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Bad boss and coworker stories

Well, That’s Just Infuriating For Everyone Involved, Isn’t It?

, , , | Working | February 4, 2023

We live up a long driveway in a rural area, a fair drive from a couple of tiny towns, so most of the time, mail orders are literally that — through the mail — and we collect them at the post office. There is one courier who drops packages off at a gas station only twenty minutes away, another courier that actually comes to the house (which I feel bad about as they usually get lost, and at best, it’s time-consuming), a few who decline to operate out here, and one that’s… just plain weird. Let’s call them [Courier].

The first time we had something coming with [Courier], I was watching the tracking closely, and to my frustration, I saw the package check in at a city five hours away and then stop. I Googled the business name mentioned as the last check-in spot and could find no record of it. I thought maybe it was a small local company that might do a loop only weekly or something, so I waited patiently.

When nothing came, I tried contacting [Courier], but searching their name brought up no contact information, only a million negative reviews and people raging that [Courier] was impossible to contact.

After two weeks of no tracking updates, I tried asking the seller for a replacement — sent with another company!

Maybe a week later, a stranger called me. It turned out she worked at a business in a town over an hour away — not the nearest town, by the way, but the fifth nearest, and very small, so we never go there — and my parcel had been sitting at their counter for weeks. She got tired of it being in the way, so finally actually looked at it and saw that my number was included on the label, and here she was calling. There was no explanation of why it was there or why she and her coworkers had not immediately either contacted the recipient or sent the package back.

Inconveniently, this business was inaccessible to me due to disability.

Me: “I’m not able to get the package. Could my partner come and get it for me?”

Employee: “No, we’ll only give it to you personally after seeing your ID.”

Tight security for an abandoned parcel! I had no choice but to tell her to return it to the sender, though I wished I could have saved the poor unwitting seller the hassle.

Even had I been able to collect it, I think it very strange that a courier who got paid to deliver a package would see fit to drop it miles away, forcing the recipient to do their work. And if they do this sort of thing, why not at least update the tracking with the package’s actual location and/or contact the recipient, so they know they are supposed to go to this location and get their parcel?

I have to wonder if this policy is why so many reviews complain about things never arriving. 

And I have to laugh at the bizarre fact that there is a “delivery company” which takes delivery jobs and charges delivery fees… but does not deliver.

There’s No Time To Do Anything To Meet About!

, , , , , , | Working | February 3, 2023

We had a time when upper-level managers were demanding weekly status updates. Once a week with team leads attending to give the updates was reasonable and quite manageable.

Then, there was a crisis, and they started doing the status updates twice a week. This was worse but still manageable, even when the team leads needed backup from the people actually doing the work.

Over the next few months, they raised the requirement to the entire workgroup going — walking to another building for this pointless meeting for an hour and then walking back! It took about an hour and a half each time… every single effing day!

Then, they wanted the meeting twice a day, because our backlog was getting worse. There was absolutely no recognition of the impact losing 20% of our available work time to this pointless meeting was having on our productivity… and our manager wouldn’t do anything! (That was the worst manager I ever had — worse than the guy most of us didn’t know was a drinker until the day he showed up sober!)

Eventually, one of the team leaders got the point across to an only marginally incompetent manager, who allowed the team leaders to represent the work group and report on any issues they couldn’t answer at the next meeting.

Sometime after that, we got new high-level management, who reduced the meetings to first twice a week and then back to once a week, with the group managers reporting and bringing any people needed for detail reports.

It was the strangest thing, but our productivity rose sharply once we were working on projects instead of spending all of our time explaining why we were so badly behind.

That’s Not Fare

, , , , , | Working | February 3, 2023

I want to meet my partner downtown. My plan is to take the bus, and I’ve already bought a ticket. I’m waiting at the bus stop along with some other folks. The bus is already running late when it finally arrives. The ones waiting to enter the bus are quietly sorting out who goes first, putting on their masks — the usual thing.

Bus Driver: *Yelling* “Get in already!”

Okay, I get the mood, but okay. He’s probably annoyed himself that he’s running late. A man goes first, and I’m second to pass by the bus driver to show or buy a ticket. The man in front of me still has to buy a ticket.

He hands a 50€ note to the bus driver.

Traveler: “Ulm!”

Bus Driver: *Angrily* “You can’t pay with a 50€ note! Do you have anything smaller?”

Traveler: *Looking confused* “Ulm!”

Apparently, the man doesn’t speak German at all. Still angry, the driver points to the door.

Bus Driver: “Get out! You can’t ride on this bus, then!”

The other traveler moves toward the door and my alarm bells of injustice start to ring when I jump in.

Me: *To the other traveler* “Hold on. I’ll pay for the ticket for you.” *To the bus driver* “I’m gonna pay for his ticket. How much is it?”

Bus Driver: “3,10€.”

Me: *Starting to collect coins* “Why did you want to kick him out? He has enough money for the ticket.”

