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Economy Me

Employee trouble

My post of this afternoon centered around employees feeling like they are owed something, simply because they had been employees for a long time, even if those employees hadn’t done anything to improve themselves for (in some cases) decades. There is a reason for that post.

I was hired into a management position at a hospital. When I was hired, I got a lot of pushback. It seems that the employees of the department who had been there for a long time were upset that someone was brought in from the outside, and felt that the position should have gone to them, because they had been there for a long time. One employee told me that she felt like her 17 years there meant nothing and that I got that promotion simply because “I rode around in a truck for a few years.” I told her that it wasn’t just my time on an ambulance that mattered. It was my certifications, my four college degrees, my years of experience as a supervisor that landed me that position. I advised her that she should take advantage of our employer’s tuition reimbursement program, so she could be more qualified the next time a promotion became available. She quit a week later.

Other employees told me that they felt like our employer should pay more. I listened and went to management, who told me that they won’t pay more unless the employees gain a skill. I went back to my employees with a deal: I would help them learn the material to take an exam to earn a certification pertinent to our job, and if they passed the exam, our employer would give them a 20% raise. The cost of the exam is $200. I was willing to teach them on my own time.

The employees refused, saying that they would only take the class if they were on the clock, and refused to pay for the exam fees out of their own pocket. So to sum it up, they want a raise, more training, more certifications, and they want their employer to pay for it all. Why would any employer do all of that? It makes no economic sense. It would be cheaper to let you quit and hire more qualified employees.

If employees refuse to make themselves more valuable, how can they expect to make more money?

5 replies on “Employee trouble”

The worse day of my career wasn’t the day I was escorted of campus, it was calling an employee’s phone and leaving a message that said “if you are not at your desk by 1030 we will assume you have quit.”

He was a “smart” person who just would or could not learn and hid it. After he was gone I had to pick up his tasks. I found so many issues that I felt like a failure for having trusted his reports on the project.

In all my time as a manager I didn’t have a single employee learn a new programming skill set, get another certificate, learn a new programming language, learn a new framework on their own.

Every skill advancement was management sending them to a class on company time and dollar.

In the same time frame I learned 3 new frameworks, learned to be an ok machinist, learned how to build a foundation and did it, framed and finished a stick frame building. Learned to reload. Took three graduate level courses. Learned two new programming languages.

And not one of those things was paid for by anybody else.

Yeah, I’m bitter over employees that think they are owed something for doing the tasks they are assigned between smoke breaks, chat sessions and lunch breaks.

Speaking of “smart” people who just won’t or can’t learn and hide it,
My last employee I inherited did this. I struggled with him all year before realizing that he was a space monkey. An a lazy one to boot.

All he knew how to do was click the shortcut to launch scripts. When they failed, he flailed. They’d fail because not once in the 8 years since he inherited the gig did he maintain the AWS machines the scripts were using. No patches, no updates. Amazon was letting the infrastructure that held them die on the vine, and he never moved them off, nor thought to do so. Nor knew he could do so. Worse yet, we have cloud experts. All he would’ve had to do was ask for help.

When we did line up help, he argued. He’s a space monkey, all he knows how to do is press the buttons (Scripts). The engineer we had helping gave up. He tried to tell spacemonkey how to do things to no avail. I think his last line to me was “no one’s gonna break their heads figuring that shit out”

So relieved he’s gone.

This is a subject that’s near and dear to my heart.

I worked for an IT firm that supplied “Feet on the street” to a large consulting firm. It was my job to manage the monkeys at a large customer jobsite they had just picked up – an outsourcing gig. I had been on one of those before, in my previous life as a consultant.

I was sitting in the courtyard, chatting with the customers former employees, now consultants. They were sold off in the deal. I told them big consulting firms like this loved certifications and training. They’d have opportunities to take this training that they should take advantage of. They’d also have social events at corporate, and they should attend those as well, because when this project hit ‘steady state’ they’d keep the best people here, move or cut loose others so it was in their interest to meet program managers and tune into what other gigs the firm was working. These people were pretty sedentary. I referred to them (later) as ‘plant life’ or ‘the local flora’. Deep roots. Hate to move.

There was a network engineer the corporate folks assigned to the job. We got along great. He told me that they had cisco boot camp after work available at corporate – maybe 15 mile drive. None of the plant life took advantage. None. He did, because he had to renew his certification. Here, they are paying for training, buying dinner, and all they need do was waddle north at the end of the day.

I think the only one left, last I heard, was the fatass useless manager.

Around the same time, one of the lesser apes under my eye came up and said “Next week’s my anniversary here”

Oh? Congratulations.

“I’m expecting something”

Oh? What are you expecting

“something”

What do you do now that’s different? Because what from what I see, I you told me you know how to terminate fiber, but you weren’t paid to do that so I had to bring in a contractor. So. Good luck.

I think I fired half of them.

I’m stuck at a dead end at work after dealing with the same kind of people.

Turned out you’re not allowed to actually write up or coach certain employees and that there are certain unwritten unofficially official rules and standards for protected classes. Lie, steal, falsify time cards at a federal installation, smoke pot in the parking lot on break, fake research data and use manipulated conditions for a favorable outcome? That’s fine if they are past a certain threshold of protections. It’s frightening to call up a hotline to anonymously report violations and have the HR rep say you must be lying because they’re personal friends with director so and so and there is no way they’d do and allow such things.

So now I know exactly what I can do and still keep my job and taking advantage of free tuition and ability to audit classes.

i have co-workers that get upset they have to drive their own car to a class the company pays for that’s less than 30 mins away…they get paid for training, per diem for the day, and bitch because they have use their own gas…to better themselves…fucking whine babies…

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