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Nepotism, Stupidity, Or Something More Nefarious?

, , , , , , , , | Working | May 2, 2023

I was a project manager, and my not-so-bright boss dumped a do-nothing and know-nothing employee onto my team. Why, I have no clue, but despite my objections, I was stuck with him. He had no idea what our project was even about, but I tried to find something important for him to do — like documenting our processes and procedures — that wouldn’t cause our project to fail. But he failed at that simple task, too. 

Then came annual evaluations for all members of my team. After writing them, I met with my boss for review and approval. My recommendation, complete with a list of all the screw-ups and mistakes this jerk had made, was to put him on probation for ninety days, and if he didn’t improve, he was to be let go. And he would receive no raise that year.  

Instead of my boss accepting my recommendation for this guy, he told me to promote him to a Senior Analyst position! I could not justify that, and I told my boss so.

Boss: “Do it, or you might be reporting to that guy.”

I got the drift and somehow managed to write a half-decent reason for promoting this guy.

But, I did two things: along with my promotion request, I sent all communications explaining to my boss why I didn’t want to promote him and his responses to “do it”. And in the minutia of the request for promotion, I wrote, “[Employee] is being promoted only because I was told to do it. He is not worthy of this promotion.” My boss never saw or read the negative comments; he just signed off on it, and this guy was promoted.

Thankfully, our project was over in a couple of months and my staff was reassigned, as was I, to other projects. [Employee] was assigned to a different project manager that reported to a different boss. His new project manager quickly learned just how bad this employee was and read his employee file, including the “review” I had written.  

The project manager and his boss came to talk to me about it, and I told them the entire story, complete with copies of the emails between my boss and me, where I constantly wrote and provided examples that this employee was incompetent and did not deserve a promotion, and the responses telling me to “do it”.

Then, the three of us went to the Vice President of the division and explained what happened. [Employee] and my boss were asked to resign or be fired. They resigned.

Good riddance.

So Much Roomba For Improvement

, , , , | Right | May 2, 2023

I do technical support for a company that sells robotic vacuum cleaners.

Me: “Thank you for calling [Company] customer support. What product can I help you with today?”

Caller: “I just bought your g**d*** worthless [Cleaning Robot] yesterday, and the f****** thing doesn’t work! What kind of a racket are you people running?!”

People complain about products a lot, so you learn to just let them vent until they calm down a little, and then continue.

Me: “Ma’am, what seems to be the problem with your device?”

Caller: “I charged it all night just like the instructions said. Then, I took it off the dock, put it in the middle of the room, and pressed ‘Clean’, and nothing happened!”

Me: “Ma’am, do you see the button right next to the ‘Clean’ button labeled ‘Power?’ Try pushing that one.”

Caller: “Oh! All the lights on the thingy came on!”

Me: “Now press ‘Clean.'”

Caller: “There it goes! You’re a miracle worker!”

There Are No Accidental Loopholes

, , , | Right | May 1, 2023

A customer has brought in a laptop with obvious water damage.

Me: “Sorry, sir, our protection plan doesn’t cover accidental damage. It looks like this laptop was submerged in water.”

Customer: “It wasn’t accidental damage. I knew I bought the protection plan, so I threw it in a lake because I knew you guys would have to replace it.”

Hope They Short-Circuited When They Saw The A**hole Tax

, , , , | Right | April 30, 2023

I work for an Internet service provider. A job shows up on my laptop in the morning, and it turns out a tech has been to the customer’s home before but wasn’t able to resolve the issue because the owner wasn’t home. I arrive at the customer’s home and she is there. After I introduce myself:

Me: “I just need to take a measurement at the side of the home to verify that the problem is in the house.”

I am basically double-checking that the other tech did his job correctly.

She flips her s***!

Customer: “No! The problem is in the house!”

Me: “Well, it will only take me a few seconds to verify.”

Customer: “Either you come inside immediately or I’m going to call your manager and give you s***!”

Me: “Okay, the problem is in the house. Have you unplugged all your phones?”

There was a short circuit, and it’s usually a phone or modem plugged in causing this.

Customer: “Of course, I did!”

She is rolling her eyes as if I’m an idiot.

Me: “Do you have a modem, and is it unplugged?”

Customer: *Kind of taken aback for a second* “I didn’t unplug my modem.”

Me: “Unplug it, please?”

I watch on my multimeter as the short circuit disappears. I tell her that was the problem. Still not believing me, she says:

Customer: “Hold on a minute. I’m going to verify with my phone.”

Sure enough, it’s working.

Customer: “Huh, you don’t know how lucky you are, because I was just going to yell at you.”

I smugly told her to have a nice day, went outside to my van, and charged her for every single thing I could possibly find related to the service call. I hope she enjoyed her bill.

They’re Not The Sharpest Butter Knife, Are They?

, , | Right | April 29, 2023

I am taking a technical call, and I ask the caller to unplug their plug from the outlet.

Customer: “It’s screwed in! I can’t unplug it.”

Me: “Do you have a screwdriver?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “Do you have a butter knife you can use?”

Customer: “Look. I’m not fancy like that. We don’t have a knife exclusively for butter!”