Friday, December 31, 2010

1 Year Under Management For A Worker: 2010

Happy New Year, Everyone!

That last one really blew chunks, so let's try and make the next one a goody, huh?

O.K., let's get on with it, starting with this "Adventures With NewAge Management" message for Glenn Reynolds - and, we swear, every word of this is the truth as we've lived it:

We'd moved, financed a truck, and - ever since our "lost" post-divorce/murder years - been carrying a boatload of debt that we're still religiously (heh) paying off so we can get back to our music career.

So we got a job at a mid-sized operation, having never done the job before. We made friends with a cool white guy who - completely unafraid of blacks - introduced himself with the words, "Hey, Stupid."

We chose him as a mentor. (We said this is all true.)

The management's philosophy? "Throw 'em in the water, see if they swim." So we dog paddled, finding ourselves successful by the end of the first day.

Management's response? Hit 'em with a bit of the ol' Maharishi/The Secret philosophy, which we didn't believe a word of but - come on, it's us - we mastered it so well that, soon afterwards, a co-worker said we were too good to be there.

Our cool new mentor agreed.

Meanwhile, word got out somehow that we're a Republican, and then photocopied signs started appearing around the office (where clients could see them) denouncing us for what political party we belong to.

We quickly worked our way up to Number One (Take that, Democrats!) and then left for a bigger operation in the same field.

The bigger operation was a hothouse of the ol' Maharishi/The Secret philosophy.

As a matter of fact, they had four meetings a week (which we had to attend, at 8:30AM, even if it's our day off) just so they could pump our heads full of that garbage.

We did fine until a male manager hired a NewAge woman (declaring "That's me in a dress!") and assigned us to train her.

We tried to be fair and do as we're told, but the dingbat wouldn't stop talking to clients about "Karma", and handing out business cards advertising her home massage business.

We told her, in private and as gently as possible, to knock it off. She went to management and said we'd been sexually harassing her, starting a stupid "investigation" by the Human Resources lady that basically consisted of HR and management telling us our track record, work habits, and/or day-to-day familiarity meant nothing.

"Where there's smoke, there's fire, and we've got our eyes on you" was the attitude.

Things started to go downhill from there, with the NewAger (who we'd been told not to talk to) smugly reminding us, at every opportunity, of her newfound power in the workplace.

We told Human Resources the NewAger wouldn't stop bothering us.

Human Resources said she didn't have to - we had to stay away from her, remember?

From there on out, nothing we did was right, and accusations of misbehavior on our part become a daily occurrence.

We eventually got fired/quit - with no new job lined up.

This is what good ol' Glenn Reynolds called "funemployment".

Luckily, a former co-worker eventually heard we were available and asked us if we wanted to join him at a new location. He wanted us because (he said) we were a good worker, we're good people, and we've got "class".

We accepted the invitation.

Everything looked great until we started working with the new management, which consisted of another male enamored with the ol' Maharishi/The Secret philosophy - except this guy also had a volatile temper.

It was so bad he went through 6 employees in the first month we were there - and this job came with a company car!

Basically, the situation was the owner would scream at the manager and the manager would take it out on his employees, and then hit us with a lecture of the ol' Maharishi/The Secret philosophy so we'd know what he thought wasn't working.

We told him, in private but man-to-man, this wasn't going to work for/on us, so he'd have to cut it out or else we were going to clobber him one day.

Keep in mind - we liked the guy otherwise - but the angry Maharishi routine wasn't doing anybody any favors, least of all the business.

But he didn't stop. He didn't know how to stop.

The ol' Maharishi/The Secret philosophy was all he knew.

It's the only way this particular occupation had been done for decades and, despite it's ineffectiveness, nobody influenced by it could change.

Oh - it was about this time we got a call from a friend at our last job. That awful/evil NewAge woman that charged us with sexual harassment?

She'd been fired.

And, of course, things at our new job got so bad - again - that we quit without another job lined up.

(That would be "funemployment" episode number two.)

We looked for another position but, thanks to the incompetents at the last place screwing up our credentials, we had to pay money to get them straightened out - money we didn't have because (wait for it) we were unemployed!

So next we went on food stamps - which Reynolds' readers describe as gladly taking advantage of them (and the system) just living the good life on their dime - while also taking out several loans from a friend to keep a roof over our head and get our credentials straightened out.

Once that was accomplished, we did find a new position - at a place with no Maharishi/The Secret philosophy - and all was well as we started to dig our way back to paycheck-to-paycheck American financial normalcy.

We even started to flourish, making friends with our manager and, once again, finding joy in being part of a functioning team.

Then - just today - we got a call from our friend at the last job. How do we like it where we are? "It's great" we said. "Better than here?" he asked.

"Yea, why?"

The boss just fired the manager.

Then the boss asked, specifically, if it was possible to get us back.

And that, Glen Reynolds and Co., is what it's really like to work with management - in the real world.

And by the way, we could still use those donations:

We ain't out of the woods yet,...