Exposing cruel and unusual workplaces since 2005.
Showing 81 - 85 of 121 Tales.
Tale # 107
Dept: Management Score: 11
Apr 20th 2007 Submitted by Anonymous
“Once Upon A Midnight Bonus”
A donut The service company I work for has several interlocking policies which combine to make the office staff miserable.

You can't take vacation unless the office is in total compliance. Total compliance is impossible to achieve, by design. If you reach the end of the year without taking vacation, you lose it. Recently, due to excessive cashing out, a new policy was instituted. You are no longer allowed to cash out your vacation. HQ is said to be very surprised at the increase in office staff turnover.

Corporate takes 10 percent off the top of your location profit and loss statement. Unless you are shown to be making a profit at the end of the year after the cut to HQ, no Christmas bonuses. Due to the nature of our business, we often have unplanned overtime circa the end of the year. One year we were already promised Christmas bonuses when -- you guessed it -- December's P&L came in and the bonuses went away. Merry Christmas.

The senior manager in the office decides who gets the Christmas bonus. They are usually very bitter and disillusioned. My first year: I got $150 bonus in cash. My second year: I got a $30 gift certificate to Honeybaked Ham. Found out the manager had dipped into their own wallet for it. My third year: a cocoa mug. My fourth year: nothing. My fifth year: almost certainly nothing.

HQ takes about thirty-five days to pay expense reports. Expenses are routinely challenged and audited. After twenty years of stellar service with the company, an office manager was accused of defalcation because she attached the wrong receipt to a $25 expense report. Senior managers are therefore very unwilling to throw down their own money on behalf of the company. We lost a million-dollar client bid because none of the three managers present were willing to pay for the client lunch.

Our workplace violence prevention policy appears to be taking the office staff out every few months to a nationwide chain of arcade/restaurants. Anyone seen to have played a shooting game is counseled by HR. Really.

Recently a new change was instituted. HQ would no longer pay for food expenses not associated with travel (such as meetings, training, etc.) but would pay for coffee service. We immediately changed to a brutally expensive coffee service. So we snack on wafers and crackers from home while drinking premium java. Who knew? The driver: a salesperson who is no longer with us, who became very cranky when deprived of her caffeine. She is now much happier and sells coffee systems.
LINK
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Tale # 120
Dept: All-Staff Score: 11
Sep 24th 2007 Submitted by He who must not be named
“Inter-company wars”
A donut I used to work for a company that bid on construction tenders, usually worth between 30 and 300 million pounds. For one such bid, for a new school, we made sure to hire an architect with an extensive background in schools. One part of the bid involved this architect answered some questions from the council in a live interview format. He completely flubbed the interview, and seemed unable to answer very simple questions about school-building that even I knew the answer to. We lost the bid right after the interview, and had a sort of post-failure analysis meeting. I was a bit amazed at how badly our man had performed, but the older hands were completely unfazed:

"He probably got a call from one of the competitors in the night, offering him a few hundred grand to intentionally fail the interview, then a position with them if they got the bid. We'll probably do the same thing at the next round of bidding." LINK
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Tale # 162
Dept: All-Staff Score: 10
Mar 25th 2009 Submitted by Nosucker
“My accountant needs to do your taxes”
A donut Right out of college I was hired by an arrogant blow-hard of a boss. It was a small company... just him, me a part-time assistant and four freelancers. I had worked there for two years, getting regular paychecks -- everything was pretty normal. Then one day, the guy calls me into his office. It seemed that though he had been withholding taxes and Social Security from my wages, he wasn't actually sending that money in to the IRS. He had talked to his accountant and the scheme they worked out was to make me an independent contractor, retroactively to my start date. To do that, he needed his accountant to do my taxes.

Sure thing. I walked and my first call was to the IRS. LINK
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Tale # 169
Dept: All-Staff Score: 10
May 17th 2009 Submitted by Killer Bees
“The Idiot Go-Between Supervisor”
A donut I worked in credit card dispute resolutions for a mid sized bank. Customers would complain about an unknown charge on their credit cards and it was my job to investigate and report back to them. This usually took about 30 days. I was at the behest of the credit card providers, not the bank's rules, hence the 30 day turn around time.

Our team was running smoothly until they appointed a new Team Leader and shunted our much beloved usual team leader sideways. This woman was a nightmare. She would hold weekly meetings and tell us all the new procedures that would be implemented, most of which ran contrary to the smooth operation of the team. She was clearly a corporate climber and had a nasty attitude to boot. She would always ask for questions or comments, but she'd trained everyone to be so scared of her reaction that nobody would put up their hands. At the end of the meetings, she would say, "Good work, Team. You're all STARS!!!!"

Upper management wanted to save costs, so they did a review of everyone's job. We were all on contracts so we were cheap fodder anyway. I liked my job until her underling/moron lackey/team leader wannabe was appointed to do an audit of my job. I tried to explain to him over many meetings why some months had a lot of disputes resolved and other months didn't. He JUST.DID.NOT.GET the concept that the disputes were clocked at 30 days from the day I received them, not 30 days from the 1st of each month.

Each meeting with him would find me getting frustrated constantly having to justify my work ethic (which is quite substantial) and him not understanding my plain English explanations.

In the end, it was decided that I wasn't good enough at my job and my contract wasn't renewed. I heard they ended up giving my job to a girl who was completely lazy and spent most of her time on the phone to her boyfriend. Meanwhile, my perfect turn around record was reduced to at least 280 disputes outstanding longer than 90 days! What happened then? The credit card providers ended up following their rules and denying anything older than 30 days and the bank wearing the costs of the dispute as they tried to keep their customers happy.

I went on to greener pastures and lived a happy corporate life. I ended up finding out from old work colleagues that the corporate climbing Team Leader lost her job in the downsize. LINK
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Tale # 217
Dept: All-Staff Score: 10
Jul 8th 2009 Submitted by Anonymous
“My door is better than your door”
A donut I worked for a small stand-alone operation within a large multi-national corporation. Our 1,000 square foot front office building had 10 people working in it with our GM's office in the corner.

The GM was in over his head in every way except when it came to whom he made friends with at Corporate. Eventually his friendships paid off and he got promoted to Vice President. Now a big shot, he needed special treatment. No longer could he walk in the front door with all of the "little people." He had carpenters cut a hole in the side of the building and put in a door so he could have his own private entrance to his office. LINK
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Showing 81 - 85 of 121 Tales.