Sunday, April 15, 2012


I haven't talked much about the store lately, have I?

I love my job, same as usual. I love my co-workers, same as usual. I love my customers, same as usual.

What has changed is a steady decline in store morale. We have a manager with a serious problem. The district manager has been advised of the issue, which affects virtually every employee in our store, but he only counseled our manager. Nothing else changed.

I'd always thought that I'd keep this job as a second job, work here on the weekend. I just really enjoyed it that much, but lately it has become increasingly stressful, and I know that I won't. I'm a lucky one though. I am graduating next month. I have somewhere else I'll be going.

Yesterday at the store, it happened again. This time, I was the target. It has only happened a few times before. I think I've probably been able to duck most of it because I have been working so few hours due to clinicals. I'm also sort of well known in the community. Not bragging. It's a fact. I write for the newspaper, and people get a kick out of talking to me. I think those two things keep him careful around me. Can't say for sure, but that what I guess.

Yesterday, though, it was my turn to get it, and I got it. He made me so mad that I yelled back at him, and I could tell that he was not expecting that. I went back to the break room, and Pete sat there eating his lunch and reading a book. He looked at me amazed. I wrote down the corporate number. I left the store, and I was mad. Oh, man...I. Was. Mad.

Driving home, I thought about it. Everyone is fearful of losing their jobs, and that threat has been made out loud. More than once. In this economy, jobs are hard to come by. I know that I am leaving. My future with the company is...well...that I don't have a future.

Everyone else, though? They're in it for the long haul. This is what I know about my team. They are good people and they are hard workers. We have a good team.

I made that decision. I called in my complaint to corporate. I went above the district manager's head. I filed a complaint. At the end of the conversation, the interviewer said, "What do you want to see happen here?" I told him that I want to see someone from corporate come out and speak with the employees, to get the full scope of the problem, and that I wanted to see the situation addressed.

Afterwards, I called the assistant manager to tell him that I'd filed a complaint, since I mentioned his name in the report. He was thrilled, and hopeful that finally, FINALLY, the situation will be addressed. He tells me that everyone has been discussing doing what I did, but no one wanted to be the first to do it.

I'll be heading off soon. I'll be in a new line of work. I'll be doing a new job that I love. But I'm hopeful that I have given my co-workers a good-bye present, one that will make a difference.

I guess this is where the rubber hits the road. The ethics that the company talks about all the time? They either have them, or they don't. At least now, my coworkers will know for sure.


A Novel Woman said...

You are my kind of people.

ellie k said...

yea for you, I do admire you for the courage to do something.

Anonymous said...

Glad you had the courage and thoughtfulness for fellow emplyees to do what you did, hope it makes a difference. We will miss seeing you at the store but good luck with your new career and maybe we will run into you sometime , someplace. Best wishes from Debbie and Mike L.

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

Debby, May I buy you a cup of coffee and a danish !~! I am so proud of you for what you have done. Many are not strong enough or they have a vested interest in their jobs, as you said, and cannot make the necessary call.

Your description of your self on this blog page endears you to me more than you will ever know. You and I could be sisters with our corresponding interests and personalities.

Namaste, Debby.

Bill of Wasilla said...

Boy, I remember when you so loved working at the store, when everyone there was happy and great. Since you are well-known, the people must know about this blog as well. The manager must sometimes go read it. It would be interesting to know how he reacts after reading today's post.

Kelly said...

You did the right thing. Definitely.

Debby said...

I do not write what I will not say directly to a person. He knows how I feel. I try very hard to be gracious, but sometimes you must be direct, and sometimes the words must be plain and stark. In this matter they are so, and it makes me feel kind of bad to be that. I'm sure that he has read the blog. Today, I could see that he was trying harder, and today he worked with his team.

Linda G. said...

I've been in the store a few times recently and have missed seeing you each time. It sounds like I won't be seeing you there again, not in capacity of employee at any rate. I'm glad you had the courage to do what you did to help your coworkers.

Debby said...

No, Linda. It's not like that. I work limited hours because of my clinicals, but I will not be fired. I am still a hard worker, and well liked by employees and customers.