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.)

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