Sunday, October 19, 2008

Management by Fear

So, I have this job, right? I loved my job when I started it in 2000. My coworkers were great, we had fun, and we always got our job done - since we loved our jobs, we went way above and beyond to make sure we did them, and did them right. But now, it has slowly deteriorated into what it is today. A corporate America job where all they care about is money. How much they can save by letting people go and making the ones still here do more work. How no matter how much work they pile on you, they give some corporate line of "in this economy, be happy you have a job" and "it could be worse, you could be one of the ones let go" and "would you rather I fire you?" I have heard these three phrases so much over the last 3 months that I'm immune to their effect.

It started a few months ago. The manager of our KY branch applied for and got a new position in the company. Well, rather than replace her, they decided to assign that branch to my boss. They can save money that way, right? Well, I've written about this branch before, I had to help out with it previously and it is still a mess. And since my boss is the manager now, I'm the one doing all of the administrative stuff for it. Job security, I'm was told. Since they had done some layoffs and were looking at our branch and trying to get rid of one of our admins, I was told that this would make my job more secure.

So, as much as I didn't want to, I accepted it.

Then, 2 months ago my boss came to me and said that I needed to train with the techs in my "spare" time so that I could work on computers in the back when the techs weren't there. He needed for some of my time to be "billable" so that he could defend my position if they asked that he get rid of me. So that some of the work that I do pays for my salary. I was very incredulous that they could even question if they need me or not, and what kind of spare time do I have??! Not much, I'll tell ya. In the last 2 months since I was supposed to train, I have maybe had a total of 1 day to go back there and train. And this wasn't "spare" time. It was me just doing it and letting some work slide.

I was not thrilled with this new turn, but I decided to look at the bright side and think of it as more training I could put on my resume, in case they did decide to remove my position.

However, I have always been a perfectionist with my work. I want it done, and I want to do it right. I was always a control freak of sorts. When I took vacation or sick time, I would log in from home or on my laptop so that I could stay on top of what needed to be done. I didn't want anyone else messing it up.

Now I hardly have time to do the work, let alone try to see if it is getting done right. One of my jobs is to make sure invoices get invoiced when they are supposed to and that they are correct. The billing is all done at our corporate offices, so they do not know our contracts as well as I do and they sometimes invoice for something they shouldn't. Or at the wrong rate.

So, when my boss came to me on Monday to tell me that they had found a way to "solidify my position in the company" by having me take over the California branch as well, I was livid. And I got all the standard lines, again. "In this economy, we have to do what we have to do to keep our jobs. What would you do if you lost this job?"

My response? "Maybe I would go out and find a job where I only had to do the work of ONE person instead of FOUR."

So, after all the lecturing about how happy I should be that I have a job, I just looked at him and said, "Fine. I'll do what I can."

Then I went out to my car, got on my cell phone and called my "former work bud" to vent. Although he had no solutions other than my moving 2 hours north and coming to work there, it did make me feel better to just talk about it. I calmed down and went back to my desk to work. I'll do what I can in the time I have and if it doesn't get done, they can let me go and try to find someone else to do the work of four people. Or - hire someone in the Philippines for 6K to replace me. Which is what they want to do anyway.

I'm not sure if they are trying to push me to quitting so they don't have to pay me severance or unemployment; or if they are piling on the work so I won't do a good job so they can have a reason to fire me. Whatever happens, it happens. It will be hard for me to not be able to do a very good job at all the jobs I have to do, but I will do my best.

What's that saying? If your best isn't good enough for them, tell them they can kiss your @$$. Sorry for that. But. I'm pretty much beaten into submission at this point. It is very hard for me because I can't just not care, so it makes it very stressful for me.

This post is just me venting about the way the company I work for is treating its employees. I'm not the only one, and they are probably not the only company doing this right now. I just think it is wrong.

And yeah, I am looking. But he is right - there isn't much out there right now.

I did go play the lottery that night, but no luck. I day dreamed about being able to go in the next day, pack my personal stuff up and sing "Take This Job and Shove It" while I was doing it. It didn't happen though. Good thing, I guess, becaues I don't really know all the words to that song. :)

2 comments:

FWB said...

Here's the Lyrics!

Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more
My woman done left and took all the reasons
I was working for
You better not try to stand in my way
As I'm a walking out the door.
Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more

Ive been workin in this factory
From now on fifteen years
All this time I watched my woman
Drowning in a pool of tears
And I've seen a lot of good folk die
Who had a lot of bills to pay
I'd give the shirt right off of my back
If I had the nerve to say

Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more
My woman done left and took all the reasons
I was working for
You better not try to stand in my way
As I'm a walking out the door.
Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more

Well that foreman, he's a regular dog
The line boss, he's a fool
Got a brand new flat-top haircut
Lord, he thinks he's cool
One of these days, I'm gonna blow my top
And that sucker, he's gonna pay
Lord I cant wait to see their faces
When I get up the nerve to say

Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more
My woman done left and took all the reasons
I was working for
You better not try to stand in my way
As I'm a walking out the door.
Take this job and shove it
I ain't working here no more

Take this job and shove it

katie said...

LOL!

Well... i need new lines for the "woman done left and took all the reasons... etc"

Any suggestions?