Bus Driver: *Unfriendly* “I can’t accept 50€ notes!”

I’m getting angry, as well.

Me: “So, why didn’t you explain that in a friendly way? He doesn’t understand what’s going on! Here you go.”

I try to hand over the coins.

Bus Driver: *Furious* “Get out! Both of you!”

Me: *Totally shocked* “What?! I just asked you to be more friendly, and by the way, I have a ticket already!”

Bus Driver: “I don’t care! Get out! Both of you!”

So, the other man and I left the bus. We looked at each other, shaking our heads. In the end, my partner picked me up at the bus stop, and we gave the other guy a lift downtown. My complaint is still unanswered.

Maybe It’s Like Isla De Muerta From The “Pirates” Movies

, , , , , , , | Working | February 3, 2023

I live in a somewhat rural area, but I’m just over a mile from a fairly large hospital. My street has single-family houses on one side and several condo and apartment complexes on the other. The complexes range in age from about twenty-five years old to one still under construction, and many are inhabited by people connected to the hospital.

One day, I get a voicemail from the local branch of a national shipping company about a problem delivering a package I’m expecting: they don’t have a valid address. I call.

Customer Service: “The address we have isn’t a valid address, so we just need the correct address.”

Me: “Oh, wow, no problem. My address is [street address] in [Town].”

Customer Service: “Yes, that’s the address we have, but we need the correct address.”

Me: *Pauses* “That is the correct address. What’s wrong with that address?”

Customer Service: “Ma’am, that street doesn’t exist.”

Me: “What?”

Customer Service: “It’s not a street in [Town].”

Me: *Pauses again* “Yes, it is?”

Customer Service: “Ma’am, we have looked up the street, and the drivers tried to find it. There’s no such street in [Town].”

Me: “This street has probably more than 300 people living on it, and I’ve been here for two years. I can assure you, this is a real street.”

Customer Service: *Starting to sound exasperated* “Ma’am, there is no [Street].”

I give directions — it’s off of a street that’s off the main state highway that runs through town, so perhaps not super easy to find — and include some landmarks.

Customer Service: “I’ll pass on this information and we’ll try again, but otherwise, you’ll have to make other arrangements to get your package.”

And miraculously, my package arrived the next day.

Do It For The Kids! Just Not Yours.

, , , , , | Working | February 3, 2023

I work in a daycare and am currently pregnant. It is a high-risk pregnancy, so during the last two months, I’ve had appointments twice a week involving growth ultrasounds and non-stress tests. I work four tens, so I schedule one of the appointments on my day off, but I need additional time off on one of the days I am scheduled to work.

I inform my director of the situation and provide a doctor’s note explaining why these appointments are necessary. He tells me he will inform the rest of the administration and they will work with me to make sure I have coverage.

I plan my appointment around my lunch break and ask for a two-hour break instead of one hour to give some wiggle room, but I am always back within an hour and a half, if not earlier. I give reminders as my appointments come up and on the day of.

However, every time I am gone for an appointment, I get multiple calls asking when I will be back and to hurry up. The person who covers for me complains, as well. I talk to my director about how it is extremely stressful for me when this happens, but nothing changes.

One day, the assistant director asks if she can speak with me.

Assistant Director: “Having you gone additional time during the week isn’t working for us. You’ll need to have your appointments on your day off.”

Me: “[Director] said he was willing to work with me on this. It’s two appointments every week. I have one of the appointments on my day off. I still need additional time for the second appointment. I am also always back earlier than what was planned. I only drive there, do the appointment, and drive right back to work.”

Assistant Director: “We really need you here instead. Do you honestly need to have two appointments every week? With my pregnancy, it was only once a week toward the end.” 

Me: “Yes, I do. If you need me to come in earlier on those days, I can, but I really need to attend these appointments. I could also come in on my regular day off after my other appointment if needed.”

Assistant Director: “Did you know you’re allowed to refuse procedures or appointments? Your doctor can’t make you go.”

I take a long pause before I respond.

Me: “This is a high-risk pregnancy. The tests are to ensure that my child is able to tolerate labor and survive birth. Are you denying my doctor’s note?”

Assistant Director: “Well, no. It would be you denying your appointment with your doctor.”

Me: “Ah. Understood.”

Assistant Director: “Perfect! I’m glad we could come to an understanding.”

The following day, I go in and explain what happened to my director. I then hand him my resignation letter. 

Director: “What’s this?”

Me: “My two-week notice.”

Director: “I thought you were going to work up until you gave birth?”

Me: “And I thought administration would be more understanding.” 

When the assistant director found out, she tried guilting me into staying for the kids and said that I should have talked to her first and we could have “figured something out”. 

I made sure during my last two weeks to take my time during my appointments and take the full two hours instead of hurrying back. 

I also enjoyed not working the last few weeks of pregnancy and can happily say I gave birth to a beautiful, healthy little girl.