn’t work, just move onto the next. Here, I can help!”

Me: “No, I would rather a manager oversee this. It’s going to be a large purchase.”

Coworker: “It’s only a couple thousand! Nowhere near enough to bother his ‘Royal Highness.’”

(I’m actually standing mouth agape when the manager arrives. He talks to the receptionist and looks bewildered as he comes over and takes the booklet from me. My coworker looks nervous.)

Manager: “What? How did you come by this?”

Coworker: “Oh, it’s nothing. I just thought I would treat myself. You know…”

(The manager signals for a guard to come over and my coworker is escorted out of the store.)

Manager: “What was she trying to do? Her trolley wouldn’t be covered by these.”

Me: “She said to scan an entire column.”

Manager: *bug-eyed* “An entire column!”

Me: “And to move onto the next if it didn’t work.”

Manager: “I’m pulling a couple of guys from the stockroom. I want to you and them to total up that entire trolley. I need to get in touch with [CEO].”

(We spend close to three hours totaling everything.)

Manager: “What’s the number, to the nearest thousand?”

Me: “Well, it’s more accurate to go with £4,500.”

Manager: “Great. So with that, she would have nearly blown the entire budget for [Primary School I attended].”

Me: “Wow.”

Manager: “I can’t understand where she got them from. They’re kept in the safe at all times, except for select days, and they are counted every week. Also how did she know stacking the vouchers would work? Only store managers know that. Only I know that!”

Me: “Maybe they aren’t real?”

Manager: “Oh, they’re real. The codes check out, and I put a notebook through with one to be certain. [CEO] is launching an investigation. I’ll probably lose my job over it.”

Me: “What happens to [Coworker]?”

Manager: “I called the police the second I got in the back. She’s being held. [CEO] is considering pressing charges. Either way, she won’t be working with us anymore.”

(The investigation found that the vouchers actually came from when the store moved location, but for whatever reason, weren’t voided and destroyed in the move. We still don’t know how she found out about stacking the vouchers. We haven’t heard much else on whether she has been prosecuted, but we are checking local news just in case. My manager was able to keep his job in the end, only because of our quick thinking, to which CEO thanked us personally. We got a nice bonus from it.)

Should Quit That Line Of Questioning

, , , , | Working | June 5, 2017

Assistant Manager: “You need to quit.”

Me: “What?”

Assistant Manager: “You need to quit, like now.”

Me: “Why?”

Assistant Manager: “Because I was just speaking to [Boss], and he said the only way I’ll get a promotion is if you leave… so leave already!”

Me: “Well, you are my assistant manager. If you want to stay in this department, the only way to can get any higher is if you replace me.”

Assistant Manager: “So when are you leaving?”

(I’m about to answer when an email from Boss comes through on my computer. I can only see the notification and the first sentence, but the tone of the email isn’t too pleasant towards Assistant Manager.)

Me: “Umm, I’ll get back to you on that.”

(Whatever was said in that meeting he had with Boss, it certainly left an impression — and not the good kind.)

One Door Closes… And That’s It

, , | Working | May 26, 2017

(I have gotten into work and am going through a sequence of doors, each requiring either a code or ID to unlock. I see a woman behind me carrying a large box and decide to hold the door open for her.)

Me: “I’ll keep the doors open for you.”

Coworker: “Umm, excuse me?”

Me: “I said—”

Coworker: “I don’t need a man to hold a door open for me!”

Me: “I’m sorry. I thought I would help, otherwise you would have to put down the—”

Coworker: “Get your male privilege out of my face!”

Me: “Oh, okay.”

(I let go of the door and walked away. The rest of the journey through that corridor was me opening one door and seeing her struggle to get through the last before closing it.)

Cancer Can Do A Real Job On You

, , , | MN, USA | Hopeless | April 9, 2017

(We have a 24-year-old who works basically as a receptionist for our box office. She answers the phones, directs workers, and handles little stuff for us so we don’t have to. It’s clearly her first office job after a string of terrible retail jobs, and she’s confessed she’s afraid she’ll mess up and have to go back to retail. Because part of her job is answering the phone, we ask that she not answer her personal phone if it rings. She usually just keeps it in her purse until break. One day I notice she has it sitting on her desk and keeps glancing at it.)

Me: “Everything okay?”

Worker: “Oh, yeah, sorry. I’ve got an important phone call due soon. Would it be okay if I answered it? Sorry, it’s really important.”

Me: “Sure, just let [Coworker] know so she can cover the phones while you do.”

Worker: *look of utter relief* “Thanks. It’s from my doctor and they were supposed to call yesterday.”

Me: “Doctors, man. They never call back when they say they will.”

(About an hour late, I hear buzzing, and then see Worker bolt down the hallway, phone in hand.)

Me: *to Coworker* “Any idea what’s going on? I’m getting worried.”

Coworker: “She wouldn’t say. I hope it’s nothing bad. I feel really bad for her sometimes, you know? She’s told literal horror stories of having to work at her other jobs while sick, or not being allowed to call off and she sometimes acts like the smallest mistake will make her lose this job. Yesterday she told me about how she had to miss a funeral because her last job wouldn’t let her have the day off.”

Me: *shuddering* “I do not miss retail. I have no problems letting her go home early if she needs it, you?”

Coworker: “Nope.”

(Worker comes back, kinda pale, and looks like she’s trying not to cry. She goes straight to her desk and sits down, pulling up her work and tapping half-heartedly at the keys. Coworker and I exchange glances.)

Coworker: “[Worker]?”

Worker: *sniffling* “Yeah? Sorry. Hang on; I have a tissue in my purse… Sorry, sorry, would it be okay if I went home? I know it’s sudden but I can come in early tomorrow or—”

Me: “No, it’s fine, it’s fine. Are you okay?”

Worker: “I… just found out I have cancer. Um, I’m probably going to need to put in my two weeks while I get treatment—”

Me: “What?! No, absolutely not! You go home and get everything situated. If you feel up to it, come in whenever you want tomorrow and we’ll get this sorted. I’m gonna drive you home, and don’t worry about your job. Worry about your health!”

(She wound up needing surgery and a few rounds of chemo, but our parent company had no problem holding her job for her in the meantime, and even took up donations to help her pay for everything. She’s currently in remission and I’m happy to say she still works for us. I shudder to think what would have happened if she’d been at her old job when that happened…)

That Explanation Will Go Viral

, , | Australia | Working | March 14, 2017

Working at a computer company, a customer brings in a computer to have a virus removed. We remove the virus and scan the rest of the system to make sure all traces of it are gone. Now, this particular virus is known to come from porn sites so to warn the customer without making them feel embarrassed we say to be careful what websites are accessed with the computer.

Then a few days later the same customer brings the computer back in with the same virus, accusing us of not removing it, and demands that we remove it without them paying. I remove the virus again, scan the system again, print out the Internet cache of websites that the computer has accessed in the past 24 hours (including some kinky-but-not-illegal searches on a couple of porn sites), and then give the system with the evidence to the front desk staff to give to the customer when they come back. Later in the day, I hear raised voices out the front and I know it is that customer when I hear, “I don’t go to porn sites and the only other person who uses this computer is my partner.”

The customer would have learnt something new about their partner that day if it weren’t for the salespeople saving things by telling the customer that sometimes viruses can access the porn sites.

Yeah, that’s how it works: the porn sites come from the virus, not the other way around.

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