Ashamed…

I guess I did something tonight that I have never done before, and I feel like shit right now because I know it was the wrong thing to do. I napped for a couple of hours this evening in preparation for going out tonight and checking on the stores to see what my third shift is doing. There is never enough management oversight in our stores on the graveyard shift, so they do pretty much whatever the fuck they want. If you have a good manager that has been there any length of time they mostly behave, but if you have new managers like I do or shitty managers, they rip us off blond or worse.

The first store I visited I sat in the bank parking lot for awhile spying on them with my cool little spyglass. The restaurant wasn’t busy, but it was pretty steady. A full house. After awhile I drove over and parked in the lot behind the building so that they wouldn’t see me drive up. I walked around the side of the building and when I got inside the only person on the floor was the cook. The few tables without customers were nasty and both of the waitresses were in the back room. Nobody even noticed. Hell, I made it all the way around the counter and had tapped the cook on the shoulder before he even noticed I was there. Scared the shit out of him. I could have grabbed the cash register and been gone had I wanted to.

When I walked in the back room, it was full of smoke from whatever the fuck the two waitresses had been smoking. Damn they scrambled to hide it. One of the girls was so freaked out she was shaking. I just dilly dallied around as if they had done a good job of fooling me and acted stupid, checked a few things and walked the fuck back out of the restaurant like nothing had happened. What I should have done at that point is fire all their asses on the spot and found replacements, but the place was full and I didn’t want to be out of my bed in the first place. I am sure that they will behave for a least a couple of days now, maybe long enough for me to find replacements and shit-can them, but a few years ago I would have done just as I should have and fired them all.

The other two shops were pretty good. Everyone was on the floor working and the places looked at least OK. I did find a cook to come in for one of them so they could go home, but that was about the extent of it at the other two stores.

Maybe it’s not as big of a deal as I feel like it is, but I have this shitty knot in my gut because I am ashamed that I acted like a pussy and went home to bed.

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  • In my opinion, there is nothing to be ashamed about. Silence can be a very powerful management tool — they know they messed up. Being caught unexpected like that will put the fear of unemployment in the ones that care.

    Show up a few more times unannounced, with a pad of paper in hand. You can pretend to take notes or actually write down conditions that you find – good and bad – along with names. Very effective if they see you doing this without seeing what is written. After a few weeks, I’ve found having an impromtu meeting of the staff during one of these inspections (just a few minutes) to lay down the law effective. No “questions-and-answers”, just “this is what I found and better not find again.” Make sure to point a few good things that you approved of. Depending upon the extend of the unprofessionalism of your workers, a mandatory meeting might be needed set down the law (again, because some people are so thick, they have to be reminded.)

    Anyway, just a thought from my experience. I don’t know what it is but it seems like I’m working with more and more who think having a job is a right instead of a business exchange between their effort and my money.

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  • That’s normally how I run my meetings and is probably going to be what happens. I knew when I took over this new job what I was getting in to. I would say that about 60% of my problem people are all folks that I fired as a manager over the last 15 years in this area of town. The just migrated to another store where the management didn’t care.

    It is unfortunate, but I knew when I got here that I would end up replacing quite a few of them.

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