Don’t Live With People and Expect a Change

In a few days, I have to fire someone at work.  Major company policies were broken, and it is something that I cannot ignore.  This has been a long time coming, the reason he has lasted this long, is that he has been a dependable worker, he has never called in sick or even asked for days off.  The issue with him is his work isn’t worth his dependability anymore.

He’s been working with me for nearly four years, and he’s always been slow, and I thought, he will get faster.  His work is always inaccurate, but I thought, it will get accurate.  His paperwork has always been sloppy, but I thought, it will get more organized.  He left money out yesterday, but so and so called in and he was there.  He forgot to set the alarm, but I’ll talk to him and he won’t forget next time.

I’ve been making excuses and letting things slip passed me for the sake of dependability.  I always assumed I can talk him into doing better.  Eventually things will converge, and the breaking point hit when he left a new worker alone, with full access to the work safe.  If my new worker wasn’t trustworthy, she could’ve robbed us blind and we would be out, at least, $1000 today.  His excuse, “I needed to take care of stuff at the bank”.  I’ve never given any reason to let him think it would be alright to leave a new worker, by themselves, with a load of cash ready to steal.  And I can corroborate all this because I have cameras that backs up her story.

The story and the fallout aren’t what is important here, the important part is what lesson we can take out of it.  Don’t live (and work) with people and expect them to have a major change.  I sat down and talked with this guy at least once a week, for over four years, and he still made paperwork mistakes, policy mistakes, cash handling mistakes.  I have documentation of his poor performance, and have even given him a final warning.  He still hasn’t learned, and his bad behavior continued to plague the store.  No one wants to work with him, everyone complains about his performance.  How many times do I have to tell him to quit Snapchatting during work?  How many times do I have to tell him to stop letting his friends hang out and distract him from his work?  How many times do I have to work around him… before I learn!?  What an idiot I have been to let him skate by and get paid while making every other worker stressed.

I let my other employees know what was going on, and the difference in attitude among associates was astounding.  I never realized just how much this one workers dead weight was dragging us all down and the relief I felt when I decided to rip the bandage off was very uplifting.  We will be a stronger team with out him.  If someone doesn’t fit with your work or life, don’t try to hard to make it work, not much will change probably.

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Leaving the Internet for Two weeks

Since I was a young teenager, the internet has been a large part of my life.  I’ve always been an avid consumer of whats on the net, I cord cut cable before it was cool, I played MMOs that were text based before World of Warcraft, I’ve digitized my DVD library before streaming services came around, I even used my PC to text my friends before smart phones were big.  I’ve always been big into tech and gadgets, and there has been very few times in my life I wasn’t connected to the internet.  Now I have two discord servers, Twitter, Facebook, Gab, PlayStation, Xbox Live and steam, all with different friends, and different people contacting me all the time.  I haven’t even watched a YouTube video.  I don’t really use Facebook anymore, it’s pretty much there for personal friends to contact me.  All the others I use pseudo-names, mostly to keep my family from being harassed, and the anonymity lets me express things I normally would filter.  For example, I’m pretty politically open on Twitter, but not on Facebook, for reasons like those found here.

Well for the last two weeks, I didn’t log into any of those (with the exception of my PlayStation, but I didn’t play any social games like Warframe like I normally do).  You could call it a internet cleanse, and I honestly don’t really want to go back to being a heavy user of some of these services like I used to be.  I feel a lot less stressed, I am more focused at work, I feel more positive and motivated everyday.  The constant barrage of news seems to have caused such a drain on my mental state prior to these last couple weeks.  And what did I miss?  People are still freaking out about the Brett Kavanaugh SCOTUS nomination.  People are still freaking out that Trump is the President.  Everyone is still a racist and Russian bot.  Nothing has changed, all the outrage is still there, yet I feel better and happier.

I’m here to proclaim that news fatigue is real, and everyone should do themselves a favor and take some time out of Social Networks.  Use the time to meditate, clean your room, ask your spouse some questions, play with your kids, talk with your parents.  There are more pressing issues in life than what Trump tweets.

 

Don’t Go To Work in a Bad Mood

This sounds easy enough to avoid, but we all go to work after staying up too late, or partying to hard, or having a child that was sick or cranky through the night, or we let the supreme court nomination allegations bother us.  There are times, you are going to show up at your business and you will be in a bad mood.  I have THE perfect example today, why you should not go to work angry.

A little background about where I work.  My business is a small convenience store, we make about $1,000,000 a year.  We receive about 400 to 500 cases of product a week and we have a team of 5 people to do all this.  The store is also located in a village of less than 200 people, it’s tiny.  There is us, a gas station and a liquor store; no restaurants, no theaters, not even a bar.

This particular delivery I’ll be talking about was delivering about 350 cases and was scheduled to arrive at 6 pm.  This wasn’t anything unusual, however he arrived closer to 7 pm.  When he did arrive, I greeted him with a hand shake, and he greeted me with a, “Let’s get this f**king over with”.  Our unload process takes about an hour, so me and one of my guys gets started.  I hear the driver talking to someone on his phone, complaining about how its too late to be sent out here, and we are taking to long, he was pacing back and forth the entire time, basically just being a little bitch about his job.  I noticed he was in and out of his truck a lot while we were unloading, until… He locked himself out.  I’m sure the entire village heard him screaming and swearing when he realized this.  So he tried to call his maintenance department for his company, I can hear him give a bunch of information about his truck, then he waits… and waits.  At this point, we are already done unloading.  I hear him thank whoever he was on the phone with hangs up, then curses them out.  I ask him what’s whats going on, he explains that they can’t send anyone out here this late to unlock his truck, he will have to wait until the morning.  I offered to give him a ride up to the closest hotel, which is about 30 miles away, he declines, and we parted ways.  His truck was still in my parking lot when we opened the next morning.

So let’s break this down a little.  In his rage and complaining, he failed to notice he left his keys in his truck, which put him in a situation where he was stranded until the morning, a few hundred miles away from home (most of these drivers come from Indiana).  He must’ve slept in the trailer of the truck, which the temperature got into the low 50’s here.  I was talking to him when they arrived to unlock his truck, and it cost him nearly $200.

Now, am I 100% sure his bad mood caused all this?  No, but I doubt it helped in anyway.